Edinburgh – a natural capital

Every three years, all public bodies in Scotland report to the Scottish Government on how they’re meeting the legal requirement to further the conservation of biodiversity.  Our report sets out how we’ve looked after our valuable natural environment and worked with partner organisations to improve our green and blue spaces for nature.

Examples of the type of work include:

  • policy work to incorporate the natural environment in the Edinburgh Adapts climate change programme
  • site management changes across Council-owned parks to increase natural areas and meadows
  • community projects such as food growing projects, which have wider health and social benefits as well as increasing biodiversity
  • education, communication and professional in-house training are other related activities to highlight the importance of protecting and improving biodiversity.

Working with the Edinburgh Biodiversity Partnership, the Council also supports work to look after some of our rarer species and habitats.

The report and the Edinburgh Biodiversity Action Plan 2016-18 are also available on our website.

Junior Road Safety Event and air quality

On 13 and 14 September we held workshops at the Junior Road Safety Event at The City Chambers to show school kids how everyday activities contribute to air pollution.  The event is organised by colleagues in Road Safety and Active Travel who work with Junior Road Safety Officers (JRSOs) to help promote road safety and active travel amongst their peers.  They do this through competitions, assemblies and events in school, and help them put together their travel plans to reduce cars on the school run, reduce congestion and promote walking, scooting and cycling.

This annual event brings together Edinburgh primary school children who are JRSOs and provides them with ideas to promote road safety issues in their school and local community.

Air pollution has been recently described by the World Health Organisation’s Director General as ’the major public health issue of our generation’.  Because we can’t always see it, it is easy not to think about it.

But transport is a major source of local air pollution here in Edinburgh, and reducing vehicle emissions or using our cars less for example by walking or cycling instead, is one way we can help improve air quality.

The workshop activity used food colourings to represent pollutants in air. Adding drops of these to glasses of water (representing clean air) allowed the children to see how their individual activities including travel to school can pollute the air we breathe. The children compared their glasses and discussed ways they could reduce their own contributions.

The feedback we got from the children who attended the event was really positive and we hope it helps to give them a better understanding of some of the air quality issues in the city.

World Heritage Day 2017

Promoting diversity of cultural heritage of humanity, their vulnerability and the efforts required for their protection and conservation… or something like that idk.

Emma’s blog post #5: World Heritage Day 2017

World Heritage Day 2017 is on Tuesday 18th April, and there’s an event you should go to at the National Museum of Scotland. It starts at 10, and runs through til 4 with workshops on the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh (which make the Edinburgh World Heritage site). There’ll be loaaaaaaads of stuff to do; Victorian materials, a brass rubbing map of the New Town, some World Heritage-related music… I’m also told there’ll be colouring involved. Get HYPED.

The event will also give you an opportunity to talk about the consultation for the Old and New Towns Management Plan, so you can help us manage the World Heritage Site.

You can learn about the statue of David Hume, on the High Street. It’s become a superstition that rubbing Hume’s right foot will bring good luck. Which is ironic, given that Hume believed logical thought is an answer to superstitious beliefs.

Or about the Sir Walter Scott Monument, the biggest monument to any writer in the world.

ORRRR you could find out about the ears of the Alexander and Bucephalus statue in the City Chambers courtyard. You wouldn’t think ears would be interesting. But you’d be wrong.

 

So do go to the event on Tuesday, it sounds like it’ll be good.

As such, I’ll be getting involved in the World Heritage Hour twitter event later on Tuesday, between 18:04 and 19:04. The theme: ‘tell us 5 extra-special things about your WHS’. Get involved even from the comfort of your own home, people, and use the hashtag #WHSHour so we can all appreciate Edinburgh World Heritage ~*together*~.

Also, follow @planningedin on Twitter or Instagram ok thanks.

Emma