Global Challenges Think Tank meets
On Thursday the Business and Government group met in Nailsworth in Fi's home - here is a brief summary re the Think Tank, Sustainable Community Strategy and more...
Photo: Coffee break
We started off with feedback from Fi MacMillan from the first meeting of the Global Challenges Think Tank - two Transitioners are part of that group that was initiated by Transition Town - the District Council provide support and input - Nigel Riglar and Barry Wyatt - two top Directors of the Council were both there - it is to look at both climate change and Peak Oil and feed directly into the Local Strategic Partnership to create policy (see previous blogs for more on this - and on the Council website here).
The first meeting of the Think Tank received submissions re 'Planning' - many issues were raised around mitigation, adaptation and Peak Oil - the main driver of policy in this area seems to be mitigation as that is where the Government focus is - less attention on adaptation and nothing on the Peak Oil nationally.
More detailed reports will be forth coming but it gave the opportunity to raise a whole host of questions - here are some Transition Stroud raised in response to what was apparently a very comprehensive presentation...enclosed just to give a flavour of some of the discussions...
• Regarding public assets that need to be preserved/developed in the face of global changes, would like to see the following added
o public transport network
o pedestrian/cycle networks
o car pooling/liftshare organisation
• The possibilites for planning and food production are important in the face of peak oil, where current food production/distribution is likely to breakdown.
o How to ring fence existing agricultural land
o How to increase estate of agricultural land
o Encouraging domestic growing space
o Encourage community growing space
• Decentralised water/waste processing and energy provision seem key in tackling issues of peak oil
• Close proximity of work/living space, and the development of non-road based transport will also be key. We support the development of more utility cycling routes.
Food is a big topic that often gets missed but it was good to see that Council officers had clearly grasped this is important - sadly it is not an area that Councils have much direct control - a good article into whether Britain can feed itself (via Rob Hopkin's blog) can be downloaded here:
There will be a special meeting to look at food but the next Think Tank topic will be housing so we looked briefly at some issues around that - but also looked at other areas where it would be important to engage with the Council....
Sustainable Community Strategy
One important area is the Sustainable Community Strategy - for more on that see here. It is easily laid out so that people can contribute - part of our discussion was to how to facilitate more people to get involved - this is after all a chance for embedding real change in Councils policies. It might be possible to make this strategy a part of the work for a Transition Stroud day that has been set aside for 3rd Feb? There is a Transition meeting on 3rd Jan that could look more at how best to input to this consultation. Certainly it would be good for TS to make a submission but also many other local individuals before 29th Feb when the consultation ends.
Apols but this blog has been a bit of a ramble and am now off to another meeting so do contact us via this blog if you have any queries...Finally check this short video out: