Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Travel by public transport

Transport Direct's CO2 Emissions Calculator

Private car transport is the least environmentally-friendly way to travel. For short distances walking, running or cycling are best; and for longer distances public transport offers a lower environmental impact (as well as the option of reading and relaxing in a way that you can't when you are driving!).

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Welsh Assembly Government lies

The Welsh Assembly Government made a false claim in favour of culling badgers an official leaflet sent to 26,000 homes in a proposed badger cull area during their consultation - something only admitted and covered in the press after the consultation was over. As a result of this (whether dishonest tactic or inept mistake) there will be more pro-cull responses based on the false information spread by the Welsh Assembly Government. Can we really trust these people? It seems that, on top of their bad science and bloodthirsty primitive prejudice we can add either ineptitude or dishonesty. Their pro-cull arguments are shown up for what they are politically-motivated rubbish. More information here.

Saturday, 11 December 2010

New site - Badger Protection League

The Badger Protection League is an independent website supported by many societies, groups, VIP’s and Celebrities, set up to fight against the proposed killing of thousands of badgers in England and Wales from May 2011 onwards. The badgers will be killed despite the protection legislation afforded to them.

To help out go to their site for more information; follow our coverage of the badger situation; and respond to the WAG consultation by 17th December. Our Delicious account also has many useful badger links.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Badgers update

Don't forget to respond to the badger consultations (the WAG Public Consultation on badger culling in West Wales and the Defra Consultation on culling in England).

Aberystwyth Against the Cull organised a stall in Aberystwyth town centre recently and achieved 114 completed responses in just a few hours! Their newsletter said:

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Bad school science

From a recent Secondary School Update by
the PETA Foundation
- click the image to read it

Some schools still favour old-fashioned dissection in teaching science, despite the fact that it is not mandatory and there are far superior - and cruelty-free - alternatives.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Traws Cambria consultation

The Welsh Assembly Government are taking a week out from persecuting wildlife to seek views about the TrawsCambria network. The consultation is open until the 12th December and you can respond by email or post (they have not provided an online option).

We recommend that you respond to the consultation if you want to see improved public transport options. Possible things to mention include the following.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Friday, 29 October 2010

WAG response to report on land use and climate change in Wales

The Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) land use and climate change group have responded to a recent report on land use and climate change in Wales. The report was:

"an assessment of the science relating to emissions from the agriculture, land use and food sectors in Wales and outlines a way forward for these sectors to achieve significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions by 2040. ... Existing evidence suggests that agricultural operations and land use changes contribute around 11% to Wales' total GHG [GreenHouse Gas] emissions - or a ~net 5,200 kt CO2e. Of this, about 45% is in the form of CH4 from ruminant animals" (pxxix)

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Cardiff eating places to try

The cool people at Eat Out Vegan Wales have come up with a vegan guide to Cardiff and given permission for us to make the information available. Their site is excellent, and has always been included in the CIN Delicious links, Eating Out category. Make it your first port of call when travelling! Guide text reproduced below - although aimed at vegans it is automatically useful to vegetarians too.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Ignore Science, Kill the Badgers: the idiots are at it again

Plaid Cymru, the Conservatives, and the Liberal Democrats are all renewing their vows to use taxpayers' money to slaughter protected wildlife. Yes, despite all the evidence proving that their plans are a waste of money, and despite all the public opposition, they have stated again that they are determined to start killing badgers.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

WAG consultations - food strategy and TB

There are two new Welsh Assembly Government (WAG) consultations, see details below.

1. On TB in non-bovines
Respond to the consultation here by 11th November.

There is a simple method for dealing with this issue - the only one that a civilised society should follow. That is, if TB occurs in an animal then they should be treated to the best quality veterinary care available until they are better. Along with restrictions on the moving of animals to markets the TB issue will disappear.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Aberystwyth is the 19th clone town

A report released today by the New Economics Foundation reveals the high streets of Aberystwyth, Bridgend, Carmarthen and Llanelli have all lost their individuality and have become part of an “identikit” commercial culture. Traditional market towns across Wales are being turned into 'clone towns' as chains continue to drive independent retailers off the high street. Once-distinctive towns have now lost so much of their character as a result of the suffocating effect of large retailers such as Marks & Spencer, Topshop and HMV, and their residents no longer engage in the community. Read more here.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Massive factory farm planned for Powys

Zero-grazing is a form of factory farming where animals that naturally graze are instead locked into huge warehouses. An application to set up Wales’ first proposed mega-dairy has been submitted to Powys, where 1,000 cows would be cooped up indoors for more than half of the year. The environmental impact of these huge dairy farms has been well documented in America – and there is real concern that we may just be importing those problems to our shores.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Community green report

Community green: using local spaces to tackle inequality and improve health examines the impact of the quality of local green spaces on the health and wellbeing of people in six deprived and ethnically diverse areas. It shows that providing good quality local green space is an effective way to tackle inequality. Read the report and summary here.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Cardiff University involved in cruel experiments

(image from here)

We have been asked to promote this petition about the vivisection experiments being done at Cardiff University (covered in the news here), behind closed doors and funded by the public who are kept in the dark about the unscientific cruelty they are funding. Sign it here. Note that other Welsh universities are involved in this primitive practice too. Complain to your MP and AM!

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Woodlands Strategy

The Welsh Assembly Government has published the Woodlands for Wales action plan which sets out what needs to happen over the next five years to make progress towards achieving the outcomes of Woodlands for Wales, the Welsh Assembly Government’s 50 year strategy for trees and woodlands.

Friday, 6 August 2010

Promoting cycling to every door

One of our supporters told us they had received a copy of the 'Cycling to Work' booklet pictured above some time ago, and it made cycling seem so attractive and easy that it inspired them to get back into it again. They felt that the booklet - or something similar - should be more widely available as a way of promoting cycling, giving practical advice on all aspects of choosing and maintaining a bike.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Catalonia bans bullfighting in landmark Spain vote

Yes, that is the bull's blood

The parliament of Catalonia has voted to ban bullfighting - the first region of mainland Spain to do so. See the BBC site for more.

Friday, 23 July 2010

UK-imported feed for livestock farming is depleting rainforests

"Rainforests and grasslands are being ripped up to make way for soy plantations or for beef ranching which has been displaced by soy plantations" - see new report here.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

North Ceredigion Bat Group

image by Kretyen

Are you interested in bat conservation? North Ceredigion Bat Group is centred in Aberystwyth, Mid Wales. The group consists of volunteers and conservationists and their activities include roost counts, bat walks and bat talks. See their blog for details of upcoming events.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Victory for badgers!

image from

Covered by the BBC.

Comment from the Badger Trust:

"Victory for badgers on all counts as Court of Appeal declares proposed Welsh badger cull unlawful.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Seagulls chicks orphaned at Aberystwyth University?

Seagull chick orphaned at Penglais?

CIN has received emails about orphaned seagull chicks on Aberystwyth University's Penglais Campus outside the Arts Centre this week. On further investigation in nearby buildings we were informed that Aberystwyth University had installed acoustic bird scarers at Penglais campus. We investigated yesterday and did find seagull chicks wandering around in obvious distress while adult seagulls seemed unable or unwilling to land near them to help. One person told us that Pestokill (a company that profits from exterminating animals) were being used by the university to do this.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Meat-free Mondays

Meat-free Mondays are a great way to cut carbon emissions, reduce fuel and water use, and have a positive impact on climate change. Several European cities have already done this e.g. Ghent, Hasselt and Mechlelen in Belgium, Washington DC, San Francisco, Bremen, Sao Paulo, Cape Town and several universities e.g. Oxford and Harvard and Helsinki educational institutions (see here for a longer list).

Friday, 25 June 2010

Wreath-laying at the Welsh Assembly Building, Aberystwyth

Around thirty people gathered on Thursday June 17th in a peaceful and good-natured procession to lay a wreath and flowers at the front door of the new Assembly building in Aberystwyth. Banners and placards left no doubt as to what people were unhappy about - the killing of our wildlife by the Welsh Assembly Government. A two minutes' silence was held at the front door. Black and white ribbons, wristbands, flowers and hand written messages on postcards and posters were left attached to the security fence (the only thing it has ever been useful for).

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Rural affairs minister Elin Jones gets confused

In a FarmersWeekly article we read the following:

"Wales' rural affairs minster Elin Jones said she is willing to sacrifice her seat at the next election rather than back down on her plan to implement a pilot badger cull in west Wales. Ms Jones, who is the Assembly Member for Ceredigion, told the Farmers Union of Wales' agm that her determination to order the cull resulted in a "politically motivated'' campaign to unseat her at next year's Assembly elections. "I know I can only lose votes for having taken this decision," said the Plaid Cymru AM, who claimed another political party was capitalising on her position to snatch votes from her."

Saturday, 12 June 2010

‘Substantial Fall’ in Cattle TB in Wales

Victim of the Welsh Assembly Government

We have received the following excellent guest article which shows how useless and unscientific WAG's badger cull is, and how WAG has been misleading the public while wasting money on the useless cull.

"I have been looking into the stats for bTB in Wales and have noticed a substantial fall in the bTB figures starting around April2009. For example look at herds under TB restriction.

Friday, 4 June 2010

Meat and dairy free diet urged by UN

Another UN report concludes that the Western diet must shift to being meat and dairy free in order to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change.
Livestock agriculture and growing crops to feed animals is on par with fossil fuel because of the environmental impacts. Agriculture, especially meat and dairy products, accounts for 70% of global freshwater consumption, 38% of the total land use and 19% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, says the report, which has been launched to coincide with UN World Environment day on Saturday. See an article in the Guardian, or read the full report.

Monday, 31 May 2010

Some badger updates

As well as the updates below, have a look at some of our Delicious links about badgers.

Updates from Pembrokeshire Against the Cull [Thu, 27 May 2010]

[This relates to what CIN covered here]

Saturday, 29 May 2010

No Freedom of Information in Wales

WAG keeps information from us - but aren't they meant to be serving the people? [Image by Tim Sanders]

The Welsh Assembly Government has been refusing to answer Freedom of Information requests related to the badger killings in Wales (note - even their press release about it has now been made secret and the public are no longer 'authorised to view this page'!). We had been informed of this from other sources, and had decided to try our own FOI requests on 3rd May 2010. Below are the requests made and the responses given by the WAG team that organises wildlife slaughters (they only replied on 28th May). It should be noted that WAG altered the wording and removed detail from our original requests when they acknowledged our requests on 7th May. We corrected their 'error', but in their final response they only responded to the edited questions they had created, not our original requests or corrections to their errors (sent to them on 8th May).

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Attempts at justification

We have been forwarded a letter send to a CIN supporter by Nerys Evans, Plaid Cymru AM, about Plaid's and WAG's plans to kill Welsh wildlife. It had taken Nerys 20 days to respond to a letter sent on 1st May.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Welsh Assembly Government security lunacy

The Welsh Assembly Government has started sending staff onto private land without the landowner's permission in order to identify badger setts so that they can come back and kill the badgers. The irony is that the surveyors wear balaclavas and have id badges with no names on, and refuse to remove the balaclavas so that the landowner can check that they are who they say they are! One man took the ID cards so that he could phone WAG to clarify if these were really who they claimed to be - and even though it was his only option under these barmy circumstances, he was arrested for theft! (Thanks to Peter Black, AM, for covering the issue - the last two links go to his blog.)

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Aberystwyth Walking Festival

Friday May 21st - Sunday May 23rd.

Explore the beautiful coast, valleys and hills around Aberystwyth on walks for all ages and abilities.

More information here.

Friday, 7 May 2010

Justice is served!

Well, Plaid Cymru got smashed in the elections, their results far down on those they got last time. In Ceredigion Plaid Cymru lost by 8,324 votes - a 10.5% swing away from the party. Is it a coincidence that they have been pushing through unpopular legislation to kill our wildlife? CIN doesn't think so. Our post about parties' stances on the badger slaughter got more hits than any other we had ever done - last week the number of unique CIN blog visitors tripled! This is obviously a huge issue, and has made Plaid Cymru deeply unpopular with many people in Wales, who love the country because of its natural environments.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Badgers and the election

Who should you vote for in the election this week? It may well depend on your opinion about badgers, and how each party's Assembly Members have responded to the cull in Wales. The National Assembly Senedd is made up of 60 AMs: Labour (26), Plaid Cymru (14), Conservatives (13), Liberal Democrats (6), Independent (1).

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Talks about the badger cull - a report

One of our supporters attended the local meeting on Saturday 24th April 2010 in the Old College, Aberystwyth, about the badger cull, and sent us the following report. Thanks!

"About 50-80 people were there – a great turnout. It was also being filmed by S4C for showing at a later date. There were four speakers: Dr Dan Forman, Swansea University; Dr Lizzie Wilberforce, Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales; Ian from Badger Trust; and Cecilia, a dairy farmer from Pembrokeshire. The speakers were all excellent, and at one point a member of the audience spoke out, saying that he had lived in the countryside for 30 years and had previously supported a cull but what he heard on that day from the scientists has totally changed his mind about the badger cull, and thought that if more farmers were told the truth about what was really going on (rather than the biased information and suppressed facts via WAG) then they would be against the cull. A dairy farmer also spoke at the meeting and she said farmers are being sold the wrong message. They are being promised that culling the badgers will end bovineTB, but as more facts come out it is clear that they are being misled. We're all being misled by the Welsh Assembly Government.

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Local event against the badger cull

Saturday 24th April at 2pm, Old College.

With Dr Dan Forman from Swansea University, Lizzie Wilberforce from Welsh Wildlife Trust and possibly local Green party parliamentary candidate Leila Kirsch.

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Legalised vandalism

We have written about historic Bronpadarn Mansion woods in the past. The last two weeks have seen a number of trees cut down, undergrowth ripped up, and all done despite Tree Protection Orders (TPO) and Conservation Area status. Which shows how little value those 'protections' offer in reality. As Antony Gedge, Cambrian News writer, told us in an email: "the council [said] that the works being carried out were all authorised and given permission by the council."

Friday, 2 April 2010

Crazy EU seed laws

Update, 17 april 2010: Over two weeks later, and not one of the MEPs bothered to reply. This shows how crap the main parties are - make sure you don't vote for them in the election!

Dr. Kay Swinburne MEP, Conservative Party
Mr Derek Vaughan MEP, Labour Party
Mrs Jill Evans MEP, Plaid Cymru
Mr John Bufton MEP, UK Independence Party

Monday, 29 March 2010

Friday, 26 March 2010

Earth Hour

Earth Hour is a World Wildlife Fund (WWF) global publicity initiative that aims to demonstrate support for action to avoid climate change. For the fourth year running, WWF is campaigning to get organisations, major landmarks, communities and individuals to turn out their lights for one hour from 8.30 pm on Saturday 27 March.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Penglais Woods

Parc Natur Penglais/Penglais Woods is a designated Local Nature Reserve managed by Ceredigion County Council and local residents. It is a popular spot to visit but please be aware that the lighting of fires on the reserve is not allowed as this causes damage to vegetation and is a fire hazard. Timber stacks on the woodland floor are recent tree fellings and have been left as habitat piles. This work is part of the site’s ongoing woodland management programme to encourage natural regeneration.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Penparcau Is Green Day

[Click image to enlarge]

Penparcau Is Green Day
Saturday 20th March, 10-7pm
Ysgol Llwyn Yr Eos, Penparcau, Aberystwyth - Intergrated Children’s Campus

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Save the badger

This news is probably too late for most people, but there is a 'Save The Badger' rally at 12pm tomorrow afternoon (Monday 8th March), Welsh Assembly Building, Cardiff Bay. Help to stop the slaughter!

More information on the Save The Badger site, and also on the Viva! site.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

New wildlife walks

[Image by Michael Jastremski]

A new series of walks to explore the beautiful wildlife of our area is on offer in March. To take part, call Chloe Griffiths on 07966 018 062 (Mon to Wed only), or email her, or just turn up on the day. The walks will leave promptly at 3pm so please arrive a little earlier. Feel free to bring your camera.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Population versus the environment

"The UK population reached 61.4 million in mid-2008, having grown 408,000 in the previous year. More than two million people have been added to the UK population in the last seven years, and our numbers have increased by more than a fifth since 1950 - in less than a lifetime, in one of the most densely populated countries in the world." Optimum Population Trust

Sunday, 21 February 2010

More road expansions

The roundabout slated for expansion if the pro-traffic lobby get their way

CIN was recently informed that a proposal to widen the roundabout between Llety Parc and Morrisons has been submitted to the Welsh Assembly Government (WAG).

Sadly, local Plaid Cymru councillors have been lobbying to get road entries widened (aimed at 'improving traffic flow entering the roundabout' = making it easier for car drivers), as they state in their 'Llanbadarn Fawr Newsletter' (February 2010). They said that as a result of their lobbying an engineering consultancy company, Atkins, were appointed by the Mid-Wales Transport Consortium to look into proposals for the WAG Regional Transport Plan 2009/10.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Threat to the proposed ban on intensive egg production

The Polish government has proposed to postpone the EU battery cage ban, which would be due to come into force in 2012. This proposal will be addressed when the EU Agriculture Council meets on 22 February. If you are annoyed at the cruelty involved in intensive farming techniques, and believe that they have no place in a civilised society, please urge Jim Fitzpatrick MP to oppose Poland's suggestion. There is a lot more information and a form you can fill in on the Compassion In World Farming page. Please take a stand against cruelty.

Friday, 19 February 2010

Animal Aid video vault

There are many informative (and some upsetting) videos in the Animal Aid video vault. Have a look if you want to see what is wrong with horse racing, or current practice in UK abattoirs.

Tom Lang Ltd: 5 min version from Animal Aid on Vimeo.

Monday, 8 February 2010

Welsh Assembly Government staff love their cars

This week Ceredigion councillors accused the Welsh Assembly Government of breaking its own transport plan because staff from the new WAG building were regularly parking on double yellow lines. The story is covered in the Cambrian News (longer version in the print issue).

Friday, 5 February 2010

Vegan fitness

Do you need meat to be healthy? Can a vegan be an athlete?

In the Winter 08 issue of PETA Animal Times, p21, Neal Barnard, M.D., answered the question "Do athletes need to eat meat?" His answer was:

"Absolutely not. Some of nature's strongest "athletes" - stallions, bulls, gorillas, and elephants are vegans. Whether you're an on-field pro or a weekend athlete, going vegan will give your health and energy a boost.

Tuesday, 26 January 2010

Circus consultation

We covered the background to the Government's public consultation on wild animals in circuses here. However the Government's online consultation is now live. Go here for a link to it, and useful guidance on filling it in so as to give the best chance of relegating to the history books the cruel and uncivilised practice of using wild animals for entertainment.

Monday, 25 January 2010

CCC recycling survey

Ceredigion County Council are running a survey on how to improve recycling in the area. It only takes five minutes to fill in online, or you can contact the Council with your views. See this page on their site for more information, the link to the questionnaire, and contact details for the Council. Deadline for responses is 31st January 2010.

Friday, 22 January 2010

New Scientist blatant bias

New Scientist recently published an article about the threat to endangered species caused by man's over-consumption of fish, the issue getting greater publicity thanks to films like The End of the Line. One of the conclusions was that there is little point trying to make better choices since the fishing industry and resellers abuse the labelling system.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Pig Business film

Aberystwyth Friends of the Earth are screening the documentary film Pig Business, by Tracy Worcester, which exposes the true cost of cheap pork in supermarkets.

Where: The Morlan Centre
When: Thursday 21st January at 7.30pm (doors open at 7.00pm)

Admission is free and refrshments will be provided. All welcome.

Friday, 1 January 2010

Capture of wild monkeys

Every year thousands of monkeys are torn from the wild and their families to stock breeding colonies in factory farms in Asia and Mauritius that supply European laboratories. 10,000 monkeys are used in experiments in Europe every year, most of these are born of parents snatched from the wild. Europe is therefore continuing to fuel the capture of thousands of wild macaque monkeys to stock breeding farms in Asia – a region where the species is now in widespread and rapid decline.