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  • Parminter Header
    Article: Apr 28, 2022
    By Kate Parminter

    I just wanted to write a quick post to thank you for all the work that you've been doing in the runup to next Thursday, and take a moment to wish you all the best of luck.

    Every year, I'm amazed by the efforts put in by our activists, and Green Liberal Democrats throughout the country have been acting with the urgency that our party - and planet - requires.

    I count it a privilege to do all I can in the Lords to fight for positive action on the environment. Our team hold the Government to account and advocate for a fair deal from Westminster.

    But we cannot do this alone.

    Throughout the country, our campaigners and councillors are doing the work to make sure that we fight the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity on a local level. I don't need to tell you the effect that Liberal Democrats can have in their Local Authorities, driving positive environmental action for our communities.

    But they can't get there without your help.

    That's why I'm writing not only to thank you, but to urge you to keep working hard. It's amazing what we can make happen in only 7 days, so do what you can, and let's win some more seats!

    Best wishes,

    Kate Parminter (Baroness Parminter)

    @kateparminter
    kate.parminter@greenlibdems.org.uk

    P.S: I use this map to find where elections are being held in various areas. I hope you find it helpful!

    Donate here

  • TP Header
    Article: Apr 27, 2022
    By Keith Melton

    It may be difficult to imagine planning beyond next Thursday, 5th May, at this moment.

    Polling day is on the horizon and based on the feedback we are getting from across the board, we may be looking to have some remarkable successes for our party this year.

    This kind of result has the potential to be great for our planet.

    That's why, this summer, our Green Liberal Democrats Summer School and Conference is indispensable. If we hit the ground running, this can be "A Turning Point" in our fight against climate change and biodiversity loss.

    Tickets to "A Turning Point" at Nottingham University on Saturday, June 11th - are available now:

    Get Early Bird Tickets Now!

    Keep your eyes peeled for the full agenda. Here's a slice of what to expect:

    • 'Green Debut' training sessions for councillors and candidates.
    • Panel discussions with our MPs, colleagues, and partner organisations.
    • Special Interest Group sessions to produce policy motions.
    • Strategy roundtables to plan campaigning and messaging.
    • Vegan lunch for all!
    We're working hard to make sure that we carry the dynamic of these Local Elections into practical environmental activism, so join us in Nottingham this summer!

    You need to book your early bird tickets before the 11th May.

    Best of luck next week. If you don't have elections in your area and would like to help our GLD Accredited Candidates in target wards, volunteer here.

    Warm regards,

    Keith Melton

    Chair, 2022
    chair@greenlibdems.org.uk

    P.S: Early bird tickets are available only until the 11th May. Make sure you get in early!
    Book here
  • Article: Apr 20, 2022

    Cllr Claire Malcomson, Cabinet Member for Climate Change, updates on the recent achievements and plans for the environment in Mole Valley.

    And see here how you can lower your own carbon footprint:

    molevalley.gov.uk/goinggreen

  • BH Header
    Article: Apr 18, 2022
    By Green Liberal Democrats

    Energy bills are spiking. 7.5 million households are set to enter fuel poverty. We are all feeling the squeeze.

    On the first of April 2022, the energy price cap rose by 54%, burdening 22 million customers with increased bills. Those on default tariffs paying by direct debit will see an increase of £693 from £1,277 to £1,971 per year, whilst prepayment customers are experiencing an increase of £708, from £1,309 to £2,017.

    It's our job as Liberal Democrats to advocate for these people.

    Whilst we have presented a full plan for reducing the cost of living, home insulation has increased in relevance in light of the campaigning efforts of groups like Extinction Rebellion and Insulate Britain.

    A fabric first approach to reducing costs by investing in better homes could transform the experience of opening utility bills at the end of the month.

    This briefing and campaign pack will outline how we can promote our plan for better homes and lower bills.

    The Problem:

    Well insulated homes save £671 in energy bills per year. Not to mention the human cost.

    In the winter of 2018-19, 17,000 lives were lost due to cold housing conditions, the highest since 1976. A greater quantity than the cumulative deaths from breast and brain cancers in the same period.

    The UK has the second worst cold weather mortality rate of 30 European countries, and when balanced for wealth, rank amongst the worst in the world.

    In turn, energy usage in our homes accounts for 14% of UK emissions. To tackle the climate emergency, we know that we must urgently reduce our carbon footprint. The phrase 'activism starts at home' could not be more true. It shouldn't cost the earth to live in a healthy, comfortable dwelling.

    But instead of helping households to reduce their costs, tackling the health crisis of draughty homes, and reducing our carbon emissions, the Government slashed regulations for developers, costing those in new homes £361 million extra every year.

    The price of inaction is too high for our communities and climate.

    The Solution:

    In the Spring of 2021, the Liberal Democrats proposed that the Windfall from auctions of offshore wind farm rights should be used to invest in a Sovereign Green Wealth Fund. This would finance an emergency ten-year programme to insulate every home.

    Sir Ed Davey MP called for 'Lower heating bills for everyone - and an end to fuel poverty. Warmer homes for everyone - and green jobs in every village, town and city across the UK.'

    E3G analysis found that for every £1 of government money invested in retrofit, £3.20 comes back into the economy by way of increased GDP. This is an opportunity we cannot afford to waste.

    This reiterates pledges made in our 2019 manifesto, which you can read here.

    Our plan calls on the government to:

    • Invest in grants to upgrade insulation in all existing homes, creating over 500,000 skilled green jobs.

    • Require all new homes to be eco-friendly, tackling developers who cut corners with higher standards and regular inspections.

    • Increase minimum efficiency standards for privately rented properties and remove the cost cap on improvements, so tenants aren't trapped in cold homes.

    • Empower councils to develop community energy-saving projects, including delivering housing energy efficiency improvements street by street.

    • Grade Stamp Duty Land Tax by the energy rating of the property.

    The Campaign:

    We've produced a pack of essential resources for campaigning on improving our homes:

    P.S: It may be too late to select a campaign for the runup to May, but we are Liberal Democrats. We campaign all year round!

    Donate to support our efforts
  • Article: Apr 12, 2022
    By Jules Ewart

    When launching our training last week, a few eagle-eyed members asked for more details about our Green Liberal Democrat Summer Conference.

    The Turning Point in June 2022 will feature:

    • A panel discussion and keynote speech from our Vice President, Wera Hobhouse MP

    • Extensive campaign and governance training

    • Meetings of our Special Interest Groups

    • Sessions from partner organisations

    • And plenty of social opportunities!

    More details will follow, but save the date - the 11th June, at Nottingham Conferences, NG7 2RJ.

    You can add the event to your calendar here:

    Apple Google Office 365 Outlook Outlook.com Yahoo

    I look forward to seeing you there!

    Best wishes,

    Jules Ewart

    Vice Chair Organisation, 2022
    vice-chair.organisation@greenlibdems.org.uk

  • Article: Apr 11, 2022
    By Green Liberal Democrats

    The improvement in air quality that we saw during lockdowns brought the issue, an early target of environmentalism, to the fore of public attention. The moment provided us with insight into what might be possible for future air quality in our communities.

    Given the significant threat to health and well-being that poor air quality represents, raising awareness of the transformative impact that local initiatives can have is a vital campaign point.

    YouGov polling found that across six European countries, two thirds said they did not want to go back to pre-Covid pollution levels. Roughly the same proportion (68%) agreed that cities and towns must take effective measures to protect citizens from air pollution, even if it means preventing polluting cars from entering city centres to protect clean air, with as many as 63% of drivers themselves in support.

    Around three quarters (74%) of respondents believed that cities must take effective measures to protect citizens from air pollution, with just 10% opposed.

    We have an opportunity, as we look forward, to improve the health of people and the planet.

    The Problem:

    Air Pollution is the most significant environmental threat to health in the UK, responsible for 36,000 early deaths every year. It causes the development of heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease and lung cancer.

    Fine particulate matter (PM2.5) is the primary cause of damage, with nitrogen dioxide (NO2) also responsible.

    Children are at greater risk from air pollution, with those living in polluted areas more likely to have reduced lung growth. Maternal exposure to polluted air can result in premature and low birth-weight babies.

    A quarter of UK children attend schools with air pollution above the World Health Organisation limit, placing 3.4 million young people at increased risk of asthma, obesity, and cognitive impairments.

    Schools should be safe places. They should not threaten the health of our children.

    However, the United Kingdom's national limits for nitrogen dioxide and particulate matter are set at four times the level of the World Health Organisation guidelines, and the principal source of these are traffic emissions, with wood-burning stoves also being a major contributing factor in some areas.

    Following the tragic death of Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah, air pollution was listed as a cause of death for the first time in December of 2020. In a report to prevent future deaths, the coroner recommended a reduction in national limits of particulate matter.

    The Solution:

    At Liberal Democrats 2022 Spring Conference, the Party passed motion F9: Action to Improve Air Quality, proposed by Cllr Hina Bokhari AM and Summated by Cllr Jon Ball.

    The Motion calls on local authorities to:

    1. Install more pollution sensors near major roads and at every urban school.

    2. Publicise local air quality issues including publishing live pollution levels from their pollution sensors stating specific levels of pollutants using globally recognised units of measurement.

    3. Work to improve air quality in their area.

    4. Take into account likely differential air pollution changes in different roads when designing traffic schemes.

    5. Consider implementing or extending Clean Air Zones, in consultation with residents and local businesses to ensure that such zones reduce net pollution and don't merely displace activity

    6. Promote schemes to allow the rapid and affordable replacement of petrol and diesel vehicles by lower polluting vehicles by local businesses in conjunction with the introduction of Clean Air zones.

    7. Establish No-Idling Zones outside schools.

    Conference also called for the Government to:

    1. Urgently bring forward statutory instruments under the Environment Act 2021 to introduce legally binding national limits for particulate matter and other pollutants at or below current WHO guidelines.

    2. Introduce a fully-funded obligation for all local authorities to install and maintain pollution sensors in their areas.

    3. Introduce a scrappage scheme targeted at the most polluting older vehicles, in particular old diesel vehicles, and at vehicles used by local businesses in proposed Clean Air Zones.

    4. Introduce targeted funding to provide financial support for the operators of buses, taxis and private hire vehicles to switch to less polluting technologies.

    5. Increase the Air Quality Grant Programme which provides funding to local authorities to tackle locally identified air pollution issues.

    6. Encourage local authorities to run public education style programmes and allow them to follow these with an increased maximum penalty that they can apply to drivers leaving their engines idling, with the local authorities retaining 100% of the money raised.

    7. Fund local authorities to introduce more electric charging points in Clean Air Zones, allowing supply to keep ahead of demand.

    Read the full motion here

    The Campaign:

    We've produced a pack of essential resources for campaigning on improving air quality:

    P.S: We don't have long now until Polling Day, but we are doing everything we can to support campaigners like you to deliver for your communities.

    Donate to support our efforts
  • Lance Spencer and others at bus stop
    Article: Apr 8, 2022

    Surrey County Council's plans for a greener future took a major step backwards when it failed to get any financial support from the government for its Bus Service Improvement Plan.

    Boris Johnson announced funding for his Bus Back Better scheme in March 2021 with £3 billion available to help transform bus services across England.

  • Hands with mittens holding a white cup of coffee - Alex Padurariu @unsplash.com ()
    Article: Apr 8, 2022

    Families in Surrey are paying over £240m more a year for their energy bills because they are living in poorly insulated homes, research by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

    Surrey Liberal Democrats are demanding that the government urgently invest in fixing leaky homes in the area and cutting people's energy bills in the long term.
    The analysis shows almost 350,000 households in Surrey have received poor energy efficiency ratings (EPC Bands D-G), making up between 57% (Mole Valley) and 71% (Reigate) of homes in the county. It comes despite a government target to upgrade all homes to Band C by 2035.

  • Article: Apr 6, 2022

    Raj Haque is a well-known face in Bookham and Fetcham, having lived here for over 40 years and as owner of the popular Fetcham Tandoori restaurant. Since his election to Mole Valley District Council in 2010, Raj has worked hard for residents, both in his own ward of Fetcham West and across Mole Valley as Chairman of the Council in 2018-19. Raj believes in working with other councillors and residents to get things done, and is always willing to help those in need, whether during the floods of 2013/14, supporting key workers during the pandemic, or through charity work. His proudest achievements include getting Cock Lane repaired, a 20mph zone for Fetcham's schools, and saving Fetcham's Molebridge surgery from closure.

  • Sign designating permit holder parking only 1-2pm Mon-Fri.
    Article: Apr 5, 2022

    Surrey County Council has launched a public consultation on increases to on-street parking charges including those for residents' parking permits, with the aim of increasing parking revenue by £334,000 per year across the range of measures.

    Notably the cost of parking permits is set to rise over 60% for the first vehicle in a household, increasing from £50 to £80. Additional household permits will go up from £75 to £100 for the second permit and to £130 for subsequent ones.

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