Petition Tag - environment

241. International Youth Accord on Biodiversity

Youth from 14 countries around the world have drafted the International Youth Accord on Biodiversity. It has been signed by people in more than 50 countries and has been translated into more than 20 languages. The youth will present the Accord to world leaders at the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity 10th Conference of the Parties in Nagoya, Japan during October 2010.

The NGO Biodiversity Matters hosts the Accord, alongside some of their other work, at

242. Stop HS2 (High Speed Rail)

On 11th March 2010, the outgoing Labour Government announced plans for a High Speed Rail (HS2) link from London Euston to Birmingham. It was reported then that it would cost £11bn, but that figure was 6 years out of date. On the same day you could have got information from the Department for Transport which put the cost at £17.4bn or from HS2 Ltd, which put it at £25.5bn, or 2.8% of our generational national debt (based on a total national debt estimate of £916.6bn).

Despite all the cuts we will face as a nation, and the fact the new Prime Minister has stated that "things are worse than we thought", the Coalition Government still want to go ahead with HS2 and even extend it to link with Heathrow and HS1, meaning it will cost even more than the current £160 million per mile.

The business case assumes three times the number of passengers carried by the West Coast Mainline (45,000 increasing to 146,000 per day), despite there has been no increase in long-distance train travel since 1995 and the only increase has been on discounted fares.

This also ignores the fact that in 15 years time when it is scheduled to be ready, people will need to travel for work less, as who knows what we will have in terms of internet connections and video conferencing.

When announcing the sale of HS1 in Kent, Secretary of State for Transport, Philip Hammond said; "High Speed One is a national success story." This is despite the fact half the trains have been cut to stem the losses. HS1, like HS2, was meant to be great for business and was going to carry 21 million people per year. It has managed 7.5 million. HS1 is being sold for £1.5bn, about a quarter of the £5.8bn it cost to build.

Just to make sure people will use it, as in Kent, current services will be cut. Commuters from Coventry currently enjoy three London trains per hour. If HS2 goes ahead, the two express trains will be cut, meaning even if people go up to Birmingham International to use HS2, it will take them longer to reach their destination.

Supporters and politicians are quick to say HS2 will be good for the environment, however when you read the actual plans, you find out this is not the case. HS1 passengers are responsible for 35% more CO2 emissions than car passengers, but HS2 will go faster, so the CO2 emissions will be higher, but we don't know how much higher as there is no passenger train in the world that travels at the proposed 250mph to compare it with. It will also lead to more flights, not less, as Birmingham International Airport is being extended and it will be about 40 minutes on the train from Euston and now will be directly linked to Heathrow. Birmingham will provide Heathrows third runway.

The HS2 report admits that the plan may lead to an increase in CO2 emissions, but in those calculations they ignore the seven years of construction and roadworks that will mean and the fact that in some places a 75 metre (83 yard) wide strip of 'green stuff' will be turned to concrete, due to 25 metre 'no vegetation zones' on either side.

Yes, 75 metres! The pitch at Wembley is only 69 metres wide. The plans state that where the trains will travel at top speed, the tracks will have to be 25 metres to stop passing trains blowing each other other the rails, and there will have to be a 25 metre 'No vegetation zone' on either side.

HS2 will cut right through the heart of the countryside at a noise level of 95 decibels. The noise level at which sustained exposure could cause permanent hearing damage is 90-95dB. It's not planned to go next to motorways (existing transport corridors) as that would cost even more and to travel at 'high speed', the line has to be very straight.

This will create massive social damage to towns and villages along the line. While the government say it is 'good for business', HS1 and the M6 Toll were justified for the same reasons, but have not devilvered the promised benefits. All they have delivered is large losses. The business case takes no account of businesses which will be destroyed, and businesses will only get land value when it comes to compensation.

HS2 will of course lead to the filling in of greenbelts, as once they are blighted by the fact upto 40 trains per hour (1 per 90 seconds), a quarter of a mile long, going past at 250mph, creating 95dB, it's not going to be a green belt any more. There is also the chance of extensive development around the Birmingham International station as a result of this plan.

The thing is with HS2 is it sounds like a good idea, but when you look at the details, you find that most parts of the plans are bad, unjustified ideas. The main thing is that it is going to be a collosal waste of money that will help bankrupt the country even more than it is now.

Just think of what would not need to be cut if it wasn't for committing to at least 25.5 billion pounds on one train line, connecting two cities, when there are already two train lines doing the job.

243. Green Roof Initiative for FCPS Schools

For the past year the Green Roof Initiative has been working with Fairfax County to help the local schools go green. The Initiative was first set up by three high school freshman over a year ago who researched, set up meetings and proposed a plan to help their high schools be a better place. A green roof is a type of green architecture were living plants are planted in a soil layer on top a roof.

Just to name a few of the benefits: green roofs help lessen the urban heat island effect, filter stormwater runoff and provide added insulation to the building which saves energy.

244. Action Now to Save the Gulf


We are the "SMALL PEOPLE" of the Gulf Coast States.
We will not stand idly by and let the "BIG PEOPLE" destroy us, our jobs, our industries, our communities and our country. We may be small but we are many and so are our friends around this great nation.

We, the "Small People" are the oil industry. Stop demonizing us.

We will take our lives back from the "BIG PEOPLE", the outsiders from Washington and other foreign countries that have caused this preventable disaster. The "BIG PEOPLE" are making the problem worse through their incompetence, inaction, exploitation and politicization of this crises.

We are tough, proud, hardworking, innovative and independent.

We know how to solve problems and this problem can be solved if BP and Washington get out of the way.

We are even more concerned about protecting the environment than all the environmentalists, media and academics combined. The Gulf is our heart and our soul; our livelihood and our inspiration. Fishing, oil and gas production and tourism have been our lifeblood for generations.

We will not let BP and Washington destroy, in 60 days, what we have built for generations.

We will survive because if we don't it will be the beginning of the end of America as we know it.

We will ween ourselves off of oil and gas when our enemies do the same. Until then they will take our oil if we don't. The reality is today there is no technology to replace fossil fuels; only the technology to make it safer and cleaner. Even a brief moratorium will force the best rigs and technology to quickly leave U.S. waters guaranteeing the destruction of the industry. This will dangerously weaken our national defenses.

We can get the well controlled and we will clean up and restore our environment better than before!

We will make BP and Washington pay for the catastrophy they have inflicted on us and our country.

In the meantime, we refuse to become dependent on BP and Washington.

We are the ones that will fix this. We want our jobs and our lives back and we want them now!

President Obama: Your ill-conceived moratorium and Washington's failure to act, instead of blame, is cutting off the lifeblood of our people. When our blood stops flowing, it won't matter if the leak is stopped, the Gulf Coast will already be dead and so will America.
Washington and BP have had their chance and have failed. The real disaster in the Gulf is what the government and BP are causing by not taking the following immediate actions.

This call to action is the opportunity to begin a nationwide economic recovery.

245. Stop BP From Drilling in the Rocky Mountains

The Government of British Columbia has given BP Canada permission to drill for coalbed methane, known as the Mist Mountain project.

BP has been under scrutiny for cutting corners relating to safety and environmental conservation in its operations since April 20, 2010 when their Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded and caused a massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Mist Mountain project threatens one of the most important wildlife corridors in North America.

246. The EEC of Ierapetra must be strengthened and continue to function

The Environmental Education Center of Ierapetra must be strengthened and continue to function. Almost all citizens of Lassithi, are well aware of the role, work and the importance of play in EEC of Ierapetra, an institution with experience over three years and as one who brings a new attitude and perception towards the environment for students, professors and the society in which it operates. 5780 students, 1190 teachers and over 2200 people attended the 3 years of EEC of Ierapetra in environmental programs.

Εδώ και λίγες μέρες διαδραματίζεται ένα θέατρο του παραλόγου στο χώρο της περιβαλλοντικής εκπαίδευσης. Διαρρέονται πολλές φήμες περί κλεισίματος των Κ.Π.Ε., περί σύμπτυξης για ένα ΚΠΕ σε κάθε νομό, περί αναπροσαρμογής τους στις νέες οικονομικές συνθήκες αλλά και στις απαιτήσεις της Δια Βίου Μάθησης, περί μείωσης του αριθμού των μελών των Π.Ο., περί μη απόσπασης δασκάλων στα ΚΠΕ, περί αλλαγής του χαρακτήρα, της φιλοσοφίας αλλά και των στόχων τους.

Τα Κ.Π.Ε. αποτέλεσαν –εδώ και αρκετά χρόνια– και συνεχίζουν να αποτελούν φορείς μια άλλης αντίληψης αλλά και μιας πρακτικής εφαρμογής της βιωματικής αειφορικής εκπαίδευσης, κυρίως χάρη στην προσωπική, ακάματη εργασία των υπευθύνων τους και των μελών των Παιδαγωγικών τους Ομάδων. Η συσσωρεμένη εμπειρία και το έργο τους μπορούν να αποτελέσουν τη μαγιά για την αναβάθμιση του θεσμού της Περιβαλλοντικής Εκπαίδευσης αλλά και του αειφορικού χαρακτήρα του σχολείου γενικότερα.

Σχεδόν όλοι οι πολίτες του Ν. Λασιθίου, γνωρίζουν πολύ καλά, το ρόλο, το έργο και τη σημασία που έχει διαδραματίσει το Κ.Π.Ε. Ιεράπετρας, ως θεσμός με εμπειρία άνω των 3 χρόνων και ως παράγοντας που αναδεικνύει μια νέα στάση και αντίληψη απέναντι στο περιβάλλον για τους μαθητές, τους εκπ/κούς αλλά και την κοινωνία με την οποία συνεργάζεται.

5780 μαθητές, 1190 εκπαιδευτικοί και πάνω από 2200 πολίτες πήραν μέρος τα 3 χρόνια λειτουργίας του ΚΠΕ Ιεράπετρας στα περιβαλλοντικά του προγράμματα.
Είχε μια από τις μεγαλύτερες πανελλαδικά απορροφητικότητες των ευρωπαϊκών κονδυλίων που άγγιξε το 97%.

Από τα 190.500ευρώ που απορρόφησε στην τοπική κοινωνία διατέθηκαν τα 172.500ευρώ, δηλαδή ένα ποσοστό που ξεπερνά το 90%. Το ΚΠΕ Ιεράπετρας επιβάλλεται να ενισχυθεί και να συνεχίσει την λειτουργία του. Το έχει ανάγκη όχι μόνο ο νέος δήμος Ιεράπετρας που με τη συνένωσή του με τον Δήμο Μακρύγιαλου θα είναι ο μεγαλύτερος του νομού μας, με πάνω από 5000μαθητές, αλλά το έχει ανάγκη όλος ο νομός Λασιθίου, διότι είναι από τα λίγα ΚΠΕ της χώρας μας που αναπτύσσει πάμπολλες και ποικιλόμορφες δράσεις ευαισθητοποίησης της τοπικής κοινωνίας και δεν περιχαρακώνεται μόνο στα πλαίσια της σχολικής κοινότητας. Η αειφόρος ανάπτυξη έχει ανάγκη την εκπαίδευση για την αειφορία.

Στεκόμαστε δίπλα στους εκπαιδευτικούς του ΚΠΕ Ιεράπετρας στην αγωνία τους για την συνέχιση της λειτουργίας του.

247. BP - Save Our Oceans!

On April 20th, 2010, an oil rig called the Deepwater Horizon exploded in the waters off of Lousiana, killing 11 people and injuring 17 others. Oil seeped into our oceans, and has yet to come to an end.

Though BP placed a cap on the well, it is not capturing all of the oil that is flowing. 597 birds to date have been found dead due to the oil spill and the numbers are rising. Even dolphins, sharks, fish, and turtles are suffering from this tragic event.

This petition is meant to tell BP that they are held responsible for what has happened and no matter where the fault lies, it happened on their watch.

We are already facing enough of a crisis with global warming and this has added to it. Please BP, take care of the problem, stop the flow of oil, then help our oceans, our marine life, the gulf, and EVERYONE impacted to recover.

248. Support the relief and help efforts for the Gulf Oil spill

I want relief for the Gulf Oil Spill as it is killing our wildlife and hurting our local fishermen and their families.

The oil spill is currently not under control.

It makes me mad that relief efforts can be made to Haiti and other countries so quick when right here in our own country our Wildlife is currently dying due to this Oil spill currently in the Gulf of Mexico.

249. Declare the Gulf Region a Disaster Area!!

British Petroleum Oil Company, or BP had an oil rig explode off the coast of Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico which led to a huge oil spill that is still currently flowing as of the date of this petition.

President Obama needs to declare the region a disaster area and bring aid to animals and tourism in the area, as well as make sure that the clean up begins NOW!!!

Go after BP Mr. Obama!

250. Say NO! to Offshore Oil Exploration/Extraction in Belize

In response to the signing and intention to start Offshore Oil Exploration and Harvesting in Belize, the Government has chosen to embark on large scale agreements with international Oil Companies to start Offshore Exploration off the Coast of Belize.

Instead of steering toward more sustainable and environmentally friendly alternatives, they are advocating tapping into our strategic natural resources and protective areas, a measure that not only endangers the life forms around said areas but steals the future from our children and provides only a very short term benefit for our country and the companies that will be harvesting the oil.

The Government demeans our system with claims of progress and practicing political maneuvers that work behind closed doors instead of cooperating with the Conservation groups in Belize and abroad.

Download the full pdf version at

Keep an eye on the spill here:

251. BP's president should resign

The Gulf spill has been occurring over too long a period with only failed attempts to control the massive leak.

There was a leaky valve that was known to have existed for years on the well. Why wasn't that repaired?

252. Chicago Clean Power Campaign

Chicago wants to be the greenest, healthiest city in America, but two old dirty coal-fired power plants in the city continue to pump soot and global warming gases into our air.

Cutting soot pollution will reduce asthma attacks, chronic bronchitis, heart attacks, lung cancer and strokes caused by particulate matter pollution. The young, the elderly and those living closest to the plants are most at risk. Reducing global warming pollution will significantly cut Chicago's carbon footprint - keeping Chicago in the running for the 'Greenest City in America.'

Help to Secure a CLEAN FUTURE for Chicago!

Mayor Daley and Aldermen: Clean Up the Power Plants Now!

253. Eating Ourselves to Death: A Vegetarian Manifesto

1) Cancer is the leading cause of death worldwide. Every year, this serial killer is responsible for 7.4 million deaths worldwide; 72,000 of them in Canada alone!

It is time we admitted, we are ignominiously losing the war on cancer. Thus, it is imperative that we open our eyes to the possibility that the cure lies, not in only in research, but also, and perhaps primarily, in prevention.

Vegetarians have up to 40% fewer incidence of cancer than their meat consuming counterparts

2) Up to 50% of Canadians have weight problem

According to the MSNBC being thin now puts you into a minority in the U.S. where a staggering 68 percent of the population is overweight and 34% are obese!
Obesity levels among vegetarians is only 1/4 that of non-vegetarians;

3) Our fragile planet is on the verge of extinction.

Livestock production is responsible for more climate change gasses than all the motor vehicles in the world.” These these “gasses” are the major causes of global warming.

4) 75% of the precious Amazonian rain forest is now used as grazing land for the millions of cattle used as cheap hamburger meat for the wealthy nations.
(Our lifetime friendship with Ronald McDonald's is not only making us fat, but is killing everything else on the planet!)

5) Three billion people don't have adequate supply of fresh water; millions die of dehydration.

Water required to produce 1 pound of beef is 19,761 liters, on the other hand water required to produce 1 pound of potatoes = 87 liters

6) Finally, what the animals must endure in our modern-day slaughterhouses is so despicable that Paul McCartney said "if slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be a vegetarian".

254. Stop Yellow Pages Deliveries

Millions of trees are destroyed every year to provide Yellow Pages with ridiculous claims of huge marketing distribution.

Please sign the petition here if you wish to save a few of these trees by only allowing Yellow Pages to be delivered to those places that want them. (My home and workplace don't use them so don't want them delivered - and meantime, we would like the ones we have picked-up and recycled).

Feel free to leave a comment as well. And hey! I'm just an ordinary bloke who drives a car pumping-out pollution, has a Pepsi now and then and loves the Kangaroos in the AFL footy. I do however think that this might help the World in some small and easy way that doesn't take too much effort.

255. ConCERN - Stop CERN LHC Magnetic experiments


CERN has a 10,000 tonne magnet, the LHC experiment generates a field of 4 teslas, 100,000 times greater than the planet Earth. Built in Geneva, 300 feet under two giant pillars of the Jurassic iceage is a 6-metre diameter housing with a 13-metre long superconducting solenoid coil that stores 2.5 gigajoules of energy. The LHC has had a number of failures and an explosion will be switched on again to run at 14 trillion electron volts (TeV) in 2011.

The LHC magnet provides the trajectory curve for two beams of protons to speed 11,000 times per second in opposite directions, faster than the speed of light around in a magnetic ring the width of fire hoses, 27 kms long in a helium vacuum to keep it colder than absolute freezing −273.15°C equivalent −459.67°F and emptier than outer space.

CERN released Antimatter, or dark energy, in an experiment to find the God particle, 29 years ago, by attempting to recreate the conditions of the Big Bang, 14 billion years ago. CERN is only a short radius to the volcanoes in Iceland, 2,500kms, along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, spreading apart the Eurasion and North American plates. Ice poured into the volcano causing huge explosions. as watemelt hit hot lava, generating plumes of ash 30,000ft high. Satellites show a correlation between cosmic ray intensity and the amount of low cloud cover, through the formation of new aerosols (tiny particles suspended in the air that seed cloud droplets or deplete ozone) which influences the Earth's energy balance; small changes can have a strong effect on the climate.

For posterity’s sake the undersigned are very ConCERNed about the magnetic housing of ANTIMATTER and the risks involved and seek authorities to cease LHC Magnetic experiments.

GENEVA is the Palace of Nations, the place on earth that is the seat of power where all elite groups and the richest people in the world congregate and many hold the Nobel Peace Prize attributed to CERN’s facility. The state of the Environment is a reflection of the values of the rich.

256. Save Myrtle Creek Catchment

The people of Wyndham on the NSW Far South Coast run their own independent reticulated water-supply and know well that the part of their catchment now threatened by logging is crucial to their future water security.

But Through a decade of drought Myrtle Creek’s rare flow continues to sustain our town.

This water flows from a unique part of Yurammie State Forest’s Special Prescription Zone, which has extensive swamps and rainforests, and tragically is now slated for logging within weeks.

The Special Prescription Zone (Forestry Management Zone 3B)was established in recognition of the area’s high conservation, timber and water catchment values, as well as aesthetic reasons. It is a valuable asset for Wilderness Coast tourism.

Any forestry activities in the Yurammie SPZ are mandated to receive close assessment & application of special protections to maintain the forest’s special values before any logging can be considered, but residents say their legitimate concerns are trivialised, ignored, & will be disregarded by Forests NSW who appear intent on proceeding with their logging plans.

Western Yurammie has important biodiversity values associated with rainforest, old growth and mature tall moist Eucalypt forest, soil and water catchment & is the habitat for vulnerable & rare species.

The old growth and adjoining Goodenia rainforest have been identified as being sufficient to warrant nomination to the register of the National Estate.

It is a watershed for two river systems (Towamba and Pambula) and its rainforest gullies are part of Wyndham village’s water catchment.

The presence of at least 8 recorded threatened species, (Koala, Yellow-bellied Glider, Potoroo, Sooty Owl, Powerful Owl, Barking Owl, Glossy Cockatoo and Giant Burrowing Frog), rainforest, swamps and stands of old growth and mature forest means there are many values within the forest requiring protection.

Myrtle Creek catchment is vital to the survival of the isolated village of Wyndham & surrounding areas including Towamba, Myrtle Mountain, Rocky Hall & Burragate.

Myrtle Creek provides the entire water supply for the 120 residents which comprise the isolated village's 55 households, as well as the four local businesses in the town & surrounding area.

The community owned & operated water scheme also provides water for the local school and high pressure fire hydrants for the village's Rural Fire Service.

Scientific research is unanimous that harvesting results in long-term reduced forest water yield, especially of drought flows, and also leads to a drying, more fire-prone forest.

At this eleventh hour, the high water-yielding value of this forest remains unacknowledged and a halt has to be called to logging preparations now.

A real investigation is essential, and until then the Precautionary Principle must apply.

Excluding this small, special forest from harvesting might be inconvenient for the timber industry, but the long-term consequences of the demise of our once-reliable water supply, would be disastrous for this community.

Logging of these Special Prescription Zones (FMZ3B), the only such SPZ’s in the Eden Regional Forest Agreement, is scheduled to commence imminently.

All residents of New South Wales Australia can help protect Myrtle Creek Catchment by signing this petition. Your signature may be the one that tips the balance in favour of our forests and catchment!

View for more information, as well as

257. Save our Oceans

After the failing of legally protecting sharks, bluefin tunas, who are considered by all to be endangered, by trade or otherwise.

Deep-sea bottom trawling is not prosecuted.

Numbers that were considered to be threatened 25 years ago, are still not protected though now endangered.

Our ocean's health is under threat by pollution but also by our use of the oceans.

This petition is to better our use of our oceans.

258. Save The Wenlock

Our aim is two-fold:
1) (WE'VE WON THIS ONE - WENLOCK RIVER DECLARED WILD BY THE QLD GOVT - 4 JUNE 2010) To have the Wenlock River declared a 'wild' river under the Wild Rivers Act 2005, &
2) To deny mining rights to Cape Alumina Pty Ltd to mine bauxite (or any other resource) in the Wenlock River basin and Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve.

Our reasoning is as follows:
The Wenlock River is one of Australia's last few remaining, true wild rivers. It retains its unique and irreplaceable attributes untouched and undamaged by man. It is home to the largest diversity of freshwater fish species of any Australian river. It is home to the largest breeding population of salt water crocodiles on the planet. It is also home to other endangered species such as the Red Goshawk. The Wenlock must be declared 'wild' under the Wild Rivers Act 2005 to ensure it is protected and doesn't become another victim of man's waterway greed, like the Murray Darling River system.

The bauxite plateaus present in the Wenlock River area, and particularly in the Coolibah Springs complex are vital to the overall hydrology and resultant ecology of the area. If the bauxite is removed, the entire system will fail, it is that simple. It can never be replaced, regardless of the amount of 're-vegetation' promised by Cape Alumina Pty Ltd.

259. YES to McDonald's Ocean Dr Port Macquarie

Amongst our Port management team we have 300 years of McDonald’s experience. Our people are at the heart of our business and as a nationally accredited training organisation we strive to provide all of our people with the flexibility they require at different life stages, as well as training and skills that will serve them well wherever their future decisions take them.

We do, however, take the issue seriously. Since the early 2000s McDonald’s has not only looked to provide choice - including healthier options - but to improve the nutritional value of all menu items. Examples include a change to low sugar (less than 5%) buns in 2004 and the change to a vegetable oil blend in 2004 which removed 9000 tonnes of saturated fat from the food industry. The subsequent move to a next generation canola oil blend removed more than 415 tonnes of trans fat from the Australian food supply.

Stripping away the misconceptions, we are a family restaurant that provides food and non-alcoholic beverages in a safe and comfortable environment.

As part of our development application to council planning experts, we have included independent traffic and acoustic reports which we encourage those in the community who have concerns about these issues to view.

A litter free environment is something we’re passionate about and we take every opportunity to remind our customers of the need to dispose of their litter thoughtfully. We also have a Litter Patrol Program in place which is a structured, regular task for our crew, and involves them picking up all litter from the restaurant grounds and its vicinity.

We fully intend to remain an engaged and proactive neighbour, and hope to receive your continued support moving forward.

260. Cure Phuket's Plastic Addiction

Phuket is an island in the Andaman sea, its is a small island and much of its income is dependent on tourists flocking to Phuket because of its pristine beaches and natural beauty, not to mention its fantastic nightlife.

But with Phuket's current plastic addiction every day tonnes of plastic waste is being sent Phukets landfill and the incinerator at its maximum the problem is only getting worse with each passing day.

It is up to Phuket citizens and students to join together and help reduce plastic consumption in Phuket.

261. Keep Bushwick Ballfield closed for the safety of our community children

Bushwick Ballfield is a vital part of our community in Bushwick Brooklyn. The past few years our park has been taken over by notorious gangs and thugs that have created a hostile environment for our baseball Little League and football programs.

We have witnessed everything from gang initiations to drug use and drug buys inside the park while our kids and coaches were present. The park is constantly dirty with garbage thrown everywhere including broken liquor bottles.

The two park entrances constantly smell like urine because its used as a public bathroom. Our members are being subjected to this on a daily basis and now its time to take our park back.

262. Support Vision Kashmir


263. No to Bogus Green Policy

Lewisham Council is planning to take part to a Government scheme for micro production of energy that costs £8.6 bn but wastes 95% of that staggering sum by rewarding inefficient and often tokenistic energy production with inflated compensations that bear no relation to any measurable amount of energy produced and reduction in carbon emissions.

We must not support such wasteful and badly targeted scheme. There are many better ways to invest such large sum on the environment.

For more info read

264. IYEP2 Declaration

This declaration is the outcome of the second Inter-civilizational Youth Engagement Program, that took place in November 2008 at Kuala Selangor, Malaysia, where 49 youths and youth leaders from over 15 countries participated.

265. Investigate and re-launch the Federal government's Green Loans Program

As a result of poor foresight and very significant maladministration, the Australian Federal Government's 'Green Loans Program' is set to end before mid-2010. That is less than one year from its inception.

Initial estimates given to assessors, who are at the core of the program, gave 31 December 2012 as a date for when assessments may no longer be required.

The aim of the program is to assist householders in making their homes more sustainable with the environment. An often quoted definition of sustainability appears in the 1987 United Nations Report 'Our Common Future'. It is also known as the 'Brundtland Report'. The definition is: "development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs".

Green Loans is an excellent movement towards sustainability. It allows for a trained professional to visit homes in his/her area and engage householders on how their homes can be made more energy efficient. The householder then receives a report of recommendations from the government for implementation. If a recommendation is expensive, they may apply for a green loan of up to $10,000. This is fee free and interest free for four years.

Poor monitoring of the program has resulted in a massive influx of people being registered as assessors. It has been suggested that training organisations over-enrolled students to their classes. A huge rush to complete assessments is occuring to recover training and other costs before the funding for the program is exhausted.

In many cases, householders have had to wait for many months to receive the report of recommendations from the government. This is issued after an assessment has been lodged with the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Until such report is issued, householders are unable to apply for the green loan. Nor can they know what any of the recommendations are.

It has also been revealed in Senate Estimates Hearings that since 14 December 2009 one company, Field Force, has received preferential treatment in being able bypass the call centre in order to book assessments. With under 10% of the assessor workforce, they are booking over 6,000 assessments per week (roughly 30%). In addition, they are passing on only half of the fees receive to their employees. This is to the detriment of thousands of self-employed individuals who made a conscious, life-changing, decision to join the program. They are not able to get through to the central call centre to book assessments, or have to wait inordinate amounts of time to speak to a call centre operator when they do get through. Even then, only five bookings per call can be made.

Update: Minister Garrett has today, 19 February 2010, announced that an additional 600,000 assessments will be rolled out. Funding will come by scrapping the less popular loans component of the program (this may have been less popular due to extensive delays householders faced in receiving the recommendations report). The number of assessors able to sign a contract with DEWHA will be capped at 5,000. The number of assessments per assessor will be capped at five per week and three per day and the number of total assessments per week will be capped at 15,000. From today, only individual assessors will be able to book jobs. The Green Loans Program will end on December 31, 2010 and Green Start will commence on 1 January 2011. Details on Green Start are promised in coming months.

Reaction has yet to filter through. As author of this petition, I am contactable on this page. The petition wording remains as it was since structural issues associated with the program continue to remain. These include:

* Uniformity in assessor knowledge, training and currency of knowledge;
* A need to investigate processes within DEWHA so that program changes (both present and future) can be incorporated smoothly;
* The establishment of a monitoring system (perhaps random), for both newer and older assessors.

The quality of the program (and the extent to which it may have thus far been compromised) remains, as always, an important consideration.

The government has promised an upgrade to assessor qualifications (to Certificate IV level). This is to be at no additional financial cost to assessors, although additional time will need to be invested. This upgrade provides a significant opportunity to bring the program back on track.

Author's note (19 February 2010): online petitions carry the advantages of amendability (to a point) and accessibility from diverse physical locations. This is a spirited attempt to connect people to elected representatives. Any other communication activities which occur, in addition to this petition, so that we may sustainably manage resources of the planet is encouraged. They may be individual or group based.

Having said that I will, with the collection of a sufficient number of signatures, print off the petition and personally deliver it to the Prime Minister and perhaps all elected representatives. Feedback on who the most appropriate addressee/s is/are is welcome. Thank you.

266. Go Solar CT!

While Congress continues to debate a global warming bill, we can lead the way in CT by investing in solar power. Environment CT came very close to passing a Solar Bill last session, and with our help, we can pass the bill this spring.

The Go Solar Connecticut campaign is working to pass this legislation restructuring Connecticut’s solar power incentives to build over 300 megawatts of solar power, the equivalent of up to 100,000 solar powered homes statewide.

The solar power generated would help cut Connecticut’s global warming pollution by the equivalent of taking 500,000 cars off our roads. It would also support over 3,000 “green jobs” supporting solar power in Connecticut over the next decade.

267. It's Time Supermarkets used Solar Panels & Green Roofs

Globally, we need to reduce carbon emissions. Globally, we have reached 'Peak Oil', and are now eating into our resources.

In the UK and some other countries, one can't help but notice that Supermarket have their glaring lights on, and their fridges and feezers running, often late into the night. Yet how often do we see a solar panel or a green roof (to help wildlife) on a Supermarket?

It's time the Supermarket Giants started being more responsible. These are, after all, very wealthy organisations, and they can afford it.

268. Adopt Environmental Tracking as a form of investment to incentivize greenhouse gas emission reduction

The ET Index Series ranks corporations listed on major stock markets against their absolute greenhouse gas emissions, this data is referenced against information from the Carbon Disclosure Project and company reports. It adjusts the weightings given to those companies within their respective indexes according to their position in the Carbon Ranking. If the adjusted indexes are supported by a sufficiently large pool of index investors, companies will have a new and fundamental incentive to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to avoid their share price being damaged by their position in the index.

The ET Index Series is being sponsored by the Environmental Investment Organisation, a non-profit specialist NGO of 15 years standing in the field of ecological and ethical investment systems. For a more detailed explanation of the mechanics of the ET Index innovation or to see the ET Global Carbon Rankings please visit Alterntavely you can download a free copy the accompanying book at

To view a visual explanation of the concept in under 3 minutes:

Thank you for your support,

The EIO Team

269. Enough talk – Time to Back Tuna Trade Ban

Brussels, Belgium/Rome, Italy - France, other European countries and the EU Commission will in the next days confirm their final position regarding a temporary trade ban on Atlantic bluefin tuna, a measure shown by science as offering the best chance to save this overexploited species from extinction.

The 175 member countries of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) next meet on 13-25 March in Doha, Qatar, where Atlantic bluefin tuna will be the headline species. Global fisheries experts at the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) already stated in December that evidence clearly shows this endangered species fits requirements for an international trade ban – through a listing on CITES Appendix I.

ICCAT science shows tuna needs protection, but they fail to act

Meanwhile, in October the scientific committee of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) – the management organization still failing to ensure the sustainable management of fishing for Atlantic bluefin tuna – also showed that this fish amply meets the necessary criteria for a CITES Appendix I listing.

Sarkozy declares support for tuna

But the first European leader to openly declare his support for the trade ban was France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy, who at a national maritime event last July said, “France supports listing bluefin tuna on the CITES convention to ban international trade. (...) Ours is the last generation with the ability to take action before it’s too late – we must protect marine resources now, in order to fish better in future. We owe this to fishermen, and we owe it to future generations.”

France, which plays a key role in Atlantic tuna fishing, is central to this debate. WWF calls on President Sarkozy to remain true to his word in championing the tuna trade ban – and also calls on Spain, holder of the rotating European Presidency and another EU country with a strong tuna fishing tradition, to show leadership on this issue of vital importance to both industry and wider marine conservation.

In everyone's interest to act – NOW!

“What is so frustrating now is that ultimately our interests are all the same – fishers, consumers, conservationists, and politicians whose duty it is to ensure future generations have a healthy environment and food to eat,” said Dr Sergi Tudela, Head of Fisheries at WWF Mediterranean. “WWF wants to see the future survival of Atlantic bluefin tuna, which has been fished and eaten in the Mediterranean since time immemorial. It is inconceivable that this pattern of sustainable fishing should be ruined by one, two decades of greed and bad management.”

Outgoing European Commissioners for the environment and fisheries are in disagreement over the issue. Environment commissioner Stavros Dimas is in favour of the trade ban, urging the widespread view that this is shown to have the best chance of ensuring the conservation of Atlantic bluefin. But fisheries commissioner Joe Borg of Malta – a country where tuna is big business – is continuing to take the industry line that the fleets must continue fishing, whatever the long-term cost to this fragile species.

“In a year when the EU kicks off its reform of the highly imperfect EU Common Fisheries Policy, this is a golden opportunity for the European Commission to start how it means to go on – by backing measures in global fisheries management that in the long-term ensure sustainable fishing and seafood consumption, both in EU waters and beyond,” added Tudela.

The next scientific assessment of tuna populations likely to yield fresh data will not be for several years. Atlantic bluefin tuna is a long-lived species so it takes time for any change in its populations to be detectable – a routine assessment is scheduled for September 2010, but this will provide no new insights. The high incidence of illegal fishing – exacerbated by insufficient management measures adopted in recent years – makes population growth extremely unlikely. Postponing action again will only allow one more season of massacrous fishing activity in the Mediterranean Sea.

Half measures will not be enough

Some opponents claim an alternative listing on CITES Appendix II – which requires export permits to be issued but does not outlaw commercial trade – will be sufficient to improve the status of Atlantic bluefin tuna. WWF says this would again be too little too late. Effective implementation of an Appendix II listing would be highly doubtful because decisions on catches and quotas would revert to ICCAT, the very body that has repeatedly failed to sustainably manage the species to date.

“The only measure that can truly have the necessary impact now is to suspend international commercial trade – simple as that,” added WWF’s Sergi Tudela. “There has been enough talk, enough analysis, enough debate – the facts are clear, the science is clear, the imperative is clear – it is time for President Sarkozy and others to step up to this historical challenge, and take the courageous political decision to safeguard an industry and a species that are as strong a part of Mediterranean culture and life as olive oil and sunny afternoons.”

270. Save Arch Bar in Hulme

Arch Bar in Hulme was a great community resource but sadly there were occasional problems on the door. It has been closed for two years. We have lost the legendary Russell Club (aka the Factory, aka the PSV) and far too many pubs to mention... There's nowhere left for the community to meet! (Very few places, anyway.)

The Cavendish pub has now closed, having been sold by the owners last week. It is rumoured that it will become a fast food outlet. THIS IS ALL THE MORE REASON TO SAVE THE ARCH.

We are nearing "tipping point" in Hulme, past which the local community will be swamped by transient young people who have no roots and who are generally encouraged to keep themselves apart from the local populace (e.g., local pubs).

We know that MMU plans to build up to 900 student spaces, according to their own "Impact Assessment Report", and yet we've just had the announcement of a private 672-space block that's going to be built on Coupland Street, near Birley Fields.

We're not anti-student - so many people in Hulme are ex-students that it would be daft to be so - but we are concerned about keeping a viable community going in Hulme. There are few enough venues for going out, or having meetings or running workshops. The Arch Bar could be a great resource for the community - don't let the Council cave in to the first money-making scheme that comes along.

The people of Hulme deserve better!

The planning application report can be viewed here:

Or else try [www_manchester_gov_uk]

14th January 2010: LATEST NEWS

The Planning Dept. made a "site visit" in the morning, when they actually GOT OFF THE COACH (a very rare occasion) and later in the day the deferred the decision. The next planning meeting is mid-February. Please join the "Our Hulme" email group if you want to be involved in the campaign to save the Arch and to resist the saturation of student blocks. (Post a message to me on here if you want to be added to the group.)

Thanks for all your support so far. The first thing that happened at the start of the meeting was that the Chair defensively declared that "there's no such thing as a done deal here", quoting from a local activist's Twitter update of that day. They are now aware that there are genuine concerns from the local community about the proposals.