Wednesday, 19 November 2014

General Election candidates

Declaring the results of the selection of Green Party candidates.

L to R: Kate Simpson (Teacher), Melanie Collins (Retired Health Worker), Noel Lynch (Returning  Officer), Tony Rablen (Minister and Hospital Chaplin), Lorna Tooley (Trade Union Officer)

Following our local party hustings on Wednesday evening 12 November 2014, our ballot papers were counted and the results declared.  Just over 33 per cent of you voted by post or in person after the hustings, which is a good return for an internal election which the Greens always win.  We're pleased to tell you the following were duly selected:

               Dagenham & Rainham Constituency.
                                Kate Elizabeth Simpson

                                Tony Ford Rablen                            
                Hornchurch & Upminster.
                                Melanie Jane Collins                      
                                Lorna Jane Tooley

Hustings in East London

Conducting the GE candidate hustings for Barking, Dagenham and Havering Green Party last Wednesday.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

The Political Slot. Channel 4. 19.15. Wed. Nov.19th

MP of the year Caroline Lucas: 'If we had more MPs, just imagine what we could achieve'

18 November 2014
* Musician Brian May: ‘We need more’ MPs like Caroline Lucas
* Columnist Mark Steel: Caroline’s “brought politics into disrepute … she’s done all the things she promised to do!”
* Caroline Lucas: Greens’ positive policies offer people “hope not fear”
* Green Party membership up almost 90% in 2014
* Greens polling at highest numbers ahead of a General Election since 1989 
Ahead of the May 2015 General Election, Caroline Lucas, recently named MP of the year (1), has urged voters to help the Greens “deliver the change we all so badly need.” 
Appearing on Channel 4’s ‘Political Slot’, Caroline Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, acknowledges that people are “fed up with politics as usual” and reminds viewers that she, like all Greens standing next May, is not “tied to vested interests” and “free to stand up for you and what I believe in.” 
“If we had more MPs, just imagine what we could achieve”, says Caroline. “All of us committed to making this country a more equal society, putting the environment at the heart of politics, working towards real economic justice and offering people hope, not fear.” 
In the film, Queen musician Brian May and columnist Mark Steel speak of their respect for Caroline’s work over that past four years as an MP. 
Caroline Lucas “is exactly what you’d want an MP to be. She’s honest, truthful, always in pursuit of fairness, never motivated by self-interest. She’s a wonderful MP and we need more like her”, insists May. 
“I think Caroline Lucas has brought the whole business of politics into disrepute really,” says Steel, “because politicians are meant to do things like pledge to abolish things and then treble the thing they promised to abolish or take the country into war on premises that turn out to be completely untrue or claim expenses for various castle-related activities and stuff like that. Caroline, instead of that, she promised to campaign to defend the NHS and to campaign against Page Three and campaign against fracking and she’s done all of the things she’s promised to do, she even got arrested for it. She’s making a mockery of democracy.” 
The ‘Green surge’ has seen Green Party membership and polling sky-rocket in 2014. Membership stands at 25,799 and is up a striking 87% since 1st January 2014. The Greens have polled ahead of the Liberal Democrats on three occasions in the past month.
May and Steel appear alongside others including ‘No More Page Three’ campaigner Lucy-Anne Holmes and Kayla Ente of Brighton & Hove Energy Services in the three minute film, which will air on Channel 4 on Wednesday 19th November at 19:15.
(1) Earlier this month, Caroline Lucas was named UK MP of the year. More than 90 MPs from across the country were nominated for the award, and the winners were selected by an independent panel of judges.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Litter pick in East Finchley

Out today on a litter pick with members of Barnet Green Party.

Greens pick up nine sacks of litter at Strawberry Vale to highlight plastic horror - See more at:

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Generous public subsidies are bolstering otherwise unprofitable oil, gas and coal exploration

Generous public subsidies are bolstering otherwise unprofitable oil, gas and coal exploration, new evidence indicates ahead of a meeting of G20 leaders this week.


G20 countries spend around $88bn each year on finding new fossil fuel reserves, according to a new report by the Overseas Development Institute

(ODI) and Oil Change International.


By contrast, the global top 20 oil and gas companies invested $37bn, less than half of the government expenditure, in exploration activities in 2013, the authors found.


The report seeks to remind the G20 leaders of their 2009 pledge to phase out inefficient fossil fuel subsidies. It argues that few subsidies are less efficient than those spent on exploration as these come to almost double what the International Energy Agency estimates is needed to provide universal access to energy by 2030.


An average of $521m of exploration subsidies per year were channelled through multilateral development banks between 2010 and 2013, according to the report. The World Bank Group accounted for two-thirds of this, calling into question its commitment to drive low-carbon development through its loan practices, the researchers warned.


The report urges governments to shift their resources towards renewable energy, which provides better returns. Every US dollar in subsidies attracts

$2.5 in investment when spent on renewables but only $1.3 when it is directed to fossil fuels.


Global subsidies for fossil fuels, of which exploration subsidies make up only a small part, were estimated at $775bn in 2012. This contrasts with a meagre $101bn for renewable energy in 2013, the researchers said.


To avoid dangerous global warming, two-thirds of fossil fuel reserves already found need to be kept in the ground, argued ODI¹s Shelagh Whitley.

³Instead, governments are using tax-payers¹ money to look for more oil, gas and coal resources,² she said.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

NHS Sell-Off Watch this film and spread the word!

This powerful new film is a blockbuster which shows how our public NHS is being eviscerated and parcelled up for sale to US corporations in front of our eyes. It's too radical for the moribund mainstream news media to touch, but is already on YouTube. Make time to watch it, and spread the word to everyone you know.

It needs to be seen - most people still have no idea what is happening. This film will open their eyes.

Jonathan Bartley writes about how they do things in Lambeth Green Party.

Sometimes you just have to take matters into your own hands...

This morning, I went with Cllr Scott Ainslie to visit a resident on the Nuneham Sheltered Housing Estate at the corner of Garrad's Road and Prentis Road.

Her story was all too familiar. She is a vulnerable resident and Lambeth Council and Lambeth Living have let her down with repairs. She was being ignored, treated abysmally, and living in dreadful conditions because of the Council's neglect, and there was no accountability.

Part of the problem was a leaking roof, and after two botched repairs it was still leaking water into her bathroom. Paint was pealing off the ceiling, and more damage was being done every time it rained, which would cost more and more money to fix. A patch of plaster in the ceiling that had been repaired weeks ago, was still wet to the touch.

We arranged to meet the latest contractor who had been appointed to do the job. He arrived and insisted there was nothing wrong with the roof. He said it was just damp under the felt that needed to dry out after the last repair. He suggested waiting a few more weeks for it to dry out. We said there were drips. He said that there weren't any. So we showed him the drips. He said they came from the wet plaster that we had just pushed. And so we went backwards and forwards with no resolution.

Finally he said he would come back when it was raining again.

There was no way we were going to let him leave and "come back when it was raining". This is exactly the same thing that has been happening in Cressingham Gardens in Tulse Hill with the leaks there. Contractors say they can't see a leak and say they will have to come back when it's raining. And then when it rains, they say they can't go on the roof "for health and safety reasons", and so nothing ever gets done.

So Scott climbed on the roof and I passed him up buckets of water. Five buckets later, sure enough, the water began to pour down the walls inside. Finally the contractor was convinced, he agreed to go up on the roof and found he leak. He is booked into repair it tomorrow. It shouldn't be this hard. But sometimes you just have to take matters into your own hands to get things done.

But while we were there, we also got rid of some ash trees that were breaking up through her patio at the back, but which Lambeth Council and Lambeth Living said was not their responsibility to clear.

The resident asked us to tell this story.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Lambeth Green Party meeting

Great to attend the Lambert Green Party meeting on Wednesday night. The photo above is only one section of the packed meeting.

It was really inspiring listening to the great work  being done by our Council team of Cllr. Scott Ainslie and Jonathan Bartley, seeing the enthusiasm of the local party and talking to all the new members.

Support for unions.

Unite the Union have announced that
“NHS workers have had their wages cut by up to 15 per cent since 2010 thanks to the government's draconian pay policy of pay freezes and minuscule below inflation pay rise”.
 The Green Party Trade Union Group believes that this is characteristic of  a nation where neo-liberal economics has run riot, penalising the poor, the sick,  the vulnerable and also those who provide their health care.
Unlike Cameron’s cronies, nobody who works in the NHS expects to become a billionaire, but NHS workers will be striking again for decent pay on November 24th. The Green Party Trade Union Group sends it support, we all need the work that these workers do and they need a decent wage!
Noel Lynch
Co-chair, Green Party Trade Union Group.