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Kingston
Environment News

       

Welcome 

to our July 2021 issue 





Welcome to this month's joint newsletter of Kingston Environment Centre and Transition Town Kingston



Nothing much on the pandemic front (apart from a new Secretary of State for Health) changed in June, so some restriction on events and numbers persist for now, and, though more indoor activities and events are happening (provisionally) we  recommend that you continue to check websites before setting out so that you and others stay safe. Check the current Covid rules for Kingston here. But at least summer weather and current Covid rules permit outdoor activities which should keep us usefully occupied for a bit. 

So scroll down or use the Contents column below to find something green and interesting to do in Kingston. Local news and activities take priority in the newsletter and within sections - and most of the local groups below have their own websites, social media and newsletters – so if you are particularly interested in any of them, follow their links to find out more and join in their activities. If you'd like more news from elsewhere, try some of the sources listed here

Next issue

Notes to contributors, current and future
If you normally contribute items to this newsletter, or would like to, and haven’t heard from us recently, please subscribe to our contributors’ list via this sign-up form to get our requests and reminders - and make sure they are not disappearing into your spam folder!  You can update your own contact details in this list or unsubscribe at any time. 
     We look forward to hearing about more environmental activities, on-line or in the real world of Kingston, as and when possible - we try to give local news and campaigns top billing, so do please keep them coming in. Do use this newsletter to promote new local green groups or enterprises – and also to check what's already happening locally to avoid clashes.
     In any case, please send us your environmental news and updates in good time to feature in the next newsletter which will go out on or just before 1st of next month. According to Mailchimp, 58% of our 800+ readers frequently click the links in this newsletter and 23% do so sometimes, a good number of engaged readers worth reaching.

If you have problems viewing this newsletter, please click the link at the very top of this page to see it in your browser.

May contents

This is our standard list of contents, with links to local green groups and events near the top and more general ones further down - not all are live every month and occasional extras may be added! But don't miss out on interesting items by skipping too selectively!

Campaigning together
Kingston Environment Centre
Transition Town Kingston
Save the World Club
Kingston Environment Forum + Green Volunteering
Local sowing and growing
The Community Brain
Kingston Biodiversity Network
Habitats & Heritage
Berrylands Nature Reserve
XR Kingston
Kingston Council news
Money, money, money
Nature notes
Have your say
Waste matters
Energy and transport news
Climate crisis updates
Food, glorious food
Reviews + Updates on all things environmental
More things we like this month
What else is happening soon?
 

Campaigning together 


"The future is written nowhere…you have to write it." Amin Maalouf

Please tell us about local and national green campaigns we should highlight in this section. See the Have Your Say and Kingston Council sections and look out for Megaphone Man for more opportunities. Please take action - if not us, who? 

Seething Wells
The Seething Wells Action Group is asking all  Kingston councillors (and known candidates) to sign a pledge to protect Seething Wells, and also asks us all to email our local councillors asking them to help save this natural asset by supporting compulsory purchase of the site. Even if the Seething Wells SINC (Site of Importance for Nature Conservation, now At Risk because of the owner’s campaign of destruction) is outside your ward, it could be an asset for everyone in Kingston as a publicly or community owned accessible wildlife centre. SWAG AGM is coming soon. Find out more and join SWAG on Facebook.
 
Tell the UK government to stop airport expansion
Please sign FoE’s petition demanding that  PM Boris Johnson commits to no new airport expansion. He’s trying to prove his green credentials before the UK hosts the UN climate talks this November, so this is the perfect time to ask - and expansion of Heathrow would certainly affect us in Kingston as well as encouraging more carbon-intensive flights and a worsening climate crisis.

Sam and Simon’s cycle ride around Spain 
Setting off on Saturday 3rd July, 9.30am, from Memorial Gardens, Kingston
Join Sam & Simon on the initial part of their cycle ride! After Covid rules necessitated a week's delay and revision of their route, Sam and Simon will be setting out on Saturday 3rd, and everyone is welcome to bring their bikes and cycle part of the way with them, or even just to wave them off. Their month-long cycle ride aims to raise awareness of - and money for - the campaign against oil and gas exploration in Surrey and Sussex, with a specific focus on the controversial oil site in Horse Hill, Horley, and to promote cycling as a sustainable form of transport. Like their Facebook page for more details, to follow their journey, and to donate to a local good cause: the legal challenge to oil and gas exploration in Surrey and Sussex and/or The Full Cycle project, run by Gary at The Circulatory in Kingston. Read more here.

Time for the UK to deliver real leadership


Sign Greenpeace’s petition to the Prime Minister here 

Cut Carbon Not Forests recently launched a joint NGO Statement to tell the UK Government that burning biomass from forests in massive power stations threatens climate action and should not be subsidised. In response to a call for evidence on the role of biomass in achieving ‘net zero’ climate emissions, they made clear that burning trees for electricity at the scale currently relied upon by the UK simply cannot be sustainable. The joint statement is supported by Cut Carbon Not Forests, RSPB, Friends of the Earth, The Wildlife Trusts, WWF, Greenpeace, and many others, 22 environmental NGOs and campaigns in total.

Useful resources for campaigners

 

Find contact details for your councillors, MP, MEPs, and LA members at WriteToThem.com  Rather than repeating our advice on writing every month, we have saved it here on the TTK website.

TheyWorkForYou shows what MPs have been speaking and voting on recently, with a page on the website devoted to recent votes and parliamentary business on the environment),

Info on Citizens’ Assemblies: Participo offers info on the research on and practice of innovative citizen participation – useful and interesting for anyone interested or involved in planning Citizens’ Assemblies.

 

News


Hampton Court Garden Festival
KEC will have a planter at the Festival as part of the Community Brain/Farm of the Future garden designed by Georgia Neesham. This innovative garden will feature eight planted wheelie-bins to represent the recent nationwide loss of allotment space - literally dumping our growing spaces into the bin! Fingers and toes crossed that the sweetpeas we planted for this will flower in time!

 


Coming soon


KEC Grand Fete
Saturday 24 July, 11.00am – 5.00pm

- with local environmental and community groups, the London Korean Dance Society, Spring Grove Morris group and live music . We also hope to have some craft stalls, Dr Bike, activities for children and a vegetarian lunch. 
 

Regular events at KEC and on-line


Stitch and Chat
Back on 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month, 7.00 – 9.00pm

if we exceed the permitted 6 we can break into smaller groups. Some of our members have been inspired by the group Stitches for Survival who are creating panels which will be part of a visual display at COP 26 in Glasgow this November. The group hopes to make enough knitted, crocheted or material panels to stretch for 1.5 miles to represent the 1.5 degree target in the Paris Agreement. If you would like to join Stitch and Chat email Pat and she will put you on the mailing list.
 
Socially distanced gardening 
Saturdays, 10.00am -  3.00pm, and also Thursdays,
but email Pat  to make sure
We welcome volunteers to help us in the yard and the outside planting areas with gardening, and also need people to help with carpentry, fundraising and events. Our photo shows one of our volunteers Ryan with the space saving vertical planter shelf that he made using wood recycled from pallets. Please do get in touch if you have spare time and would like to volunteer.
 
Plant sales
We usually hold these to coincide with the New Malden Farmers Market and hope to continue over the summer. A big thankyou to Habitats and Heritage who donated  a car-load of plants in June left over from their own plant sale..



Listen or catch up with previous shows on Mixcloud..



See the KEC website calendar for info and updates on events and activities at Kingston Environment Centre, 1 Kingston Road, New Malden, KT3 3PE.
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TRANSITION TOWN KINGSTON

News


TTK Energy Group
A reminder that there is a lot of useful advice from the EG and other sources in the TTK energy initiatives section of the TTK website.

GreenZone 2021 .
Next planning meeting, Monday 5 July
TTK is taking the lead in exploring what a GreenZone event might look like in 2021. If it happens (COVID-19 dependent), it will be between September 20th – 26th (Recycle week) somewhere quite central to Kingston. Please share your ideas and what you might contribute here in our short survey. We are honing possibilities and meeting again on Monday the 5th July and hope to have some more clarity at that point. There’s a really strong desire to come together this year and encompass the growth that has happened over the last 12 months.  The GreenZone is definitely a collaborative event, bringing us all together in service of celebrating and strengthening the diverse ways we all create a more resilient and flourishing community together. If you want to get involved directly, please contact Alison.
 


Coming soon


Stitch in Time
Thursday 1 July, 7.00 - 8.30ish, The Circulatory

TTK's monthly sociable sewing sessions return - find out more and book your place via our Facebook Events page or TTK Events on the website.

The TTK Squash and Tomato Plant Book Club meeting: Carbon Choices
Monday 19 July, 6.30 - 7.30pm, Zoom or IRL 
 
Paul and Alison are convening a conversation about Neil Kitching’s book, Carbon Choices (see Reviews in our June issue), an informal gathering where everyone is welcome, some will have read the book, some won’t. We can share what we’ve learned from the book and explore how that is influencing our choices and plans. Do join in - more details here or please email Alison for details.

TTK AGM - new date
Tuesday 20 July,  6.30pm, The Circulatory

Everyone is invited - more info and updates here 
 
 

Transition news and events


The What Next? Summit – Call to Action
Read the 5 provocations that follow from the Summit in March

Transition London & SE Hub Online Meet- Ups
Keep an eye on their Facebook page for further interesting and encouraging meet-ups in 2021.

Find out more about the wider Transition Network.  
Find more Transition activities, discussions and events in London and the S E on Facebook

Regular TTK events


TTK management team meetings 
Last Tuesdays of the month
Details will be posted on the TTK Facebook page. 

Website Website
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News

Keep up with, and donate towards, Save The World Club's excellent food redistribution work during the pandemic here and/or make sure you don’t miss any news by following us on Facebook. For example, read about STWC's latest project - Square 1 Cafes - A Call for Community Action for post-Covid Social Recovery. 



What's on at The Circulator
 

Regular events


TTK's Stitch in Time
1st Thursday of every month, 7.00 - 8.30ish, next one Thurs 1 July, booking essential

Covid-19 restrictions currently permit indoor meetings of up to 6 people - for last-minute changes and/or book a place see TTK's Facebook Events page or TTK Events on the website. If no one books, we will postpone to the next session due. We will remain cautious: there is plenty of room upstairs at the Circulatory for social spacing, though it is not always possible to keep one’s distance while helping each other with sewing tasks, so please bring and wear masks and use hand sanitizer on arrival. We would welcome a few volunteers, especially once we can expand a bit, who could help other people with their sewing projects alongside getting on with their own sewing and enjoying some sociable stitching. 
 


A little bit extra to STWC -


AmazonSmile customers can now support Save The World Club. Simply turn on AmazonSmile whenever you shop with Amazon, select Save The World Club as your chosen charity, and a small percentage of each purchase is then donated automatically to STWC.

The Circulatory, Unit 5, Chiltern Way, (at the bottom of Chiltern Drive), adjacent to Berrylands Railway Station
Website Website
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A network of local environmental organisations covering a wide range of blue and green issues in Kingston 



News 

KEF in Kingston's Covid Recovery Task Force 
The Communities Task Force and its various sub-groups continue to meet roughly monthly, with KEF represented in the Steering Group, and in the Volunteering and Health and Wellbeing subgroups. We publish occasional updates and useful links on the KEF website and we email KEF members with relevant information and opportunities that come up.at these meetings.  

Green Funding Collaborative 
This small group, brought together by KEF and KVA, has now completed its first task, creating a survey to inform KVA and others about local green groups, their work and their aspirations for funding.  Local environmental organisations, large and small, that are interested in applying for funding for  green projects in Kingston are invited to join the Kingston Green Funding Collaborative by completing this short survey which will help KVA to pass on relevant funding opportunities as they arise. We hope this will help green groups to access the funds they need, and also that survey responses may enable collaborations on some green projects and funding applications.

Community hubs - an opportunity for Kingston green groups?
There are empty and underused properties and spaces all over Kingston (see, for example, Kingstonfirst's vacant units project), and plenty of good green ideas for using them, like Camden’s ‘ThinkandDo’ community space, pictured here, for people in Camden to come together to develop ideas and projects tackling the climate and ecological crisis, or Save The World Club's Square 1 cafes. Are there other green groups out there that could use a vacant unit in Kingston creatively and sustainably and turn ideas into action? One idea, below, the outcome of a fruitful conversation between TTK, KEF and XR Kingston, could provide a space for many local groups.
 



Event


A collaboration between Transition Town Kingston, XR Kingston and Kingston Environment Forum:
Let's Create a Climate Emergency Centre in Kingston!
Tuesday 13 July, 7.00 - 8.3pm, Zoom
A workshop on Climate Emergency Centres with a 15-20 minute presentation covering everything from how to find the right space, the legal side and outreach, followed by workshops in break-out rooms to come up with ideas that people would like to have as part of their CEC.  Keep the date free and see  Transition Town Kingston, XR Kingston and Kingston Environment Forum Facebook pages for more details and to book your place.
 

 

Green volunteering

Volunteering of all kinds comes up a lot in Covid Recovery Task Force meetings, and as many of our readers are experienced volunteers, organisers of volunteers, novice or aspiring volunteers... we are passing on some of  the news, information and reminders we come across:

Looking to recruit volunteers?
Volunteering Kingston is here to help! Volunteering Kingston is the volunteer centre for Kingston. If you are looking  for more volunteers to support your activities or advice on any aspect of involving volunteers we can help: we have a website where you can advertise volunteering opportunities and a resource bank with advice on a range of different topics; we can provide one-to-one advice on Zoom to support you on various topics such as recruitment, retention, reward and recognition, managing difficult situations, and how to organise volunteers when you are an informal group. Please get in touch any time via enquiry@volunteeringkingston.org.uk or 0300 365 9980 

Get Connected
Connected Kingston is a site dedicated to helping Kingston residents find local activities and navigate local services [and local groups to find helpers and participants]. It is run by the Royal Borough of Kingston Council and Kingston Voluntary Action in conjunction with local charities and statutory organisations. Special training is available to anyone who regularly comes into contact with people that may be struggling to navigate or find local activities or services. Our goal is to help residents of Kingston stay happy, healthy and connected to each other. Contact us here and/or register an activity or find something to do.

Local green organisations, please make sure you are still members of the KEF website and that someone interested will pick up our messages, so that you can contribute and be consulted as and when relevant. New organisations and/or new group representatives are welcome to join too, by clicking the Join Website button at the top of the KEF Home page. And have a look at the website and Facebook page occasionally - there may be a question or issue for you to take up. 

KEF events: we hope to run quarterly discussions (avoiding when possible  the months when KBN hold theirs, maybe even IRL), with the aim of bringing us together, communicating and coordinating with each other better, and reminding ourselves of what we share as a community. Possible future themes for public or smaller round-table discussions include collaboration (how could Kingston’s green groups work better together, especially now that environmental concerns are becoming mainstream?) and Seething Wells nature reserve, but please contact us with other ideas for themes and offers of speakers for a quarterly discussion.

Coordinating KEF: any KEF member-group interested in taking this over this role, which has plenty of scope for expansion and networking, is invited to contact Marilyn, who would like to hand over and stand down before the end of 2021. 

Individuals, there is almost certain to be an organisation or person in the group who can answer your eco-questions or take up local environmental issues or send you in the right direction, so do use the Facebook page to share these. If KEF (or one of the organisations that feature in this newsletter, many of which are KEF members) can’t help, we almost certainly know someone who can. And you don't need to join KEF’s website to access its useful information and resources. 

If you’d like to write something on a green theme that is too long for this newsletter or too broad for more specialist green groups, please send it to us for possible publication in KEF’s blog. 
Website Website
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Local sowing and growing: 
Kingston community gardens   

Hogsmill Community Garden 

Hogsmill Community Garden has a nice video of the June get-together for volunteers at the garden on our  Facebook page. Meditation sessions at the garden, with the sounds of birdsong and the river, are now taking place on Thursdays at 5.00pm.  Donations welcome for the next project, turning Kingston University School of Arts students’ designs for a sheltered workspace and a children's den/hideaway into reality.
On Swan Path, Vineyard Close

Canbury Community Garden

Visitors and helpers are welcome again at our weekend gardening sessions. We’ve been harvesting broad beans, asparagus, gooseberries and rhubarb, and there are always herbs to take home. Muddy Toddlers meet in the Garden twice a week for messy play.
Our “Oldie” hens, Lily,  Chocolate and Daisy, were joined in June by three “Newbies”, Coco, Jasmine and Pingu (pictured above exploring their new home). They had to be kept separate from the Oldies for a week or so, but have now settled in well, mingling with the other three and beginning to learn their places in the pecking order and to lay small eggs. Although they are all ISA Browns, they differ in character as well as appearance: Coco, the darkest one, is the most adventurous.
Between Canbury Gardens, Kingston Riverside [tennis] Club and Kings’ Passage - current access only via our Canbury Gardens gate near the bandstand.
Facebook - Hogsmill Community Garden Facebook - Hogsmill Community Garden
Facebook - Canbury Community Garden Facebook - Canbury Community Garden


Kingston Edible Forest 2100

A food forest planted for the long term with perennial edible flowers, veg and fruit, details on our website. We are there most Sundays and a weekday evening when there's light. Please contact us to check as the gates to the allotment site are locked. 
Knollmead Allotments, Tolworth
KT5 9QP
Website - Edible Forest Garden Website - Edible Forest Garden

Regular gardening sessions


See Facebook pages to confirm opening times and safety rules before turning up.






         

Useful resources for gardeners


Rather than letting this list become every longer, we have moved all the older items to Growing Tips on Transition Town Kingston's website.
  • Go wild in your garden! Together, our gardens are a vast living landscape. With an estimated 24 million gardens in the UK, the way they are cared for can make a big difference to the natural world
    Large or small, ledge or yard, your garden can be a mosaic in a wider network of natural havens linking urban green spaces with nature reserves and the countryside.
  • AllotMe, a recently launched digital platform touted as the “Airbnb for gardens” to enable people who have green spaces they don’t use to rent them out to would-be growers looking for land. Read all about it in Positive News.
  • Community Harvest,Capital Growth’s initiative providing community food gardens with tools, materials and advice to grow more food for their local community. 
  • Buzz Club for the science behind wildlife gardening - a citizen science club, bringing together gardeners and volunteer scientists of all ages to answer important questions about garden wildlife
We believe in giving people ‘permission’ to be brilliant because everyone can be brilliant...

See Kingston Environment Centre's item about the Hampton Court Flower Festival.

One of our murals in Tolworth on the left.
Website Website
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KBN exists to highlight and promote local conservation work in Kingston. 
 

News

Click on an icon below for news of more conservation activities around Kingston - get involved or set up a project of your own.
 



Coming up

The next KBN meeting, a presentation from the Kingston Bee Keepers 
Wednesday 14 July
Kingston Bee Keepers will talk about the fascinating world of honey bees, and part of the meeting will be on engaging with the planning system to support biodiversity - stay tuned for future updates and booking instructions. Although we are investigating how to run future meetings in person, this meeting will be virtual. As always, it will be free to attend but booking will be essential 

Regular events


Every Wednesday is Wildlife Wednesday on the RBK social media feeds, with a  small factoid about local and seasonal wildlife. 
 
Every Monday there’s a Reading Nature session with the Library Service on their social media - a short video encouraging people to go outside and explore green spaces to find wildlife

See the website or Facebook page for other KBN activities
Website Website
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Habitats & Heritage acts for the natural and historic environment in south and west London. In a time where the health of our environment and each other has never been more important, and never more interlinked, we invite readers to support our work by signing up to join the new Habitats & Heritage Supporter Scheme today for just £10 a year. 
     Click on the icons below for our news and information, and sign up for our newsletter to hear about all the news, opportunities and events from the Habitats & Heritage community. 
Website Website
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 Berrylands Nature Reserve

Read our blog: after every event,or when there is some exciting news about our nature reserve or local green space, we try to write a quick blog post to let everyone know. We love feedback and ideas so please do keep in contact by emailing us or via social media. 
 

Regular events 


See our website and Facebook page.
Website Website
Facebook Facebook
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Instagram Instagram

XR Kingston   


 

News


Extinction Rebellion Kingston in the news
XR Kingston made headlines in the Surrey Comet when activists targeted the Barclays branch in the town centre on Saturday 18th June to highlight the bank's ongoing links to the fossil fuel industry. Dressed as cleaners nicknamed The Dirty Scrubbers they theatrically washed the bank to highlight its funding of the dirty fossil fuel industries that are driving the climate crisis.
 

Regular events


For XR Kingston meetings, actions, film shows coming up check Events on the Facebook page. 
 
 

From the XR network


Sign up for The Impossible
Launching soon, The Impossible will feature stories of resilience and creativity from around the world to find a way through the crisis. Find out more.

News from global Extinction Rebellion here. Read the latest London XR news and sign up for the e-newsletter here.  
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Kingston Council news                        

Let's Talk 
Now on Kingston Council's Let's Talk portal, a consultation on local grass verges / wildways. 

Our Streets engagement hub
“We are committed to tackling climate change, improving air quality and enabling our residents and visitors to use sustainable travel options. In 2019, the council declared a Climate Emergency in the borough.  This was just the first step. We are now in the process of identifying key areas for improvement, with the goal of making our borough carbon neutral by 2038. We are continuing to invest in Sustainable Transport infrastructure to encourage active travel and reduce reliance on high polluting vehicles. Initiatives include expanding our cycle network, supporting the roll-out of dockless and e-bikes, installing more electric vehicle charging points, and creating ‘Healthy Streets”.  We really want your views. We want to make sure that we continue to listen to your ideas, comments and suggestions about how to improve our programmes and make Kingston cleaner and greener for everyone.” Participate here.
 
See the Council's recently redesigned website for the latest news.

Have your say - 

See Campaigning Together and Council News above.

 Money, money, money... 



Coming soon: Kingston Kingston Community Lottery
Kingston Council will soon be launching the Kingston Community Lottery, with the aim of supporting and raising funds for good causes in the borough. See Events below to find out more.

Boost Choose Now Change Lives 
Grants between £1,000 and £10,000 to support a range of community groups and organisations are open to all non-profit organisations. The funders are calling for all community sports clubs, community action groups, youth work, music groups and food banks to nominate themselves. Find out more, deadlines: 18 July or 26 September. Other funding opps via Semble.

DPD Eco Fund
The Eco Fund is funded by DPD's circular economy initiative to protect the environment. Anyone can apply for funding from the DPD Eco Fund, although they particularly encourage schools and educational facilities across the UK working on green projects with their students and start-up companies working on developing environmentally friendly products to apply. The Eco Fund has donated over £200,000 to worthy sustainable projects since it started in January 2020. Click here to get details of the DPD Eco Fund and apply.

See also the item about a new Green Funding Collaborative in the Kingston Environment Forum section above.
 

Events

 
Kingston Community Lottery - Good Cause Launch
Thursday 1 July, 3.00 – 4.00pm, on-line 

Local good causes can find out more and register for this event here.

People's Postcode Lottery's virtual funding workshop
July 22nd, 10.00 am, Zoom

Good causes in Kingston & Surbiton are invited to learn how to apply for funding and hear from the People’s Postcode Lottery charities team and local MP Ed Davey. RSVP to reserve a place.

Nature notes   


Get InVOLEd! Spring 2022 release date confirmed
CitizenZoo’s Get InVOLEd project had rewilding expert and consultant Derek Gow down to assess the Hogsmill River along with representatives from Southeast Rivers Trust, Thames Water, the Environment Agency and Kingston Council. The discussions were around the Spring 2022 water vole release date with river restorations planned over the coming years. Read more and sign up for Citizen Zoo newsletters.

Watch out for the Oak Processionary Moth
When you are out and about enjoying local parks and open spaces this summer keep a lookout for the Oak Processionary Moth (OPM) – a pest that can pose serious health risks for those who come into contact with it as well to oak trees. It feeds on the leaves of oak trees and creates nests in branches and tree trunks. The tiny hairs from the pests can cause nasty rashes, conjunctivitis type symptoms and breathing difficulties for anyone who comes into contact. 

 

Kingston’s Review of Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation
Read the review here


Bring nature to a window near you
Create for Mental Health agree with us that watching wildlife is very relaxing and good for our wellbeing – and have produced this little video to prove it. It’s almost as good as watching IRL!

Safeguarding biodiversity
The UK’s first "biobank" is archiving DNA samples from endangered species in an effort to safeguard the planet's declining biodiversity. The initiative, from National Museums Scotland and the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, is named Cryoark. Conservationists say they have already banked 8,000 samples from more than 1,000 species, including the critically-endangered Sumatran rhino and Scottish wildcat. Read more in The Independent’s Climate News online or sign up for weekly climate updates

Useful websites and apps for nature-lovers


Identify a butterfly
The RSPB’s advice on planting for nature
Friends of Ham Lands work with local naturalists to preserve and enhance the natural habitats of Ham Lands, a Local Nature Reserve right next to Kingston. You can read current and previous newsletters on their Newsletter page.
Citizen Zoo - a social enterprise dedicated to rewilding in the UK – sign up for their newsletter highlighting lots of lovely rewilding news and events.
The London Natural History Society Virtual Natural History Talk series brings together naturalists, experts and specialists via Zoom. Talks are recorded and you can catch up with them here
The Seek app uses your smart phone to identify the plants and animals all around us, and can make the daily walk much more interesting.  
BirdNET can identify 984 of the most common bird species of North America and Europe. from song recorded on your phone.
UK Bird Sounds
Backyard Nature.

Waste matters  


Repair What You Wear 
“Mending is an eco action. Mending saves you money.”  Lots of lovely free resource to teach mending skills on the Repair What You Wear website. And/or come along to a Stitch in Time sociable sewing session  - see Save the World Club Events for info.
 
Stop food waste
John Hewlett, volunteer with Save the World Club, was inspired by their efforts directing food and other essentials to those who most need it and has started a petition calling on the government to mandate the donation of supermarket food that cannot be sold to foodbanks in the UK. According to a recent report by The Independent, British supermarkets are throwing away the equivalent of 190 million meals a year that could be given to the hungry, and only donating nine per cent. Read more in the Surrey Comet

Energy and transport news


In case you haven’t yet done the simple things to save energy in your home
Get government advice on energy efficiency here and/or from the government approved Simple Energy Advice website’s advice on ways to save energy.
 
 

Event 


Fighting the Climate Emergency in North Wales, Mozambique... and Berrylands
Wed 4 August, 7.45pm, doors open 7.00pm, cornerHOUSE Community Arts Centre, Surbiton, KT6 7SB


Bob Dean, volunteer and performer at the CornerHouse and also a high voltage electrical engineer,  will be talking about his experiences on large scale wind power and hydroelectricity projects in the UK and Africa, and discussing the issues around the climate crisis. In the second half of the evening Bob will bring the debate closer to home in considering what is being done to combat the climate crisis in and around Berrylands. Why Berrylands you ask? Well, come along to the cornerHOUSE and all will be revealed. Tickets £4, book here.   

Climate crisis updates  

 

There’s always plenty of bad news, for example that the UK’s climate leadership is undermined by inadequate policies and poor implementation.so to counter that, here is some good(-ish) news from The Independent’s Climate News (read more online or sign up for weekly climate updates here).
 
On firms tackling their carbon footprints
Some of Britain's best-loved institutions - the Royal Mail and Marks & Spencer's sandwiches - are moving to tackle their carbon footprint. A fleet of new electric vehicles (EVs) has been announced at Royal Mail's Bristol delivery office, replacing all 23 diesel vans to reduce emissions. The post office will also be equipped with six electric charging posts. Royal Mail reports that it has reduced carbon emission by nearly 32 per cent from 2005 levels. And Britain’s largest sandwich maker, which supplies M&S along with supermarket chains Morrisons and Sainsbury's, has pledged to make almost half of new products meat-free. Supplier Greencore said it plans to introduce 1,200 new sandwiches by the end of 2021 and of these 40 per cent will be vegan or vegetarian. The vegan options include ingredients like chickpea-based mayonnaise and cheese made from cashew nuts.
 
Environment Now – the facts
The Earth is changing faster than at any point in human memory as a result of human-caused global heating and The Guardian is tracking the changes via the vital signs, from carbon dioxide levels to Arctic sea ice, taken from data sources including Nasa, the US National Snow and Ice Data Center and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 

What to do?
Possible suggests five key areas where we can all take action to tackle the climate crisis.
 


Events


Great Big Green Week
18 – 26 September

The Climate Coalition’s national week of events celebrating action on climate change in the run-up to COP26 - communities across the country will join together for the Great Big Green Week, the biggest event for climate and nature ever in the UK, and everyone’s invited! Find out more and get involved.

Useful resources


Recommended by The Climate Coalition
The Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, “a non-profit organisation that supports informed debate on energy and climate change issues in the UK.”
 Carbon Brief “ UK-based website covering the latest developments in climate science, climate policy and energy policy. We specialise in clear, data-driven articles and graphics to help improve the understanding of climate change...”

CarbonCopy's brilliantly designed map showing us the level of climate ambition from councils across the country - from places that have not yet declared a climate emergency to places targeting net-zero carbon emissions by 2030.

Fossil Free News
There’s so much happening in the climate movement — it can be hard to keep up. Get highlights from campaigns everywhere working for a #FossilFree world, delivered twice a month.
 
Off-set your carbon footprint...
It is estimated that an average UK household emits around four tonnes of CO₂ each year. Even if you’ve pared your carbon footprint  down to the minimum, there will still be carbon dioxide emissions associated with your everyday life. The World Land Trust Carbon Balanced calculators enable you to calculate how much – and then offset it with a donation towards tree-planting and conservation projects around the world. If that’s not your thing, there are other ways to offset – tell us your favourites.

What is COP26, How does it work, Why is it important? A short explanatory video on YouTube

Climate Outreach’s How to have a climate change conversation – Talking climate.

Environment Now – the facts
The Earth is changing faster than at any point in human memory as a result of human-caused global heating and The Guardian is tracking the changes via the vital signs, from carbon dioxide levels to Arctic sea ice, taken from data sources including Nasa, the US National Snow and Ice Data Center and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 

Want to take action on climate change, but don’t know where to start? Possible has divided their campaigns across five key areas where we can all take action to tackle the climate crisis. Click the buttons on Possible’s website to find out what you can do right now to help.

Food, glorious food...


The Good Food Co-op
A Kingston not-for-profit enterprise championing local, spray-free, ethically sourced, seasonal, healthy food for all. The profits from every full price veg or fruit box subsidise a box for someone local in need. Find out more and order a veg or fruit box.

Traffic-light system of ‘eco-scores’ to be piloted on British food labels
UK government and major brands back bid to help consumers assess environmental impact of products. Read more.

Creating a Sustainable Food Future
The world is projected to hold nearly 10 billion people by 2050. Sustainably feeding this exploding population requires meeting three needs simultaneously. According to World Resources Institute research, the world will have to close a gap of 56% between the amount of food available today and that required by 2050. It must reduce agriculture’s impact on climate, ecosystems and water. And it needs to ensure that agriculture supports inclusive economic and social development. Yet today, hundreds of millions of people remain hungry, agriculture uses almost half the world’s vegetated land, and food production generates one-quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions. At the same time, more than 1 billion tons of food is lost or wasted every year, while diets in many parts of the world are driving demand for more resource-intensive foods. Read the report Creating a Sustainable Food Future A Menu of Solutions to Feed Nearly 10 Billion People by 2050.

Reviews 

We read the reviews so you don’t have to... (We haven’t read or watched everything in this section, but we think they all sound interesting.) 
 

Read 

 
 Salmon
The spring edition of Kingston's magazine for ethically-minded people who live, work and play in the borough and the surrounding area is just out. Look out for it around Kingston, or read it on-line by clicking on the picture on the right. 

 
Slowdown by Danny Dorling
A powerful and counterintuitive argument that we should welcome the current slowdown-of population growth, economies, and technological innovation. Drawing from an incredibly rich trove of global data, Dorling book reveals that human progress has been slowing down since the early 1970s. The rate of technological progress is also rapidly dropping but rather than lament this turn of events, Dorling embraces it as a moment of promise and a move toward stability. Find out more.
 
Post Growth: Life After Capitalism by Tim Jackson
Capitalism is broken. The relentless pursuit of more has delivered climate catastrophe, social inequality and financial instability - and left us ill-prepared for life in a global pandemic. Tim Jackson dares us to imagine a world beyond capitalism - a place where relationship and meaning take precedence over profits and power. Post Growth is both a manifesto for system change and an invitation to rekindle a deeper conversation about the nature of the human condition. Find out more.
 
The Day the World Stops Shopping by J B MacKinnon
Over-consumption is at the root of the planet’s environmental crisis. One solution, proposed by author J B MacKinnon, is that we should simply buy less. But would that really work? Read a Guardian review/interview.

 
A Blueprint for a Green Future from the Cambridge Zero Policy Forum 
“This is a crucial moment for the UK and the world. We are dealing with a pandemic, but we must also take urgent action to prevent an even more destructive environmental future. How we choose to prioritise an economic and societal recovery will dramatically affect the outcomes of both for future generations...The Cambridge Zero Policy Forum has brought together ideas from senior academics across the University of Cambridge to present a multidisciplinary perspective and series of recommendations for policymakers and industry in an ambitious new report..." 

Stories to save the world: the new wave of climate fiction
Novelists are facing up to the climate crisis in a new genre, cli-fi.  Claire Armitstead talks to some cli-fi writers in The Guardian.



Watch or listen

 
Our Planet Now
The BBC has helpfully filed all its environmental programmes and resources in one place, to help us understand the challenges facing our planet and how we can address them: everything from the basic facts to the latest technological solutions, from tips on what you can do to make a difference to inspiring films about the natural world; and the lowdown on what a changing climate could mean for your local area.

Rethink the Future
Leading thinkers from across the globe give BBC Radio 4 their route maps to a better tomorrow, and how the world should change after the coronavirus pandemic.. Catch up here. And based on the podcast, a book on this global 'reset moment', examining life after the pandemic.

 


Watch

 
The People Vs Climate Change
BBC documentary, available for 10 months

Follow members of the UK’s first ever Citizens Assembly on climate change, where 108 ordinary Brits are tasked with deciding what we should do to meet our climate change goals. Organised by Parliament, this historic event sees members of the public grapple with big questions about our future. As the Assembly members learn the science of climate change from experts and hear Sir David Attenborough thank them for giving up their time to this task, they begin to realise the huge significance of the decisions they must make. The film follows seven Assembly members from all over the UK, who each bring their own perspective to the climate change debate... Our comment: “It’s heartening to see how people can change their minds and come up with quite radical proposals when faced with the facts – let’s hope their trust in government to act on their proposals is justified.” Catch up on i-Player here. 

 

Regular updates on all things environmental 


Most of them will send environmental news direct to your inbox:
EcoWatch - online environmental news, also on Facebook  
The Independent environment news  
The Guardian environment news and The Guardian’s weekly Green Light email.
The BBC environment news
The Ecologist, currently celebrating its 50th year; its impressive archive includes the landmark A Blueprint for Survival (1972) outlining the need for a serious economic and environmental overhaul
Fix the Planet - New Scientist’s monthly dose of climate optimism

 

More things we like this month   

 

What else is happening soon?  

Stir to Action's Playground for the New Economy Festival, summer 2021 
13th - 15th July, Selgars Mill, Devon

3 days of conversation, workshops, sustainable food, wood-fired sauna, games, craft beer and live music with the Transition Bounce Forward team, other Transition Groups and amazing community activists from across the country, this time at our very own site, the New Economy Centre at Selgars Mill in Devon. Find out more and book tickets and accommodation.

5x15 on Rivercide
Thurs, 22 July, 6.30pm, online via Zoom

A discussion with George Monbiot, Franny Armstrong and Peter Armstrong on their quest to make rivers clean, swimmable, and a rich diverse natural habitat, and about their innovative, "live documentary" Rivercide, + other leading experts and campaigners. Find out more and book

And find out more about the live documentary Rivercide and how you can watch it live on Wednesday 14 July at 7.00pm.


London Open House 2021
4 - 5 September

This year Open House will be a festival of rediscovering the richness of the city after months stuck inside. It will be a celebration of the buildings, parks and places that we’ve all been missing, local places and spaces that are important to local communities, such as community centres, volunteer centres, local parks and open spaces. Find out more and propose a place which would fit this bill, or offer a community-led tour or talk.
 
The Great Big Green Week
 18 - 26 September

The Climate Coalition invites  communities like ours to host thousands of events and activities across the UK, an opportunity to raise the profile of climate change and how it is impacting the people and places we love here in Kingston and across the world. Together we can show our communities, local decision makers and the UK government that it’s time to step up. Find out more.

Buy Nothing Day
November
The international day of protest against consumerism. In North America, the United Kingdom, Finland, and Sweden, Buy Nothing Day is held the day after U.S. Thanksgiving, Find out more.

Kingston Voluntary Action events and training
Ongoing

Affordable / free training, designed specifically for the voluntary sector - topics from First Aid to Crowdfunding + some tailor-made ones just for you.  KVA also offer free easy to use websites to community groups. Find out more here.
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