Monday, 16 November 2015

Saving Your Local Community Transport Links

What would you do if you had no car, limited income, mobility problems and wanted to shop and travel to required health appointments? Ask a neighbour - again? Call on family, who may work and often live a distance away? Spend on taxis?

For many people currently, local community transport services provide an economical and more sustainable door-to-door service for just folk. But, as we've advised previously, Derbyshire County Council has been consulting on withdrawal of funding for Community Transport and removal of both shopping buses and health care travel. With others, we believe the loss of this vital service will harm older, disadvantaged, vulnerable and disabled people in particular, here and throughout the county. The prospect of such cuts has already caused anxiety and distress among many service users. There is a groundswell of support to let county councillors know the strength of feeling there is.

A petition asking the council not to proceed with such cuts has been organised. Thousand have already signed, with presentation of the 'completed' petition to inform a debate at County Hall in December. If you're concerned about this - on behalf of many of the most disadvantaged members of our communities - please sign the online petition below by Friday 20th November.

The petition can be found here

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Fossil Fuels - action you can take?

At Thursday's evening lecture (7.30p.m., The Royal Hotel), Professor Kevin Anderson is bound to refer to our excessive burning of fossil fuels and their impact on climate change, and the need to recalibrate our economies towards more sustainable sources of energy. Amongst action we can take is to press public bodies to cease or limit their investments in fossil fuel industries. There's now an outlet for doing so close to home.

Sustainable Hayfield has joined with a dozen similar groups around Derbyshire to support submission of an online petition to Derbyshire County Council to progressively dis-invest from fossil fuels via the Derbyshire Pension Fund by freezing any new investments and dis-invest from existing investments in fossil fuels within 5 years. The pension fund has £290 million invested in fossil fuel companies.

Such a step is both environmentally justified - bearing down on a major source of greenhouse gas emissions which threaten global climate change - and financially prudent since fossil fuel investments are increasingly likely to create risks for investors if they become stranded assets (worthless fuel stocks that regulation will prevent from being burned). There is already evidence investments in fossil fuels results in reductions in the value of pension funds. And we would not wish the pensions tens of thousands of employees of over 170 employers in Derbyshire (inc.Derbyshire County Council, all the borough and District Councils in Derbyshire, Derby City Council; Chesterfield College; Derby College; Derbyshire Fire and Police Authorities; Peak District National Park Authority; University of Derby and a large group of smaller employers), to continue to be exposed to the financial risks of such a sector, when safer, alternative, investment options exist.

Institutions across the world including churches, universities, local authorities in the UK such as Bristol City Council and Oxford City Council, and the Environment Agency, have already committed to divest from fossil fuels.

If you would like to support/sign the petition, here's the link with more information.

Friday, 6 November 2015

Climate Change: Facts & Futures with Kevin Anderson

You've maybe seen posters in the village promoting the climate change presentation we're hosting at The Royal Hotel a week today, November 12th, with Professor Kevin Anderson. Attached is your own poster, as a reminder, to whet your appetite.

Interest in the event is certainly building. We know of folk coming from Glossop, New Mills, Buxton, Hope Valley and maybe beyond....the local papers have both featured the event in today's issues and Prof Anderson's being interviewed on the local radio too. This reflects both interest in the subject and Prof Anderson's reputation. Two examples:

Chris Lea from Buxton says “He’s a top man in his field. I’m coming with friends. We’ll get an expert view”.

Maggie Cole from New Mills says “He gave a presentation on this subject I attended a few years ago….... brilliant ... he continues to inspire - and debunk myths.”

The event starts at 7.30p.m. Prof Anderson's presentation will last about an hour and then he'll answer questions. His international expertise should make it a really informative evening. We hope to see you there - you might need to be early!