May’s Waste Thoughts 2021

BBC radio has another interesting series of programmes, highlighting how human civilisation has advanced through access to energy from fire to agriculture to fossil fuel to the future where retaining access to energy will still be key – https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000tlv3/episodes/player

TV wise “Dom Digs In – Waste” is a jovial programme about waste touching on recycling and  burning was for energy as solutions to the growth in waste (at least during the pandemic), whatever you think of its conclusion, the programme gives you a real idea of the scale of our waste challenge:https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000vsyj/dom-digs-in-series-1-8-waste

Pete – working through Mark Carney‘s book Values interesting to understand that the resilience put in place after 2008 has allowed stability through Covid and how a world banker views climate change and how to tackle it – the book is well worth reading from a local bookshop or Hive, you can hear a lot of the ideas too in his Reith Lectures which are still available on BBC web site – episode 1.
Should we be engaging with scrap dealers – to reduce waste and close the circle.  For example are Calverts based outside Stokesley a local firm who may give us new ways to look at waste.
Jenny – It’s important we get involved with big business, so we can ensure they take climate change seriously.  One way is through share ownership which gives you the ability to vote at annual general meetings – for example ShareAction encourages you to get 1 share so you can vote to get positive measures adopted by companies.
Awaiting results of the Hessian Sack Competition which has now finished.
The CooP Foodshare is now working well on a limited basis, with a full car of food being taken from Stokesley and Great Ayton to IPC in Middlesbrough on Thursday evenings.  The challenge is still that for things like bread, if the CooP store doesn’t make it then it can’t be sold, but the cost of the ingredients is cheap compared to the sold bread, so incentive on store to over bake with excess going to waste.  Talking to Steven, the Manager at Springfield CooP, there is another big source of waste which happens because customers remove an item from fridge or freezer then spot a cheaper item and just leave the item on the open shelves, when the staff spot this they have consign it to waste, as they have no idea about how long it has been outside of the correct storage conditions.
Other collections of food are happening but mainly in the mornings, so largely only collecting food bank type food meaning many going out of date foods will be out of date in the morning and so will have gone to waste – still a challenge to get that day food collected in the evenings and delivered to users.   Alternatively, you could imagine lots of people standing by ready to cook the food to extend its life (WI Cooking Clubs in village halls for example), great dream but would need a lot of organisation.  Simon understands from attendees at the CAT course that WI are concentrating on stopping the generation of food waste by the supermarkets at source.
CooP AGM – asked whether a law similar to that in France (shops are not allowed to dispose of food as waste) was necessary to sort out supermarket food waste.  CooP say not as the supermarkets are all getting together and putting processes in place to tackle food waste.  We are yet to see the benefits of this co-operation.
CooP Environmental policy has a great environmental policy we should all be buying there – https://www.coop.co.uk/climateRefugees – could we get the old white goods upgraded from kitchen companies to refugees who desperately need such items when moving into unfurnished accommodation.
Host Nation – befriending a refugee – Befriend | HostNation
What about a local Repair Cafe?  https://www.repaircafe.org/en/ perhaps every month in Stokesley Town Hall.  Needs somebody to investigate and champion.  Or even a local repair shop funded by donations to start with.
David – take in old / broken tools either to repair at a cost or more to give to Africa – Tools for Self-reliance https://www.tfsr.org/ national – locally in Middlesbrough – Middlesbrough Tool Workshop was running at Langridge Initiative Centre, Berwick Hills, Middlesbrough TS3 7LU.
Wendy – Globe now have boxes for blister packs and bread bags – need to work out how to get the items to the next step in the recycling chain.  They also have a seed share box.Gill DeCosemo from the Globe has been on Radio Tees and publicised the recycling opportunitites at the Globe.
Lorna – is involved with Swainby Church who are thinking about what they should be doing environmentally.
From a waste perspective they already have collection of a number of items for recycling at the back of the church – soft packaging from dishwash/wipes packets, Hasbro plastic toys and used to collect crisp packets – all through the Scouts in Hutton Rudby.
The church has a big space in the middle of the village. It would be good to do something positive with it, so could for example if recycling became more serious erect a shelter for recycling containers.
The church are also interested in other green initiatives, Jane Kitching – green use of the green space – communal gardens, insects, and Lorna energy and recycling.
They have been talking to Great Ayton Church – Jeff Jacques around their initiatives.
Church of England has an environment programme but not currently cascading down to give individual churches advice / actions – https://www.churchofengland.org/about/environment-and-climate-change/about-our-environment-programme
They are also looking into a connection the Syrian refugees community initial through use of the building for a service.
Sheffield Students were delivering the Well Being Cafe which used food that would otherwise go to waste, there is a similar cafe in Middlesbrough
Anne – Followed up on plastic waste collection by Stokesley CooP – still no fixed date.
Lakeland are selling compostable cling film.
Times article on how sustainable is your town or village – one nice idea was the doorstep car boot sale give away out the front no payment with a donation to a suitable green charity / local initiative.
There is a local Freecycle and church brick-a-brack stalls are still good ways of giving things a second life.  Northallerton & Thirsk – http://groups.freecycle.org/ThirskNorthAllertonUK – there are also Middlesbrough, Redcar and Stockton Freecycles – should one be set up for Stokesley?
Simon – attended the Centre for Alternative Technology’s Zero Carbon Britain 2 day course – great to learn about CAT’s ZCB plan for the UK which gets us to net zero by 2030, can be done with available technologies, keeps us warm, feed and the lights on.  Very well run zoom session – opportunities to mingle with other attendees, hear about different parts of the ZCB report then reflect on what it means for you with others on the course – see summary infographics below.
Following a Guardian article I came across Climate Emergency Centre – https://climateemergencycentre.co.uk/ – having discussed at previous meetings having a shop in Stokesley, this is a whole scheme for taking over a shop and the owner getting rate relief so in mutual interest.
Free food in Middlesbrough – https://www.middlesbrough.gov.uk/community-support-and-safety/homelessness/free-food
Middlesbrough Food Partnership – https://www.sustainablefoodplaces.org/members/middlesbrough/ – has a food action plan for Middlesbrough
AOB
Jeff from NYCC Rotters will be giving a presentation at our full meeting next Tuesday – from reuse to repair to recycling to composting to waste etc..
The North York Moors are asking for views on what the Moors should be like in future – https://northyorkmoors.org.uk/yourviews

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