We ask eco champion Marilyn Mason about what we can do locally to make a difference…
Top local initiatives
- Transition Town Kingston promotes ideas, local meet-ups (including monthly Kingston Green Drinks at Woody’s bar on Kingston riverside), projects and activities to help us live more sustainably.
- Kingston Environment Centre in New Malden is a venue, resource and hub for all things green and worth a visit.
- Kingston Environment News emails subscribers with green news and events and activities happening around Kingston every month.
- Community gardens and conservation activities around the borough provide opportunities for volunteers to get fit while doing something useful and sharing skills.
- An open letter in support of a Climate Emergency Declaration in Kingston invites residents to sign before July 2019
- TTK’s Abundance Kingston saves food waste by harvesting seasonal gluts of local fruit, such as apples, pears and plums, and redistributing them to the local community (nurseries, homeless shelters, individuals, etc.) on a not-for-profit basis. Tree-owners get the first share of the harvest, with some fruit being left for the birds, bees and insects. Bruised and damaged fruit is juiced whenever possible to save further waste.
- Save the Food Club collects surplus foods from local supermarkets for distributing to local charitable groups such as the Night Shelter, Refugees and the Rise Cafe at Kingston Quaker Centre.
- Hogsmill, Canbury and Kingston Environment Centre community gardens and Kingston Permaculture Reserve grow fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers in wild-life friendly ways and are always happy to share work, skills and produce. Canbury Community Garden also houses a few happy chickens, a great attraction to local children.
Five things we can all do today to make a difference
Many of these are good for our personal health and wellbeing as well as the health of the planet:
- Shop and consume with the planet in mind – “reduce, reuse, recycle”, throw away less, reduce the amount of plastic you bring home, eat seasonally, grow your own organic vegetables, eat less meat… Find local green businesses
- Make your home more energy-efficient and cosier – insulate, deal with draughts, use low energy appliances and light bulbs, and switch to a renewable energy supplier… Find out more.
- Think about how you travel: walk or cycle more, use the car less. Holiday closer to home, use the train, fly less.
- Plant a tree (or support companies and charities that plant trees), a wildflower patch, a pot-plant, some herbs or other wildlife-friendly plants. Garden organically.
- Lobby your councillors, your MP, your London Assembly members, your MEPs, about the environmental issues that concern you (air pollution, waste, Heathrow expansion, loss of trees and other greenery…) – and vote for representatives that will do something to improve our environment and prevent climate chaos. Find their contact details on www.writetothem.com.