Fossil fuel subsidies pay the polluter instead of making the polluter pay!

All of us are becoming increasingly aware of respiratory and heart disease from polluting emissions.

Now health campaigners say the energy policies of the world’s richest countries are inflicting a double burden on their citizens, not only using their taxes to pay fossil fuel subsidies, but also loading huge health costs on them.

The Health and Environment Alliance, HEAL report says that although fossil fuel combustion causes deadly air pollution and climate change, virtually all governments spend vast sums of public money – their citizens’ taxes – on supporting the oil, gas and coal industry in fossil fuel energy production.

The G20 agreed in 2009 to phase out the subsidies, but HEAL says that on average, in countries belonging to the bloc, the health costs associated with fossil fuels are far greater than the subsidies: US$2,758bn against $444bn. How big are our subsidies? 

This infographic doesn’t show the direct effect of pollutants from burning fossil fuels but looking just at climate change in itself, there is much food for thought. 

World has three years left to stop dangerous climate change, warn experts

On Saturday some of us will be writing messages on Climate Change in a metalwork art workshop with Norfolk artist, Karen Whiterod, entitled Hope Calling. There are still a few places. I think my personal message has to be something about the urgency expressed in the letter this week from Christina Figueres, former UN Climate chief and other experts:  https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jun/28/world-has-three-years-left-to-stop-dangerous-climate-change-warn-expertsNorfolk County Council have helped fund the workshops and the messages will be used to create a photobook to be presented to local MPS.

A real palm oil victory!

Greenpeace writes:

We did it. HSBC have just announced that they’ll stop funding palm oil companies that destroy the rainforest. 

Burning the rainforest to make space for palm oil plantations in Sumatra and other parts of Indonesia  is not only disastrous for wildlife but has a staggering carbon footprint.

We should feel pretty powerful today  (whether you signed the petition, donated, or badgered them online, you made this happen)- and it’s not everyday you topple a bank! -that’s why it’s probably not the time to rest on our laurels. HSBC isn’t the only bank that’s been putting orangutan habitat at risk. If right now, we make HSBC’s decision as public as possible, we can show just how easy – and what good PR – it would be for other banks to do the same.

The Earth fights back!

Encouraging to get a message from the American Earth Day movement  that they are planning a massive event this year.

Save the date: Saturday April 22nd! Message below:

Do you recognize this famous image?

It’s the poster that American artist Robert Rauschenberg made for the first Earth Day in 1970. On that historic day, over 20 million people across the US took to streets, parks and auditoriums to demand protection of the Earth. The modern environmental movement was born and passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts soon followed.

Since that mass action, we’ve come a long way. Our environmental laws have prevented harm at home and been replicated in countries around the world. Earth Day showed that people could use their power to heal the polluted landscape that Rauschenberg depicted.

What’s happening now?

Donald Trump’s administration wants to undo all the gains we’ve achieved over the last half century.

Trump is doing everything he can to ensure that our federal agencies are run by people like Scott Pruitt, Rick Perry, and Rex Tillerson–people who’ve spent their careers undermining environmental law. He’s waging a war on science, restarting the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines and is likely to withdraw from the historic Paris Climate Agreement.

This is unacceptable, and with your help, we’re going to do everything possible to oppose Trump’s anti-environment, anti-science agenda. If we don’t act now, the repercussions in the U.S. and around the world will be catastrophic.

As the world’s largest environmental network, Earth Day Network has a critical role to play in mobilizing defense of the planet. Environmental and climate literacy, reforestation, species protection and mobilization of green voters are more critical now than ever.

So what’s next?

With your support, our first move will be to build on the success of the Women’s March and make Earth Day 2017 a referendum on Trump’s agenda. Let’s keep the momentum going and make April 22nd a day of global resistance.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Not giving up- DiCaprio meeting with Trump on green jobs

Dreadful – and farcical- news about appointment of Scott Pruitt (climate change denier who has sued the EPA in relation to Obama’s moves to cut greenhouse gases from coal-fired power stations) as Environmental Protection Agency administrator, but environmentalists keep up the fight. DiCaprio met with Trump yesterday about the opportunities for business growth in the green economy and gave Ivanka Trump a copy of his Before the Flood documentary.

Have you seen it yet?

I wonder if we can build more links with environmental groups in the States, and start by sending Christmas messages of support?

On a slightly different tack, do we want to affiliate to Friends of the Earth?

 

 

An event to lift the spirits!

On Saturday morning forty people gathered in the bright late autumn sunshine to plant two dozen big Liquidambar saplings on Anthony Nolan Road, at the entrance to King’s Reach, beyond Fairstead.

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The planters included employees from the Public Open Space section of the Borough Council, with Operations Manager, Sarah Moore, a good strong  team from COWA, an enthusiastic group from the High Street McDonald’s  enjoying the ‘green fun’ to quote Lewis Catton, plus residents of King’s Reach and members of the King’s Lynn Climate Concern group who had suggested the tree planting project.

 

The KLimate Concern group promotes tree planting as one positive step towards mitigating the effects of climate change since trees absorb carbon dioxide, the most widespread greenhouse gas.  Jonathan Burr, an active member of the group, is passionate about tree planting. He pointed to the startling shortfall over the last two years in the government’s own tree planting targets through the Forestry Commission and the Woodland Trust charity’s campaign to get ordinary people to plant 64 million trees over ten years, one for each of us in Britain.

 

‘We should be planting trees every weekend for the next few months, unless it’s actually frosty. From November to March is the perfect time.’

 

The Woodland Trust www.woodlandtrust.org.uk give will help with advice and resources. KLimate Concern are happy to give encouragement, may have access to some free trees and are looking for other places to plant.  Please contact us :  email hidden; JavaScript is required