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Wirksworth town council declare a climate emergency
On 18th of February, the town council considered a petition, collected by members of Peak Extinction Rebellion, to declare a climate emergency. Several townspeople were there in support of the petition and, among others, representatives from Peak Extinction Rebellion, the youth of Wirksworth and Grassroots Wirksworth spoke in favour of the proposal to declare a climate emergency.
After debating the issue, the council did indeed declare a climate emergency and “resolved that Wirksworth Town Council establish a working party (comprising Cllr Pollock, Cllr Gratton and Cllr Taylor) to liaise with local groups and prepare a report on what action(s) the Town Council might take in support of its resolution to declare a Climate Emergency. The group to report to Full Council (after it takes office in May)”.
The councillors have not said how they will constitute the workparty but if you have relevant expertise in environmental or energy matters and feel you can contribute to the working party, please contact Grassroots Wirksworth [ ] to volunteer.
It was also pointed out at the public forum before the council meeting that anybody in the town who would like more influence on town or district council policy is free to stand for election at the upcoming town and district elections. The town clerk, Mr. P. Jennings, is happy to meet with any prospective candidate to give information about the duties and limitations of the post of town councillor.
Derbyshire Climate Coalition formed
On 19th of February, representatives of over 30 community and environmental groups from throughout Derbyshire met in Derby to discuss what action to take over the present climate emergency. Representatives from Peak Extinction Rebellion and Grassroots Wirksworth were present at the meeting.
It was resolved to form the Derbyshire Climate Coalition with the intention of lobbying every council in Derbyshire to declare a climate emergency and to produce and enact plans to become carbon zero by 2030. [The precise wording of the proposal to be decided by a co-ordinating group comprising one representative from each Derbyshire district].
Due to upcoming local elections, the county council will be targeted first, with every county councillor contacted by their local Coalition representative to urge them to support the declaration of climate emergency. We advise all citizens who are concerned about climate change to contact their local County Councillor and call upon them to insist that the County Council declares a Climate Emergency. With concerted efforts we will encourage them to support this proposal. If you wish to actively participate in the Derbyshire Climate Coalition campaign, please contact Wendy Bullar, .
Volunteers wanted to help with an environmental and gardening group at Anthony Gell School
The Growers group have been contacted by the environment lead at Anthony Gell School for assistance with the garden [which includes polytunnel and raised beds] and environmental projects [eg. building bird boxes]. Growers are already involved with vegetable propagation for the Rotary plant sale and are working with children from the local nursery as well as maintenance and development at the community garden so extra volunteers are needed to help with the Anthony Gell project. Please contact if you can help.
Plastic free Wirksworth
Members of the Transition Waste and Recycling Group have asked for the support of the town council for a campaign to reduce the use of single use plastics in Wirksworth. The Environment and Town affairs recommended that “at the Annual Town Council meeting on 13th May 2019 a council representative be sought to attend Grassroots Wirksworth subgroup on Waste & Recycling. That when the new council take office in May 2019, the review of the Council’s policy in regard to plastic and the wider environment be made a priority” This recommendation was approved by the full town council meeting on Februray 18th. Meanwhile, the group will continue to plan for the upcoming campaign, which will follow a format provided by Surfers Against Sewage, who are now supporting many communities throughout Britain in the fight to eliminate plastic pollution.
If you wish to help with the campaign, please contact Alex Warzynski on .
Stoney Wood
There is concern about the district council’s decision to make the area just outside Stoney Wood, on the Middleton Road, a temporary traveller’s site. A spokesperson for Stoney Wood Group says “The Town Council are taking legal advice on the situation and Stoney Wood Group will be issuing a statement in the next couple of days. So not much to say at the moment apart from people need to contact DDDC with their concerns and they could also attend the Wirksworth Environment and Town Affairs Committee meeting on Monday [4th March, 6.30pm] where it will be discussed.”
One member took issue with the first item on the “Save money while saving the planet” leaflet, circulated last month. He thought it “irresponsible if not criminal” to suggest people should have fewer children as “the population is falling in Britain”. However, the government office of national statistics states that
“In mid-2017, the population of the UK was an estimated 66 million – its largest ever
The UK population is projected to continue growing, reaching almost 73 million by 2041.
Sustained UK growth results from births outnumbering deaths (by 148,000 in 2017) and immigration exceeding emigration (by 282,000 in 2017).”
It is incontrovertible that the world is overpopulated by humans, that this is the major cause of climate change, habitat loss and mass extinction and that people would save money by having less children so Grassroots Wirksworth does not retract the statement.
The only feedback to my request for comment on the statement that Grassroots Wirksworth should support the declaration of a climate emergency was agreement so this is now Grassroots Wirksworth policy.

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