This sounds like good value

Connecting Bristol and Vowlsie are reporting that Bristol has been chosen as the only city in the UK to be short-listed for the European Green Capital Award.

Shit. If this place is the greenest city in Europe we really are all doomed …

This entry was posted in Bristol, Environment, European Green Capital Award, Global warming, Local government, Politics and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to This sounds like good value

  1. The inmates have now taken over the asylum.


  2. Media Mouse says:

    Its hardly an eco city of world class public transport is it….

    I could go faster on my wheel in my cage than a bus journey round Bristol!

  3. Dave says:

    It’s all a precursor to justify the introduction of a congestion charge. I guarantee it.

  4. Chris Hutt says:

    How surreal to see Bristol listed along with cities like Amsterdam, Muenster, Freiburg and Copenhagen as a potential Green Capital.

    How bizarre that Bristol has been short-listed ahead of out twin cities of Bordeaux and Hannover, as well as a raft of outstanding cities like Malmo, Helsinki, Prague and Vienna.

    What does Bristol have that these cities don’t have? An integrated transport system perhaps? Outstanding facilities for cyclists? A pedestrianised city centre? A highly sociable public realm? Well insulated housing stock? A minimal carbon footprint?

    Obviously none of the above, so what is it? A couple of token wind turbines at Avonmouth? A load of plastic boxes cluttering the pavements outside every house? A burgeoning wildlife (rat, pigeon and seagull) population?

    I’m at a complete loss, other than to think that it is down to nothing more than spin and hype perpetrated by some smooth operators who look forward to the rewards to come if Bristol wins.

    And why shouldn’t Bristol win? Would that be any more inconceivable than being short-listed? Then what? Thousands of our European neighbours descending on the city (via an expanded airport of course) to be stung for £7 for the bus ride from airport to town, then looking for ‘hour-bike’ bicycles to hire only to find that most are vandalised, discovering that the city’s famous Railway Path is being converted to a bus route and finally bemused that the bus station is well over a kilometre from the train station, which in turn is a kilometre from the modified traffic gyratory which serves as the Centre of the city?

    Perhaps Green Capital is an award for sheer chutzpah, in which case the title is richly deserved.

  5. Des Bowring says:

    Chris Hutt is showing an amazing degree of ignorance about Bristol’s wildlife, which happens to be really rather good. I find many ‘environmentalists’ are equally dismissive of biodiversity, preferring instead to bang on about bloody cycling.

    Other than that, Bristol has a lot to do to justify ‘green city’ status.

  6. Bluebaldee says:

    Truly laughable.

    How on earth can Bristol even come close to be being nominated? We have the worst public transport system of any major city in the UK, and probably Europe.

    The city is riven by dual carriageways, splitting neighbourhoods.

    The Centre, which should be fully pedestrianised, is instead a big roundabout. On Saturday and Sunday mornings it looks like the surface of a landfill dump.

    We’re probably going to build a bloody great big waste incinerator.

    One of the possible factors that would count towards Green City status for our city, the excellent and generally well-kept parks are now under threat from developers as a direct result of Council policy.

    Our rat population is rocketing.

    This decision beggars belief and is indicative of the fact that these ridiculous “European City of……..” things are entirely politically motivated, not remotely objective and a total waste of time, money and an insult to our intelligence.

  7. Des Bowring says:

    Yep of course I meant to add that although Bristol is one of the best cities for wildlife, we have to protect our precious greenspaces to keep it that way.

  8. Chris Hutt says:

    “Chris Hutt is showing an amazing degree of ignorance about Bristol’s wildlife”

    So Des, please inform me. Am I wrong in thinking that the rat population is increasing, or that pigeon and seagull populations have caused problems? Should we view these populations as something positive then?

    And is it not the case that the Railway Path through east Bristol, created and saved from more intensive development by cyclists, is also an important wildlife corridor?

  9. Des Bowring says:

    Humans have provided ideal conditions for increased populations of pigeons, rats and gulls all over the world – these species are merely exploiting our throw-away lifestyles. Any problems they are perceived to be causing can therefore be traced back to human behaviour – as a naturalist I rather admire their adaptability. By the way, there is no such thing as a seagull – they are mainly Herring and Lesser Black-backs in Bristol.

    Cycling is a great hobby but I’m not sure it can be credited with saving the planet or even protecting a disused railway line although it does indeed have value as a wildlife corridor.

  10. Spectator says:

    Des, I know that there is no such thing as a “seagull”, I am also aware that species we humans term “vermin” are merely exploiting the biological niches that we have created for them. I think that Chris is using ironic humour here, directed at those who chose to bid for this award.

    Now Des, with all due respect, chill out.

  11. Des Bowring says:

    Irony? What’s that?

  12. Spectator says:

    “Irony? What’s that?”

    You get it from heating magnetite, haematite, geothite, or a number of other rocks until…

    … no wait… that’s iron…

    …irony… irony…

  13. By shortlisting Bristol this award scheme brings itself into disrepute. Even worse if Bristol wins!!

    If I was to pick one way in which Bristol might justify being shortlisted it would be the amount of green space it has and the biodiversity associated with it. The bizarre thing is that the council seem hell-bent on flogging off and building over acre after acre of these spaces.

    I’ve been told that plans for the future are assessed as part of this award but surely the Parks and Green Spaces strategy, which endorses green space flogging of up to several hundred acres in principle (as I think Bluebaldee and BB pointed out in some discussion quite a while ago) cant be seen as green? Its being overruled on a whim by unelected officers anyway!

    On major area like transport, waste, economic development patterns, air quality, noise pollution, the future of green spaces, carbon and ecological footprint levels….Bristol’s state and plans cannot be considered green. Any actions taken or planned are just tinkering at the edges really.

  14. We Love Trees says:


    Didn’t quite know where to put this but people need to know.

    The triangular wood between the lido, the cemetery and the lake in Eastville Park was felled today, Saturday 8th November 2008. A very large number of mixed tree species and mature bushes has now gone. The workmen weren’t aware of any bat roosts as they seemed surprised to find a tall nesting box (about 4ft high), which I believe is for owls or bats. Can someone please investigate what is going on.

    Has anyone got any records of wildlife in this corner of Eastville Park? Were any councillors or members of the public aware these tree works were going on? It is lawful practice to put up public notices.

    I suspect today’s destruction is a decision made entirely at Council level, possibly to prevent the prostitution and drug-use which was common there. I wonder where that will now go on… hopefully not at the lake!

  15. Des Bowring says:


    This is bad news – there is a local naturalist called Richard Scantlebury who knows the area’s wildlife well – I don’t know his email but he is contactable via a yahoo wildlife group that I belong to – I will bring this to his attention. He regularly encounters Tawny Owls here, and bat species include Noctule and the Daubenton’s.

    Sadly, many of the trees and shrubs in Bristol’s parks are aggressively cut back in the name of
    public safety and crime prevention – the police seem to be able to convince the council that such work needs to be carried out, ignoring the wildlife value that is being destroyed.

    The police dictating parks management is a particularly frightening concept, but a very real one.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Bristol City Council doing major tree works and felling very tall trees in Eastville Park on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th November without any warning signs, barriers or regard for health & safety – tut, tut!

  17. BristleKRS says:

    Back to the OP – Bristol is also apparently ‘Britain’s greenest city’!

    Bristol knocked Brighton and Hove from first place in the second Sustainable Cities Index which ranks the 20 biggest British cities according to social, economic and environmental performance.

    Bristol’s triumph was in part due to its rise in recycling and composting rates and its high scores on water quality, waste collection and green spaces.

    But it came bottom in public transport – one of the criteria used by Forum for the Future which compiled the index.

    Forum spokeswoman Helen Clarkson, said: “Bristol has been very consistent across all the indicators we look at. Sustainability has been on the agenda long term for Bristol as people have been doing this stuff for years and all the benefits are beginning to fall into place.”

    “Transport was the one thing people we spoke to on the streets in Bristol complained most about,” said Miss Clarkson.

    “People said public transport was a joke and a lot would much rather cycle because of the price of bus fares and the congestion in the city.”

    *Feels chest puff up*

    Nothing like meaningless awards to generate a bit of civic pride that might distract us from awkward questions, eh…

  18. Anonymous says:

    Does everyone know about the wood in Eastville Park which was completely demolished over the weekend? This is unbelievable!

    Apparently, it isn’t the work of Bristol City Council as it is private land and the tree felling was done by a private contractor. Was this specifically done at the weekend when the owner knew Council officers couldn’t be called out to stop it?

    Just found this:

  19. Pingback: The Eastville Park tree massacre « Bristle’s Blog from the BunKRS

  20. Ecoughnut says:

    Tree-hating lazy absentee landlords strike again – this time in Bedminster.

    From the evening pist ….

    Nearly all the trees in the historic Hebron Burial Ground, in Hebron Road off North Street, Bedminster, have been cut down.

    The cemetery, which is in a conservation area, is owned by a man named Pietro Mario Sansone, who is understood not to live in the UK….

    Another resident, who asked not to be named, said the area was a haven for wildlife and the trees shielding the cemetery prevented it being misused.

    “As soon as the trees started to come down people started dumping things. I have taken several things on trips to the tip myself that other people have chucked in there,” he said.
    “It’s also a haven for wildlife. I have seen bats, hedgehogs, birds and other wildlife. There aren’t many places in Bedminster for wildlife to flourish and I wonder if some of those creatures will be back next year, now that all the trees have been cut down.”….

    Developers suggested the burial ground could become a car park and a memorial garden.
    But the proposal was dropped because of opposition and the burial ground was sold separately in the same year.

    Mr Sansone does not maintain the cemetery and brambles and weeds grow up to five or six feet, covering many headstones….

  21. Pingback: Ecolo-Info » Créer/Bâtir » Bristol, ville verte ?

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