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Our Comment: Reflections on my first year at SWM

What a year 2014 was; not just because of the continued progress made against our vision, but for me personally in the role of Sustainability Adviser.  I started working with SWM almost a year ago to the day and to say that it has flown by would be an understatement.  The tireless work of my dedicated colleagues, our board, members and associates has meant that last year we were able to support and work with an even wider audience. One of the biggest successes was our new and expanding partnership with Birmingham Science City, which we support by running their Low Carbon Working Group and helping to catalyse innovative projects.  The wealth of knowledge and infectious dynamism that comes from the individuals involved in this low carbon innovation space has been a hugely rewarding learning curve for us and has helped to expand our outreach. The diversity of work represents another of SWM’s key strengths, as we go from low carbon innovation to supporting our valuable rural assets.  We are planning some outreach workshops later this year for audiences interested in green infrastructure and the sustainability and resilience of our rich and diverse habitats and forests.  In the shorter term, coming up in March we are running four workshops for the farming community in partnership with the Environment Agency and Defra’s Farming Advice Service, which will include an in-field soil analysis demonstration and good practice sessions around weather resilience, CAP reform and seasonal planning. So, we’re not even a month into 2015 yet and there is already plenty to look forward to.  If you are interested in becoming more involved in what we do, because it affects your work, livelihood or simply because you have a New Year’s resolution to live a more sustainable life, we’d love to hear from you.  Alan Carr, on behalf of the SWM team

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