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Friends of the Earth > Local Groups > North Wiltshire Friends of the Earth

Newsletter. March /April 2018.

Just a few odds & ends I thought you might be interested in. Stephen has been busy in conjunction with various other groups over the Westbury Incinerator.

Peter & Guy have been planting more trees at Charlottes Wood – you can see how the wood is coming on on Facebook. Peter is hoping to arrange a picnic for the group later this year so we can see the progress being made. We’re hoping to get the Young FoE group re-started in the next couple of months.

We need to do some fund-raising urgently, so I will be looking into having a spot at the Dauntsey Car Boot Sale in April or May. We will need ‘stuff’ to sell, so hang on to anything you think might sell & I’ll arrange collection closer to the event.

Don’t forget Earth Hour on 24th April.

Cleaner recycling : Waste Management World

One of the reasons we’re given for not recycling food packaging is the problem of sorting the organic from the inorganic. Take a look at the Tiger Depack, an Italian machine that can remove all common food packaging in one step leaving dry, clean & re-useable plastic waste along with organic waste suitable for anaerobic digesters.

Medical Waste Makes Money: Resource

 The Sterilisation wrap used to package surgical instruments & equipment to protect them air-borne contaminants & bacteria is usually disposed of through incineration. St Woolos Hospital in Newport has conducted extensive trials involving recycling the wrap to produce sanitised, solid briquettes. The heating process reduces the volume of the wrap to nearly 90% of their original size. This also cuts the expensive clinical waste by 50%

CowPots: The Gardener

Got quite excited when I saw an advert for flower pots made from cow dung until I realized it was an American Company that made them. Does anyone know of any British Company who is doing something similar –

we have enough dung!!  

Award for App: Positive News

Deforestation is a huge threat to the world’s forests:

an estimated land area equivalent to 48 football fields is lost every minute.

Researchers from the National Centre for Earth Observation at the University of Leicester have won the international Copernicus Masters Award , a ‘Space Oscar’, for their work on a potential solution. Their research led to a mobile app, Forest Sentinel, that helps combat illegal logging. The technology enables rapid deforestation alerts to be sent to a mobile app, allowing communication with thousands of app users working out in the field via a central dashboard, allowing them to more easily protect forests.

6 ideas for solar power Blue and Green Tomorrow

With 173,000 terawatts of solar energy striking our planet each year, solar energy is the largest source of renewable & clean energy for mankind. 6 ideas for solar power:

Solar Windows, Solar Transportation, Solar Fashion, Solar Power Harvesting Trees, Photobiological Cells & Solar Desalination. The last 2 are particularly interesting.

Ethical Labelling & Fairtrade 

A talk to be held by Sustainable Devizes at Quakers Meeting House. See diary for details

Bring Back Heavy Metal: CIWM

Last year a campaign by Hubbub & Ecosurety was started to collect some of the 178 million used batteries hoarded in UK homes. Lead, mercury, cadmium, zinc & lithium are some of the metals found inside everyday single use batteries; these can be recycled into new batteries or repurposed for other uses. Lithium is a very useful metal for many electronics, & is at number 15 on the British Geological Survey’s risk list of vital elements with threatened supply. Moreover, the standard AA or AAA battery is made of around 25 per cent steel, a resource which can be recycled infinitely.

Films fron Greenpeace:

The Stroud Greenpeace group are screening 2 short Greenpeace films – A Time Comes – the story of the Kingsnorth Six and Black Ice: The Story of the Greenpeace Arctic 30 on Sunday 4th March. A Time Comes – the story of the Kingsnorth Six documents the action of 6 Greenpeace activists who shut down the Kingsnorth coal-fired power station in 2007.Black Ice: The Story of the Greenpeace Arctic 30 shows the action that Greenpeace took in Russia in 2013 to confront the first ever oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean which led to 30 activists being seized at gunpoint by Russian special forces.

 Vegan food from our seas: Ebb Tide

At the vegan fair in Chippenham last year I came across a Devon company that produces pots of dried seaweed.

 Ebb Tides prides itself in harvesting the best varieties of seaweed including Dulse, Kelp, Sargassum & Laver to be used in cooking. The company works with Natural England & are licensed to ensure all their seaweed is hand harvested both sustainably & ethically. Seaweed is rich source of vits. A, B1, C,D & E as well as iodine & is a delicious addition to food.

Dog Poo power: The Week

Saw an article about dog poo being turned into power for a street light, but liked this simple CBB’s article

Is It Me?

Recently there has been a lot in the press about the plastic used to seal tea-bags. And yes it is a problem but so are the plastic bags they come in & no-one seems too concerned about them. Several years ago I used to buy Co-op loose tea that came in waxed paper in cardboard boxes. When I queries why they started using plastic I was told for financial reasons! For more see here

International Day of Forests: UN

Theme for 2018 - Forests and Sustainable Cities:

 Let’s make our cities greener, healthier, happier places to live

Recycling Pens and helping WWT:

I recently came across a way to recycle all unwanted writing implements (apart from pencils & crayons) that is run by Terracycle in conjunction with BIC. It can also help raise money for various charities. Our nearest collection point is at Wiltshire Wildlife Trust in Devizes. For details see:

More ways to recycle: Terracycle

Take a look at other things that can be recycled.

Greener Shipping: i newspaper

A Container ship can produce the same amount of pollution as 50 million cars & if the shipping industry was a country, it would be ranked between Germany & Japan as the 6th largest contributor to global CO2 emissions. Take a look at a  Eco Marine Power a Japanese company that is designing rigid sails fitted with solar panels for cargo ships, with 80% of the power coming from the wind & the rest from the sun. 

And see Hydroville, a passenger shuttle that uses hydrogen to power a diesel engine. Hydrogen has the advantage that no CO2, particulate matter or sulphur oxides are released.

The shuttle will be mainly used as a platform to test hydrogen-technology for commercial sea going vessels. It will initially be used to transport people from Kruibeke to Antwerp during the rush hour to avoid traffic jams.

Less Food Waste: CIWM

Tata Steel has developed a mobile canning line that will allow farmers all over the world to can their produce on site. This should dramatically reduce food-loss & generate more income for farmers in remote areas. A mobile canning & processing line will include 2 trucks that house the canning & processing facilities.

Save on electricity and time.

Animal hair a problem on the carpet or chairs. Use a squeegee to wipe away hairs without clogging the hoover!


Great British Clean up

Join ‘Off the Ground’s’ First Community clean up of 2018 at Monkton Park Chippenham. 

To see events in your area see the link in the diary below

It’s all Free:

Transcoco will be holding another Give and Take Day on Saturday 10th  Mar from 11:00 – 12:30 at Selwyn Hall Box.

Fairtrade Fortnight:

Runs from 26th Feb – 11th Mar. This year’s theme is ‘Come On Into Fairtrade’. For ideas on how you can get involved see:

Winter/Early spring salad:

Just a suggestion on amounts per person. 40-50grms fine bulgur wheat per person, a small orange segmented, greens (kale/watercress/whatever you have) steamed if necessary, spring/red onion chopped. Soak/cook wheat as instructions, drain off any excess moisture. Add greens, onions & orange. Stir in a dressing of your choice: We use 1 tspn grainy mustard, ½ tspn paprika, 1tspn honey, juice of lemon, 1 tblspn cider vinegar & 4 tblspn oil. All shaken together (this is enough for 4). Good with Feta cheese or Falafal.



26th Feb-11th Mar

Fairtrade fortnight

See above for details

2nd- 4th Mar


Great British Spring Clean

3rd Mar


pop-up repair café


10th Mar


Transcoco Give and Take day

See above for details

14th Mar


Sustainable Devizes Talk

20th Mar

7- 9pm

Monthly meeting

Jubilee Rooms Chippenham

21st Mar

International Day of Forests

24th Mar

Earth Hour

6th Apr

Walk to Work Day

17th Mar

7- 9pm

Monthly meeting

Jubilee Rooms Chippenham


Walk to Work Month


If you don’t have internet access & there is anything you would like more information on give me a ring & I’ll see what I can print off


Don’t Forget

There are only 3Ps that should be flushed:

 pee, paper and poo!