Building a better green future
A leading government adviser will argue at a conference on
21st February that organisations and businesses across South
West England must do more for the benefit of both the environment
and the economy.
Writer and broadcaster Jonathon Porritt will explain how
South West England has blazed a trail in developing the economy
hand in hand with the environment. However, he believes the
region needs to raise its game if it wants to maintain a high
quality of life and healthy economy in the face of increasing
competition from abroad.
A recent Government study has found that the region's
Objective One and Two programmes have been the most successful
in England in improving our economy and environment.
Councillor Brian Greenslade, Leader of Devon County Council
which is hosting the conference, said: "By working
in partnership, South West England is now acknowledged as
the leading European region in demonstrating how environmental
objectives can be integrated into economic development. This
has created real economic and environmental advantages, such
as green buildings that are also cheap to run, increased sales
for businesses with green credentials and a more highly skilled
workforce, generating sustainable development for the benefit
of the whole region. I am delighted therefore that this conference
is taking place in Devon.
Effective collaboration between key agencies has been
vital to establishing our lead and we need to continue this
momentum by continuing to work together, involving more people
and promoting the benefits to a wide audience. This conference
will recognise our achievements and also enable us to plan
for our continued success."
The conference, to be held on 21-22 February at the Thistle
Hotel in Exeter, will highlight examples from across the region
where regeneration of the economy is supporting a better environment.
Examples include the Cornwall Sustainable Tourism Project,
the expansion of the Caddsdown Industrial Estate in Bideford
and the creation of a community park in the Hartcliffe and
Withywood area of Bristol.
Simon Hooton, Director of Policy and Strategy at the South
West of England Regional Development Agency (RDA), said: "The
environment is central to the work of the RDA and its partners,
because we know how important it is to recognise the positive
contribution it makes to South West England's economy.
Protecting our environment can go hand in hand with good business
performance and contribute to a healthy, sustainable economy
as many South West-based businesses have shown. It's
now time we shared our success with others attending the conference
from across the EU so that governments and other organisations
take a similar approach to ours in future."
Mark Yeoman, Deputy Director of the Objective One Partnership
for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, will also be speaking
at the conference. He said: "This region is well
known for its beautiful natural and historic environment.
With Objective One, economic and environmental regeneration
go hand in hand with the aim of making the region a better
place to live while attracting visitors and business to boost
Over the past six years every organisation or business that
has applied for Objective One or Two investment has been given
advice on how to improve their financial and environmental
performance. This approach has been acknowledged as innovative
and effective by the European Commission.
An additional event at the Met Office on 23 February will
allow European colleagues to hear more about successful projects
in South West England that have brought together the environment
and the economy and to present their own experiences.
For further information please contact Fiona Clampin, of
South West RDA press office on 01392 229583 or e-mail: email@example.com.
The Environment is one of three cross cutting themes
which must be addressed by all projects with Cornwall and
the Isles of Scilly, Objective One investment.
||The South West of England Regional Development Agency
was established by government in 1999 to promote the long-term
economic success of the region. It does this by working
with others to give people the skills they need, encourage
enterprise, improve infrastructure, help communities with
regeneration and promote the strengths of the region.
|| The conference is supported by Government Office for
the South West, Devon County Council, the Objective One
partnership for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, the
South West RDA, the Environment Agency, the Countryside
Agency and English Nature and is part-financed by the
||Devon County Council works with GOSW, the South West
RDA, the Environment Agency, Countryside Agency and English
Nature to deliver the South West Objective Two programme.
They employ an Environmental Sustainability Theme Manager
who helps every applicant to the fund deliver environmentally
sound projects and monitors the programme's overall environmental
performance. The programme is committed to leaving a positive
'legacy' by extending the environmental approach pioneered
by the South West Objective 1 & 2 programmes to other
economic development programmes. Devon County Council
is the only South West council with a 4-star top-rating
from the Audit Commission for quality services and value
for money. www.devon.gov.uk
||The Met Office is hosting an additional event as part
of Greening Regional Development Programmes, a European-wide
network to improve knowledge of economic development which
respects the environment.
Media Relations Manager
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD
Mobile: 07973 813647
Telephone: 01872 223439