Earth Day is a day to raise awareness for the need to protect the planet and to encourage people across the world to be more environmentally friendly. It is an annual event and started in 1970. The theme for Earth Day 2021 is Restore Our Earth. It seems an appropriate time to highlight projects that Positively Putney BID with our BID businesses and partners have worked on to ensure that Putney is a cleaner, greener place to work, live and visit. We believe that an increased focus on the sustainability of the town centre is vital in this time of environmental crisis and that all members of the community – be it businesses, residents or visitors – can do their part to help.
In 2019, all the pubs and bars on the riverside used reusable cups on Boat Race day. Traditionally, a very busy day for our hospitality businesses in Putney and we estimated that we saved 15,000 single use plastics in just that one day. The reusable cups continued to be used throughout the summer of 2019 thereby saving even more single use plastics.
We have given away 450 cotton tote bags. Plastic bags can take up to 1000 years to decompose. Plastic bags are used and discarded in high volumes, whereas our cotton bags last much longer, replace the need for plastic bags and we love seeing them around Putney.
In 2020 we launched our Putney Pedals Recycling Trade Waste Initiative. This is a pioneering scheme where the waste is picked up by electric bicycle. This reduces the need for vans to congest the streets to collect the waste, as well as improving the air quality. To encourage businesses to recycle the BID have subsidised the cost of these streams. This project has been supported by ReLondon (previously LWARB).
Urban greening has social, environmental and economic benefits. For these reasons in 2020, we installed two parklets on the intersecting roads of Putney High Street. Not only are they aesthetically pleasing, providing biodiversity to the town centre, they are also a place for people to meet and have a rest and a chat.
We have lots of ideas for new projects for our businesses and for Putney town centre that will help restore our earth. Check back to see what we have managed in 2021!