News from the Climate Change and Environment Group January 2017

Introduction: The Climate Change and Environment Group is founded on our Labour values of social justice and responsibility towards others.  We share urgent concerns about the environment and climate change, and warmly invite Party members in Hornsey and Wood Green to contribute ideas and suggestions, and to join us.

 An informal group started in autumn 2014 in the run-up to the General Election and with the active support of Catherine West, our new MP.  During the campaign we produced several briefings for her and for party activists, and also organised a public meeting at Middle Lane on climate change with Maria Eagle, then shadow spokesman. This was very successful, and attracted over 70 people, a standing-room only audience.

The group aims to provide information on climate change, energy and environment issues both locally and nationally to members. It is affiliated to SERA, the Socialist Environment & Resources Association, which is Labour’s official environment campaign.

Public Meetings in 2016

In 2016 the CC & E Group organised the following:

-a significant contribution to the Hornsey & Wood Green Labour Party conference in January, suggesting speakers on the environment, and organising a successful workshop on ‘the consequences of climate change and environmental policy in the EU.' Speakers included Murad Qureshi of the London Assembly, Lucy Anderson MEP, spokesperson for the European Labour Partyon Transport and Tourism, John Sauven, Director of Greenpeace and Christian Wolmar, the authority on rail transport

-a public meeting on ‘Tackling Our Polluted Air: The Vital Role of the EU; this meeting attracted around 25 people and resulted in a lively debate about the the serious impact of air pollution on health, especially on young people and the contribution of EU policy. There were speakers from Greenpeace, Client Earth, the London Assembly, the European Labour Party and Kings College London

Contact Details: Norman Beddington, Secretary, Climate Change & Environment Group, Hornsey & Wood Green Labour Party nb@ecodev.co.uk

Upcoming meeting:

 

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MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 08.01.17 AT 47 BARRINGTON RD N8

 Present:       Jenny Taylor (chair),Alan Morton, Jill Boswell, Sydney Charles, Jonathan Boswell, Tony CumberbircJanet Boston                                                 Helen Mayer, Norman Beddington (Secretary), Nicky Gavron, Catherine West MP  Apologies:   Peray Ahmet, Fred Fitzke, Natan Doron, Fried Meinert, Julian Sainsbury

Website Norman reported that he is keeping our website page on the H&WG LP site updated. From now on agendas, minutes, interesting reports and documents would be going up. As an example the SERA autumn newsletter is up there. Sydney said that she would provide a link to the notes on her successful Hornsey ward talk on air pollution for the site.

SERA AGM Jill and Norman attended on 26.11.16. Jill reported that Melanie Smallman and Jake Sumner, the current co-chairs were working well together, and the organisation has now hired a worker for admin and supporting local groups. Norman reported that Keir Starmer gave an excellent talk about the Brexit process and the environment, and how it was a main objective of his to ensure that environmental legislation is not overlooked in the Omnibus bill transferring EC legislation to the UK.

 Discussion on Air Pollution Norman summarised Haringey’s response to to Sadiq Khan’s air pollution consultation – sent by Peray Ahmet, and written by Edwin Leigh. This was thought to be a good response. Main points were:

LBH supported the introduction of the £10 Emissions Surcharge, however it felt that the operation hours should be extended to 24 hrs, and also to cover the weekend as well as weekdays;  the charge should be based the emission level, not on the rather confusing Euro standard; Clean Bus Zones should be extended further to cover areas with particularly poor air quality eg Wood Green High Street (part of Green Lanes is now covered); the North Circular is backed as the Northern boundary, although there are concerns about traffic displacement and air quality on the NC; given that buses give out 10% of NOx emissions, the Mayor should prioritise reductions of bus emissions; LBH wld like Wood Green High Rd, Tottenham High Rd and Green Lanes included as Low Emission Bus Corridors;  noted that support for a diesel scrappage scheme is being sought by the Mayor; domestic boiler replacement scheme also needed

Nicky raised her concern about pollution at schools right on the North Circular such as Bounds Green Primary. She thought that the edge of the ULEV should be the GLA boundary to get over the  problem. The Mayor will be making grants available to schools and community groups for work on air quality; Nicky was asked to find out when this funding will be available. Norman undertook to make contact with Victoria Daines at Hornsey to see how they wanted to follow up Sydney’s recent talk. It would be great if they wanted to work with local schools. Helen to raise air pollution at the 17th Jan Education seminar.

 Air Quality Support Network.  It was thought that there is a good case for a Haringey Air Quality Network, on the lines of the Camden one attended by Sydney, which could support schools and community groups in taking action on air quality. Jonathan stated that the current Haringey Transport Strategy is not much more than a list of nice aspirations, including on air pollution. Norman to ask at Transport Forum about whether more useful objectives will be incorporated in the new Transport Strategy, and when the new strategy will emerge. Also to ask whether Haringey anticipate receiving monitoring funds, and funding for organising Cleaner Walks to school, and for physical measures such as hedges and trees. Catherine wanted to know whether fleet vehicles, such as Veolia’s, met green standards, and would continue to do so.

 Report from Catherine West MP

Boiler scrappage: Mayor developing a scheme, but it takes 18 months to develop a new scheme; Sydney volunteered to check on progress. CW is concerned about fuel poverty – 4.5 m people in UK suffer. She would like us to suggest a question she can ask in the House on this, and on other green subjects. She would like to see a Hoppa bus connecting Muswell Hill and Wood Green, possibly via the Hornsey Park Rd area. Renewables have overtaken coal for first time this year as a source of electric power. Obama has doubled the amount of renewable power in the US

Negatives Brexit & rolling-back of environmental standards eg on fleet renewal;  Trump’s dubious appointments eg Rex Tillerson CEO of Exxon as new Secretary of State; CW is involved with a UK/EC policy group, aiming to put pressure on Trump and make case for high environmental standard. CW wants suggestions for a speaker on the environment for a broad left meeting

Electric Vehicles

Fried Meinert gave his apologies. Tony Cumberbirch strongly advocated that the Mayor and boroughs work with vehicle manufacturers and power companies to provide charging points for all new developments, and for CPZs on a rolling basis. Purchasers of EVs would benefit from a subsidy from the Mayor, and also from a % of parking spaces (initially 10% ?) allocated to EV owners. Manufacturers’ fines from falsifying emission standards would be dedicated to the fund.

 PVs for Woodside School Alan explained the MHSG scheme for installing PVs at Woodside School in Tottenham. The scheme will cost £90k but will save the school £9k p.a. with a Salix grant for installing LEDs. If the fundraising, including a community share scheme, is successful the project will be installed in summer 2017.

 Feb 9th Meeting Arrangements One round of the meeting flyer has already gone out; Norman plans two more rounds before the meeting. Helen and Jill Pack are revising the flyer with colour photo. Janet to send flyer to ward secretaries; Norman to send to Emma W for general circulation. Norman to get 300 printed; Janet will give out at Boogaloo event, Norman will  give them out in Crouch End.

Date of Next Meeting: Sunday 5th March at 6.00 pm

Norman Beddington, Secretary, 11.01.17

 

Air Pollution and Current Developments

 


 

 

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