Meeting notes: September 2021

 Notes from Sheffield FoE Local Group meeting -  13th September 2021 by Zoom

Attendees: Lindy S (chair), Duncan F,  Liddy G, Claire B, , Sarah S

Apologies: Helen F, Richard S, Sean A, Shaun R, Sue S

Updates from August meeting:

Grey to Green Walk -  2nd walk went well – over 20 people , Green Party members made up bulk of the group.

Nature Recovery Sheffield – Lindy, Claire & Sarah attended a Sheffield Nature Summit organised by Olivia Blake MP on September 1st. Recognition of the nature emergency spoken about by both Terry Fox, leader of Sheffield council & Dan Jarvis, S Yorks Mayor, but thin on specific commitment. Follow up expected. Nature Recovery Sheffield organising a community event for developing strategy on Sept 30th  All welcome. 

Near Me tool - Lindy hasn’t yet managed to follow up with councillors or via Twitter but will do so.

Sheffield City Council Climate Action Plan - We are signatories to an SCA call for council to move more quickly, with commitments made to take some steps before COP 26 starts. 

Carbon Literacy Training - Claire planned to attend this if possible but so far SCA have not provided any dates; Lindy will chase up with SCA.

Future Meetings - Lindy has investigated possibilities for film showing/in person social meetings in the future but these could be quite expensive

COP26 plans - Lindy attended training and reported back on Sheffield council plans.  FoE keen on a ‘stunt’ and we can plan for Oct meeting to be about COP – and discuss what form this action should take. 

Other updates:

Pinstone Street - SCC are planning on removing the Active Travel traffic free routes and Lindy has written to SCC on FoE’s behalf and raised issue on Twitter to raise awareness of what would be a backwards step. Decision is expected this week. 

Owlthorpe Fields – Channel 4 interviewed Claire and campaigners for a piece on the evening news shown this evening and so although campaign has not stopped development has made a significant contribution to national debate on planning v environment and the limitations of ’ biodiversity net gain’ requirement in planning laws. 

Future event We have agreed to book a stall at the Sheffield Peace and Craft Stall in the Town Hall on Saturday 27 November 

Numbers of supporters - Numbers continue to increase with a mix of positive and supportive messages - on Database 384, followers on Facebook 638 & Twitter 678. While numbers continue to grow, speed of this increases with actions such as petition.

Petition – Sheffield FoE have just launched a petition calling on local horticultural retailers to stop selling peat-based compost. In 36 hours this has generated 114 signatures and has increased followers on Twitter and database. The petition is linked to the campaigning at the Castlegate event on Saturday 18th (see below)

Funding : We can apply for up to £500 from FoE Local Group Fund so Lindy and Liddy will put an application together for printing costs etc for campaigning this autumn. 

Engaging with the public training: Next Tuesday 7-8:30pm tat he SCA monthly campaigns meeting, Nick Nuttgens of the Climate Communications Hub will be facilitating training on engaging the public in conversation about the climate crisis. Lindy/Duncan definitely attending.  Lindy will share Zoom link by email.

Next Local Group Meeting – Monday October 18th – main agenda item will be COP26, hopefully with a speaker covering what it is/why it matters followed by planning for a ‘stunt’ on Nov 6th – the global day of action. 

Great Big Green Week Campaign Stall plans: 

1) Sat Sept 18th: 10-4, on Castlegate: As part of a Nature Recovery Sheffield campaign event, our stall will focus on Peat; the importance of peatlands, the dangers they face and the need to avoid using peat in gardens. Market stall gazebos are being supplied and erected by SCC staff. Lindy, Shaun, Sarah had met and suggested following:

We will have photos and displays about peatlands and a short video to play on a laptop.

Sarah will investigate getting a sample of sphagnum moss to bring and we will have a bucket and a sponge to illustrate the absorption qualities of the moss. 

The petition for stopping the sale of peat-based compost will be available to sign.

Duncan offered to bring home composting samples to use alongside a range of alternatives to peat compost in gardens, for people to get their hands into. 

House plants will also be a focus, with a draw for a peat-free, coir-potted, UK-grown, house plant for those who provide a contact email to encourage people to sign up for our database and/or petition. 

Lindy has generated  QR codes for the petition and links to other sources of information, including a page on our website which Shaun is developing to cover all the peat info we will have on display. 

We will have FoE local group business cards to hand out.

Lindy, Sarah, Duncan, Claire, Liddy, Siobhan, Richard all on the stall at various times

2) Sat Sept 25th: 10-4 on Fargate, as part of wider campaign groups event under the SCA ‘banner’. Key aim to publicise the IPCC report, the need for urgent action and the upcoming COP.  

Duncan leading on this

Duncan to provide some physical artefacts as visual talking points eg bleached coral, to compare with a photo of living coral, a replica dinosaur claw to start a conversation about what happened to them (together with dinosaur toys on display to attract attention!) 

Link to one or more FoE petitions via QR code

‘Most important steps to take’ on business card size takeaways

We will have FoE local group business cards to hand out.

Lindy, Duncan, Richard only available so far - please sign up if possible.