Monday, February 15, 2010

Why vote Green? Part Three...

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Greens work for strong local economies, keeping wealth circulating within communities, creating secure and stable jobs locally. This promotes wellbeing, self-reliance and sustainability eg through greater local production, improved energy and food security. We believe small is beautiful and actively support small, locally owned businesses, local exchange and trading schemes and credit unions. Our approach is in stark contrast to that of the big three parties, whose focus is the global not local economy – and that results in situations like the global banking crisis and the Kraft takeover of Cadbury’s with the loss of many local jobs.

The Green plan for rebuilding the economy - the Green New Deal – is a £45 billion investment to create 1 million jobs. It will begin to build the kind of economy and society I’ve described by: redesigning the financial system so that it serves the ‘real' economy and local communities, breaking up the big banks so they are no longer ‘too big to fail', massively clamping down on tax avoidance, generating £10 billion in revenue; investing massively in renewable energy - raising wind energy production to the same level as Denmark by 2020 would alone create 200,000 jobs; investing massively in energy efficiency measures for UK homes, schools and hospitals, creating 80,000 jobs, reducing harmful emissions and cutting fuel bills; investing in public transport and in waste management; creating more affordable housing for rent; introducing green workforce training; providing decent pensions and free social care for older people to improve quality of life, creating 60,000 jobs; reducing poverty massively by introducing a Citizen's income.
This post is the third of a series giving positive reasons to vote Green in the run up to this years local elections and general election.

Knowle Ward 2010 Local Elections: Green Candidate details

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Copy of my local election page on the Bristol Greens website follows: Knowle ward includes the area with the Broadwalk shops at its centre, bounded by the top of the hill to the north and east, Airport Road to the south, and Newquay Road to the west. Need to check whether you live in this ward? Click on Bristol City Council's 'ward finder'.

Knowle residents elect two councillors to sit on Bristol City Council. At present, both seats are held by the ruling Liberal Democrat group. One of them comes up for election in May 2010.

Glenn Vowles, a long-time resident of the ward, is Bristol South Green Party's candidate for the Knowle ward in the May 2010 election. Glenn contested Knowle in May 2007 achieving 15.6% of the vote.

Glenn has lived in Knowle virtually all his life, attending primary and secondary school there, has been a member of the Green Party for many years, and teaches Environmental Decision Making and Studies with the Open University. He is already familiar with the way the council works. He writes a very well known 'blog' (vowlesthegreen) which you can take a look at
here [!!]- it reports on all his political work.

Glenn continues to be very active in many local campaigns. His recent activity includes:

* organising the online petition to keep St Peter's Hospice open, as a member of Save Our Hospice;
*being one of the two 20's plenty champions for Knowle, working for 20mph speed limits on residential roads;
*working to highlight the problems of air and noise pollution eg around Wells Rd and Bath Rd;
*trying to stop Tesco taking over the Friendship pub and building a car park over the pub garden;
*petitions to protect local green spaces such as the Northern Slopes and Newquay Rd playing fields from being sold off and built over;
*opposing the merger of Ilminster and Connaught primary schools to keep quality, human scale education;
*campaigning for good quality local bus services and against inappropriate BRT;
*working for residents ideas on the regeneration of Knowle West to be listened to and acted on by the council and consultants;
*setting up and coordinating the local community-based sustainability and quality of life group
Sustainable Knowle - the neighbourhood transition group

Glenn writes a regular slot on green living in the Knowledge local newsletter and regularly appears on the letters page of the
local paper, which he's also written feature articles for. He's put many questions to the council/cabinet on a wide range of issues and reported on the responses received on his blog. Two of the many suggestions Glenn submitted to the council's Sustainable Communities process, on minimising waste and on biodiversity and eco-footprint considerations to be a formal part of the planning process, have made it all the way through the various tests and are now being considered by the Secretary of State.

In recent years the Green share of the vote in Knowle has more than trebled, through the candidacy and campaigning of locals like Glenn Vowles and Graham Davey. Contact Glenn at, tel 9717023