blank
Connect with us

Environment

Council flood alleviation scheme to start in Ystalyfera this summer

Published

on

Neath Port Talbot Council is aiming to begin work on a £700,000 drainage project in Ystalyfera in July 2021 which will reduce the flood risk to residents of the Varteg Estate and also benefit the surrounding community.

With funding from the Welsh Government, the project will involve works to the Glan Yr Afon Culvert in Ystalyfera, close to the Asda superstore, to stop surface water backing up in Varteg Road during periods of high rainfall. 

The work will take around 12 weeks to complete with approximately 140 metres of new pipework being installed. 

Throughout the construction process, the council and its contractors will try to minimise disruption to local residents as much as possible but some temporary disruption will unfortunately be inevitable. 

Cllr Mike Harvey, Neath Port Talbot Council’s Cabinet Member for Streetscene and Engineering, said: “We are delighted to be able to announce the progress on this important scheme which is being delivered to safeguard local residents and increase the community’s resilience against the risk of flooding.

“The Welsh Government’s Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management (FCERM) strategy, which the Council is helping to deliver locally, provides a longer term vision of how we can better protect and prepare homes and businesses from flooding and coastal change in the context of a changing climate.”

Advertisement

Lead Image: Varteg Road, Ystalyfera (Image: Google Maps)


Advertisement
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Environment

The Welsh National Survey for Otters shows partial decline of otter populations in Wales

Published

on

By

Natural Resources Wales, Cardiff University and a host of volunteers have repeated the Welsh National Survey for Otters for the first time since 2010.

Using the same methods as previous surveys to ensure results were comparable, a total of 1073 sites were visited, with signs of otters found at 756 sites, showing a substantive decline in their populations for the first time since the 1970s, from around 90% occupancy in 2010 to 70% in 2015 to 2018.

Advertisement

Reasons for the decline are unclear and further work is planned by NRW and CU to investigate likely reasons for this.

Dr Eleanor Kean, who led the research for the Cardiff University Otter Project, said: “Cardiff University Otter Project (CUOP) surveyed national survey sites across six river catchments and noted a decline in otter signs. Natural Resources Wales collaborated with us to organise surveys of the remaining sites across Wales to complete a sixth Otter Survey of Wales, with the help of volunteer surveyors.

“Declines were not universal, with the worst affected regions being the Conwy, Loughor, and Teifi catchments. Smaller declines were evident on most other catchments, while only a few, such as the Severn, seemed to have stable populations”.

Liz Halliwell, Team Leader for Terrestrial Ecosystems and Species at NRW said: “Monitoring otter population status is important with respect to conservation of this much-loved mammal. As well as this, as top predator of our freshwaters, the otter can be an important biological indicator of the health of our rivers and wetlands.

“In Wales as in much of the UK, the otter is a largely nocturnal animal and is rarely observed in the wild, but it is possible to detect its presence by searching for its distinctive droppings – spraints- and footprints.

Advertisement

“Otter populations across Britain have been gradually recovering from significant declines in the 1970s. The clear message from this report is that we cannot be complacent about the ongoing recovery of the otter in the UK. To understand the reasons for the decline, we are working with otter and freshwater habitat experts to review the situation.  We also have an extensive River Restoration Programme in development which will bring benefits to many riparian species including otters.”

The Mammal Society, Environment Agency and Natural England, with support from a number of water companies, will be initiating the sixth national otter survey of England in 2022. 

(Lead image: Natural Resources Wales)

Continue Reading

Environment

Energy saving consultancy helps leisure firm reduce carbon footprint

Published

on

By

Almost 500 tonnes of carbon a year have been saved thanks to energy-saving measures at Swansea leisure facilities.

Freedom Leisure, the not-for-profit charitable leisure trust which operates leisure centres in Swansea as well as dozens of other local authorities across the UK, has been working in partnership with an energy saving consultancy to deliver a number of projects to minimise the environmental impact of its leisure centres.

Advertisement

Award winning consultancy and industry leader, Leisure Energy has been supporting the not-for-profit organisation with projects across the UK.

Amongst recent projects was a programme of energy saving measures implemented
across the community leisure facilities in Swansea, South Wales.

Operated by Freedom Leisure, on behalf of Swansea Council, the facilities have benefitted from significant energy savings and a reduction in carbon of almost 500 tonnes per year. This is equivalent to taking 100 cars off the road per year or saving the entire energy use of an average house for almost 40 years.

This success is being replicated across the Freedom Leisure group, with the organisation
able to reduce its carbon emissions by 841 tonnes (CO2) and also reduce both its gas (-
5.1%) and electricity usage (-9.2%) during 2019-20. However, the organisation is now
looking to boost these efforts even further.

The recent award winning project at The Stour Centre, Ashford, is testimony to this. The
carbon reduction project at the Freedom Leisure centre was delivered with support from
the Public Sector Decarbonisation Grant and will result in carbon emissions being halved
at the centre. The project has been recognised with multiple industry awards, including
Energy Managers Association: Energy Management Consultancy Partnership 2021; and
New Civil Engineer: Best Use of Technology: Carbon Reduction (TechFest 2021).

Advertisement
The LC is one of the leisure centres in Swansea to have benefitted from the energy reduction programme (Image: Freedom leisure)

Working on behalf of Freedom Leisure, Leisure Energy have played an instrumental role
in the delivery and success of these projects.

Neil Bland, Managing Director – Leisure Energy said: “Leisure energy have been working with Freedom leisure for about 6 years, helping with their energy efficiency, sustainability and decarbonisation pledges. We recently helped Freedom Leisure reduce the carbon footprint of the community leisure facilities in Swansea by nearly 500 tonnes per year. Our most recent project has also won two prestigious awards for decarbonisation, again – showing that Freedom Leisure are at the forefront of carbon reduction in the Leisure sector.”

Ivan Horsfall-Turner, Chief Executive Officer of Freedom Leisure added: “Minimising environmental impact is a priority for Freedom Leisure right across our organisation. We are totally committed to being socially and environmentally aware, delivering a sustainable service for local communities – the success and recognition of these recent projects in Swansea and Ashford are testimony to that.”

Freedom Leisure say that these awards follow the recent appointment of a new Sustainability and Environmental Manager. Angela Brown was recently appointed to the newly created
role in a bid to secure its commitment towards a greener future. Brown has joined the
Senior Leadership Team and Freedom Leisure say she will play a key role in driving the sustainability and environmental efforts at all levels across the group.

(Lead image: Freedom Leisure)

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Environment

Recycled paint tins turned into bench for housing association’s haven scheme

Published

on

By

Neath Port Talbot housing association, Tai Tarian’s paint suppliers Crown Paints have donated a bench with a difference to a Haven scheme in Crynant, made entirely out of recycled paint cans!

While the housing association recycle their paint tins with Derwen Recyling in Neath, Crown have their own ‘Can Back’ scheme allowing all paint tins returned to the business to be recycled.

Advertisement

The nationwide service has saved an estimated 8000 tonnes of paint cans from going to landfill by turning them into outdoor benches, planters or picnic tables, to be enjoyed in local communities.

Playing their part in a sustainable planet is a big priority for Tai Tarian so being gifted a bench transformed from recycled materials for Llwynon residents is fantastic.

As an added bonus the bench is located in the scheme’s biodiverse garden space, the pride and joy of many of the residents.

Esther Harris Operations Manager at Tai Tarian said: “After being customers for many years we were delighted when Crown asked us to nominate a community space that could benefit from one of their recycled benches.

The pandemic has been particularly tough for our Haven residents with their communal areas closed until quite recently. Their wonderful garden space is a real community hub at the scheme so the bench will enhance that outdoor area, allow them to socialise together and improve wellbeing.”

Advertisement

Glen Cooper, Specification Technical manager at Crown added: “Crown Paints have always been proud to be a strategic supply partner to Tai Tarian and that our recycled plastic benches are a physical representation of the commitment that both businesses have to Sustainability, also people can actually use and see the commitment and effort both businesses have on recycling. The placing of this bench in a communal garden space adds the dimension of wellbeing into the environmental mix. The benches have a lifespan far in excess of a traditional timber product and we hope many people will use it to enjoy being in the fresh air for decades to come.”

(Lead image: Tai Tarian)

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending

Copyright © 2021 Swansea Bay News