News from the August meeting

2G3S meeting held 30 August 2018
We discussed various ideas for future events, including ways to progress our campaign against single-use plastics.  As part of this we are publicising the Eco Living Festival in Cambridge on 22 September.

There are also important events being held by other groups in the near future, including the international ‘Rise for Climate’ action on Saturday 8 September.

Also Camcycle, formerly Cambridge Cycling Campaign, are holding a month of cycling events in Cambridge throughout September.

Back to 2G3S: we are hoping to hold an Apple Day next autumn, possibly as part of a wider event.  The idea is to combine apple pressing for juice, which we have done before, with talks and activities on how to use your apples (making chutneys, cakes etc).

We will almost certainly hold another Repair Café, and are considering ideas for winter evening activities – something on plastics? green finance and investment?  Let us know what you would be interested in.

Fracking: we plan to be part of a delegation to our MP, Heidi Allen, urging her to vote against the government’s proposal to bypass local democracy and planning processes to fast-track fracking.

Photos!
We are looking for photos for our new website.  If you would like to send in a photo (as jpg format please) that illustrates either our general Mission Statement, or a particular type of 2G3S event, we would be delighted to hear from you.  We especially welcome submissions from young people.  So please send your photo, plus your age if you think it relevant, to greengroupssss@gmail.com.  Photos are welcome at any time, but we shall be making our initial selections by the end of December, and awarding a small prize to the best (ioho!) of those we publish.

Financial  help for other groups
Finally, we are a small group of activists.  We always welcome more people to our meetings!  But we have also decided that one way of advancing our aims is to give financial help to other organisations who wish to put on events.  So if you or your group want to stage an event in the 2G3S area which complies with the 2G3S Mission Statement, and need some funding for pump priming, you can apply to us for up to £75.  If at the end of the day you can give some or all of this back, that would be great, but is not essential.  Contact us for more information.

Summer 2018 Newsletter

Here is our Summer 2018 Newsletter as a download.

As well as reports of our most recent Repair Cafe and dates for future cafes, it contains updates on campaigns and lots of information about other green events locally, and green news from the wider world.

July social/planning meeting

UPDATE:  This meeting has been rescheduled to Wednesday 18th July – still at 8pm, at The Rose.

See the event listing for Agenda.

Do join us at our meeting at 8 pm on Wednesday 11 July at The Rose, Stapleford.  The meeting usually includes an ‘open forum’ to discuss green issues – so if there is something you’d like to get off your chest over a drink, or if you’d just like to come and meet us, come along!  We’re very informal.  We use the small bar to the left of the main entrance, but are sometimes in a quiet area in the main bar – ask the bar staff if you can’t find us!

Palm Oil reduction

As with plastics, campaigns to reduce palm oil consumption, based on a concern for the loss of forests in Indonesia and elsewhere with its drastic effect on air pollution, global warming and indigenous peoples’ lifestyles, have been boosted by the much publicised ‘collateral damage’ to the orangutans who are losing their habitat and being killed in the process.  In 2017 the EU voted to ban biofuels made from vegetable oils including palm oil by 2020.  And some retailers are taking action – in March the supermarket chain ‘Iceland’ announced it will stop using palm oil in its own-brand products by the end of 2018.  But earlier this year there was a report that the UK is pushing for a deal to boost palm oil imports in defiance of EU trends:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/mar/09/uk-defies-eu-over-indonesian-palm-oil-trade-leaked-papers-show

Partly in response to this, Rainforest Rescue have set up a petition against a free trade agreement on palm oil – go here if you want to sign it:

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1132/no-to-free-trade-with-palm-oil?mtu=326768568&t=4023

Plastics Campaign

There has been a huge increase in awareness of plastic pollution, due in no small part to publicity such as David Attenborough’s ‘Blue Planet’ programme.  We have seen victories both small and large, from PG Tips resolving to remove plastic from their teabags (did you sign the petition featured in our last newsletter?!!), and the pub in Bristol whch is switching to using drinking straws made from pasta; to the government commitment to introduce a deposit scheme for single-use drinks containers (plastic, glass or metal), and the UK Plastics Pact whereby in April companies responsible for 80% of plastic packaging in supermarkets pledged to crack down by 2025.  And more people are signing up to get their milk delivered in glass bottles – must have read our November newsletter!  Will 2G3S save the world, we ask ourselves?!

Local action on packaging

There have been several responses to my suggestion in the last newsletter that you let us know of positive initiatives by local shops:

We said that Barkers butchers, Great Shelford are very happy if you take a Tupperware container in when buying ham, sausages, cheese etc.  It turns out that Searle’s butchers in Sawston do likewise.

Shelford Deli are now using degradable materials for their takeaways.

Dorrington’s Bakers in Sawston will give you your sliced loaf in a paper, rather than plastic, bag if you ask.

Slightly further afield, Arjuna on Mill Road, Cambridge, routinely allow you to use your own containers for herbs and spices.

2G3S survey – packaging and local sourcing

We have decided that we are going to do a more systematic survey of local food retailers and eateries to find out their policy on plastic packaging; and while we are at it we shall ask them to what extent they source their food locally.  We hope to collate the results in time for the summer issue of this newsletter.

Spring 2018 Newsletter

Here is our Spring 2018 Newsletter as a download.

It has details about the forthcoming June Repair Cafe, and write-ups of the February film show of Carnage, plus our trips to the Waterbeach Waste Treatment plant. Plus information about other events on around and about.

Great Shelford Repair Café 2 June

With the support of South Cambridgeshire Sustainable Parish Energy Partnership (SPEP), Transition Cambridge, and Cambridge Carbon Footprint, 2G3S are pleased to announce our second Great Shelford Repair Café.  As last time, it will be held at The Scout and Guide Headquarters, behind the Memorial Hall, Woollards Lane, Great Shelford, CB22 5LZ from 2:00 – 4:30 pm on Saturday 2 June 2018.

Repair Cafe
Repairers in action at one of our Cafes

It’s a free event (donations very welcome) where we match amazing repairers with people who need stuff fixing.  Bring along the following to be repaired and to pick up repair skills: jewellery (and jewellery cleaning), sewing and fabric repairs (no alterations; and clean items only please), small household appliances and electrical items, knives or tools to be sharpened, computers, mobile phones, bicycles, and general bits’n’bobs.  This time we are also offering a book repair service, so if you have books with broken spines or damaged/loose pages, we can look at those too.    /cont’d

You can turn up with your item on the day, but as before we expect to be very busy so it’s best to book it in.  Bookings will be open throughout May – visit http://circularcambridge.org/repaircafe/ (where you will find more information about Repair Cafes) and follow the links.  The repairers are brilliant and can fix most things but there are no guarantees.  Lots of tea and cake available of course!

Trips to Waste Treatment plant

Do you know the difference between an MRF and an MBT?!

In April we organised a couple of trips to the Amey Waste Management Park in Waterbeach.  On each occasion about a dozen of us toured the site, took part in a light-hearted quiz and a ‘which bin?’ exercise, and were given the opportunity to find out all we’ve ever wanted to know about recycling in Cambridgeshire!

We all came home having learned lots about what happens after our wheelie bins get collected, and how important it is not to put inappropriate things in any of the bins.

A visit here is recommended to all – unless you have a very sensitive nose, as the whole site does smell quite rank! Well done to our ten-year-old visitor with the acute sense of smell who endured it throughout and asked some of the most insightful questions.

Jon Crisp, the Information Officer at Amey, is going to have a stall at Shelford Feast on Sunday 15 July, where he will not only have answers to all your recycling questions but also games and quizzes for your enjoyment.

Film screening: “Carnage”

In February, as part of the Cambridge ‘Films for our Future’ festival, 2G3S showed ‘Carnage’ – a mockumentary written and directed by comedian Simon Amstell – which looks at veganism in an informative but entertaining way.

Around 50 people attended the showing at The Johnson Hall in Stapleford, including several representatives of Cambridge Veg*ns.  They not only answered questions after the film, but also treated us to some delicious vegan nibbles!