Hope that you have been coping ok during this unprecedented time, it has certainly been a strange moment in history for us all. We would be interested to hear about your experiences. We will be back in the office from next week so able to sort out any postal enquiries and update any subscriptions. We are hoping the e-newsletter issue is resolved now but please update us if you know of anyone who still isn't receiving it.
Great news, we have received £300 from the Marsh Christian Trust, this will go towards our running costs.
Glossary: EI: Environmental Illness, MCS: Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, EHS/ ES: Electro-Hypersensitivity
Boiling water: Prepare a kettle of hot water and take it to your garden. Make sure you aim around the crown of the undesired plant. For some plant sorts it might take several tries, but it will kill them eventually. This method is also good for spots you plan to replant, because it won’t damage the soil.
Landscape Fabric: If you’d like to suppress weed growth in pathways, you can install a landscape fabric or ask for professional landscapers to do so. Usually, the fabric is covered with a layer of mulch, and that’s another place where weeds can develop. However, their roots will be shallow and pulling them off will be a piece of cake.
Vinegar: Pure vinegar (white or cider), causes dehydration to unwanted plants. Although strong on its own, white vinegar can become even deadlier to undesired plants when combined with some ingredients including vinegar and lemon juice, vinegar and salt or vinegar and soap.
Mulch: Cover the soil with grass clippings, wood chips, sawdust, shredded bark, and other organic materials to stop sunlight from reaching the soil. This, in turn, should kill the unwelcome plants. Mulch also prevents new weed seeds from entering the soil. For more tips go to https://blog.fantasticgardeners.co.uk/natural-weed-killers/
A light, quick and easy Mediterranean dish that can be served as a starter or salad for lunch. Healthy too! Click here for the full recipe.
In a near-deserted plaza near Birmingham’s Bull Ring shopping centre, local artist Diane Wiltshire considers the imminent return of traffic and pollution after lockdown with a feeling close to dread.
Wiltshire suffers chemical sensitivity – severe intolerance to pollutants, which give her breathing problems, affect her eyesight and disrupt her digestion. Doctors and immunologists are divided about the causes of her condition, but that makes little difference to the trauma felt by the 42-year-old as the old economy starts to rev up again. “There is no way I want to go back to what was normal before,” she says. “I was very ill, but the lockdown has given me a break. I want those health improvements to stay.” Wiltshire’s hypersensitivity is extreme, but it highlights the challenge facing the country as it emerges from an acute illness, Covid-19, that can kill in weeks, to return to a chronic illness, pollution, that erodes our health over years but on a far more destructive scale.
Amid the misery of the UK having the worst death toll from the coronavirus in Europe and growing fears about the economic impacts of the lockdown, people have also felt positive changes. In a nationwide YouGov-Cambridge Centre survey exclusively commissioned by the Guardian at the peak of the lockdown, 66% of respondents said air quality had improved, while 20% said there was no difference, and only 3% believed pollution had grown worse.
In the Midlands - where local NHS trusts have recorded some of the worst Covid-19 death tolls - there is both relief that the crisis may be easing but also nostalgia for the calm that some people got to experience by living and working at home, while the stress of capitalism was muted and there was a greater focus on collective wellbeing and community.
As elsewhere across the country, this has revitalised debate on whether to continue the trade-off between health and wealth, or whether to push for a green recovery that addresses both problems at the same time along with tackling the climate crisis. In this region, more than anywhere else in the UK, that means rethinking the road and air traffic industries that have long been a mainstay of the economy but are also a rising source of health concerns. This article was written by Jonathan Watts for the Guardian newspaper on Saturday 20th June. Read the rest of the article here.
Action Against 5G are trying to appoint top human rights lawyer, Micheal Mansfield QC, to take on the UK government to stop the rollout of 5G due to the impact on health and the environment. Funds are being raised and you can find out more here. If you wish to donate to help make this happen click here.
An interesting piece on Parkinson's and sensitivity.
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