In the North East
Boardroom v Classroom challenge is back!
The Boardroom versus Classroom Challenge is back for its second year.
The initiative, which brings together North East firms and students to find creative ways to identify commercial opportunities relating to the low-carbon and climate resilient economy, will be launched during Climate Week 2012.
Run in partnership by ClimateNE and the Climate Change Schools Project, it will see North East-based businesses challenge and work with school students on projects that look at ideas that can become commercially viable while offering ways to reduce carbon or increase adaptation to the impacts of climate change.
Gary Thompson, Managing Director at C2MUK Ltd, who took part last year said: "The Boardroom versus Classroom Challenge was an immensely valuable chance to explore and develop commercial opportunities relating to climate change that we wouldn't necessarily have the time or resources to do so otherwise. It's been a great experience working with the students and tapping into their ideas and enthusiasm is inspiring, and practically, also very useful.
"Thanks to ClimateNE and the Climate Change Schools Project for a very professionally-run and worthwhile initiative."
More details about this year's challenge will be released on Wednesday 14 March.
Find out more about the Challenge and see details from last year at www.tinyurl.com/boardroomvclassroom
ConnectFriday brings North East businesses together
ConnectFriday is the only regular way for businesses in North East England who are green, or would like to be, to meet in an informal and relaxed way.
Organised by ClimateNE, the climate change partnership for North East England, ConnectFridays have proven to be so popular that they will take place regularly over 2012. The next session will take pace during Climate Week on 16 March at Cafe Rocco in Sunderland.
Confirmed sessions for the rest of 2012 include: 11 May in Newcastle; 28 September in Newcastle; and 30 November in Middlesbrough. An event in July may take place at Morpeth in Northumberland depending upon demand.
To find out more, or register to attend, go to http://www.climatenortheast.com/managecontent.aspx?object.id=16485
Climate Week in North East England
Climate Week 2012 takes place in just three weeks time - from 12 to 18 March 2012. Last year saw nearly half a million people attending over 3,000 events, making it the UK's biggest ever environmental occasion, and many events took place in North East England and included pub quizzes, films, lectures and talks.
This year a host of activities are taking place in North East England and are summarised in the events section of this newsletter.
Kevin Steele, Chief Executive of Climate Week, said: "We are absolutely delighted by the scale and variety of what is being done in the North East for Climate Week. It is wonderful to see that so many organisations in the region are doing their bit to help combat climate change."
Find out more about Climate Week at http://www.climateweek.com/
South East England officially in drought
Much of southern and eastern England is officially in a state of drought, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has announced.
In parts of South East England groundwater levels are lower than in the dry summer of 1976.
Water companies have agreed measures to reduce the environmental impact of dry conditions, including reducing water losses and improving leak detection, as well as encouraging customers to save water. The Environment Agency will also take steps such as monitoring the impact of the dry weather on fisheries and wildlife.
The announcement came on the same day that Environment Secretary Caroline Spelman hosted a drought summit.
Read more at http://goo.gl/1Y40a
Charles beats DiCaprio on climate
People in London are more likely to be influenced by the Royal Family, politicians and business leaders, than celebrities when it comes to climate change, according to new research.
Prince Charles and Al Gore topped a poll commissioned by Climate Week which asked over 1,000 people to choose who from a list of famous individuals would be most likely to make them act on climate change.
Sir Richard Branson came second, followed by Barack Obama and the Queen. Meanwhile Leonardo DiCaprio, one of Hollywood's most committed green stars, did not feature in the top 10 and was found to have no more influence than celebrities not known for green issues.
Read more at http://goo.gl/ia8sj
Climate impacts for UK revealed
The UK Climate Change Risk Assessment (CCRA) 2012 has now been published. It is the first assessment of its kind for the UK and the first in a five year cycle.
It provides underpinning evidence that can help inform priorities for action and appropriate adaptation measures. It also highlights where more work is needed to understand the scale and nature of the risks, and to help us consider what action we need to take and, as such, will inform the development of the National Adaptation Programme (NAP), which UK Government will publish in 2013.
To coincide with the publication of the UK CCRA 2012, and given the importance of local adaptation action, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) commissioned the Climate Change Partnerships across England to produce an information pack to highlight key risks and opportunities from climate change within each area.
In looking over these regional reports, and in the context of the publication of the CCRA, the Defra Secretary of State, Caroline Spelman, said: "I would like to thank the Climate Change Partnerships for the help that they have provided throughout the development of the Climate Change Risk Assessment. I was particularly struck by quality of the reports that each partnership produced for publication alongside the CCRA, and I am very grateful for their contribution to adaptation at the national and local level recently on this project - as well as over the last few years.
"I am delighted that there is such strong national and international interest in the CCRA, and I am clear that much of the work now in translating and communicating this assessment will be needed at the local level - with local authorities, business and other local organisations."
Drawing on information within the CCRA and other local evidence, the analysis illustrates what climate change may mean for people, businesses, community and charitable groups, local authorities, and other organisations across key sectors, at the local level. It also highlights where there is a strong case for greater local action.
The North East Summary report, along with examples and links to national documents and reports from the other local areas, can be found at http://www.climatenortheast.com/manageContent.aspx?object.id=16463
Views sought for National Adaptation Programme (NAP)
The National Adaptation Programme (NAP) will set out what policies and actions are needed to take action on the risks (and opportunities) from climate change. Defra aims to co-create this with involvement from all relevant stakeholders, and to ensure a strong local component. Your views will be critical for us to contribute to this next step in the process led by Defra and also the development of the Environment Agency's new role as the adaption delivery body in England. This exercise will last until April 2012.
Take part in the Call for Views at http://engage.defra.gov.uk/nap
If you are interested in engaging with government via ClimateNE in the development of the national adaptation programme via a reference group, email Adrian.firstname.lastname@example.org
New Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change
Edward Davey MP has been appointed Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. He said: "I want us to have a green economy, with the green jobs and investment we need to help grow our economy."
Find out more at http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/news/pn12_006/pn12_006.aspx
New low interest community energy loans
For its latest funding round, PURE is seeking projects that deliver environmental, social and economic benefits to the 50 per cent most deprived communities in the country, as measured using the Government's Index of Multiple Deprivation.
PURE provides low interest loans to meet the costs of installing renewable energy equipment. Eligible organisations include charities, community energy cooperatives and other organisations operated on a not-for-profit or community interest basis.
Interested parties should submit an 'Expression of Interest' form. Organisations will then be contacted at a later date to confirm whether they will be invited to complete the full application form. The deadline for submitting Expressions of Interest to PURE the Clean Planet Trust for the latest funding round is 12 March 2012.
More information is available at http://www.puretrust.org.uk/page.jsp?id=105
Coastal Communities Fund launched
Details about the launch of a new £23.7 million programme supporting the prosperity and rejuvenation of the UK's coastal towns have been announced by the Government.
The Coastal Communities Fund (CCF) will support the economic development of coastal communities by promoting sustainable economic growth and jobs, so that people are better able to respond to the changing economic needs and opportunities of their area. Among the examples of activities that may be eligible for funding are managing and adapting to flood and coastal erosion risk, and supporting sustainable transport improvements.
Innovative bids will be welcomed from businesses, social enterprises, local enterprise partnerships, charities and local authorities supporting the economic development of the community. Expressions of Interest will be invited from early March with a deadline of 30 March 2012.
Find out more at http://www.communities.gov.uk/publications/regeneration/coastalfundprospectus
Initiative to provide unemployed young people with green skills
A new partnership targeted at training 1,300 young people with skills in the upcoming green economy has been launched by Accenture and Global Action Plan.
Six-month internships and B-Tech qualifications will be included in the internships, as well as the provision of mentoring, peer-to-peer networks and counselling services.
Find out more at http://goo.gl/wOSTu
UK submarines to help climate change research
The UK Ministry of Defense is to de-classify submarine data to help shed light on climate change in the Arctic.
Environmental data such as water temperature and salt content is routinely monitored by all UK Navy vessels, including submarines. The data set from a UK submarine mission can provide a snapshot of conditions under the ice and shed light on the changes taking place in the Arctic. This could inform scientists about how the Arctic is likely to change as it becomes more seasonally ice-free.
Scientists have previously made trips under the Arctic aboard nuclear submarines in order to measure ice thickness. But these were dedicated scientific missions; environmental data collected as part of standard Navy operations have rarely been released.
Find out more at http://goo.gl/60xgO
New climate change risk study
An international conservation group is set to lead a new climate change vulnerability assessment of six cities in the country to prepare for the devastation caused by natural disasters.
The World Wide Fund for Nature-Philippines (WWF-Philippines) will partner with the Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) Foundation in conducting the Climate Change and Business Risk Assessment studies in the cities of Laoag, Dagupan, Bacolod, Cagayan de Oro, Lucena and Zamboanga. The results of the study will be released in October.
Read more at http://www.mb.com.ph/articles/351766/new-climate-change-risk-study
Climate change a 'fundamental' health risk
Prompt action on climate change is paramount to our survival on earth, according to a leading Australian disease expert.
In a paper, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Prof Tony McMichael argues the world faces extreme climate change "without precedent" over the past 10,000 years. Prof McMichael has been examining the impact of climate change on population health for 20 years and says it's not easy to raise awareness of the risk.
Read more at http://goo.gl/5GYKt
Hedgehog climate change study
Members of the public are being invited to participate in a scientific study into the impact of climate change on hedeghog hibernation. The findings will be compared to those of a previous project conducted 40 years ago which suggested a link between climate and when hedgehogs come out of hibernation.
The work is a joint initiative by the People's Trust for Endangered Species and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society.
Find out more at http://www.hedgehogstreet.org/pages/hibernation-survey.html
ClimateNE Business blog
Did you know that ClimateNE and Climate Change Schools write a regular blog for businesses? Hosted on the Journal and Evening Gazette business website, posts are added regularly making it an easy way to stay in touch with the work and projects that are taking place to help North East England on the low-carbon and climate resilient economy. The latest blog looks at the impacts of climate change on North East businesses.
Check it out at http://blog.nebusiness.co.uk/climatene
This website offers a gateway to research on climate change communication. It also features a comprehensive and frequently updated database of academic papers, a regular newsletter, and a blog featuring comment and analysis from climate change communication experts.
Visit the website at http://talkingclimate.org/
Events in the UK
Climate change adaptation training
This two-day training course, called Climate Change Adaptation: Drivers, Barriers and Strategy, will take place on 6 and 7 March at Imperial College London. It provides participants with an in-depth, practical knowledge of policy and current practice relating to climate change adaptation, how to understand risks and plan an effective strategic response.
Find out more at www.imperial.ac.uk/cpd/adaptation
This half day event will take place on 7 March at the University of Exeter and aims to bring together industry professionals with academic expertise to explore some of the opportunities presented by current and future markets.
Find out more at https://connect.innovateuk.org/web/6365022
Feed-in Tariffs: progress and next steps
Taking place on 8 March 2012 in central London, this morning event will focus on the key findings of the Feed-in Tariffs (FITs) scheme review and the next steps in the delivery of FITs. This includes the potential implications of any changes made to the export and generation tariff rates, the criteria for qualifying for FITs payments and the certification requirements for new installations.
Read more and register at http://www.westminsterforumprojects.co.uk/forums/event.php?eid=373
Science and sense: using knowledge effectively to address climate change
This training course will take place on 8 and 9 March 2012 at Imperial College London and provides participants with an understanding of how different types of knowledge can be used effectively for improved communication, decision making and to stimulate innovation in the context of climate change. The course draws on theory, applications and techniques of knowledge brokerage and exchange.
Find out more at www.imperial.ac.uk/cpd/knowledgebrokerage
Climate Week 2012
The second Climate Week will take place from 12 to 18 March 2012. Many activities are taking place in North East England, including:
Climate Week Challenge on 12 March: Pupils from 12 primary schools across South Tyneside are getting together at the West Boldon Lodge to tackle the National Climate Week Challenge. The three winning ideas will be submitted for the National competition. Pupils are also requested to bring a ‘waste free packed lunch' - the team with the least waste at the end of lunch will be awarded a prize. Email: Amy.email@example.com
Food event on 12 March: a day-long event at the Town Hall in Durham will see the launch of the Sustainable Local Food Strategy Project. The first of a series of events that will involve stakeholders in forming a Food Partnership with the aim of developing and promoting local sustainable food production and consumption in County Durham. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Afternoon tea competition from 12 to 16 March: staff at Darlington County Council will be encouraged during the week to register their energy saving ideas to win Afternoon Tea for two at a local bakery/café. Email Paula.Jamieson@darlington.gov.uk
Eat low carbon from 12 to 18 March: Staff working for South Tyneside Council will be invited to take part in an all staff competition. They will be asked to submit their best ideas for meals made from leftover food. The best idea will win a brand new SodaStream. All ideas will be made available to staff after the competition. Email: Amy.email@example.com
Energy bike on 14 March: staff at Darlington County Council and the public in the area will be encouraged to trial Global Action Plan's Energy Bike which will be available throughout the whole day in the Leisure Centre. Email Paula.Jamieson@darlington.gov.uk
Planning for Low Carbon Living on 15 March: A free one-day training workshop for those working on community-led planning for a sustainable future. It will introduce a suite of tools and information designed to support communities in planning low-carbon and renewable energy initiatives, including more strategic engagement with the statutory planning system. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
ConnectFriday on 16 March: informal morning networking bringing together like minded businesses that are green, or would like to be. This session will take place at Cafe Rocco in Sunderland from 8am to 9.30am. Find out more at http://www.climatenortheast.com/managecontent.aspx?object.id=16485
Love Food Roadshow on 17 March: located in Darlington Town Centre, people will be able to enter a prize draw to win a meal for two at the local bakery/café. Email Paula.Jamieson@darlington.gov.uk
Renewable Energy and Climate Change Fayre on 17 March: On display in The Durham City Market Place will be different types of renewable energy technologies including Solar Photovoltaics and Solar Thermal panels, Wind turbines and Biomass boilers. Email email@example.com
If you are running a Climate Week event, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org
Find more events at http://www.climateweek.com/find-an-event
Funding a Green Future
Taking place on 13 and 14 March 2012, this two day conference aims to place the public and private sectors side-by-side at the forefront of the UK's transition to a low-carbon and more sustainable future. It is free to attend for those in the public sector.
Find out more at www.visitsouthend.co.uk/groups-media/funding-a-green-future.aspx
Brighter Futures Together: Helping you take simple actions for your community
This half-day event will officially launch the Brighter Futures Together toolkit, and explore the role of community and community groups in responding to the sustainability challenge.
It will take place on Tuesday 20 March from 9am to 2pm in the Great Hall, Sutherland Building, Northumbria University in Newcastle.
It is led by the Sustainable Communities North East Initiative, in partnership with the Sustainable Cities Research Institute at Northumbria University, and event speakers include Stephen Hughes MEP and Trewin Restorick, CEO of Global Action Plan.
The Brighter Futures Together toolkit is a central source of information, advice and guidance for individuals and community groups who want to undertake action to improve their neighbourhoods, including links to key partners, community programmes, funding opportunities, and section featuring local case studies, where groups can learn from other examples.
Find out more by emailing email@example.com
Delivering the Green Deal
This one-day event will take place on 22 March at Central Hall, Westminster in London and will focus on learning how to build effective partnerships with the commercial sector to ensure a strong degree of take-up, to ensure that all households have access to fair funding and that installations meet quality standards.
Confirmed speakers include: Derek Lickorish, Chairman, The Fuel Poverty Advisory Group; Trewin Restorick, CEO, Global Action Plan and Peter Smith, External Affairs Manager,National Energy Action.
Find out more at http://www.publicserviceevents.co.uk/205/delivering-the-green-deal
Planet under Pressure
Taking place from 26 to 29 March 2012 in London, this conference will provide an update of knowledge of the Earth system and the pressure the planet is now under and will focus the scientific community's and the wider world's attention on climate, ecological degradation, human well-being, planetary thresholds, food security, energy, governance across scales and poverty alleviation.
Find out more at http://www.planetunderpressure2012.net/
This year's Earth Hour will take place on Saturday 31 March 2010 at 8.30pm. People, businesses and iconic buildings around the world will switch off their lights for an hour to show that they care about the people and wildlife threatened by climate change.
Find out more register your support at http://earthhour.wwf.org.uk/
Sustainable Business - The Event
Taking place from 22 to 24 May 2012 at the NEC in Birmingham, this conference will see business leaders from some of the world's biggest companies offering their thought-leadership, sector knowledge and best practice.
Find out more at www.sustainabilitylive.com/Content/Visting-SB
Earth Systems Engineering 2012
This technical symposium on systems engineering for sustainable adaptation to global change, will take place form 3 to 5 July at Newcastle University. It will explore how engineering decisions can better respond to the challenges of intensifying global change.
Find out more at http://conferences.ncl.ac.uk/ese2012
Climate Adaptation Futures 2012
This conference, which focuses on adaptation to climate variability and change, will take place from 29 to 31 May at the University of Arizona, USA.
It will bring together researchers, policy makers, and practitioners from developed and developing countries to share insights into the challenges and opportunities that adaptation presents, and will showcase cutting-edge research from around the world. It will also explore practical adaptation policies and approaches, and share strategies for decision making from the international to the local scale.
Find out more at http://www.adaptation.arizona.edu/adaptation2012
Fourth International Conference on Climate Change
This conference will be held in the University of Washington, Seattle, USA from 12 to 13 July 2012, and is aimed at anyone with an interest in, and concern for, scientific, policy and strategic perspectives in climate change. Plenary speakers will include some of the world's leading thinkers in the fields of climatology and environmental science, as well as numerous paper, workshop and colloquium presentations by researchers and practitioners.
Find out more at http://on-climate.com/conference-2012
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