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Sustainability West Midlands

SWM News August 2019 - Looking Ahead

As the seasons change, we welcome you to our latest newsletter. Some of you may be looking back wishing you made more of the sun, with others looking forward to colder days and darker nights. All we know is, for at least one night, you can spend it wrapped up with a blanket, reading our newsletter, full of new and exciting opportunities.

We’ve got a lot planned this Autumn! The next meeting of the Innovative Low Carbon Working Group takes place on 10 September. On 22 October we’ll be running an event, ‘No Time to Waste: The Future of Organics’ in partnership with Severn Trent Green Power. The workshop will explore the world of organic waste and we’ll be inviting industry experts to share their knowledge on the latest strategy, policy and good practice.

Later in the year we’ll hold our Annual Conference. Taking place at The Edgbaston Park Hotel on 3 December this will again be a great opportunity to network with sustainability professionals from a wide range of sectors. This year we’ll focus on the updated Sustainability Roadmap to 2030 for the West Midlands. This will be your opportunity to comment and reflect on the Roadmap and identify the steps that your organisation can take to ensure that we hit our targets and create a more sustainable West Midlands. Save the date!

We hope you can join us at these events and get involved with the other opportunities listed below. Stayed tuned, and get that blanket ready for next month.

Tom Hendy, Sustainability Adviser, on behalf of the SWM Team

Funding opportunities

  • By September 2019. UK businesses and RTOs can apply for a share of up to £2 million to define a cyber-physical connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) test facility.

  • By September 2019. The ghd Sustainability Challenge is a light-touch way for start-ups to demonstrate their expertise to a potential investor/customer. 

  • By September 2019. Innovate UK have launched the next and final round of R&D funding for Transforming Construction Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) will open on the 28 August

  • By September 2019. ERDF funding is available for applications in all LEPs in the West Midlands to, among other areas, stimulate a low carbon economy.

  • By September 2019. UK businesses can apply for collaborative projects that develop supply chains for power electronics, machines and drives in the UK.

  • By September 2019. UK businesses can apply for loans for game-changing innovations with strong commercial potential that will significantly improve the UK economy.

  • By September 2019. UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £1 million to develop innovative proposals with Singapore and other EUREKA countries.

  • By September 2019. Organisations can apply for a share of up to £22 million as part of Energy Catalyst Round 7 to help provide clean and affordable energy in Africa, South Asia or both.

  • By October 2019. BEIS has allocated up to £20 million to design and construct carbon capture and utilisation (CCU) demonstration projects.

  • By October 2019. Organisations can apply for a share of up to £3 million to develop technology components that help improve the efficiency of local energy systems.

  • By October 2019. Up to £2 million is available for innovative projects that provide collaborative solutions to the challenges of urban mobility and waste to wealth in Malaysia.

  • By October 2019. £25m is available for in the best game-changing, innovative or disruptive ideas with a view to commercialisation. All proposals must be business focused.

  • By November 2019. The Smart Sustainable Plastic Packaging programme is funded by £60 million from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. 

  • By December 2020. Businesses are encouraged to showcase their achievements and apply for a Queen’s Award in Sustainable Development.

  • By June 2021. The Worcestershire Natural Networks scheme aims to boost biodiversity in an ERDF-funded venture which includes SWM members Worcestershire County Council.

  • By December 2021. Businesses in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent can benefit from free energy audits and 60% grant funding towards energy efficiency measures.

  • By December 2021. Marches Renewable Energy is a grant scheme allowing eligible applicants to apply for a 50% grant for the installation of renewable technologies on their premises.

  • On-going. The Rural Community Energy Fund (RCEF) is a £10 million programme which supports rural communities in England to develop renewable energy projects.

  • On-Going. The National Lottery Community Fund has launched a new £100 million Climate Action Fund to help people and communities take the lead in tackling the climate emergency.

  • On-going. Monthly themed funding for Birmingham based projects that aim to deliver positive change is available.  

  • On-going. The Community and Environment Fund is to provide benefits to communities along the route disrupted by the construction of HS2.

  • On-going. BEIS funding of around £162 million is available in industrial research and innovation, including Carbon Capture, Use and Storage (CCUS).

  • On-going. The UK Government has announced how to apply for the Urban Tree Challenge fund, which has £10m available for the planting of trees in urban areas in England.

Over the past year we have promoted >£850 million of accessible funding.

Upcoming SWM and member events

  • Cenex is running a Low Carbon Vehicles and Connected Automated Mobility Event on 4 and 5 September in Bedfordshire.
  • SWM in partnership with the Innovation Alliance for the West Midlands is running its latest Innovative Low Carbon Working Group meeting on 10 September at Ricoh in Telford.
  • sben and CR Plus are organising a practical introduction to Sustainable Procurement workshop on 10 September in Rugby
  • SWM will be exhibiting at Recycling and Waste Management 2019 from 11-12 September, taking place in Birmingham and bringing together industry experts to tackle business waste.
  • SWM will be exhibiting at Solar & Storage Live 2019, taking place on 17-19 September in Birmingham, gathering people from across all sectors interested in energy technology.
  • Warwick University is hosting an Industry Day in Sustainability to help develop sustainable products and services for your customer base on 17 September at Warwick University.
  • Coventry and Warwickshire Green Business Programme are running an event entitled "Renewable Energy Sources – a clean vision" on 19 September in Warwick.
  • EnTRESS are hosting Mental Health First Aid, a workshop which teaches people how to spot the signs and symptoms of mental ill health on 25 September at Wolverhampton University.
  • sben are organising an event, Electric Vehicles: The Answers, to talk about tax benefits. how going electric can benefit your business, air quality and more. 1 October in Stafford. 
  • Meres and Mosses Business Environment Network are organising event on how you can consider the environment when planning changes to business. 2 October in Shropshire.
  • Climate Change Solutions is running an event on 5 October detailing the progress Coventry has made to meet the UN's target of halving carbon emissions by 2030.
  • SWM are organising No Time to Waste in partnership with Severn Trent Green Power. It is free to attend, and will take place in Coventry on the 22nd October.  
  • Fit for the Future Network's fantastic Network Harvest is taking place on 6 November; it is one of the best sustainability events of the year, so sign up for membership to join in.
  • Climate Change Solutions is running an event on the the implications, threats and opportunities climate change provides to businesses on 6 November in Birmingham.
  • Climate Change Solutions is co-running a conference on understanding and disseminating the practical consequences of climate change on our daily lives on 7 November in Birmingham. 
  • SWM will be speaking at the Local Environment and Sustainability Conference taking place on 7 November, focusing on our support to local authorities with developing sustainability strategies.
  • EnTRESS  are running a Modern Building Materials Seminar: How Can We Recycle them in 20 Years? and IDE Regional Seminar. This will be in Wolverhampton on 13 November.

A full list of upcoming events is available here as well as our full member list here.

Other SWM and member updates

  • SWM has outlined how we can support organisations with their climate emergency declarations and meeting net zero targets.
  • SWM welcomes new member Earth 2 Plate, a brand new Zero Waste Grocery Service that deliver all items without plastic, and are implementing CO2-free transport for our customer deliveries.
  • SWM welcomes new member INRG Solar, a company that develop large scale solar PV projects throughout Europe.
  • SWM have released a case study outlining Exergy's NewPack project, focused on the production of new bio-plastics based on PHB-PLA blends with improved sustainability performance. 
  • The West Midlands Combined Authority has set new climate change targets to reduce carbon emissions across the region, aiming to achieve net zero emissions by 2041.
  • Veolia delivered record investment to help communities and environmental projects. Financial support for community and environmental projects reached a new record of £5.88 million.

  • FFTF are seeking companies who would be interested in supporting this year’s Network Harvest (6th November in London) via sponsorship or exhibition space.

  • SWM wrote a blog, Venturefest Blog Series: Part 6 – Sustainable Business Support Hub: Opportunities for your organisation, available to read now. 

  • Boningale Nurseries are looking to fill a number of vacancies – these include: Contract Growth Supervisor, Container Manager, Inventory Control Assistant, Horticultural Nursery Site Manager.

  • Aston University have four new job opportunities: EBRI ERDF Knowledge Exchange Associate, Knowledge Exchange Associate, Industry Engagement Officer (part time and full time)

  • Bryt Energy have announced that their 2018/2019 Fuel Mix is reported as zero carbon and 100% renewable, compared to the UK average of only 32.8% renewable

SWM members can send their events, research or other contributions to to be included in the next newsletter. Not a member? There are many advantages to SWM membership; find out more here.

Other news and events

  • BESST are organising an Eco Garden visit / social event on 6 September including using the onsite pizza ovens in the Eco Garden, Telford. In the event of poor weather Denso will host indoors.
  • BESST are delivering a Environmental Management and Legislation Update on 11 September at Ricoh. The event will include talks by the LQRA, the Environment Agency, and SLR Consulting.
  • The UK Resources Council (UKRC) have published its initial proposals for a potential Sector Deal between the resources sector and UK Government and have opened a consultation survey.
  • Prysm Group is hosting a Flood Exhibition and Conference to advertise the latest innovative products, services and strategies on 11-12 September at the NEC. 
  • The Education Building Forum is taking place for leading professionals involved in the design, build, delivery and management of educational developments on 3-4 October, Northamptonshire.
  • The Hydrogen Hub is organising a hydrogen vehicles showcase in Birmingham on 16 October. 
  • The Rail Alliance will be running its first ever Sustainability and Decarbonisation event in partnership with Quinton Rail Technology Centre at Long Marston, in Stratford on 17 September.
  • Low Carbon Homes are running an event on helping to inform the final Zero Carbon Framework and the emerging Zero Carbon Housing Strategy. 14 November in Manchester.
  • The BESST Sustainable Business Award has been launched. The Awards Event will take place on Wednesday 13 November 2019 and the keynote speaker will be William Morris, CEO of Cafe Nero.

  • The Government is running its second Green Great Britain week, a week of events and activities, this year to be held on 4 to 8 November inclusive.

  • Big Solar are looking for a Project Officer to join the small and dedicated Sharenergy team. Working with experienced staff and with leading lights of the UK community energy movement across the UK

  • Innovation Gateway have released a survey examining how ready each industry is to improve the performance of their buildings. 

  • It’s Climate Outreach’s 15th anniversary this year and they are celebrating not just their achievements, but announcing the Climate Outreach Climate Communications Award.

  • UpRising Birmingham have opened applications for their Environmental Leadership Programme, open to those aged 18-24. 

  • Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership have opened a survey on The West Midlands Local Industrial Strategy, so it may identify action plans for the key sectors.

For a full list of all our upcoming events, visit our events page here. For news items, visit our news page here.

We hope you enjoyed reading our newsletter. If you would like to subscribe to our newsletter, are interested in becoming a member or have news stories, events, case studies and reports, please visit our website or contact us. In order to avoid this email going into spam, please add us to your contacts list.

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