|The Lewes Pound is delighted to be sharing in the growing excitement in the build up to the commemoration of the 750th anniversary of the Battle of Lewes in May 2014.|
We are working to bring out the new issue of our notes slightly early so as to coincide with the beginning of the fortnight of Battle-related events starting on 3rd May and hope the designs will reflect some of the themes. More on the Lewes Pound website...
Lewes Town Council is developing a Neighbourhood Plan, and has invited TTL to join a community steering group which will define its vision, priorities and content. If the Lewes community and council accept the Plan, it becomes statutory planning policy and any development in the area will need to conform to it. This could be an opportunity to encourage and promote sustainable design and construction, reducing energy demand in existing buildings, local community energy, sustainable transport networks, local small businesses, and more!
TTL is forming a small group to explore responses to the Plan as it evolves over the next year, drawing on Transition Town principles and practice. If you would like know more or to join the TTL group, please contact Dirk Campbell on 01273 479018.
By Ann Link and Juliet Oxborrow
Late November saw Guardian journalist Duncan Clark speak to a capacity audience about his book The Burning Question at a public meeting organised by Transition Town Lewes.
|The Burning Question explores how the world has any chance of keeping within the critical 20C temperature rise agreed at the 2009 Copenhagen climate talks, given that carbon emissions keep rising exponentially.|
In his talk, Duncan explained that burning fossil fuels has so far put 2,000 billion tonnes of CO2 into the air. To have a 50/50 chance of staying within the two-degree limit, the world can afford to emit only an additional 1,600 billion tonnes of CO2 (or just 700 billion tonnes for a 75% chance). Read it here...
Useful links and information
Send a message to the Big Six energy companies: switch to an independent renewable supplier. It can be easier than you think, and prices are competitive.
Take inspiration from these short, fun clips about the life cycle of stuff we consume. There may be a way of using these to spread awareness of the issues and if you have ideas and are keen to work on a project relating to this, TTL would be happy to hear from you.
If you have long been meaning to join the East Sussex Credit Union, there is a new opportunity! You can now join online and save and borrow knowing your cash is staying local and going to help the community in East Sussex. You can still visit the Brighton office on weekdays between 10am and 3pm, and the Lewes help point is open on Wednesdays from 10am to 12 noon in the community flat on De Montfort estate. For more help points see website
Our Credit Union also offers Workplace Savings & Loans Schemes, with payments made direct from employees' payrolls. These are currently available for staff at ESCC, Lewes and Wealden District Councils, Eastbourne Borough Council, East Sussex Fire and Rescue, Brighton & Hove Buses, University of Brighton and Brighton & Sussex University Hospitals Trust, among others. Anyone working for these employers can contact us to arrange membership and take advantage of the services on offer. Further details can be found on the Workplace Schemes page of the ESCU website.
We are also looking for willing employers to join this scheme, as we believe that this offers a valuable service to employees. Please get in touch if you think your place of employment and colleagues could benefit.
Naturegain is a word who’s meaning captures what nature does for us and how we can help. As an example:
All our water comes from Nature. But did you know that, in Lewes, we don’t get all our water from reservoirs; much of our water actually comes from groundwater? This is because of our setting in the local chalk hills and is influenced by the way the chalk landscapes are managed. Rainwater percolates through the chalk rock and then comes out from springs or is pumped from bore holes. We pay the local water company because they provide the infrastructure and management (pumps and pipes and ‘stuff’), but behind the engineering, water is a product of naturegain.
Clean air is also a product of naturegain. It is natural processes – principally living plants – that produce the oxygen we breathe. Perhaps less obviously, the economy comes into it too! According to one of the Senior Managers at Deutsche Bank, naturegain (although he calls it ‘natural flows’) is a very important part of the ‘invisible economy’ (more). Without naturegain, our economies would not function as we know them. However, its contribution is invisible because it is not given a monetary value by conventional economic measures and indicators. Naturegain is an ‘externality’, which means it is not accounted for in the economy.
And here’s the other side of the equation! Past a certain point, we only gain from nature if nature gains from us. We need to invest in nature to get what we need from natural processes and systems. So naturegain includes the gain that nature gets from us! The problem here is that because it is invisible in the economy, normal economic progress and growth often leads to destruction or degradation of nature. This is a bit like cutting off the legs of a chair in order to put wood on the fire and then expecting to be able to sit on the chair to enjoy the warmth of the fire. What is needed then is to re-gain nature.
All this is what naturegain says in one simple word! (watch it as a slideshow for best results)