Thursday, May 19, 2016

Victoria's Green Matters - 19th May 2016



Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

I doubt that many of us realise just how important plants are to our lives; in fact, more than important – they are vital. Plants add oxygen to the atmosphere and regulate our climate; they provide us with food, fuel, medicines and timber.

A recent ‘State of the World’s Plants’ report by experts at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, shows that there are 390,000 species of plants with more than 30,000 used by people.

But 20% of these plants are facing extinction. The greatest threat comes from farming where habitats are destroyed – cattle ranching and palm oil production, for example, account for 31% of the destruction with deforestation for timber accounting for another 21%. Construction of buildings and infrastructure destroy another 13% while climate change is a smaller factor at 4% but this is likely to grow. The full impact of these losses will probably not be felt for another 30 years as plants, especially trees, need a long time to produce offspring. One important crop that is already suffering, though, is coffee as rising temperatures make it impossible for the beans to grow and cause an increase in diseases in countries such as Ethiopia. Bananas have little genetic diversity, making them vulnerable to threats and wild relatives need to be found to breed new, robust varieties.

In contrast, there is good news as 2,000 new species of plants are discovered every year, raising hopes for new sources of food that are resistant to diseases and climate change.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Deal Seedy Saturday 14th May

Thank you to everyone who volunteered, donated/swap plants, played Ukes or made cakes for today's Seedy Saturday at the Landmark Community Group here in Deal. 

Very cold northerly wind meant we did not have the quantity of people today that we usually have but this did mean we had time to talk about what Deal With It is doing in Deal for longer which was really good.

We had £36 in donations - all money goes to Garden projects at Landmark or Deal Station

Especial thank you to the Uke Club based at the Landmark for playing us - Those Uke hands needed regular warm up breaks in the Cafe :)

All our pics are here

Our next event will be a Beach Clean on Sunday 26th June - We will be organising a Summer shindig in August.

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Seedy Saturday - 14th May

The next Deal Seedy Saturday will be on Saturday 14th May starting at 11am at the Landmark Garden on Deal High Street.

This is a plant and seed swap so please bring some labelled plants or seeds to swap.

We hope to have some music provided by the Landmark Ukulele group and some cakes to share

All Welcome

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Victoria's Green Matters - 5th May 2016



Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

It was only recently that there was a report about the poor air quality in many of our cities which was causing between 40,000 – 50,000 premature deaths a year. Now there is a further report by a cross party committee of MPs, which has labelled the situation as a ‘public health crisis’, that has concluded that diesel vehicles are the major cause of the pollution and that the government is not taking action.

The committee has found that 97% of modern diesel cars are emitting more toxic nitrogen oxide (NOx) pollution than the legal limit. New cars are subject to testing on a rolling road where they may pass the test but rarely match industry figures when out on the open road. (This is discounting any ‘tricks of the trade’ that may have been employed to cause the recent emissions scandal concerning VW).

‘Client Earth’, a non-governmental organisation, took the government to the Supreme Court last year over its failure to act on emissions and won its case but one year on is dismayed to find that little action has been taken.

Sales of diesel overtook sales of petrol cars in 2010 as everyone was encouraged to choose diesel because of its lower carbon dioxide emissions and more miles per gallon; time has shown us that this was short-sighted.

There has been a call for a diesel car scrappage scheme to get old diesel vehicles off the roads and for Clean Air Zones to be imposed in major cities.

Victoria Nicholls. Transition Deal.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Bank Holiday Beach Clean 2nd May

Massive thank you to our 25 volunteers who managed to collect over 71kgs of rubbish from the Deal Beach (Sandown Castle end) in a little over an hour

Another great Deal Community story - our new pickers and flags were donated by Deal Folk by the Sea buskers, The clean supports the great efforts of the Sandown Community Garden group who are doing so much to transform this end of the town and our volunteers are drawn right across the community

Our next clean will be at the end of June - date to be confirmed

Friday, April 29, 2016

Energy Deal Scheme Set To Help Dover District Residents Save Money

 There’s still time to find out if you could save money on your energy bills with the latest round of Energy Deal – that’s the message from Dover District Council, who launched the latest round of the popular collective switching campaign on 22 March.


Residents have until 16 May to register to take part in the latest round. Energy suppliers will then be invited to compete with their best offer at an energy auction on 17 May. Residents registered with Energy Deal will be sent a personalised offer showing the winning tariff, which they can then decide whether they want to accept.

This follows the previous round of the scheme, which was launched in December 2015, when Dover District residents who signed up could have saved an average of £271.32 a year on their gas and electricity bills. Latest figures show that Dover District residents have saved a total of £111,515.94 by switching through Energy Deal from June 2013 up to and including February 2016.

DDC is working in partnership with Dartford, Gravesham, Tonbridge & Malling and Tunbridge Wells councils to operate the Energy Deal scheme.

For more information or to register, please see the Energy Advice pages, or leave contact details on 01304 872428.

http://www.dover.gov.uk/News/Press-Releases/2016/Energy-Deal-Scheme-Set-To-Help-Dover-District-Residents-Save-Money.aspx

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Victoria's Green Matters 28th May 2016



Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:


Many of us have decided to choose the ‘green option’ for our electricity supply and will now welcome the chance to opt for a carbon neutral gas supply. If you have your electricity from a supplier who offers 100% renewable energy, you may soon be able to enter into a dual fuel contract where your gas supply comes from biogas, produced by anaerobic digesters.

As emissions from energy use are one of the main causes of global warming, the obvious way to cut your carbon footprint is to opt for the best renewable energy deal on offer. We can all do our bit to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and domestic gas use accounts for around 26% of most people’s carbon footprint.

There are now 200 anaerobic digestion units in operation all around the country where waste products are turned into gas which can be piped into the gas grid for direct use by domestic customers or it can be burnt to produce electricity which goes into the national grid. Anaerobic digestion is the breakdown of organic matter by micro-organisms in the absence of oxygen, delivering a methane rich gas for fuel and a digestate, a source of nutrients which can be used as a fertiliser. All manner of waste products from cow pats, waste food or grass from marginal farmland can be used.

This option for gas production gives us an ideal and less dangerous alternative to fracking for shale gas and also makes excellent use of waste products.

Victoria Nicholls. Transition Deal.