Sustainability Summit at Kew House School

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30 June 2017 We attended a Sustainability Summit at Kew House School, organised by InterClimate Network, a charity who work with secondary school students to inspire them to take action in Climate Change, asking ‘What can I do to make a difference?’. Schools involved were Kew House, Gumley House, Isleworth Boys and Hammersmith Academy. Guest speaker Dr Michal Nachmany (Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE) was inspirational, and not just for the students. She discussed how as humans we become addicted to our lifestyles, even if we know it’s bad for us. Plastics, use of electricity, animal products (making 1/4 of emissions in the world) are difficult to step away from. The most vulnerable populations in the world are the most effected by climate change. There is a need for a) Regulation, b) Motivation, what makes people want to change and c) Alternatives.

Air Quality Brentford went along with members of BRAG (Brentford Recycling Action Group) to lead mini-workshops to discuss issues of Air Quality and Recycling, alongside others discussing Transport and Resources. It was a wonderful afternoon and the brainstorming ideas from the pupils were a joy to witness, see above. We hope to work further with these schools in the Autumn term, giving our air quality mini-talk, and look forward to helping them put their actions in to practice to help make our air cleaner.

Tesla and Nissan at Brentford Market

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Sunday 23 April 2017 We invited Tesla and Nissan to showcase their fully electric vehicles at Brentford Market for World Earth Day to help promote alternatives to diesel and petrol vehicles. Tesla brought along their Model X sport utility vehicle with vertically opening rear doors, and the ability to seat 7 passengers comfortably. This car can do zero to 60mph in as quick as 2.9 seconds, has all wheel drive and a 100kWh battery providing 351 miles of range. It takes just one hour to fully load the battery with one of Tesla’s own super-chargers, available at various service stations and Westfield and Heathrow. This particular model starts at around $68,000. They also have a Model S saloon and the Model 3 available next year will be their most affordable car coming in at around $38,000. Nissan brought along their LEAF hatchback, starting at a more modest £26,000 which fully charged can do a range of 155 miles. It has no internal-combustion engine or a traditional gearbox, so it has far fewer moving parts to maintain. The cost of electricity is far lower than that of petrol or diesel. This car will fully charge for 8 hours over night from a station at your home and be ready to drive the next morning. Both cars drew a lot of attention in different ways, they complemented each other perfectly and gave us a snapshot of the range of possibilities out there for cleaner vehicles and the differences in affordability. Continue reading

How do we get clean air for all Londoners?

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22 March 2017
That was the question posed by Caroline Russell last night at a content-packed meeting of over 80 representatives from every London borough. There were informed mini-presentations from Simon Birkett @CleanAirLondon, Prof Frank Kelly (Kings College), Alice Monroe (Doctors Against Diesel) @DieselDrs, Louise Francis @Mapping4Change, Andrea Lee @Client Earth, Prof Andrea Seller @Sellerthechemist, Lara Houston and Dr Jennifer Gabrys @citizensense.

All the participants lived outside the proposed ULEZ extension zone of the North and South Circular and were fully aware of very high measurements of NO2 and Particulate Matter polluting their air quality. ‘We want to breathe clean air too’ and this won’t happen without change. Last night we investigated ways that we can encourage more people to sign the petition to extend the ULEZ to the whole of Greater London: https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/extend-the-ultra-low-emission-zone-to-the-whole-of-london Continue reading

Would you like secure cycle parking on your street?

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Brentford has had its first cycle hoop installed and has proved to be a popular way to store cycles in a secure location outside of the home. Many residents might be reluctant to use peddle power if it means carrying a bike from the garden through the house and back again.

Residents’ group Air Quality Brentford are looking at positive ways to make a difference to our air quality. In an effort to get people thinking about cycling more they are asking for people in Brentford to express their initial interest in having a secure cycle hoop on their street. Continue reading

The Mayor’s response about our buses

21 November 2016: Tony Arbour (GLA member for Hounslow, Richmond and Kingston) asked the Mayor on our behalf when our buses will be fast-tracked to be emission-free in pollution hotspots like Brentford.

The Mayor’s response is as follows:
My aim is to fast track implementation of Low Emission Bus Zones where air quality is poorest and cleaner buses can make the biggest difference. All parts of London outside of the central Ultra Low Emission Zone will be considered.
TfL will lead by example by procuring only hybrid or zero-emission double-decker buses from 2018. This will transform the fleet as bus service contracts are renewed over time.
Areas such as Brentford will benefit from my plans to upgrade the exhaust systems of more than half the 9,000-strong bus fleet. The latest selective catalytic reduction systems deliver immediate change by cutting tailpipe oxides of nitrogen and particulate matter by up to 95 per cent compared to non-retrofitted Euro V buses.

64 new trees along the A4

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27 October 2017: We met with Phil Hurst, the Arboriculturist for TfL, and councillors Guy Lambert and Myra Savin to walk from Boston Manor Road along the A4 to the M4 slip road, identifying locations that new trees could be planted and which trees would be suitable. 30 trees were already to be planted between Gillette Corner and Boston Manor Road, and it was agreed to plant a total of 64 new trees along the A4 through Brentford. Continue reading