Global Ocean Treaty may block deep sea mining

Philip Pearson Greener Jobs Alliance

On 5 March 2023, the UN finally agreed an historic ocean protection treaty. Oceans Campaigner at Greenpeace International, Louisa Casson, says it’s ‘a monumental win for ocean protection, an important sign that multilateralism still works in an increasingly divided world. The agreement of this Global Ocean Treaty sends a powerful signal that the tide is turning and that governments can put protection, not exploitation, at the heart of our approach to the global oceans.’

This momentum will almost inevitably spill-over into the highly controversial deep sea mining negotiations led by the International Seabed Authority (ISA), which opens in Jamaica this month.

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100,000 homes at risk from costal erosion

Barry White

Melanie Fryer who leads our food group has pointed out that this week’s BBC’s Countryfile discussed a lot of topics that are important to us including food security, flooding, climate change and the new Environmental Land Management schemes (ELMs).  The programme features John Craven and Matt Baker on the East Coast of England to investigate how storms are devouring the coastline and landscape.

You can view it at:

More about ELMs at:

Renewable energy permitted development rights could be extended

Barry White

On 28 February the government launched a review of the existing permitted development rights for solar equipment and a new permitted development right for solar canopies as part of a wider review,

If approved changes would see solar panels installed on flat roofs where the highest part of the equipment would be no higher than 0.6 metres above the highest part of the roof. Solar on a wall which fronts a highway would be permitted in conservation areas. Here the government seeks to provide further flexibility on where stand-alone solar could be installed within the curtilage of a home or block of flats in conservation areas.

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Reducing our use of plastics nationally and locally

Barry White

38 Degrees, an online social movement, estimates that nearly 2 billion pieces of plastic packaging are thrown away by UK households on a weekly basis. Of that nearly 300 million pieces of this waste come from fruit and veg packaging, primarily from supermarkets.

Selling some items in plastic packaging not only contributes to our use of plastic, but it’s also more expensive and creates food waste as we often end up buying more than we need. Just five items – potatoes, apples, bananas, carrots and onions – are by far the biggest source of food waste.  They are sold in both plastic packaging and loose.

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