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July 2017 Newsletter
A round up of news and views
Air Pollution in Marlborough - Michael Gove, the new DEFRA minister has recently announced the government's latest plans to tackle air pollution nationwide. Diesel and petrol vehicles will be banned by 2040! But what about the pollution in our streets today? Unfortunately, the responsibility for dealing with this has been passed back to local councils who will share a budget of £255m to bring in new measures. Rather than create the promised Clean Air Zones, it has been suggested that the most polluting vehicles, such as buses and HGVs should be re-routed. However, the true villains, who ministers are letting off scot-free, are the carmakers who cheated and dodged the emissions regulations that would have kept air pollution in check. It remains to be seen how much of the budget will trickle down to Wiltshire Council and whether it will be enough to pay for de-priming the A346 or even installing the 'No Idling' sign that has been promised for bus stops in the High Street.
Parking and Congestion are the 2 most important issues for the people of Marlborough! - The Neighbourhood Planning Group have enlisted People and Places to conduct a survey to find out peoples' views. You can have your say be clicking on this link: Marlborough Car Parking Survey 2017
Food Standards - it seems that the opportunity to transform our food system by creating a People's Food Policy has already been overtaken by events: there is now a danger that there will be a race to the bottom, in terms of food standards and animal welfare because of the need for a quick trade deal with the USA. Chlorine-soaked chicken, hormone-treated beef and genetically engineered soybeans may soon be on the menu if such a deal goes ahead. Chlorine is used to disinfect slaughtered chickens because they are infected with high levels of campylobacter and salmonella. Beef cattle in America are fed an artificial diet and injected with hormones to promote faster growth. Both of these practises are banned by the EU. The House of Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee has warned that the importation of cheap food, resulting from low food and animal welfare standards will drive many local farmers out of business. It will also mean that the UK will no longer be able to export farm produce to the EU. The Sub-Committe also asks how the UK will be able to manage its food and animal welfare standards post-Brexit, since more than 90% of the vets that oversee these standards are non-UK EU citizens. You can read their report here...
Permaculture Session on the Wonders of Bee-Keeping - Participants of this year's Permaculture course attended a session on bee-keeping, held in Louise's beautiful house and garden in Mildenhall. We learned about the different types of bee-hive and how to remove and inspect the frames for pests and diseases. We also tasted Louise's delicious mead and honey made from the nectar of oil seed rape flowers.
There will be a trip to Shumei Natural Farm in Yatesbury on August 27th and the last two sessions on Low Energy Living and Forest Gardening will be held in September. Please get in touch via email@example.com if you would like to join in any of these sessions.
Have you seen the Bee Road banners along the Pewsey Road?
The Transition Marlborough team
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