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Havant FOE Newsletter - January 2021

2021 is a key year for the climate because we have vital COP26 climate talks in Glasgow in November and because the prediction of our reaching points of irreversible change are very clear. The UN Environment Programme has just produced an Emissions Gap Report. https://www.unenvironment.org/resources/emissions-gap-report-2019. Emissions did fall 7% in 2020 due to COVID lockdowns, but scientists agree that we e need this scale of emissions cuts every year. We want to prevent the world going above 1.5°C of temperature rise by 2100, but we are actually still on course for 3.2°C of warming.

We have to keep reminding ourselves that climate change is happening now and having devastating effects on some of the poorest communities around the world. And let’s really increase the pressure on politicians and businesses.

There are lots of events planned for 2021 and lots of groups involved. They are mainly linked into the Climate Coalition and the Cop26 Coalition. Lots of groups are also part of the Green New Deal UK which has produced plans for a post COVID recovery with Build Back Better.

The Climate Coalition has been putting pressure on the government under the slogan The Time is Now and there are lots of plans for 2021 including a huge climate festival and a lobby of MPs but they are stressing that we need to get the message out all year.

A comms pack for messaging in January (including a special video) can be downloaded now and another for the annual Show the Love action In February can be downloaded here

The COP26 Coalition also has lots of plans for 2021. You can sign up for their newsletter on this page. They organised a four day conference in November and you can find most of the talks on their website

The Green New Deal group is working on Green Jobs at the moment and has produced a new report showing just what jobs could be created and how much it would cost. By March they will have taken this further and produced detailed figures for each constituency and they are asking us to publicise this as much as possible and to try and meet local MPs.

The Fairtrade Foundation is focusing on the climate crisis for Fairtrade Fortnight in February with a huge virtual festival and we want to use the time to hear about the reality of global heating for many desperately poor communities. Find out more here

There’s a big push to get a Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill through Parliament and this is the main focus for the current XR action. But there are lots of other ways to support it by contacting MPs and raising awareness.

“Planning for the Future” White Paper

The Government appears to have ditched the algorithm that would have almost doubled the number of houses expected to be built in Havant. However we are waiting to find out what will happen about the rest of the Bill which could reduce democratic involvement in planning decisions.

Local Plan

We submitted our responses to Havant Borough’s Changes to their Pre-Submission Local Plan to 2037, last month, and are waiting to know whether any of our views, especially on environmental issues, have been taken on board. Even if they are not, all comments will be passed to the Planning Inspectors, when the Plan is finally submitted to them.

Havant Borough Council and Planning

We are a member of Havant Residents’ Alliance. Our position is to oppose those applications that threaten the environment, even with “mitigation” e.g. developments on foraging sites for brent geese and waders.

Where developments go ahead we ask for the best low carbon building standards: a high level of insulation, and low carbon heating and power e.g. no gas, installation of solar PV panels or heat pumps; good walking and cycle routes plus secure cycle stores and EV charging points. Council policy is now for a Net Gain in Biodiversity.

To ensure this we want existing trees, hedgerows and vegetation to be retained as far as possible, with replanting where necessary with native species, including large deciduous trees. Additional trees should be planted to assist with carbon reduction.

We also want to ensure that hedgerows, trees and vegetation are adequate to provide wildlife corridors through and around sites. A variety of bird and bat boxes on trees and houses are advised plus reptile refuges where appropriate.

We support developments on brownfield sites over greenfield, but current housing targets cannot be reached on brownfield alone. (You might wish to debate the targets).

Pat Brooks has also produced a really useful list of local planning applications and if you’d like a copy, or could get involved with contesting these, please contact [email protected]

Events Coming Up

Portsmouth Green Drinks meeting – Thursday 14th January at 8pm. Professor Steve Fletcher will talk about the University of Portsmouth’s Revolution Plastics, a transformative programme focusing on sustainability and the environment.

The UK’s International Contribution – the sixth carbon budget and net zero webinar – Thursday 14th  January 10-11am.  An online session to mark the start of 2021 – they year of COP26 – dedicated to exploring the Climate Change Committee’s advice on the Sixth Carbon Budget as a fair and ambitious contribution to the Paris Agreement.

The Climate Change Committee has organised a whole series of webinars over the next few weeks and you can find the details here

The next meeting of Hampshire Climate Action Network is on Saturday 23rd January 9.45 for 10.00 by Zoom. If you’d like to join it, email to ask for the zoom link, and to suggest items for the agenda. [email protected]

You’ll get the agenda and Zoom link nearer the date.

Bye Bye Plastic talk – Wednesday 27rd January 12-1pm The London Natural History Museum hosts three speakers: a scientist researching the impact of plastic pollution on seabirds; an activist who successfully campaigned for a single use plastic ban on their home island of Bali and a photographer raising awareness through a unique portrayal of plastic debris.

Your Better Nature – A series of thought-provoking webinars United Nations Association: Climate & Oceans on Wednesday 27 January, 3 February and 10 February.

Environment Talks: How Your Pounds can Protect our Planet talk – Thursday 28th January 5:30-6:30pm.  Whether you’re just beginning your journey into more sustainable living or are 10 steps ahead of the masses, one thing that is often ignored is thinking about where our money goes. No, we’re not talking about what you buy but where your money is stored.  Hosted by Impact Hub King’s Cross.

RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch 29th-31st January. Enjoy an hour with wildlife and discover the wildlife on your doorstep.

Don’t forget that Havant Climate Alliance meets via Zoom most Wednesdays

Contact [email protected] if you’d like the details

Find out more on their website. https://havantclimatealliance.wordpress.com/ or Or follow them on Facebook or Twitter: @HavClimate

Havant’s Lesser Known Wildlife (and how we can help it)

Wednesday, 27th January 2021 from 19:30 UTC-20:30 UTC

Price: free · Duration: 1 hr

Come and find out about some of the less well-known wildlife species that call Havant home and what you can do to help them survive – and even bring back species that have been lost. This is a great opportunity hear from local wildlife gardener and conservation activist Martin Hampton, who will be sharing his knowledge of the local wildlife, sharing some examples of practical action in the borough and inspiring listeners to do their own bit to help boost biodiversity. Please sign up via the Action Network link provided to receive a Zoom link to this event. https://actionnetwork.org/…/havants-less-known-wildlife…

Coastal Group

The coast and local harbours are a huge focus just now, with sea level rise, failing sea defences, sewage and nutrient pollution, natural habits under threat, and many other issues.

So we’ve formed a small coastal sub-group within Havant Climate Alliance and Havant Friends of the Earth to focus on them.

We’ve started by joining the Hayling Island Environmental Forum, being chaired by Alan Mak, MP.

And we’re now stakeholders on the Hayling Island Coastal Management Strategy, which will report in 2022 with a strategy to take Hayling to 2120.

They’re currently in the data collection phase, and we recently had our first stakeholder consultation workshops.

More details at https://coastalpartners.org.uk/project/hayling-island-coastal-management-strategy-2120/

If you’d like to be involved, or be on our mailing list, please drop an email to [email protected].

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