Monday, 21 January 2019

Air Pollution Update - January 2019

Graham Turnbull from Clean Air Parents' Network is co-ordinating a “School Streets” petition to get changes in policy to support time limited road closures for schools with poor air quality locally. He has support from some councillors and from the University of Sheffield’s landscape department and raised awareness with schools, some of which are already interested. He is also working with university colleagues who are supporting his plans for pollution monitoring with plans for building up to 250 sensors. A further step would be to develop an app so individuals can download results from their own area.

Actions: Graham to contact Sheffield Climate Alliance to link up his campaign and FoE campaigning with their activities/networks. Potential to help organise workshops to build pollution monitors in February before a larger event planned for Saturday 23 March. Richard will also share information with national FoE through Simon Bowen.

Plastics Update - January 2019

Richard had a successful meeting with Louise Haigh to ask her to support development of the MPs’ plastics group to campaign for legislation. She is happy to also support by asking a parliamentary question on plastics.

Demand for plastic-free products/shopping growing – “Unwrapped” on Crookes Road getting 50-70 customers a day (100 at the weekend).

Screening of “Plastic Ocean” planned for 11 May as a Festival of Debate event. Action: Shaun to check plans with Drew who is organising and inviting Simon Bowen; Richard to invite Louise Haigh.

Black Plastic pots – Shaun has suggested taking plastics that cannot be recycled back to the retailer to ask them if they can re-use/recycle, at least to raise awareness.

MoveGB -  A national gym has branded water bottles and have asked for endorsement. Action – to share information with Drew and Beatrice and potentially request advice from national FoE.

Fracking Update - January 2018

Sheffield Against Fracking is organising a meeting with local speakers on health impacts and the KM8 victory at Theatre Deli on 22 January (with apple crumble).

AGM was held by Sheffield Against Fracking in January,

Future events:

  • National gathering in London,  2 February. Full details on Facebook event page; further information is also in the SAF newsletter. 
  • Monthly meeting 5 Feb 7:30-9pm Central URC Church, 60 Norfolk St, Sheffield, S1 2JB.

Other News - January 2019

Beatrice signed a Brexit letter in the Yorkshire Post explaining that a non deal was bad for the environment.

Groundswell – events planned for Spring 2019 in Birmingham (8 June), Bristol (15 June), Cambridge (29 June), Darlington (18 May), London (27 April) and Manchester (1 June). Plan is for a full day of “basecamp” activities including talks. Individuals can sign up through FoE link for any of the events.

Booking forms available for Sharrow Festival Stall - Sat 6th July; we have agreed to delay making bookings until we can plan which festivals we target when we have more dates and know who is likely to be available.

Events listings for our group – potential to use Opus/Now then magazine.

Monday, 17 December 2018

Air Pollution Update - December 2018

A while back a FOI request was turned down by Sheffield City Council. National FOE is pursuing this and just keeping us informed.

The Clean Air Zone may not include private cars if required levels can be met without this although FoE’s policy is to continue to advocate their inclusion.

Client Earth – there is a potential contact which Richard will pick up who is interested in getting involved and potentially leading on air pollution.

Plastics Campaign Update - December 2018

Richard is meeting Louise Haigh in January as part of national campaign to get MPs on side and identify a group that could champion legislation (8 already signed up).

A Plastic Ocean - film screening with Festival of Debate and the Light Cinema is being planned and Louise could potentially be invited.

Anti-Fracking Campaign Update - December 2018

Sheffield Against Fracking's AGM is coming up on Jan 8 at 7:30 United Reform Church and is an open meeting – all welcome. Drew has done some artwork for the AGM for them. Other meetings include 22 Jan 7:30 Theatre Deli, speaker meeting on Health Impacts (Eddie Thornton and others). A full update with details of future meetings from June below and further info on Sheffield Against Fracking website.

Details of Fracking events and news (update from June)

Winter Solstice at Tinker Lane     
Tinker Lane Protectors Camp, DN22 8PA
Saturday 22nd December   Starts at 4pm
Join the protectors for some solstice connection, reflection and earth healing vibes.
We'll meet and spend some time by the gates, then head to camp and eat some warming food. Everyone welcome!

FRACK OFF - festive fundraiser
Saturday 22nd December     Starts at 7pm
The Queen Crafthouse & Kitchen, 1 Sunny Bar, Doncaster DN1 1LY
An evening of live music to raise awareness of fracking and support those who are protesting daily at anti-fracking camps in the Doncaster area. RAFFLE £1 ENTRY. Plus a talk by Dave Shaw, co-founder of Frack Free South Yorkshire. Free entry but donations welcome to support the anti-fracking movement.

Sheffield Against Fracking AGM & monthly meeting
Tuesday 8th January 2019   7.30pm-9.30pm
Central URC Church, 60 Norfolk Street, Sheffield S1 2JB
With the growing threat of fracking and toxic waste in our area, we'd love new people to get involved with ideas, skills or a desire to learn.
There are various roles available, from event and action coordinators to internal and external communication roles. For more information, please email us.

Regional Strategy Meeting for South Yorks/ East Midlands
Saturday 12th January 2019       10am - 1pm
The Wesley Centre, Blyth Road, Maltby, Rotherham S66 8JD
Meeting of anti-fracking groups from across the region. Meet like-minded people, share knowledge, skills and experiences, and learn about the situation locally & nationally

Fracking: Health impacts & the KM8 victory 
Tuesday 22nd January 2019      7.30-9.30pm at Theatre Delicatessen
How the community of Kirby Misperton united to protect their landscape from fracking; with views from Eddie & Tim Thornton - 2 different approaches to activism.
Eddie Thornton an activist  determined to protect his local area from fracking - why and how.
Tim Thornton - retired family doctor and a concerned health professional, who has set up Concerned Health Professionals of the United Kingdom (alongside Carol Hutchinson from Eckington)
Deborah Gibson - local activist & campaigner from Harthill Against Fracking & Frack Free South Yorkshire - an update on fracking in the area how you can get involved.
 Free entry, donations to Sheffield Against Fracking
Apple crumble, tea & coffee included

Fracking halted AGAIN in Lancashire
A minor earthquake of 1.5 magnitude struck late on Tuesday morning following a series of far smaller tremors, and after fossil fuel exploration had stopped for the day. Activity has again been suspended. Locals said they felt the tremor.

General Group News - December 2018

The meeting was shorter than normal due to a great Christmas meal in the Red Deer and celebrating Richard's birthday.

Trademark/Partnership agreement – This no longer requires payment of an annual fee but still provides access to insurance for stalls and events; all that is required is a signature on behalf of the group.

Next meeting is 21st January 7:30pm (Richard to chair; Liddy to take notes). We hope you can make it.

Monday, 19 November 2018

Air Pollution Campaign Update - November 2018

Sheffield City Council has now announced that it plans to establish a Clean Air Zone by 2021 and it will apply to buses, coaches, HGVs, LGVs, vans, taxis and private hire vehicles but not cars. There will be a consultation from January 2019. More details can be found at the links below:
At the time of the SCC announcement, Shaun produced a very good press release and Beatrice did an excellent interview to promote the issue. Client Earth have been in touch with Shaun as they would also like to work with us on this and contribute to the consultation when it opens. They have a parents’ network and Simon mentioned FoE have some new materials for schools and informed development of school “exclusion zones” for peak periods which have encouraged parents to walk their children to school.

Simon reported on national air quality campaigning and the progress in other cities announcing Clean Air Zones, eventually expecting about 20 cities to need to develop similar action plans.

The SCA AGM was devoted to Air Pollution and they have been campaigning for the Clean Air Zone over the summer. Drew will represent FoE at the SCA meeting tomorrow (20/11/18). There is another FoE teleconference during the week as well.

Related to transport and air pollution is the Supertram consultation. Individuals have contributed along with Sheffield Climate Alliance. The preferred option is to replace the system with new rails and trams rather than adhoc improvements or scrapping it altogether. There is also a petition for improving public transport. Please sign here 

Anti-Fracking Campaign Update - November 2018

June gave an update on current activity, including a number of events coming up:

  • Ian Fairley is giving a talk at California Lane, Ballborough on 21/11/18. If you can't get there a video from the Sheffield meeting is available on YouTube.

  • An event at Tinker Lane on 22/11/18 to “dress in pink”. 
  • Saturday 23/11/18 “funeral for the future” meeting at Town Hall (dress in black).
Alan gave update on the London and Sheffield Extinction Rebellion meetings. Rachel gave update on an open letter that will be available for more signatories in due course (Lauren will forward on).

Plastics Campaign Update - November 2018

Drew gave an update about the screening of the film A Plastic Ocean. We hope to join forces with the Light Cinema and the Festival of Debate for spring 2019. Simon confirmed that national FoE should be able to provide an appropriate speaker who could re-iterate the FoE environmental line on plastics.

Richard participated in a national teleconference which discussed contacting supportive MPs and subsequently contacted Louise Hague but has not yet had a reply. He has requested a meeting and offered a photo opportunity.

Other Group News - November 2018

Richard and Liddy manned a stall at the Peace & Craft fair and sold some plastic-free products from “Unwrapped” in Crookes, collected signatures for anti-fracking and plastics campaigns; got people to sign up to online FoE climate change petition.

Group Development
Simon Bowens introduced some ideas for developing the local groups and asked for feedback from the group. Plans including developing our international links with other activist groups and increasing the support for local activists, particularly for “grass roots” campaigns that can link up with other campaigns round the country. There needs to be potential for those who take on line action with national FoE to get more involved in action locally.  Also for increasing diversity of those involved including families, all age groups.

Potential support from national FoE:  Examples of linked networks in the anti-fracking campaign which could be spread to other campaigns. Support can also include more training events or campaign topic focused events e.g. legal and planning systems expertise. Regional gatherings will be “mini Basecamps” in future and aim to bring more people in to do more active campaigning.

Action Network is a platform and tool for online actions that ensures we can get contact details and build a database of supporters directly.  Southampton have successfully used to get people who signed a petition to come to a “Clean Air Cafe”.

As many people, particularly young people, relate to a ”cause”  or specific issue rather than the organisation (FoE) it is worth considering focused actions/meetings about a specific campaign.

Drew suggested a hub/private portal for FoE discussions. Expertise around recruitment and retention of active members mainly lies with local groups and could be shared. Need balance between events - both local and centrally organised – and on line/social media engagement.

Positive Money talk
Gerry Penny would like to provide the group with a talk about Positive Money. This was not discussed as we overran. To discuss at a future meeting.

Next Meeting and Christmas Social
Our Christmas social will take place on Mon 17 December. The meeting will start at 7.00pm - 7.30pm with the meal to start at 7.30pm. Liddy will circulate menu and collect bookings.

If sending a payment by post, send to E Goyder, 23 Nairn St, Sheffield S10 1UL. If easier to pay by bank transfer rather than cash or cheque, just let me know and I will send you my account details.

Monday, 15 October 2018

Anti Fracking Campaign Update - October 2018

Richard praised Dr Ian Fairlie's insightful presentation on radioactivity and fracking at the meeting on the 27th September.

The successful Global Frackdown Carnival in Sheffield was featured on both Look North and Radio Sheffield

Friends of the Earth Sheffield are proud to have donated money to Harthill Against Fracking and wish them the best of luck in their fight against fracking in Lancashire. Friends of the Earth Sheffield will also be contributing to transport costs involved with a national call for support at the Preston New Road fracking site near Blackpool. If you would like to go to the national rally please see the poster below:
Sheffield Friend of the Earth created a short video in support of the people in Blackpool trying to stop fracking.

Plastics Campaign Update - October 2018

Shaun reported that Liddy has been in discussions with Sheffield Festival Of Debate 2019. They approached Sheffield Friends of the Earth regarding an environmentally themed day during the festival.

Drew discussed the options for screening ‘A Plastic Ocean’ in the near future. Friends of the Earth Sheffield hope to secure a viable venue by November. Drew to complete the event proposal for Sheffield Festival of Debate 2019 before 5th November.

Friends of the Earth's Plastic Action Plan is in the final stages and will be released soon. Anyone interested in discussing the plan with their local MP should contact Edward Burke ( Please also let us know in the Sheffield group.

Richard and Drew discussed the recent meeting with 65th Ecclesall Brownies where Friends of the Earth Sheffield provided a talk and some fun activities centred on plastic waste and it’s threat to marine life. We would be pleased to consider holding similar events on Climate and Environmental related themes for any group: children, youth or adults. Please contact us if you're interested. Shaun suggested it may be possible to take bookings for future talks and event evenings through the website and/or Facebook page

Richard to take the Friends of the Earth national conference call on the 17th October

Richard to send a response to the recent enquiry regarding monitoring emissions at the Sheffield incinerator

Take Acton - Can you help with our next stall?
Richard will be running the Friend of the Earth stall at the Peace & Craft Fair on the 3rd of November.  Set up from 9 am (stall to be set up by 10:45am latest)Anyone willing to help run the stall can sign up here:

Other News - October 2018

The group reviewed the updated Friends of the Earth ‘Trade mark license’ and ‘Local group charter’. Shaun suggested that it would be extremely useful if it was possible to donate to local groups through the national Friends of the Earth website.

The consultation regarding Sheffield Supertram ends on Monday 5th November. Sheffield City Council are considering several options. To have your say visit: