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Beat the VAT increase on coffee. Plus a new series of Eco Eye starts tonight.

Posted by Oisín Coghlan on January 08, 2019 at 06:42 AM

Eco eye presenters

Happy New Year.

I'm really optimistic we can make a breakthrough this year on climate action (see below for a preview of the possibilities).

But first, a quick life hack for coffee drinkers! It hasn't been such a good New Year for those of us who look forward to a take-away coffee at some stage during the day. The VAT increase in Budget 2019 has added 9 to 18 cent to the price of a coffee since January first.

Thankfully, there's an easy way to avoid paying the new higher price.

FoE KeepCup in actionStart using a resusable cup :-)

More and more coffee shops offer a 15 or 20c discount if you bring your own cup - more than wiping out the VAT increase. Check out the map of coffee shops that have signed up at the Conscious Cup Campaign. And if local doesn't currently offer a discount, ask them to! If their competitors are doing it and their regulars are asking, they'll make the move too.

Need a cup?

If you haven't got a cup we'll give you one for a donation of less than €1.00 a week. And if you give by direct debit your first donation won't be 'til February.

Pledge now and we'll have a Friends of the Earth branded KeepCup in the post to you by the end of the week.

You'll beat the taxman and support our vital work to tackle pollution of all kinds in 2019 - from plastic to peat.

2019 could be a break through year

We'll be into touch with you about our specific campaigns soon. But I ended the year doing media work on the big opportunities for progress in 2019.

I wrote this opinion piece for the Independent on what Richard Bruton should put in the all-of-government Climate Action Plan he's promising before Easter. And please retweet the article to bring the proposals to the Minister's attention. You can read a slightly longer version on our website.

And I also had the privilege of taking part in a great piece of reporting by RTE's Philip Boucher Hayes on what the top 10 global solutions to climate change are, courtesy of the ground-breaking Drawdown Project, some of which will really surprise you.

Listen to the special report here: on the RTE website or on the RTE Radio Player.

And please share it too. If you had begun to worry that climate change was getting away from us, listening to this report is the best way to start the New Year.

New Series of Eco-Eye starts tonight

Eco Eye returns to RTE One at 7pm tonight, for it's 17th series. In the first episode, called The Plight of the BumbleBee, presenter Anja Murray looks at the state of pollinators in Ireland, examining the impact of pesticides, habitat loss and human activity on these essential players in our ecosystem. I asked Anja why she is excited about the new series of Eco Eye and this is what she told me:

Eco eye presenters"The new series of Eco Eye looks at challenges and solutions to the most pressing issues of our time, the state of our natural environment and how we can act to limit climate change. As always, we meet inspiring community activists and experts from all over Ireland, who share their knowledge and shine a light on how we can move toward a sustainable future.

"Over the coming weeks the Eco Eye team explore the wonder of bees; how Ireland is managing flood risk; our incredible peatlands and their role in storing carbon; sustainable transport options; deep energy retrofits for family homes; beaches; barriers to fish migration; and more! Tune in to RTÉ 1 every Tuesday evening at 7pm."

Looking forward to what we can make happen together in 2019.

Best wishes,

Oisin Coghlan
Director
Friends of the Earth

P.S. Thank you to all of you who already make monthly donations, your support makes our campaigning possible. For less than €1 a week you can help give us the security to plan the campaigns we need to tackle climate change and plastic pollution.

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