Friday, 31 August 2012

BREAKING NEWS: 'North London Waste Plan' is thrown out!

(These are the 'headlines' - the full document is now available at the end of this post...)

"The Inspector has [today published] conclusions on the issue of whether the North London Councils have fulfilled the legal requirement of the Duty to Co-operate under S33A of the Planning and Compulsory Purchase Act 2004 Act in the preparation of the North London Waste Plan. 

"The paper combines Mr Mead’s findings in the note issued on 25 June (paras 1- 20) with those issued today, 31 August (paras 21 - 37)."

North London Waste Plan Examination

The Duty to Co-operate

(i) The consideration of the legal requirement to co-operate in the preparation of the North London Waste Plan (NLWP) is in two stages. The first stage, in a note dated 25 June 2012 (paras 1 to 20 below), has dealt with the legal submissions that, in effect, the North London Councils (the Councils) were absolved of the duty to co-operate with the planning authorities to which waste was exported.

(ii) The second stage is to consider whether co-operation as envisaged by the 2004 Act and the NPPF has been carried out. My overall conclusions are at paras 34 to 37."

(blah, blah)

Overall conclusions

34.  Accordingly, I conclude that the NLWP does not comply with the legal requirements of S33A of the 2004 Act (as amended) in that there has not been constructive, active and ongoing engagement during the NLWP’s preparation between the North London Councils and the planning authorities to which significant quantities of waste are exported. 

35.  In reaching my conclusion in this case, I have considered carefully all the representations and have also taken into account the potentially significant implications of my decision.  However, I consider no alternative conclusion can be reached, especially as it is claimed that there has been no liaison between the (North London) Councils and Buckinghamshire County Council, Northamptonshire County Council, the Bedfordshire Councils, Essex County Council and Hertfordshire County Council, other than as described above.  Therefore, contact has been scant. 

36.  The consequence of my conclusion is that the submitted NLWP is not legally compliant and so I cannot continue any further with the Examination.  The Councils may choose to receive my report on the Plan which will not deal with any planning issues and, following Section 20(7B) of the 2004 Act as inserted by Section 112 of the Localism Act 2011, will recommend non adoption of the Plan. 

37.  Alternatively, the Councils may choose to withdraw the Plan from submission and so return to the stage of preparation (S33A(3)(a) of the 2004 Act).  Were the Councils to follow this latter route they may seek to remedy any defects which have been identified.  In my opinion, this would include a continuation of the inter-regional communications via the London RTAB, but also involving meeting the RTABs, or their equivalents, of other relevant regions.  In addition, a dialogue should be initiated with those planning authorities where significant quantities of waste are imported from North London to be managed or disposed in order to establish the acceptability or not of those movements and, if necessary, explore the degree to which reasonable alternatives exist, aiming to achieve a positive outcome.  A series of memoranda of understanding could be established with each of the planning authorities.  This process, in turn, may lead to alterations to the Plan and the need to revisit the Sustainability Appraisal, but, in my opinion, it would constitute an appropriate level of co-operation and should enable the duty to co-operate to be fulfilled.

Andrew Mead

31 August 2012


2012-08 NLWP

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Daily Telegraph: "UK wind power predictable enough to keep lights on, says think tank IPPR"

Link to Daily Telegraph

"Wind power in Britain is predictable enough that the grid can rely on it to help keep the lights on, despite spells of cold, calm weather, while it cuts carbon emissions significantly, the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said.

"... The National Grid has said it can accommodate 30 gigawatts (GW) of wind power by 2020, slightly more than the 28 GW the Government expects to be online by that time to help meet its carbon reduction targets. About five GW are online currently."

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Evening Standard: "The chauffeur generation - who don't even walk 500 yards for the school run"

Link to web site

"One in 10 parents who live within 500 yards of their child's school admit driving them to the gates, research suggests.

"More than half of British school children will not be walking to school when term starts next week, according to data collated by parenting website

"... Around two-thirds (68%) of parents would rather their children walk to school but give them a lift because of time pressures, according to the research conducted among 2,000 adults with school-age children."

Sunday, 26 August 2012

The Guardian: "Food shortages could force world into vegetarianism, warn scientists"

Link to web site

"Leading water scientists have issued one of the sternest warnings yet about global food supplies, saying that the world's population may have to switch almost completely to a vegetarian diet over the next 40 years to avoid catastrophic shortages.

Humans derive about 20% of their protein from animal-based products now, but this may need to drop to just 5% to feed the extra 2 billion people expected to be alive by 2050, according to research by some of the world's leading water scientists.

"There will not be enough water available on current croplands to produce food for the expected 9 billion population in 2050 if we follow current trends and changes towards diets common in western nations," the report by Malik Falkenmark and colleagues at the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) said."

'Keeping Friern Barnet Library' - today

Link to Mr Reasonable web site

Friday, 24 August 2012

BBC: "Carried by soldiers, no score-keepers at 1960 Paralympics"

Link to the British Broadcasting Corporation

"The first Paralympic Games in Rome in 1960 was a disorganised and undignified affair, symptomatic of attitudes in the 1950s and 60s. Soldiers carried competitors to and from the athletes' village, and score-keeping was haphazard.

"When archer Margaret Maughan won Britain's first-ever gold medal in the Paralympics, there was no crowd, no podium and almost no Maughan.

"She had to be dragged off the coach going back to the rudimentary Olympic village to be presented with her prize. As no-one was keeping the score in the archery competition, she had no idea she'd won, let alone the fact there was a ceremony."

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Reuters: "Americans waste, throw away nearly half their food: study"

Link to Reuters

"(Reuters) - Americans throw away nearly half their food every year, waste worth roughly $165 billion annually, according to a study released on Tuesday.

"Dana Gunders, a scientist with the Natural Resources Defense Council's food and agriculture program, said:
"As a country, we're essentially tossing every other piece of food that crosses our path. That's money and precious resources down the drain."

Evening Standard: "Summer of scandal: the British banking controversies rocking the City of London"

Link to web site (from last week)

"The illegal dealings with Iran and other rogue states alleged [confirmed] to have taken place at Standard Chartered is the latest controversy to hit the British banking sector.

"Here we take a look at the scandals that in recent weeks have battered the reputation of the City of London."

BBC: "Beach left with 23 tonnes of rubbish"

Link to BBC web site

"Brighton and Hove City Council said, despite installing 60 extra litter bins, the beachfront was left covered with rubbish.

"... Councillor Ollie Sykes said the the level of litter was "astonishing".
"Last weekend it was wonderful that so many people came, but very depressing that the beaches looked so awful at the end of it.

The beaches looked like landfill sites. The beach goers wouldn't do this to their own streets [no?] and their own back gardens."
"He said the 23 tonnes figure only included litter left on the beach, and not rubbish that had been placed in the bins."

Monday, 20 August 2012

"There’s gold in them thar landfills - £650m of valuable materials being thrown every year"

Link to Evening Standard

"At least £650 million worth of valuable materials are being thrown into landfill or burned in the UK each year, despite rising costs of natural resources, campaigners warned today.

"A coalition of business groups and environmentalists said products ranging from steel, wheat and rubber to 'rare earth' metals necessary for making goods such as mobile phones will become increasingly costly, threatening UK productivity.

"The coalition, which includes the manufacturers' organisation EEF and Friends of the Earth, is demanding the Government develop an urgent action plan to preserve valuable resources, including policies to improve recycling and a ban on reusable materials going into landfill."

Friday, 17 August 2012

"Apart from things like atom bombs and so on, I'm quite satisfied"

BBC iPlayer,
via Brent Cross Coaition web site

Brain Coleman and the NLWA

Link to web site

"Barnet LBC councillor Brian Coleman (Con) was censured and ordered to apologise by the council's standards committee, over e-mails sent in his role as its representative on the North London Waste Authority.

"He was found to have failed to treat others with respect, under the councillors' code of conduct then in force.

"Ron Cohen, a member of the public, wrote to Cllr Coleman to protest against a bid for an NWLA contract from Veolia Environmental Services, because of its alleged involvement in Israel."

Thursday, 16 August 2012

CNN: "Tech companies make progress on 'blood phones' and 'conflict minerals'"

Link to web site

"They've been called 'blood phones'. It's a reference to the fact that some metals used to make smartphones and other electronic gadgets are sourced from war-torn areas of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

"Experts say these 'conflict minerals' help fuel one of the world's deadliest conflicts. An estimated 5.4 million people have died there from war-related causes, including disease and malnutrition, since 1998, according to the International Rescue Committee.

"But according to a report released Thursday by the Enough Project, an advocacy group, metals from the Congo are getting less bloody."

Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Friern Barnet Library: "New Success In Our Campaign"

Link to web site

"We achieved great publicity at the BAPS (Barnet Alliance for Public Services) Alternative Torch Rally and Parade, at our library and in North Finchley and Finchley Central on 21 July, and at another brilliant Pop-Up Library on the day of the official Torch Relay, the 25th, where we were greeted with enormous enthusiasm and warmth by the community.

"On Tuesday 31 July, we achieved an excellent result, when Barnet Council’s Scrutiny Committee voted to send our petition to have the library re-opened back to Cabinet.
"Both Rosie Canning and our stalwart Councillors Barry Rawlings, Pauline Coakley-Webb and Kate Salinger gave fantastic speeches, hammering home our message: Barnet Council has undermined the interests of Friern Barnet residents by undemocratically shutting our service, set up a sham library at Arts Depot that no-one wants (in an absurd gesture that only serves to waste tax-payers’ money) and handed funding on a plate to a library in Hampstead Garden Suburb that could have been used to keep Friern Barnet Library open.
"A head of steam is building as badly-hit local traders are now also calling for the service to re-open. We have maintained an effective presence on Friern Barnet Green since FBL shut, and kept up our media profile. We are not going away until our library re-opens, despite the dogged words of the chief architect of this mess, Councillor Robert Rams. This month will see a big new event on the Green on Sunday 26th August, around the 100th anniversary of Friern Barnet’s fabulous 43 bus! Do put the date in your diaries and come along to join the fun (timings will be on the website soon).
"We very much welcome new members to our meetings, at the British Legion next to the library on Friern Barnet Road (starting time: 6.30pm). It’s a chance to do something really worthwhile for the local community – not to mention make new friends."

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Mail on Sunday: "Trust the politicians to try to grab a share of Olympic glory"

Link to web site

"... Perhaps aware of his image as the Cabinet’s resident nerd, Education Secretary Michael Gove has been demonstrating that he’s a regular guy, by showing himself at one or two Olympic venues. And that requires the kind of brazen cheek which might make even Boris blush.

For it was Gove who, in October 2010, set out to destroy a programme called School Sports Partnerships, by stripping it of £162-million in yearly funding.

The programme allowed PE teachers and professional coaches to work with groups of State schools across England. As one London primary school head told me last week:
"We were in an excellent school partnership. It gave our children so many opportunities to take part in a range of sports, and supported me with specialist coaching.

... The sports partnership also led to children going on to a range of sports clubs. All gone now."

Saturday, 11 August 2012

Daily Telegraph: "London 2012 Olympics: Shaun the Sheep Olympic Championsheeps"

Link to Daily Telegraph

"100-metre Dash, Archery, Beach Volleyball, BMX, Fencing, Gymnastics, ..."

Official web site

Friday, 10 August 2012

Brian Coleman and The Great Stink

Link to Mrs Angry's 'Broken Barnet'

"... As you may have heard, the hugely popular former London Assembly Member, former Chair of the Fire Authority, and former Barnet Council Cabinet member Brian ["Pinkham Way is just an old sewage works"] Coleman has decided that, in order to reclaim some of the headline-grabbing attention he so clearly misses, he must write his memoirs.

"What a brilliant idea! Already queues of would-be readers are forming outside Waterstones in North Finchley, just opposite Cafe Buzz, where his biggest admirer, parking campaigner and suburban terrorist Helen Michael spends her days making Mrs Angry tuna baguettes, and frightening small children and secret policemen with her posters of Brian Coleman.

"Ah, I say queues of would-be readers ... most of them appear to be shopkeepers brandishing pitchforks and flaming torches ... draw the curtains, Brian."

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

E&T: 50 years of satellite communications

Link to web site

"In the summer of 1962, Telstar-1 helped ignite the white heat of technology that burned throughout the rest of the decade. Fifty years on, how well deserved is its reputation as a global comms game changer?

"A media star in its own right, the first Telstar had something special. Half a century ago, on 10 July 1962, that 88cm-diameter sphere relayed the first instantaneous television and telephone signals across the Atlantic – and promptly became an icon. Millions of Britons viewed its shaky first pictures. "The invisible focus of a million eyes" became the Queen's description in her next Christmas Day address.

"For the public, the Telstar experiment showed that Space could be useful, single-handedly kick-starting the multi- billion pound satellite telecommunications industry – up to a point, at least, for the historical truth is somewhat more nuanced, for arguably Telstar-1 was both a great leap forward – and a technological cul-de-sac."

Monday, 6 August 2012

Olympic typography through the years

Link to Wired web site

"Since the introduction of the modern Olympics in 1896, graphics have been used to capture the spirit of sport as well as the time, place, and culture of the host city.

"All along, typography has played a huge part in setting the tone and binding other graphic elements together. With technological advancements in typography as the world moves digital, these visual representations have evolved, and their role has become a hybrid solution of facilitating seamless communication between the games and its audience (much like a brand would communicate with customers) and creating a lasting legacy for the tournament."

Sunday, 5 August 2012

LB of Haringey: "Town/Village Green Application - Representations Received"

Link to web site,
for all documents

"Representations received in respect of the application to register the former Friern Barnet sewage works (Pinkham Way) as a town or village green are ... [published here]" 1 August 2012

[These are subjectively-chosen selections, in typically long documents.]

Representations from parties
with a direct legal interest
in the land

London Borough of Barnet and North London Waste Authority 

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Let's Recycle: "Councils defend North London Waste Plan"

Link to web site

"Councils accused of not meeting their ‘duty to cooperate’ in drawing up the North London Waste Plan have questioned whether the duty should apply retrospectively, after five years of preparation.

"The Plan, which has been drawn up by officers from Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Hackney, Haringey, Islington and Waltham Forest councils, identifies a range of suitable sites for future waste management facilities in North London.

"... The planning inspectorate will now decide whether the Plan has met its duty to cooperate, and may force the Plan to be redrafted, which could take a further two years."

Friday, 3 August 2012

Haringey Journal: "Public shows ‘overwhelming’ support for Ally Pally regeneration plans"

Link to web site

"Alexandra Palace has taken its first step towards becoming a major international hub for culture, community events, learning and recreation, after regeneration plans were overwhelming supported by the public.

"... Matt Cooke, Alexandra Park & Palace Charitable Trust chairman, thanked everyone for taking part and 'wholeheartedly supporting our plans'."

Thursday, 2 August 2012

LB of Haringey: "Vision for Tottenham unveiled"

"As the anniversary of the London riots approaches, Haringey Council today, 1 August, unveiled its long term ambition for Tottenham.

Link to web site
" 'A Plan for Tottenham' sets out a vision for the area from now to 2025 - building back better through economic growth; investment; improved neighbourhoods and regeneration of key sites.

"A Plan for Tottenham outlines proposals for quality housing; stronger communities; a vibrant arts and culture scene; a welcoming civic heart; wide retail mix; attractive public spaces, and successful businesses."

Link also to:

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Barnet Press: "Council rejects petition to reopen Friern Barnet Library"

Link to Barnet Press

"On Tuesday, members of the Save Friern Barnet Library group were allowed to present a petition, demanding the reopening of the library, to the business management overview and scrutiny committee.

"Tory councillor Kate Salinger said residents had been left without a local hub, and blasted the one-room interim library that was opened at artsdepot in April."