Reading Friends of the Earth

Our January Meeting will be at RISC at 8:00 pm on Wednesday January 9th. It will be a general meeting – topics expected to include discussion of implications for Reading of Crossrail/Elizabeth Line and other potential rail-based developments, transport options for East Reading without a ‘Mass Rapid Transit’, and how to campaign locally on climate change.

Our Latest Newsletter is available on this link. Other recent newsletters are available from this index

Our February Meeting will be at RISC at 8:00 pm on Wednesday February 13th. It will be a general meeting, topics by e-mail.

Save Our Ancient Riverside have a website detailing opposition to the East Reading Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) and giving up-to-date news on any further actions needed after it was rejected by Wokingham in December (see our newsletter).

Our Admin page with privacy policy etc. is available on this link.

Contact us at info"at"readingfoe.org.uk

National Friends of the Earth website is www.foe.co.uk

Greater Reading Environmental Network (GREN) website is www.gren.org.uk

Reading Climate Action website is http://www.readingclimateaction.org.uk/ It gives access to Reading Climate Change Strategy, Action Plan, and opportunities for individuals, organisations and businesses.

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Clean Air Everywhere - In Reading.

Our "Clean Air Everywhere - In Reading" petition was presented to the Council on November 22nd 2017 at the SEPT Committee Meeting by Enrico Petrucco. By the meeting we had accrued over 400 signatures - around 250 on paper and 150 on-line. Thanks to everyone who signed, helped to collect signatures, and came to support us at the meeting.

The Council has responded that it would like to introduce a Low Emission Zone,but must await government funding. Detailed response is available on this link

Our Press Release about the presentation, with pictures and a link to the video coverage, is at Petition_Presentation_to_Cllrs_PR.

The speaker's notes for the presentation are at SEPT Presentation notes.

Following government intervention, seeking conformance with EU legal requirements, in October 2018 the Council has said it will be funded to upgrade its buses to Euro VI standard and expects to comply with EU standards for NO2 by end 2021.

In November 2018 we asked a Question at the SEPT Committee - reminding the Council of our petition and asking about PM2.5. The Council said that it estimated that in one location PM2.5 concentration was about 60% above WHO guidelines, and that it would publish a revised draft Local Transport Plan in 2019. See our January 2019 newsletter

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Our Campaign against M4 Widening web-page is www.readingfoe.org.uk/m4. The government has given permission for this to go ahead - in the short term traffic is slow because of lane narrowing in certain sections of the M4, in the longer term we expect traffic to rise resulting in slower journeys and more CO2 emissions than today. A presentation giving a summary of impacts on safety, climate change, congestion, air quality and noise is at Impacts of Smart M4.

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Campaigning against Barclays support for fracking - with Berkshire Greenpeace - October 2016.

Press release describing the event is on this link.

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Response to Reading Air Quality Strategy Consultation In January 2016 we responded to Reading’s consultation on an update to its Air Quality Strategy. Our response expressed disappointment that it contains no detail of how bad the situation is at present, no estimates of future levels of pollution, and no analysis of the proposed actions to show whether they will be successful … so it’s hard to tell what should be done and where. Our full response is on this link.

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Response to Reading Waste Minimisation Strategy Consultation In February 2015 we responded to Reading’s consultation on its Waste Minimisation Strategy. Our response emphasised the importance of reducing the amount of waste created and the climate change arguments for keeping biodegradeable material out of landfill. We recommended the Council should give serious consideration to anaerobic digestion (AD) for food waste and called for evidence to be made available on the environmental impacts of current and proposed methods of waste management. Our full response is on this link.

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BeeCause Progress

For some summers we have run stalls at events: collecting petition signatures against pesticides; publicising the Great British Bee Count; giving out advice on how people can help Bees in their gardens; and calling for local authorities to implent Pollinator Action Plans. It is good to know that at last, in December 2018, three neonicotinoid pesticides were banned from outdoor use in the EU.

Here is 'Fuzzy Bee' finding the flowers in Christchurch Meadows when there was a trial plot there.

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Green Jobs Flashmob

We had good local press coverage for our Flashmob for Green Jobs on Saturday 13th October 2012 - many thanks to everyone who braved the rain and especially to the Greenpeace Polar Bear who really helped to get attention from press and public! Doug's great video - with sound-track from Seize the Day - can be seen on this link.

Here is a still (Photo: Anne Booth) of the bear calmly putting the case against the Chancellor's proposals to continue to burn unabated gas until 2030 and to give tax breaks to 'fracking' for natural gas extraction.

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Reading's Transport Issues

Reading has said it will consult on a revised Local Transport Plan (LTP4) in early 2019.

Our comments in 2010 on Reading's draft Local Transport Plan (LTP3) are on this link

A document dating from 2008 discussing the then proposed (and now abandoned) change to a one-way IDR is on this link

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