Monthly Archives: October 2018

AM Questions Toll Removal

Ex-Sustrans AM, Lee Waters has criticised the decision to remove Severn-crossing tolls because this is expected to increase motorway traffic by around 25%.  He believes the scrapping of tolls by the UK Government is to make sure the Welsh Government presses ahead with the controversial M4 Relief Road.

Healthier Spaces and Places

This Public Health Wales resource has been created to support actions that address and enhance the health and well-being opportunities afforded by the natural and built environment. The resource focuses on six priority areas: walking and cycling infrastructure, green and blue spaces, food growing and retail, local community, health, and care facilities, air pollution, and building design.

Governments Seek CCC Advice

Welsh Government Secretary Lesley Griffiths and her UK and Scottish equivalents have written to the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) asking for advice on when they should achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions from across the economy.  The governments also want advice on:

  • Whether the government should review its 2050 target of cutting emissions by at least 80 per cent relative to 1990 levels to meet international climate change targets set out in the Paris Agreement.
  • How emissions reductions could be achieved in industry, homes, transport and agriculture.
  • The expected costs and benefits in comparison to current targets.

The letter follows the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) warning that governments must act now to avoid disastrous climate effects. It also marks the first Green GB & NI Week. The committee has been asked to submit its evidence by the end of March 2019.

Food v Wildlife v Trees

Today’s Western Mail Country and Farming section highlights the acrimonious debate over the post-Brexit future of the Welsh countryside. Wildlife groups have generally welcomed the Government plans to stop direct subsidies and to pay farmers for ‘public goods’ such as habitat improvement. Farming groups want the retention of some direct support for food production, their key role, and resent the implication that many farms can only be viable with new roles. They are suspicious that a partnership approach will be led by environmental interests. Plans to greatly increase tree-planting at the expense of food production, to lower carbon emissions, are a further concern – on a day when an IPCC man said that his top priority would be that we stop eating meat.

Connecting the Dragons

Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (ARC) Trust has secured development phase funding for a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) project called ‘Connecting the Dragons’. If successful, they will start a 4-year delivery phase from June/July 2019. As part of the project development they need to undertake consultation and evaluation work. By responding to their survey, you can help them decide where and who they should be engaging with in this project. The information you supply will also be used to keep you informed about the project’s development and allow ARC to contact you about volunteering opportunities in South Wales. All those who complete the survey will be entered into a prize draw to win a signed paperback copy of the New Naturalist Amphibians and Reptiles (2002).