Tremendously good news from London – the mayor, Boris Johnson, is reviving his pledge to introduce a ban on plastic bags.
My mother sent me an article that appeared in the British newspaper The Daily Mail, which has been spearheading the “Banish the Bag” campaign. The article is rather self-contradictory, so it is not at all clear whether it is an all-out ban that is being considered, or a charge. Initially it says: “It is likely the scheme would be modelled on one soon to come into effect in Wales, where the proceeds of a 5p-per-bag charge will go to good causes.”
But then Boris is quoted as saying: “‘Plastics bags are an unnecessary scourge on our environment and I’ve set out my ambition to make London a plastic bag free city. We are planning a renewed campaign to help do so ahead of 2012, when the eyes of the world are on us.” It turns out that currently he doesn’t have the power to introduce either a ban or a charge, but could seek a special dispensation from Parliament.
He first said in January 2010 that he wanted to ban the bag in London, and it sounds as if he is now keen to keep his word – a most unusual course of action for a politician, but one definitely to be encouraged. I haven’t yet met Boris, although I am friends with his father. I was most impressed with the “Boris’s Bikes” initiative, which put racks of pay-as-you-go bicycles at locations all around London. Hurrah for Boris!
If you would like to write to Boris to encourage him to do the right thing, here are the contact details. Hardcopy letters carry more weight than emails, but emails are better than nothing.
Boris Johnson Mayor of London
Greater London Authority
The Queen’s Walk
London SE1 2AA
By email: firstname.lastname@example.org (please also provide your postal address in the email)
This is a crucial stage in the great plastic bag debate. There has been an upswing in coverage in the British press of late. Who knows if it might be your letter or email that tips the balance? Every message counts, so please do what you can to help.
And many, many thanks to all those people who have already signed the Greener Upon Thames petition” – and thanks to Doug for the digest of comments posted by friends of this blog. I am tremendously proud of my Rozlings for helping to make the world a better – and less plasticky – place!
I’ve decided to hold off on my halfway food treats until this Saturday, when Jay has proposed we have a Roz Solidarity Sunset Celebration. So that way we can all jointly celebrate my reaching halfway, the full moon, and a slightly belated celebration (if that is the right word) of 100 days at sea. It would make me very happy to think of various people around the world sending me good vibes at sunset in your time zone this Saturday, 13th August. Party on!
A big hello to sisters Margaret and Elle Lydecker. Elle – thanks for your lovely message of support. It warmed my heart to think of a gaggle of Lydeckers talking about my progress and wishing me well. Thank you!
Markus Bennett – fantastic to hear from you! So good to know you are still watching out for me. Eleanor must be quite the young lady now. I hope to meet both of you one day soon.
Norm – thank you for spreading the word.
Joan – so your dream of buying a smallholding is coming true – congratulations!! As to your friend Jeremy, I do know some fun folks in the Oxford area, although someone with an interest in vintage Italian bicycles might be stretching it a bit. Can you email me (Mum will forward) with more info about Jeremy (age, profession, personal) and I will do what I can to hook him up with some interesting people.
Helen Outen – thanks for the update on Sarah’s progress around the world. China sounds interesting, although I think I’ll stick to my beansprouts rather than chicken feet. Sarah and I have been exchanging emails from time to time as well. Always good to hear how her adventures are progressing.
Row to the Pole crew – would love to find out more about your mission. I’ve asked Mum to check out your website and send me some info. Good luck!
Aimee – the “four point tool eater jaguar” made me groan out loud – but very good!
Quote for today: “I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. I will not refuse to do the something I can do.” (Helen Keller)
Sponsored Miles: Beverly Wu, Anke Altermann, Margaret at Green Drinks, Nick Perdiew, Stephanie Batzer, Anna Wildy, Ugo Pistacchio, Darrell and Sylvia Vice, Clarence Jones III, Mark Clifton, Lynn Robb, Brian Smith, Tamara Fogg, Mark Bostleman, Cynthia Kruger and Mandeep Gill. Grateful for a good number of names = good number of miles rowed. Thank you.