Thursday, 14 August 2008

Plastic bag free Scilly

Modbury in South Devon was the first town in Britain to ban the plastic bag. BBC cameraman Rebecca Hosking was so appalled at the devastating effects of plastic on marine wildlife that she decided to go home and make sure every shop in her home town stopped selling or giving away plastic bags. This has been enormously successful, gained a huge amount of publicity and has spearheaded a rapidly growing nationwide campaign.

On Monday August 18th we will be showing the film Message in the waves, in the Old Wesleyan Chapel on St Mary's at 7.30pm. This film was shot by Rebecca Hosking's team in Hawaii and vividly describes the complete carnage that marine rubbish (most of it plastic) causes on the wildlife - yet a tiny amount of the rubbish itself actually comes from Hawaii.

This marks the launch of Plastic bag free Scilly. We want every retailer to stop selling or giving away plastic bags and every food retailer to stop selling food in oil-based plastic consumables such as cups, plates, cutlery and sandwich wedges. To do this we will be giving retailers sources of alternative packaging, whilst educating shoppers.

All this will make these Islands part of the solution, not the problem. More will appear here as the campaign develops. If you want to know more please contact us.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Film screening: 11th August

The Wrecking season is a film about a Cornishman, Nick Darke, who is a traditional "wrecker" on the north Cornish coast. The film follows Nick through a season of wrecking and looks at the multitude of objects that wash up in the tide.

This is then explored further through Nick tracking where these items have come from - in some cases thousands of miles. It's a simple concept with much deeper meanings, describing very visually how a combination of rubbish and ocean currents make marine pollution a very global problem.

The film will be shown in the Old Wesleyan Chapel on St Mary's at 19.30, doors open from 19.00. Tea and cakes will be available; the film is free, but donations are appreciated. You also have an opportunity to become a member of Transition Scilly, for a very reasonable £1 per year! For this you will get a newsletter, receive updates on events and get a chance to become directly involved in projects.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Transport and carbon footprint

Working out your carbon footprint is a measure of the carbon dioxide emissions created by you in your activities over a year. In the UK emissions from transport make up about 20% of total UK emissions - so it's really important to minimise your impact of transport to reduce your carbon footprint.

This graph shows how far you can go, using different modes of transport, to create 1kg of CO2:

Flying is a hideous waste of energy, creating enormous emissions - especially given most flights cover vast distances. One return flight to Australia will use as much energy needed to heat and power your home for six years.

On the other hand, the bicycle, one of the most efficient machines ever invented, allows you to travel reasonable distances, carrying a reasonable weight, yet has the lowest emissions of any mode of transport.

Reducing how much you fly and drive, changing instead to public transport is the most important starting point to reducing your carbon footprint, and hence global climate change. Walking or getting on your bike is the best thing you can do - and there are few excuses for those local journeys!