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Bikes v Cars

Alice Doyle05.2015 Clean Air, Community, Education, Events, The C-side Challenge

Ready for our theme on low carbon transport over June, we went to see a screening of Bike V Cars – an award-winning documentary – hosted by the Brighton Bike Hub in the Circus Street Market.

The screening was part of the Big Bike Revival fortnight (23 May – 7 June) and showed how the humble bicycle, is an amazing tool for change. The director Fredrik Gertten, looks into and investigates the daily global drama in traffic around the world.

From bike activists in Sao Paulo and Los Angeles, fighting for safe bike lanes, to the City of Copenhagen, where forty percent commute by bike daily, Bikes vs Cars looks at both the struggle for bicyclists in a society dominated by cars, and the revolutionary changes that could take place if more cities moved away from car-centric models to ones of better pedestrinisation, safe cycle lanes and better use of open and green spaces. Today there are one billion cars in the world, by 2020 at current trends, that number will double, which means more oil, more metal and more pollution.

For us city dwellers, do we really need a car that is probably only used for 1-2 hours a day? The annual cost for an average car owner is between £1,556 for a small car with low annual mileage, to £4,471 for a large car with high annual mileage. Lifestyle wise it can be hard to come away from car ownership, especially for people with small families or long commutes. But for those who just need a car for basic running about, schemes such as City Car Club, means you can easily hire vehicles for city travel and save yourself the hassle of a finding a parking space.

And the rest of the time you could be out and about on your bike.

You can watch the trailer, or see more information about the film or have a look at the Facebook page.

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Conversation Cafe – Sustainable Transport

Alice Doyle06.2015 Business, Community, Education, Events, The C-side Challenge

As part of this month’s theme on sustainable transport Brighton Peace and Environment Centre is running our first Conversation Cafe on the 18th June at the Marwood Cafe (of kick arse coffee and life changing cake fame). The aim is to engage people around the theme of low carbon transport, and also to recruit to our two Autumn Carbon Conversation workshops as part of our C-Side Challenge.

The event will be led by Duncan Blinkhorn of the Bike Hub and the Bike Train. The structure for the event will run 6.00-7.30. Duncan will give a 20 minute talk and then in small groups discussion will be led on:

  • Personal barriers to the use of low carbon transport such as walking, buses and cycling.
  • What choices exist in the city for the use of sustainable transport.
  • Information on bike schemes and personal travel planning.

The event will be held at the Marwood Cafe and there will be free tea and cake for all that participate. As well as further information on services in Brighton and Hove such as bike mending workshops and other resources to help you access more sustainable forms of transport.

A quick guide to the event is:

Open-mindedness: Listen to and respect all points of view.
Acceptance:
 Suspend judgment as best you can.
Curiosity:
 Seek to understand rather than persuade.
Discovery:
 Question assumptions, look for new insights.
Sincerity:
 Speak from your heart and personal experience.
Brevity: Go for honesty and depth but don’t go on and on.

For more information email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call 07979321 998.

Please note there is no disabled access for this event.

The Marwood,
52 Ship Street
Brighton, BN1 1AF

BPEC go adventuring round Brighton

Alice Doyle06.2015 Community, Education, Events, The C-side Challenge

We have been busy busy working at events across Brighton and Hove.

Last week we were at the Eco Technology Show, a fantastic trade show stuffed with talks and cutting edge eco-technologies. We had a great chat with Neil from Aquapax, who has designed a disposable portable water container suitable for long-term storage. It has half the carbon footprint of a plastic bottle, is fully recyclable and can be reused over and over, as there is no plastic leaching (for anyone reusing plastic bottles, over time the plastic will leach into the water). You can find Aquapax in Infinity Foods, recognisable by the lovely blue artwork, which was inspired by the timeless classic, Jonathan Livingstone Seagull by Richard Bach.

We also met Sea Shepherd, whose mission is to end the destruction of habitat and slaughter of wildlife around the UK’s coastline, and across the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species. They are always on the look out for people to help them with beach clean up campaigns and to run stands. Or even crew on a ship. They also sell some great merchandise, the sale of which supports their campaigns.

Saturday we had a big red tent at the Level Summer festival. The event was rammed and the sunshine made its appearance at just the right time. Thank you to everyone who came by to say hi. Our badge making on the One Planet Living Principles was a roaring success, while our face painter and henna artist brought smiles to many peoples faces. Thank you also to those who came by and made donations – its very generous and helps us to run as a charity. We had lots of interest too on our next batch of Carbon Conversation workshops so watch this space for more information.

On Sunday the weather took a bit of a turn, so we didn’t do our stand at the Naked Bike Ride for fear of our flyers flying off. However there was a huge turn out of cyclists who took to the road to celebrates bikes and bodies, protest against car culture and showed cyclists’ power and vulnerability. And on that note of transport, we have a great event coming up this Thursday on sustainable travel, as part of our Conversation Cafe series – so please do come. Its at the //www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Marwood+Coffee+Shop/@50.82194,-0.141749,17z/data=%214m2%213m1%211s0x4875850b0955f523:0xcc6cfe6fa1be1bc1?hl=en">Marwood, 6.00-7.30 with FREE TEA and CAKE. If you have never had Marwood cake then do come along and give it a try.

 

Our plans for todays Eco Tech Show and a minute with Damian Tow – ETS Director

Alice Doyle06.2015 Business, Community, Education, Events, The C-side Challenge

So today we are off to the Eco Technology Show at the Amex. Have you registered yet?

Some of the things we want to see are the ‘FUTURE OF ENERGY EFFICIENCY’ PANEL, which will be led by Caroline Lucas where experts will look at the direction that energy efficiency is heading in and its importance throughout the duration of the next government.

A top person we want to catch up with, is Robert Llewellyn, aka Kryten (not least to say we cant WAIT to see Red Dwarf series XI), but also to hear his talk on electric vehicles and opportunities for linking EVs, community car clubs & on-site renewable. Sounds good to us.

There is stacks on to see, three dedicated seminar areas, which will be hosting over 70 talks so we are clearing our diaries till the weekend. And who arranged this eco extravaganza? We grabbed a minute with Damian Tow, the ETS Partnership Director to ask him what he does and why?

What first inspired you to work in the environment sector?

Growing up in the countryside, a love of nature & the outdoors and finally reading a book called the ‘Weathermakers’ in 2007 that helped me decide to leave my corporate career and do a masters in sustainable development at Forum for the Future

Why the Eco Tech Show?

Well we are in our 4th year and have grown from an idea by 4 friends to educate and inspire business & communities to adopt sustainable solutions, to an event which attracts 3000 visitors and has over 70 leading speakers & 120 exhibitors on a range of sustainability topics.

If you had to be a green technology what one would you?

It would have to be a solar panel as we have installed over 2200 of community owned solar panels through my other project, www.brightonenergy.org.uk.

Thanks Damian and see you at the show.

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Five mins with Merlin of Recycle

Alice Doyle06.2015 Clean Air, Community, The C-side Challenge

As part of our theme on sustainable transport. And don’t forget our transport cafe event at the Marwood on Thursday.
Why Bikes?
Bikes rock!  Super fast, direct, save money, get fit, carry loads (I’ve had 3 adults on the back of my ‘stretch bike’)

My name is Merlin and I set up and run Re~Cycle, the bicycle charity.

Millions of bicycles are thrown away or left to rust in the UK while millions of people in Africa are forced by lack of transport to walk up to 4-hours per day, to school, work or fetching water.

Re~Cycle ships donated bikes (65,086 thus far), tools and spare parts to Africa, where partner organisations refurbish and distribute them.
http://www.re-cycle.org

Cyclists and folks who’ve been to Africa are 2 groups which really ‘get’ what we do.

This is because cyclists know how great and fast bikes are, and how much they can carry.  Most cyclists will have thrown away bikes or parts, and will have seen abandoned bikes chained up and having parts vultured off them.

People who’ve been to Africa have seen people walking (often with Huge Loads) in ‘the middle of no where’, so patently very long distances, in the heat.

What changes do you think the city should make to be better for bikes?

Separated bike lanes so those who are less confident will cycle more and cars won’t park in them

More bike parking

More reporting of abandoned bikes – send exact location and colour to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

If you were a bike what model of bike would you be and why?

Touring bike; strong yet lightweight and fast, to go the distance
Or perhaps a utility bike, as can carry a lot…

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