Sustainable Blewbury is concerned with climate change and other environmental issues, including the depletion of natural resources. We believe that we must reduce our dependence on fossil fuels because of the increasing levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. We need to explore ways in which we as a village can adapt to a lower-carbon and more sustainable way of living, while maintaining a good quality of life.
SB places the highest priority on raising awareness of climate change and communicating urgently how it affects all our lives. Our Blewbury Energy Initiative website includes information on the scientific background to climate impacts, renewable energy and measures we can all take to help lower our own carbon footprints.
Our forthcoming events
(more details on our events page)
Village clean-up and leaf clearance: Sat. 28th Nov., 10 am, meet at the Cleve
The annual effort by volunteers to clear leaves on footpaths, cut back overgrown vegetation and generally tidy things up. Co-ordinated by the Parish Council with help from Sustainable Blewbury and the BVS. Bring rakes, leaf scoops, wheelbarrows, secateurs, loppers, etc.
‘Wagon’ book launch: Sat. 5th Dec., 10am–1 pm, Blewbury Primary School (free admission)
The book will be on sale in December. It covers the life and times of the Blewbury Wagon, from its creation in 1895 to its new life on display in Blewbury this year. The book is beautiful, with text, photos, paintings, drawing and poetry from the early 20th century as well as covering the recent restoration of the wagon. At just £10 per copy it could make a delightful Christmas present. There will be a small exhibition as well as coffee, tea and biscuits.
Blewbury Garden Market Extra: Saturday mornings from 9.30 – 11.30, Post Office
We have resumed BGM Extra at the Post Office, courtesy of Karen. We welcome your bread and cakes, preserves and end of season fruit and vegetables. Bread and pastries on Saturday mornings, and preserves and produce all week. Our food page explains how it works and has full information for producers. Coordinated by Angela Hoy:
Action for the Paris Climate Change Conference
The 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference will be held in Paris from November 30th to December 11th. Why is it important? The objective of the 2015 conference is to achieve a binding and universal agreement on climate from all the nations of the world to limit the global temperature rise to less than 2°C. This goal is rapidly slipping away and further delay will make it unattainable.
The UK government needs to realise how strongly people feel, and one way to do that is to write to our MPs. The background is explained in a short note (pdf) about acting on climate change. There are also some suggestions for points to cover on the second page of the note. In addition, we have a suggested letter (Word) that you can download and personalise. You can send this to your MP by email or post – the note gives email addresses for our local MPs.
Ash dieback has recently been confirmed at the Earth Trust’s Paradise Woods, near Long Wittenham, just 5 miles from Blewbury! Ash dieback, also known as Chalara, was first recorded in the UK in 2012. Since then it has spread to most areas of the UK. The latest information from the Forestry Commission shows that the disease has spread close to Blewbury, with records to the north, south and east of the village.
Chalara is a serious disease of ash trees and is caused by the fungus Hymenoscyphus fraxineus. Symptoms included leaf loss, crown dieback and bark lesions. Once a tree is infected it is usually fatal. Click here to see a poster showing what to look out for and what to do. The Forestry Commission’s website has the latest advice on management and identification. The ‘winter symptoms’ video towards the bottom of the page is excellent. For the latest records of the disease click here.
More recycling from home
You can now put even more items out for kerbside recycling from home. Small electrical items like toasters, kettles, irons, hairdryers, small electronic toys, and radios need to placed in a carrier bag and put out next to your grey waste bin. Textiles like torn or worn out clothes, curtains and bedsheets that aren’t good enough for charity need to be placed in a tied carrier bag next to your green bin on recycling days.
- The government’s Green
Deal was aimed to be its flagship policy for
improving the energy efficiency of homes, in order to reduce carbon emissions
and the use of fossil fuels. It has now terminated for
new applicants. Although the Green Deal was widely agreed to be misconceived
and take-up was very low, no
scheme to replace it has been promised.
- The government’s Renewable Heat Incentive for domestic properties is still running. It covers solar thermal hot water, biomass boilers and stoves, and air-source and ground-source heat pumps. See our Energy Initiative’s domestic grants page for more information.
New on our websites
Depending on exactly how the data were analysed, 2014 was either the warmest year on record or tied with 2010 and 2005. The 15 warmest years have all been since 1998. 2015 looks like breaking the record again. See our global warming page.
On the Blewbury Energy Initiative website we have an explanation of what’s meant by our global carbon budget, how much of it is left, and why that means not burning all known resources of fossil fuels if we want to limit climate change.
Mike Edmunds memorial exhibition: 21 June 2015 (Open Gardens Day)
We had an exhibition in memory of Mike, and to celebrate the rebuilding of what is to be officially known as the Edmunds Footbridge over the Mill Brook in Watery Lane. The exhibition showed BVS-Environment Group and Sustainable Blewbury projects inspired by Mike’s ideas and leadership during the 22 years since he and a few others set up the BVS-EG. The posters we showed can be viewed and downloaded as a pdf file here.
Click on these links to find out:
Our activity is organised around five main themes: