The campaign needs your help and has supplied this announcement:
There will be a significant negative impact across Dorset needlessly adding to the greenhouse gases and encouraging an unbated buy throw no change attitude. Not only will there be a plume from the now increased chimney high of 90m – located below where many people live and work - but it will be lit day and night with a high intensity aviation warning light visible all along the coast. Portland has a very frequent standing lee wave cloud sitting on the top and this bounces and traps light and pollution.
This will be a symbol for the life time of the plant that we are unable to respond to the Climate Emergency and we are not able to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. SPWI and all our many many supporters consider this to be totally unacceptable. UNESCO status is to educate the world – Jurassic knowledge is about extinction – the Climate Emergency is an existential threat. This proposal has significant greenhouse gas emissions and perpetuates the habits of the past of buy and throw and ignores the dire consequence.
How can you help? Please tell everyone about this issue. We need to get technical and legal to fight with teeth. Pollution for Profit on Portland should not be allowed https://justgiving.com/crowdfunding/stopportlandwasteincinerator
The bridleways of Marnhull, one of the county’s largest villages, are described as ‘woeful’, and horse riders are forced onto busy roads. The newly formed Marnhull Horse Riders group have worked closely over the last 18 months with Dorset Highways and Dorset Rangers to find a way to create better off-road routes. They have secured a grant of almost £5,000 from Nisa’s Making a Difference Locally charity. This money will be used by Dorset Council to create a bridleway on an old disused road between Ham Lane and Mill Lane. (Blackmore Vale Magazine. August)
The Blackmore Vale Line and Community Rail Partnership has joined the national campaign to highlight hidden gems along Britain’s rail network. The group will be showcasing places to visit and things to do along the Blackmore Vale line between Tisbury and Crewkerne. Derek Beer, chairman of the Partnership, said “The Summers Day out by Train campaign has enabled people to refresh their memories or introduced them for the first time to the wonderfully varied and interesting historic and beautiful places to visit by train in the Blackmore Vale”. (Blackmore Vale Magazine. August)
Transition Town Bridport (a Dorset CAN member) will take a supporting role in an Awards For All lottery grant for a joint project with Bridport Town Council as part of its Climate Action Plan. This outreach campaign is due to start in the autumn, together with hired experts in the field of energy efficiency, to identify fuel wastage and fuel poverty and where the housing stock can be improved in terms of energy efficiency. (Transition town Bridport News, 19 July 2021)
The first active project of the recently formed multi-sector Beaminster ECO Network is the Big Green Day, to be held in Beaminster on Saturday 18 September, as part of the national Great Big Green Week 18 to 26 September.
The aim of this event is to involve the people of Beaminster in the campaign to create a greener and more resilient town and to offer practical ideas on how they can reduce living costs, cut waste, reduce their carbon footprint, encourage wildlife in their gardens, enjoy local food, plant trees and make their homes more energy-efficient. The Day will include :
This event is mainly focused on the population of Beaminster, but all will be welcome.
Dorset Wildlife Trust has secured National Nature Reserve status for its nature reserves at Kingcombe Meadows and Powerstock Common. The two adjoining areas are known for their remarkable natural habitats and wide range of species. The combined NNR, encompassing 309 hectares of grassland, woodland and scrub habitat, includes two Sites of Special Scientific Interest and recognises these as nationally and internationally important landscapes.
Kingcombe Meadows were bought by the Wildlife Trust in 1987, having previously been a working farm managed solely using traditional techniques. The meadows are still run as an organic farm, grazed by sheep and cattle and managed without artificial fertilisers, pesticides or herbicides. So, the farm teems with wildlife – dormice in the hedgerows, linnets and yellowhammers singing in the trees, unimproved grassland peppered with wildflowers such is bee orchid, lady’s mantle, pepper saxifrage, and devil’s bit scabious.
Powerstock Common has long been managed by the Wildlife Trust, starting in 1964 by agreement with the Forestry Commission. Over the decades, the Trust has removed large plantations of mixed conifers, returning these areas to grassland and wood pasture. This has increased the biodiversity and provided a range of habitats, with ‘edges’ where woodland, scrub and scattered trees meet the open grassland. This is particularly important for foraging bats, while a network of ponds within the grassland and scrub supports amphibians, with toads, frogs and all three species of native newt breeding on site.
Designation as a National Nature Reserve will bring recognition and the increased likelihood of research within the reserve in order to advance understanding of particular species, habitats and natural processes. Visitors are warmly welcomed to the Kingcombe Centre, and there is free public access on foot and horseback to Powerstock Common.
Read more (Dorset Wildlife Trust)
[Images on this page from Dorset Wildlife Trust and Dorset AONB]
Parnham House as an events venue
Parnham House is a historic mansion set in parkland on the south side of Beaminster. A Grade 1 building of high distinction, it has for centuries been a major feature in the life of the town. In 2017, the community was deeply shocked when the mansion was destroyed by fire. Since then, the shell of the building has been standing desolate. The townspeople were therefore pleased last year when James Perkíns bought the Parnham estate, with the stated intention to restore the mansion and use it as hotel, which would add to the town’s attractions and create jobs. Recently, he announced his wish to use the estate as an event venue, with varied entertainment, including plays, films, sporting events, live music and festival-type activity, both indoors and outdoors. These activities would be served by a complex of new buildings, including shop, restaurant and pub. For this purpose, he has applied to Dorset Council for an entertainments licence.
Local residents have variably welcomed the prospect of these activities, and expressed concern about their potential impacts in terms of noise, lights, traffic and disturbance. Beaminster Area ECO Group (a Dorset CAN member) has submitted – after much local consultation – a response to the licence application. It welcomes the principle of an events venue, but points to concerns related to public safety, possible public disorder, and the need to prevent public nuisance. It stresses the quiet rural character of the area, the limited capacity of local roads and of the local sewage system. It therefore asks for clear conditions on the licence which would secure limits to the total number of participants at outdoor events, moderate the levels of noise and limit the hours of late-night activity.
There is good research and mapping to show what land is at risk of flooding in Dorset in 2030. You can, first of all, a map showing land that would be flooded if seas reached 3 feet above the high tide line. See the map here.
Here is the same map showing what areas are likely to be at risk of flooding by 2030:
see the map here.
Dorset Council has given planning permission for an extension of the North Farm Solar Power Park in Spetisbury. This follows the withdrawal after consultation of initial objections from Charlton Marshall and Spetisbury parish councils; and a recognition by Dorset AONB partnership that local views are already affected by other development and activity, “including the existing solar array, pig rearing enclosures and feeding hoppers, pheasant feeding stations. paddocks and quad bike/carting courses”.
Dorset Council’s landscape team recognised that “a balance needs to be struck between the necessities for solar energy production against the visual amenity to users of the rights of way”. The extended solar farm will be able to provide renewable energy for the equivalent of 6,000 homes a year, displacing 8,600 tonnes of greenhouse gases in a year. (read more at: BlackmoreVale.net)
A passionate part of Dorset CAN’s vision for the future of Dorset is to have rivers and beaches clean enough to swim in. At the moment, many of the county’s rivers are fouled by run-off from farms, industrial effluent, poorly maintained septic tanks and even by emergency release of raw sewage by the water companies.
So we welcome the announcement by the government, on 2 August 2021, of a doubling of funds for the popular Catchment Sensitive Farming (CSF) programme, so that it can cover every farm in England. The programme – which is a partnership between Defra, Natural England and the Environment Agency – provides free individual advice to farmers to help them reduce water and air pollution through management of farmyard manure, soils and other material. In recent years, this scheme reduced the number of serious water pollution incidents by almost a fifth, and helped farmers access £100m in grants to help protect the environment.
The funding for the programme will now be almost doubled, with an additional £17m over the next three years. The extra funding will provide 50 new Environment Agency inspectors and more Natural England advisers to help farmers implement practical solutions to reduce pollution, including planting new grassland buffer strips to improve drainage, establishing riverside trees to reduce run off into rivers and using better slurry storage facilities to avoid accidental spillage. Currently around 40% of farmers are involved in the scheme: with the extra funding, Defra aims to have every farmer in the country taking part by 2023.