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voteCome to our GLD fringes and stall at the online Libdem Conference 25-28 September 2020

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We regularly publish articles from Green Lib Dems, other Lib Dems and others on green liberalism, the natural environment, and the climate crisis.

  • From the Chair
    Article: Sep 23, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    If you are reading this article on this website it is almost certain that you will be aware that the Liberal Democrat Online Conference is about to take place this coming weekend 25th-28th September. And, if you have read to the end of the last sentence it is more than likely that you are registered to be at the conference. So, please take a note of a number of things you can do to make a difference.

  • Luisa Porritt
    Article: Sep 22, 2020
    By Luisa Porritt

    Building back better must mean transforming London into the greenest capital on earth

    If you are a Londoner, a small guilty part of you probably enjoyed the brief respite from pollution over lockdown. But it should not take a pandemic and large parts of our economy being shut down for us to breathe clean air. We now have an opportunity, while our communities have been strengthened by their response to Covid-19, to design a London that is better equipped to address its challenges.

  • From the Chair
    Article: Sep 21, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    CALLS TO ACTION F21 - Separate Votes

    We want to see separate votes on two phrases.....

    We think the words `Excluding the COVID-19 pandemic,` should be cut from line 13 of the motion. (The FCC argued that since the motion was about Covid-19 they should stay in the motion - but WE think that Climate Change is much, much worse a threat than Covid-19, bad as it is, and leaving them in seriously undermines that position.)

  • Article: Sep 13, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    As an Associated Organisation (AO) of the Liberal Democrats GLD cannot introduce amendments or motions directly for consideration. But we can get signatures together to put such amendments and motions forward from "10 or more individuals" as per the Party constitution. The five amendments below are sponsored by Green Liberal Democrats and we are hereby seeking signatures As Soon As Possible please. Submissions need to be completed by 12.00 noon on Monday 14th September. Please return your signatures by late Sunday evening if possible

  • Sarah Olney ()
    Article: Sep 13, 2020

    Ed has appointed Sarah Olney MP for Richmond Park as the new spokesperson on the climate emergency.

    We, Green Lib Dems, welcome Sarah's appointment!

    Her other portfolios of business and transport complement the climate role, as well as the Lib Dems make the case for investment in the green recovery after the pandemic.

  • vote
    Page: Sep 13, 2020

    On 25-28 September we're taking the LibDem Autumn Conference online for the first time ever.
    We've got a jam-packed 4 day agenda, with something for everyone.
    Register as a member or supporter now for just £40 (£10 concessions) and secure your space:

  • Jason Billin
    Article: Sep 9, 2020
    By Pippa Heylings
    "Incineration of waste and new facilities - a good idea to get on top of the mountain of plastic waste, or a pollution problem?"
    Asks Jason Billin on our GLD Members facebook group.
    New incinerator planned at Ratcliffe on Soar (Notts)

    thanks for your question and it is one that has been the subject of one of our LD Climate Cluster weekly sessions with Wera Hobhouse, MP, who was until just last week our Spokesperson for Climate and Environment.

    We came to the conclusion that we are not opposed to EfW (Energy from Waste) in principle.

    However, EfW should not be the first choice because it is the most carbon-intensive of operations so it deals with residual waste and reduces landfill presssure but is damaging to our zero carbon targets.

    Also, that it is at the bottom of our waste/resource management hierarchy where we should first look to reduce overall landfill and residual waste wherever possible by improved reduction, re-use and recycling.
    There is data that shows that if we manage to get recycling levels to 75% across the country, then we actually have ENOUGH incinerators in the country already to deal with the residual waste produced.

    By leaving EfW incinerators as a private sector issue, individual developer proposals have no incentive to look at existing supply locally, regionally or nationally.

    There is a perverse incentive designed into EfW that does not encourage improved recycling because the incinerator is a hungry beast.

    Also the PFI contracts lock Councils into 15-20 year contracts at a time when, with new legislation, there could be a disruptive shift in the amount of waste needing to be incinerated over the next decade.

    There is also concern about particulate pollution which is often rebuffed by the developers.

    They often speak truth but the point is that the regulations surrounding air quality monitoring does not require the monitoring of ultra-fine particulates.

    Some important research has come about after dogged Parliamentary questioning by former MP, David Drew.

    Scientific evidence has shown that the real dangerous impact of incineration comes from the smallest particles, PM0.1 and PM1, because they are absorbed into the bloodstream through the lungs.
    These particles are too small to be filtered and are therefore emitted directly into the air that we breathe.

    The Government has refused to recognise this, as Drew discovered, which is why there is no required monitoring of ultra-fine particulates which means that incinerators can be policy-compliant and declare themselves safe.
    However, it is because the regulations themselves are deficient.

    Technological research has also shown that only 1 in 5 of existing incinerators use the waste heat generated and none of them capture and recover/recycle the particulates generated.

    Nevertheless, there could be a future solution to make those EfW that we do need overcome these barriers and truly be part of the Circular Economy but this would require giving local authorities powers over emissions and circularity and also resources to plan and deliver heat mapping around heat incinerators, whilst building a network of regional Resource Recovery Centres (for recovery of the heat and the particulates).

    We had an excellent presentation from the Energy Research Accelerator (ERA) and the Birmingham Energy Institute who have launched a policy commission to examine the state of play, barriers, challenges, and opportunities for Energy from Waste (EfW) to form part of the regional energy circular economy in the Midlands.

    This policy commission explores the case for regional investment whilst helping shape the regional, local government and industry thinking surrounding critical issues such as fuel poverty and poor air quality.


    and see a great explanatory video here: https://youtu.be/TzGc5TSEDgg

  • Article: Aug 27, 2020
    By Andrew Heaver

    England's towns and countryside can still offer natural delights.

    Even in the crowded southern commuter-belt, you may still find wondrous moments to make your heart skip a beat: here in Oxfordshire, for example, we are treated to astonishing air shows each summer, as streamlined Swifts and chirpy House Martins race about above the streets of our neighbourhoods. Deftly and gracefully, these elegant birds chase after countless flying insects, with all the dazzling speed of Olympians - and the breath-taking acrobatics of circus performers. They are magical, mesmerising performances, yet they are tinged with sadness: Like so many of the UK's other birds, these insect-hunting aeronauts are declining rapidly, with the RSPB noting that Swift numbers in this country halved between 1995 and 2015.

  • Ed Davey
    Article: Aug 27, 2020
    By Keith Melton

    Dear Ed

    Many congratulations from the Green Lib Dems on becoming the new leader of the Liberal Democrats. Well done!

    As you will have seen Green Lib Dems made our decision from the outset to be completely neutral in the contest. Indeed, as GLD Chair, I went so far as to `Abstain Positively` (see article) so that we could build a new partnership to tackle the huge existential problems we all face with no hidden agenda and with no uncomfortable `baggage` between us.

  • Green Q&A at GLD Conference 2020 (George Miles (dicegeorge))
    Article: Aug 24, 2020
    By George Miles

    LibDem Leadership Green Questions and Answers
    from GLD2020 Vision conference
    20 June 2020

    Click for youtube video of Leadership Green Q&A

    Keith Melton (GLD Chair): The order of first speaking starts as I said randomly Wera, Ed and Layla. So the first person to appear for the first five minutes will be Wera and then we will go to Ed and then we will go to Layla. And then when the questions come, the first person to answer the first question will be Ed and then it's Layla and then Wera and so on, if that's understood by everybody. Okay. Keep sweet everybody and keep the audience smiling!

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Keith Melton is the 2020 Chair of GLD -
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