March’s Waste Thoughts – 2023

Full notes below, quick summary:


If you have just signed up to the Waste Group, then welcome, I hope these notes of our discussion make sense.

We meet once a month to talk about topics connected to waste and plan / report progress on our ongoing activities such as the Repair Cafes, Foodshare, Refill scheme and upcoming events such as the Bilsdale Show.  If you visit the “Thoughts on Waste” page on the CASaV website you can find all our past discussions –

Please get in touch if you have any questions.

Notes form 14th March 2023 CASaV Waste Group Meeting


Matters arising: Repair Cafes
Recent online / physical meetings: FoE Building People Power and Winning Campaigns Course
AOB: River Tees; Great Big Green Week; Upcycling June



Earth Hour – Annual global event, people/buildings switch lights off for 1 hour – March 25th. This year a bit different to actually do something active for the climate during the hour – write letters etc –

Hambleton District Cloth Nappy Library Northallerton – all the support you need to avoid disposable nappies and the nappies themselves – or contact them via


FoE – France any car park 80 cars or bigger must be covered in solar panels –


A swimming pool in Exmouth is being heated by a data centre housed in the leisure centre, this is a win-win as the pool gets free heat and the data centre doesn’t have to use extra power for air conditioning, plus the data centre doesn’t have to pay rent –

On the other had it is sad to see that Rishi Sunak took the opposite approached and instead paid to upgrade the grid to supply enough electricity directly to heat his new pool in Kirby Sigston.

Of course a heat pump would use less electricity to heat the pool, as every 1kWh of electric energy produces around 3kWh of heat, whereas 1kWh into the data centre will give less than 1kWh of heat, but the point is the data centre will otherwise waste the heat and use extra energy for air conditioning.

Compost heap looks wonderful, anything organic goes on compost heap and in the end fantastically fertile brown friable material is produced, with only egg / mussel shells recognisable. Lots of organisations offer advice on how best to set up a compost heap – RSPB, RHS, Eden Project.


Wisdom of the Woods – Forest School – Sylvan Lore – really impressed how a morning / day in pre-industrial / pre-climate changing environment gives children absolute respect for the environment, with 4 years and up getting really knowledgeable about why/how to protect our natural environment and picking up practical skills including whittling.


NHS Research Funding Bids are getting greener, now the National Institute of Health and Care Research (NIHR) have sustainable guidelines for research – and the wider UK publicly funded research community is also heading to Net Zero for all research –

The NHS has a carbon footprint of around 21m tonnes per year ( and legislation says that by 2045 the NHS will be world’s first net zero healthcare system. More locally, York Hospital aiming to be carbon neutral by 2027.

It appears that the government funding for food distribution centres to stop waste has been cut, basically removing Covid support, this is sad as they are one of the most effective ways of reducing food waste and ensuring food goes to the most needy.


Times – clean rivers campaign – – while the Times is normally behind a Paywall, it appears these article are freely available, but if you find they are not then if you have a NY Libraries card you can access the times via Pressread – available via North Yorkshires Libraries using the Newsbank site/app –

Since free plastic carrier bag were banned, usage has decreated by by 97% – DEFRA Analysis.


Energy efficiency less than 97%. In 2022 wind farms generated a lot more electricty than coal. It is interesting to look at total energy use as while a lot of electricity is generated from wind and solar, renewable is still a minority of the UK’s total energy consumption i.e. including transport, heating – UK 2022 Energy Profiles.

There will be a Guisborough Eco Group (GEG) event in St Nicholas Church Hall on April 29th around nature and the grown environment. So looking to provide seeds, advice, paper plant pots, reuse of yogurt pots and how to make compost – what you can / can’t compost, plus recycling advice.

Currently no involvement of allotment group There are allotments still available awaiting de-weeding, but you can jump the queue if you are happy to remove your own weeds. GEG are looking into having a GEG allotment, so ask current allotment owners to get involved on the day.

Things are happening about repairing: A local Guisborough group are setting up to show people how to do repairs; Redcar Repair Cafe up by the end of the month; In Guisborough Trading Standards will check electric blankets, in fact they gave me a free single in exchange for my faulty double.

Looking for an Acer tree for local school

There is local funding for innovative projects to enhance tree planting

At a GEG meeting they discussed 20’s plenty and decided that in fact a better idea would be to pedestrianise Chalnor Street – which is normally closed for a bi-monthly Sunday Market.


City by the Sea / Refill / Everyday Plastics are running a joint campaign to get supermarkets not to use plastic bags for 5 common fruits / vegetables which effectively have their own wrapping –

A zero waste group has started a Can-Paign to encourage the use of cans on the basis that it they have long life and products are packaged in them minimise food waste both on production and on use –

Deposit return scheme (DRS) in Scotland was due to start this August, but is now likely to be delayed by the UK Government. This is rather disappointing, the delay is due to the scheme being slated to be unfair to small companies. Hopefully the scheme will not be delayed too long and that the learning will make implementation of schemes across the rest of the UK easier and possible even quicker.

Louise (by email)

“Please could you place an advert on your website to ask people to save used postage stamps ( for Teesside Hospice) and clean tin foil which can be used ( or new if unwanted.) People can drop things through my letterbox or leave at the back door. I could collect from Swainby or from the Repair cafes. Possibly you could have a poster at the Repair Cafes requesting these ?”

Action: Simon add information to website on postage stamps and tin foil

Action: Louise produce posters for advertising postage stamp and tin foil collection

“Also, did you get anywhere with the idea of having shops at some N Yorks tips?” This is awaiting reorganisation of the councils and may have to wait until new contracts are negotiated.

Actions from Last Meeting

Pause dredging petition – the petition is now up to over 27 thousand signatures.

Food Share Back-ups – Bridget is now helping, with food going 4 nights locally and 3 nights into Middlesbrough. Joy would like to help too.

Matters arising

Repair Cafe: Over 60 items were examined and/or repaired at the Repair Cafe on 11th February in Stokesley Globe Community Library. Next repair cafes are 18th March Swainby Repair Cafe and 1st April Stokesley Repair Cafe. At future repair cafes the plan is to proactively provide information to people about the wider activities of Climate Action Stokesley and Villages, either as a physical stall or by walking around engaging with people.

Recent online / physical meetings

Simon has been attending Friends of the Earth’s “Building people power and winning campaigns” course over the last 8 Wednesday evenings. The course did what its title says and was a great opportunity to share / learn from other groups. While many of the groups had similar challenges to CASaV, too much to do, too little time, too few people, the course provided many practical approaches to address just these issues. The title of each week give a little flavour of what was involved: getting to know each other, Building a brilliant campaigning group, Planning an awesome campaign, Getting and keeping new people in your group, Wrapping up a campaign.

The course also stressed diversity / inclusivity, at the start of each session, in great detail, which was initially rather strange but very thought provoking.


Summer Half Term – Joanna Whitwell – Discovery Centre Great Ayton book upcycling – half term book sculpture

Great Big Green Week – 10-18 June – same as Open Garden weekend plus Repair Cafe – 10th June – Stokesley. Invite our MP / Upcycling event / Get schools involved

Upcycling Day is 24th June.

One suggestion was to hold a meeting for 4 in the home made hot tub, perhaps invite Rishi Suank to show alternative ways to heat a swimming pool.

Could the Stokesley School fabric banners be taken around the local primary schools as a touring exhibition to engage children and their parents?

Could we also do a touring exhibition of the different creations (Rounton’s/Only Weigh Out Competition winners?) which have been made with used coffee bags?

Action: Kate
Action: Wendy
Send ideas

Action: Jenny plant up coffee sacks so we have growing things ready for June – potatoes, herbs, in fact anything

Action: Anne – upcylcing Powerpaint with templates / examples of upcycling for competition

Action: Simon arrange Bilsdale Show plan and seek volunteers for the day / ideas.

Action: Jenny plant up coffee sacks so we have growing things ready for June – potatoes, herbs, in fact anything

Schools upcycling posters – we could produce a Powerpoint for junior schools with examples / templates posters as part of a competition for primary school children to produce a poster showing how to upcycle something

Action: Anne – upcylcing Powerpaint with templates / examples of upcycling for competition

We have been asked to support the Bilsdale Show on 26th August, Simon is coordinating with Tracey Flint to get North Yorkshire Council support in a similar way to last years. Last year there were lots of talking to people with farmers, horse owners – lots of people keen to tell us what they were doing. What to display / put on the stall? Will be mentioned at CASaV group meeting on 21st.

Action: Simon arrange Bilsdale Show plan and seek volunteers for the day / ideas.

Current Bilsdale volunteers – Jenny, Kate, Simon, (Joanna?),

Reclaim Our Sea Update

We are still pressing to get a proper investigation undertaken to characterise the historic contamination of the River Tees, so that errors are not made that contaminate the local sea environment.

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