City Hippy

The diary of our struggle to live a green and fair life.

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CityHippy has posted its last post now (I now work for EMP plc, run At Home magazine online and more and personally blog over at Why? Click here to find out. We might be back. Keep our RSS feeds, keep us bookmarked, sign up for the news alert on the right. You never know...

We are dedicated to exploring how to live a greener and more ethical life. City Hippy is a growing collective of writers bringing you two types of content:

ARTICLES: Enjoy real content by real people trying really hard to live a greener and fairer life. Generally in-depth with weekly updates at least. Located in main body below.Subscribe:
BOOKMARKS: Follow our web travels & explore our 1400+ links to a greener life across various categories i.e. baby, cosmetics, DIY, furniture, garden & shopping. Short, sharp and frequent updates. Located down to the right. Click here to see our latest three bookmarks.Subscribe:


Tuesday, May 31, 2005

NEWS: When the wind blows

British Gas, one of the largest utility supplier's in the UK is now...wait for it...selling household wind turbines. They have powered up (pardon the pun) with Windsave to help household wind turbines make the leap to the mainstream.

We urge you to support both British Gas in this pioneering jump and Windsave: write to them, support them, talk to people about them, and if you can afford it we recommend you get a turbine. They cost less than £1,500, reduce your energy dependence and your bills by a third and will eventually pay for themselves. Plus you can sell surplus energy back to the grid at the billable rate and you are less likely to experience a power-cut.

If you get three turbines you can probably drop off the grid entirely. Energy independence can only be a good thing. Let us know if you have a turbine...would love to hear from people using them.

In the same week as British Gas were embracing alternatives Max Hastings argues in the Guardian that we should forget about wind farms and embrace nuclear power.

His article is well-formed but leaves some teeny-weeny gaps in the argument.

Let's assume we could prevent any large-scale radioactive accidents, be it on the road or at the plant itself.

Even though we have been very lucky so far not to have had any such disasters in the UK let alone the world, Three-mile Island and Chernobyl aside.

Even though recently a serious UK nuclear leak 'went unnoticed for nine months'

Let's assume we can prevent anyone determined enough from getting hold of fissionable material.

Even though we can't and as recently as last year a high profile Pakistani Nuclear scientist was found to have passed information (and who knows what else?) to Iran, Libya and North Korea (and who knows who else?).

Let's assume we can dispose of the waste products in a safe and eco-friendly manner.

Even though we can't get even close to safe disposal and even the UK Government's own independent Committee on Radioactive Waste Management (CORWM) states that 'nuclear power plants and weapons have left the UK with a radioactive legacy which presently has nowhere to go'.

So assuming Nuclear power is safe to use (IT'S NOT!!!), store (IT'S NOT!!!) and dispose of (IT'S NOT!!!) and assuming the government have exhausted all safer and less expensive (to people and planet) alternatives (THEY HAVEN'T!!!) then City Hippy is proud to endorse the further development of the Nuclear Industry. (WE DON'T!!!)

Incidentally the title of this post comes from a great movie called 'When the wind blows' - we recommend you see it. Awesome!

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Wednesday, May 25, 2005

ON THE ROAD: Kitty litter quitter

City Hippy is always delighted to welcome a new member to the collective. You can look forward to occasional (hopefully not that occasional? Ed.) posts from their green RV but for now sit back and enjoy the first installment from our new ON THE ROAD columnist.

A couple of years ago I did what I thought was the right thing by adopting a cat which would have otherwise gone to the animal shelter. The cat had suddenly become detached from its former owner who moved to a "no pets" apartment. Now I find myself about to do the same thing to the same cat because my husband and I are selling our rural home to live and travel in an RV instead. (Our plan sounds so un-green, doesn't it? Think biodiesel and solar.)

Anyway, we decided it is not fair to our cat, dog, or ourselves to take the cat with us.

Reason #1: Smitty, our cat, is a dog hater. The pet wars would escalate in cramped quarters.

Reason #2: The cat does not ride well and would require sedation each time we were on the road. I don't want to drug the cat to force it to adapt to our new lifestyle.

Reason #3: Kitty Litter: Our floor plan leaves little room for a kitty litter box. Truth be told...I don't want to be tripping over the pet waste receptacle constantly.

This is the 1st indoor cat I have ever owned. Although we currently live on over 2 acres, the cat is afraid of the outdoors. (The local coyotes may have something to do with his fears). Hence, I have pampered Smitty by providing him a kitty litter box. I had a few green things to learn.

Regarding kitty litter, "alternative" refers to avoiding clay based litters due to environmental concerns, and avoiding clumping type litters due to health concerns. Fortunately, I am able to shop at a co-op that stocks two of the top alternative brands. I have been using SWheatScoop.

A thorough review of Alternative Kitty Litters is provided by Marina Michaels. Marina is undoubtedly the definitive kitty litter authority, in my opinion.

My additional alternative suggestions:
Teach your cat to use the toilet
Teach your cat to ask to go outdoors
Get a dog and name it "Cat"

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Monday, May 23, 2005

CARTOON: Second helping

Here is the second installment in our new cartoon series:

Any ideas for future episodes...get in touch @ Image hosted by

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Thursday, May 19, 2005

NEWS: Crappy nappy but happy

Today all over the BBC and tons of other UK media are articles about a report commissioned by the Environment Agency (the UK equivalent of the US' EPA) about how Green diapers/nappies are no better for the environment than disposable diapers/nappies.

To say that 25 nappies, washable in cold chemical-free water, made of organic cotton, are no better for our planet than 2000 non-biodegradable nappies with reported health risks (see below), coated in plastic derivatives and sold in even more plastic is ludicrous and goes against all common sense! No matter what any report just goes against everything we know.

This issue is very close to out hearts as at least two of the City Hippy collective are having babies.

We will try and read the report in full if we get the chance although at a whopping 209 pages please forgive us if we just skim it and summarise for the sake of brevity and our sanity.

After a good skim through we reckon that the study does not take into full account a number of relevant issues including packaging, total transport, component production and alledged health risks.

Overall it would appear that the study had far too narrow a focus as to negate any conclusions arising from it.

For a great range of eco-disposable diapers/nappies and washable diaper/nappy systems check out Spirit of Nature. They offer FREE SAMPLES and provide a lot of info to help you decide what type of diaper/nappy suits your budget and lifestyle.

You could also check out One Life World who do a great disposable and reusable diaper/nappy.

Surfing the web we came across the following information about potential health issues arising from using disposable nappies:

Alledged health problem one: Disposables apparently contain 'Nonylpheyl ethoxylate, a proven oestrogen mimic, linked to sex changes in fish and dropping sperm count, is only recently being phased out of disposable nappies.' - taken from

Alledged health problem two: 'Research undertaken in 1999 suggests that chemicals released by disposable nappies could cause or aggravate asthma. Nappies were tested as soon as they were taken from the packet for their level of emissions, which were high enough to produce asthma like symptoms. The chemicals released were Tolune, xylene, ethylbenzene, styrene and isopropylbenzene amongst others. These chemicals are by products of the manufacturing process of disposable nappies that contain gel.' - taken from

For a full breakdown of why disposables are bad for the planet read more at the

Well if there is no difference between them then I still choose to use products that make more sense. I urge you to do the same. Then again I have not had my baby yet...will report back in about 7 months.

What do you think? Have you used disposables and/or re-usables? Do you agree with the report?

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UPDATE (20/07/05): Just found a great reply to this 'report' from the Womens Environmental Network. Read it here

INTERVIEW: The Greenloop

In the second installment of our series of interviews with green entrepreneurs, City Hippy spoke to Aysia Wright, owner of, a boutique and online store based in the Portland, Oregon area.

The mission of Greenloop is “an alignment of style and sustainability, a fusion of aesthetics and ethics, by providing the opportunity for all of us to look fabulous, feel great, and do good.” Greenloop accomplishes this by selling clothing, accessories, cosmetics and body care products for the hip, yet environmentally and socially conscious shopper.

City Hippy: Hi Aysia, and thanks for making the time to speak with us. Can you tell us where you got your inspiration for Greenloop?

Aysia Wright: In high school, I worked for The Body Shop. They were more environmentally focused at the time, so I learned a lot about both retail and the market for environmentally friendly products. I went on to study environmental science in college, and eventually earned a J.D. in environmental law. For a while, I practiced estate law, but really felt like I wanted to get involved with advocacy in a more creative manner.

From there, I began looking into eco-fashion, and I found that there really was no one-stop, high fashion shopping experience for the environmentally conscious consumer. A lot of the clothing and fashions out there were too…for lack of a better word…”hippy” to appeal to people who wanted to be fashionable. People want to wear what’s hip, and I saw an opportunity to fuse sustainability with style through Greenloop.

City Hippy: Having visited both the store in Portland and the website, we think you definitely achieved the sustainable style vibe you were hoping to achieve. When did Greenloop open?

Aysia Wright: The store has been open since September 2004, and the web site went up this spring. Not all of our merchandise is available online yet, but we’re adding more and more every day.

City Hippy: We’ve seen the mission of Greenloop online, but can you describe the mission of the store in your own words for us?

Aysia Wright: I would say it’s to create an expanded awareness for options for living a sustainable lifestyle, and also to support companies that have made a clear commitment to utilize environmentally sustainable materials and fair trade practices. And of course the designs and products we offer should be cutting edge and fashionable.

City Hippy: Since launching Greenloop, what has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

Aysia Wright: Sticking to a budget, and also choosing the right products and marketing them effectively. Figuring out the right marketing approach is interesting, because we’re trying to reach the consumer who is already environmentally and socially conscious, as well as educating consumers who don’t understand what organic fabrics are, or what sustainable style means.

For a while, people were kind of scared and skeptical of organic products, because they didn’t really understand what they were, or they thought it was just an excuse to sell certain products at a higher cost. People aren’t as skeptical as they used to be, but there’s still a learning curve that needs to be addressed through our marketing efforts.

I also want people to understand that I’m not asking them to make a radical lifestyle change. Whether it’s driving a little less or recycling newspapers or buying one article of organic clothing, every small step does make a difference.

City Hippy: What trends do you see for the future of sustainable style?

Aysia Wright: I think the biggest trend we’ll see is the increase in the availability and the use of organic cotton. There has already been a lot of education surrounding organic cotton, and once the fabric is more available, I think other people will jump on the bandwagon quickly. Of course, there’s always the fear that the term “organic” will become diluted. Hopefully it won’t become like the word “natural,” which really doesn’t mean anything anymore!

City Hippy: Right, we’ve noticed that, too. We’ve seen the term “organic” used a lot lately in quotations, where it’s used to describe a particular type of design, like “organic” dishes, instead of having anything to do with how the product was actually produced! On the other hand, maybe it’s a good sign – mainstream marketers are obviously using the term organic because people respond favorably to it, so perhaps it’s a sign that the time is coming when more and more environmentally friendly products will be available.

Speaking of times to come, what advice do you have for up and coming green entrepreneurs who are trying to get their own ventures started?

Aysia Wright: Well, first you should look for your own niche. Find a segment of the market that has not been addressed. For example, there is a VERY limited section of environmentally friendly swimwear out there….ideas anyone? Shoes is another area where there are a couple of great lines, but ample room for more, especially in the high fashion end.

Second, create and live by your core set of morals, but don’t have a completely hard line. For example, there will always be a more environmentally friendly company out there, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to sell more of their products. Don’t compromise your values, but you also need to choose products that will sell. Support and inspire people to be the best they can be.

And finally – take the risk. Do something you feel passionate about, that is purposeful beyond earning a buck, and you will be successful in more ways than one.

City Hippy: Aysia, thanks for your time and best of luck with Greenloop!

City Hippy’s final thought:
We think Aysia is on to something big with Greenloop. Visit the online store at and check it out for yourself!

City Hippy's green entrepreneur summary:
Learn to budget and stick to it!

Knowing your customers and selecting the right products

Help your customer solve a problem

Find a niche and fill it

Three words: committment, risk and passion.

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Sunday, May 15, 2005

MISSION: Little green bag

Welcome to our first mission.

We wanted to find an affordable, stylish, durable, green and fair bag for our trip to and from work. We have trawled the web and are now delighted to bring you the best of what we found in both the US and the UK. We may have missed some that are out there and not included others for a variety of reasons. Feel free to suggest other options we might have missed or dismissed.

First stop: Ethical Wares (UK)

We found some very funky options at Ethical Wares which is a great site for vegan and ethical products.

These bags are created from 'the used inner tubes from the 7 million cars in Mexico City' and have a great look. Plus being made from inner tubes they are tough as, well, old tires to be honest.

We quite liked the Laptop bag.
Dimensions: Width 40cm x Depth 30cm
Cost: £47.95

LAPTOP BAG - Image hosted by TinyPic.comRUCSAC - Image hosted by

In the same style if you want something a bit beefier then you could always go for the classic Rucsac
Dimensions: Width 32cm x Depth 42cm
Cost: £54.95

TREAD BAG - Image hosted by TinyPic.comA bag with a slightly different style is the Tread bag
Dimensions: Width 36cm x Height 22cm x Depth 5.75cm
Cost: £54.95

None of these three bags are organic as such but they do help to recycle used tires.

Are they fairly traded? Well they come from Ethical Wares so one assumes so. Whilst we trust them it would be really nice to know more about the products ie where the come from and who produces them. The more we know the better as far as we are concerned.

Next stop: Global Exchange (US)

Image hosted by TinyPic.comFound a couple of really nice bags at Global Exchange. The first is the Recycled Messenger bag which is made from 'recycled feed bags and lined with durable cotton'. Each bag is very tough and unique due to the nature of the design.
Dimensions: Width 15 inches x Height 13 inches
Cost: $49.00

Image hosted by TinyPic.comThe next one we found at the Global Exchange that made it on to our shortlist was this attractive Messenger Bag. This bag is produced by HempMania and is both produced ethically AND in an environmentally responsible manner.

The Messenger bags are made using high quality Romanian organic hemp fabric and are hand-sewn by 23 young men of Chichicastengo, Guatemala. Love the detail. Can just see these happy and fairly paid guys making my bag for me with real appreciation.
Dimensions: Width 19 inches x Height 13 inches x Depth 3 inches
Cost: $44.00

Next stop: Pure Sativa (UK)

Finding this site made us feel like kids in a toy store. Pure Sativa has a truly magnificent selection of Hemp Rucksacks and Shoulder bags.

SHOULDER BAG - Image hosted by TinyPic.comRUCSAC - Image hosted by

Would be impossible to outline their entire selection as there are just so many choices depending on what style and size of bag you are looking for. They are all made of Hemp (obviously) and they range in price from £17.50 upto £39.99. Not sure about whether they are ethically produced or not and could not find info on the website.

Last two stops: Voltaic systems (US) and Eclipse Solar Gear (US)

Imagine having a bag that could recharge your mobile phone, ipod and so on? Well imagine no more.

We have seen and heard about these bags for a few months now and decided to include an investigation of them on our mission. They represent a whole new concept in backpacks and shoulder bags...

Image hosted by TinyPic.comVoltaic systems have created the Voltaic™ Backpack which is selling for $229 and has a capacity of 1650 cubic inches.

Eclipse Solar Gear give you two choices: You can plump for the Reactor Solar Backpack which has a capacity of 1850 cubic inches and retails at $129 or you could go for the Solar Flare Messenger Bag which has a capacity of 1420 cubic inches and also retails at $129.

BACKPACK - Image hosted by TinyPic.comMESSENGER BAG - Image hosted by

All three of these solar bags are made from Nylon. We cannot determine whether they are produced ethically or not. All three represent a very good purchase as they promote alternative energy whilst you wear them...just be prepared to field a lot of questions from people when out and about with these bags.

We are sure it won't be too long before someone creates a hybrid bag combining organic material, ethical production and energy independence.

Image hosted by TinyPic.comIn the end the bag that hit the mark for us was the: Global Exchange Messenger Bag.

We chose this bag which retails at $44.00 for the following reasons:
1) The product is both green and fair.
2) Aesthetically it looks great and looks very roomy and comfortable.
3) The final cost works out at $44 including shipping which equals approx £24 thanks to the great exchange rate.

Hmmmm...shipping was included which is very strange. We hope that is the case and will keep you posted about any hidden shipping costs. Will also provide you with an update when we get the bag and see how it measures up.

It seems that all the products are sourced or assembled 'globally' and so waste fossil fuel in their creation. We would happily buy one in the UK that was made entirely in the UK. Anyone know of such a place?

Will plant a tree with the Woodland Trust to offset that Carbon cost. Adds £10 on to the cost overall.

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Wednesday, May 11, 2005

NEWS: Air car update

Image hosted by Well as promised we got in touch with those lovely folks at the Air Car. We wanted to know more about cost, availability, speed, safety, refueling and they delivered some fantastic answers.

They estimate that the first cars will be available on the road in France in late 2006/early 2007. Arrival of the car in both the UK and US currently depends on some advanced negotiations with prospective licencees. More to follow on that I guess.

If you live in the UK or anywhere in the EU of course you can go to France, buy one and ship it or drive it back. Presumably.

The MiniCat version will cost approximately US$9,000 / £5,000 and the larger family version of the Cat (apparently what they have called the CityCat shown above) will cost approximately US$13,000 / £7,000. Not sure if that includes any taxes etc.

Unbelievable. Low cost to buy. Low cost to run. Zero pollution. But surely it can't compete with other cars for performance?

The car will be able to reach an astonishing 160k/ph if you go for the six cylinder engine!!!

Fantastic. No compromise on speed then...what about refueling...does it take all night?

The car refills the air tanks itself through it's compression mode which should take approximately four hours. So overnight it is then...but wait! There is a faster option for when you need it.

You can quickly, cheaply (less than a couple of euros, pounds or dollars) and simply refill the air tanks at an air station. Presumably they mean a gas station?

Ok so it is cheap, efficient, speedy, simple to top up...I bet it is built of foil and is not at all safe?

This statement from them about safety is very encouraging as a lot of people are bound to doubt this element more than anything else.

Our vehicles will follow the same safety rules and regulations as all approved cars. As far as safety goes, it should be noted that the car's tubular body will provide increased resistance in the event of a crash.

Where do we sign up? The Air Car offers a fantasticlly affordable, environmentally sound, fast, easy to refuel alternative to modern standard vehicles. Perhaps this could be applied commercially? Air Planes, Air SUV's, Luxury Air Cars? The potential for change is immense.

This is a very exciting development which will be on the road in 2 years (ish).

The future of personal (and maybe even commercial) transport is here and we think it is The Air Car.

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Sunday, May 08, 2005

CARTOON: First contact

Welcome to the first installment of our new collective cartoon:

The Herbal Hero and the Karma Kid.

This is the collective story of two heroes (who look astonishingly like Ghandi and the Dalai Lama would if they lived in a pixellated world).

Their story is of their experiences helping people see an alternative path, the path of peace and prosperity, the path where people and planet co-exist in perfect partnership. [that's enough p's now cartoon guy - Ed!]

Join them in each hand-crafted, lovingly created, randomly timed and hopefully topical installment as they wander the earth like David Banner in The Hulk and The Littlest Hobo in...well...The Littlest Hobo.

Catch their excited adventures in the finest and most glorious pixel colour.

BUT YOU CAN DO EVEN MORE THAN THAT! This is a collective cartoon...what does that mean? It means you write it. You simply suggest a four window strip and the dialogue and we will create it as close as possible to your vision.

So please feel free to suggest a strip...just email us a proposed dialogue etc to:

Image hosted by

HEALTH WARNING: This is an experiment in pixel cartoons. We aim to take you to pixellated places that make sense to us...all very tongue-in-cheek...lets just see where this goes...if it does not work then so be it...should be fun finding out.

So Ladies and Gentlemen, without further ado, Cityhippy Productions is proud to present...Steamboat Willie...sorry...Issue 1!

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Friday, May 06, 2005

NEWS: UK Election conclusions

Another four years has come and gone and the people of the UK have spoken...well at least 61% of the electorate made their voices heard. This apparently represents only a 2% increase on the lowest turnout recorded in 2001.

Why the apathy? Perhaps voters are not inspired by the choices available and when they want to vote for anyone but the Tories or Labour they are told they are wasting their votes and letting the other in by the back door. All parties should not need to tell the people who to vote for...their policies should do that. When policies fail to win people over the parties (apart from the Lib Dems to be fair) start to beg for votes. All parties should just get people to vote for whoever their conscience dictates.

Also, perhaps if we had citizenship lessons reintroduced into schools then perhaps more of our youth would feel engaged.

The result? Well, this is what City Hippy predicted prior to the election:

In reality Labour will win a historic third term with just enough of a slim majority, to form a shaky ergo more accountable government which will mean plenty of power-sharing.

The Tories will (re)gain some lost seats and the Lib Dems will gain the most, almost certainly proportionally more than the Tories, ultimately closing the gap between the big three.

If this scenario happens I would love to see a coalition between Labour and the Lib Dems...give the Lib Dems the environment and development portfolios and PR etc...that would be enough for me.

Either way the Lib Dems will come out of this election with sharper teeth and will use them at every occasion.

Now we were not alone and that prediction seemed to be widely held. It is nice to know though that we have got our fingers more or less on the pulse of the nation. Of course Labour did not get as small a minority as we would have liked and their will be no coalition. However, Labour will need to rely on the Lib Dems (and the other smaller groups) more than ever to support bills when rebellion from within combined with Tory block-voting threatens to defeat a motion.

Ultimately only the Lib Dems have come out of this election smiling. Check out this comment we recently left on the Kennedy Campaign blog.

The next four years should see the most active, challenging and radical session of parliamentary democracy we have witnessed since before Maggie Thatcher seized power in 1979.

Why? Because both the Tories and the Lib Dems have gained seats at the expense of the Labour party, who, with a severly reduced majority, will find it much tougher to pass legislation regardless of any other parties opinion.

That can only mean better governance for Britain and better behaviour towards the rest of the world.

Our post-election analysis:

Labour lost 47 seats
The Tories gained 33 seats
The Lib Dems gained 11 seats

In terms of proportional results against 2001:
Labour lost approximately 12% of its 2001 total
The Tories increased its 2001 total by approximately 20%
The Lib Dems increased its 2001 total by approximately 22%

In terms of popular vote proportionally against 2001:
Labour fell approximately 5.5% to 35.2%
The Tories gained approximately 0.6% to 32.3%
The Lib Dems soared approximately 3.8% to 22.1%

Are you thinking what we're thinking? Britain forward not back seems to be heading for a real alternative indeed!



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Monday, May 02, 2005

FEATURE: UK Election Briefing

The UK election is days away and so City Hippy has put together a briefing for you.

We check out the three main prospects and the Green Party; we give you our take on each of them; we come off the fence and tell you who we will vote for and why; and ultimately we will provide you with our overall election analysis.

NOTE: This article represents the views of the author of the article only and not neccessarily all the writers in the City Hippy collective.

Labour's environmental and social justice activity suggests that as far as it gets them votes and does not upset the status quo Labour will act for the environment and for social justice. They seem to have become a self-serving party and seem to have forgotten to listen to the people.

A radical approach is needed to address a radical set of problems. Labour seems to hint at understanding this but ultimately does not offer a radical approach. They offer the bare minimum of activity as any centrist populist party would.

Overall they are probably a better bet than Labour for environmental and social justice issues if their campaigning rhetoric is anything to go by.

However, in reality, and based on past experience, the Tories are unlikely to sufficiently address environmental and social justice issues any more than Labour. These issues will more often than not conflict with the proven, exceedingly pro-business, Tory agenda.

Liberal Democrats
It is easy to be radical when you are not in power but we feel the Lib Dems would stay true to their core principles.

Would the Lib Dems be able to progress the issues that matter ie social justice and environmental concerns? We believe they would. Could they be any worse across the board than the big two? Doubtful.

They are more likely to dismantle some core elements of the status quo and that can only increase the likelihood for radical action.

The Green Party
As you would expect the Greens are completely on target across the board when it comes to the issues concerning the environment and social justice. Plus they have expanded their portfolio to cover all the key issues and are fast becoming an influential force. They continue to force the main parties to embrace Green issues.

We all know that they will not be forming the next government but if they got their first MP into Westminster that would be a monumental triumph and would herald a new era for British politics.

Who to vote for?
I have anguished long and hard over this decision. I have previously voted a mixture of Labour, Green and Lib Dem in the past.

I understand the need to think tactically. In my constituency Labour has a single digit majority. The tories are hot on their heels. The Lib Dems are not even pulling half of the Tories level of support. The Greens are on the ballot but unlikely to make a direct impact in this area.

I will not vote Labour to prevent the Tories getting in. I will not vote Tory as I see them winning this seat regardless. To be honest neither party is good enough in the long term and so I cannot bring myself to vote for either of them.

I estimate the anti-blair protest vote combined with the natural swing, of this mostly affluent seat, back to the right wing will see the Labour party ousted by the Tories in this seat.

Whilst I love the Green Party I would feel that a vote for them would be pointless in this constituency.

Decision time
I will therefore be voting for the Liberal Democrats as for them to push the third party into third place in this constituency would be a fantastic result.

They do indeed seem the only real alternative to the status quo supporting mainstream parties.

They are a party generally committed to the same core principles as me and so for me the Lib Dems represent the most radical party on the scene likely to gain more power.

They will continue to push ideological boundaries towards the space occupied by the Green party thus further forcing the mainstream to embrace the Green agenda.

For being brave enough to pull British politics over to the Green agenda the Lib Dems get my vote and endorsement.

Overall election prediction?
Ideally the Lib Dems or Greens (or a coalition of the two) would win a massive majority. Democracy in the UK would be radically altered for the better for ever more. I would party for sure!

The opposite of that ideal result would see the Tories win a large majority and the Lib Dems pushed further down into third place. That would be bad unless the Tories embraced the green issues they talk about. Not hopeful.

In reality Labour will win a historic third term with just enough of a slim majority, to form a shaky ergo more accountable government which will mean plenty of power-sharing.

The Tories will (re)gain some lost seats and the Lib Dems will gain the most, almost certainly proportionally more than the Tories, ultimately closing the gap between the big three.

If this scenario happens I would love to see a coalition between Labour and the Lib Dems...give the Lib Dems the environment and development portfolios and PR etc...that would be enough for me.

Either way the Lib Dems will come out of this election with sharper teeth and will use them at every occasion.

For further analysis of the major parties attitude to the environment click here to visit the BBC Election Environment special.

Find out who is standing in your constituency and who won what last time. Click here to find out what your current tactical position is from the BBC.

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