Monday, March 21

BBC article about fuel poverty...

Interesting article by the BBC (Panorama) which says it is about 'fuel poverty'.

Quote "Their entire home is poorly insulated and so it takes a few hours for it to warm up."

This isn't fuel poverty, it is insulation poverty.

Something that if the government put energy saving first, before their support for fossil fuel companies, the result would be a greater cut in carbon emissions and families like the one in the article would have lower fuel bills and far fewer mould problems.

However at the same time one has to question the family and the article.

Quote "However, cold houses are often damp houses. Every room in the family's home has damp but Ava's room is the worst. Mould grows along her window..."

Actually the cold doesn't cause mould as such, mould is often caused by cooking and heating resulting in an increase in water vapour in the air which condenses on the cold surfaces, creating breeding spots for mould.

A lot of people these days do not understand how the process works and why ventilation is important.
A small amount of ventilation and making sure that furniture does not create cold spots can help to control the issue. It doesn't help that walls are not insulated and the mother in the article is doing the right thing by using the bleach.

But it is important to becareful when cooking, lids on pots reduces water vapour escaping, plus switching on a ventilation fan or opening a window a small amount allows the vapour to escape.

My bathroom can be very cold (no heating there) but I can control the mould be being aware of how much water vapour is likely to be created by my activities and turning on the fan and possibly opening a window for a short time.

Basically water vapour is the culprit and that is caused by human activities. But poorly insulated walls resulting in rapid heat loss probably results in the homes occupants being reluctant to open a window even a little bit, so poor insulation is probably determining their behaviour and the ultimate outcome.

BTW in the article the girl is worried about the mould causing the roof to fall in. She should be more worried by the effect the mould spores have on her lungs. I suspect she often has a cough!

Quote "In winter, I get really poorly and I'm up all night coughing."

I suspect the cough is worse as a result of the mould or totally caused by it.

So when is this government going to take home insulation seriously along with climate change?

Tuesday, March 15

Bodge Britain

Just months after a path in Cosham was reconstructed and a new porous coloured surface applied, a utility company dug a trench and completely destroyed the aesthetic look with cheap black tarmac.

Such is the cowboy loving legislation we have in this nation, courtesy of Westminster Parliament, not the EU.

Cheap short term 'economic' and 'budget balancing' solutions. It's functional, but it looks shit and shows that the accountant is more important than the artist, scientist and designer. But the fact is, making this good could be budgeted in normal maintenance procedures and accounted in taxes.

If you want Britain to look good, you have to pay, not just initial costs, but also long term maintenance costs.

Saturday, March 12

Sad news about Keith Emerson

Yep I was an ELP (Emerson, Lake and Palmer) fan in my youth.

Still have vinyl versions of some of their LP's. Sadly when I 'converted' to Mod and Punk music I got rid of some of them, which I regret now. Where did that Brain Salad Surgery vinyl LP poster/insert ever go?

Wonder what sort of conversations John Peel and Keith Emerson are having up there in the heavens??


Some interesting Youtubes featuring later renditions by various artists of ELPs work:

Sunday, March 6

Pigeon and youth problems in Waterlooville

There is a growing pigeon and youth problem in Waterlooville shopping centre (on top of the issue of the charity shop and cafe issues).

Over a number of years now the pigeon population has been growing.

You may say "wait a minute, aren't you a supporter of the environment?"

Well that would be true, but that doesn't make me an animal rights supporter. UK pigeons are goften not native, they have migrated across Europe over the centuries and decades then settled here. We have a lot of problems with our activities causing extinctions of many species and that issue is getting worse, in the case of pigeons our activities are also causing a problem with an expansion of species. So in both cases extinctions and growth of various species are a result of our own growth and influence.

There is a distinct problem of male youths gathering in significant numbers in Waterlooville early in the evening. Initially they congregated around Subway in small groups, the food outlet appears to be popular with school children and teeneagers, for some time Subway also wasn't kept very clean and by evening time the floor was often littered with food packaging and remnants of food. My last visit suggested it was cleaner, but that was just one visit, the staff in the outlet is generally young and maybe the work ethic was not there.

Anyway a digress, a bigger problem  appears to be intimidating males youths on their cycles and walking around the town centre in the early evening. I walked past the centre at about 18:00 recently and there were about a dozen youths larking about, one of them was kick boxing with another youth.
On another evening I noticed a police car had been parked outside Lloyds bank, it was empty and I assume it was there to send a psychological message.

It appears to be clear that in common with other shopping centres in Havant Borough, Waterlooville is potentially declining further. The centre still manages to maintain some character, but it is close IMO to an irreversible decline. Pigeons and larking youths just add to the issues.