Farmers will be one group of project participants

Cornwall leads the way with ‘Clear About Carbon’ project

A three year project to instil better carbon literacy skills into both the public and private sector is being rolled out in Cornwall as the first initiative of its kind nationally.

Financed by European Social Fund-Convergence and supporting Cornwall’s transition to a low carbon economy, the project aims to develop Cornish management’s ability to engage with and be ahead of the low carbon agenda.

Most of the UK’s carbon footprint is generated by existing commercial and industrial supply chains, steadily accumulating in the various steps from production to final consumption. The project was therefore designed to support and inform every level of Cornish supply chains, from farmers and producers to Chief Executives and Procurement Departments. Academics from the Business School are preparing to work with public and private sector organisations to develop and embed sustainable procurement policies which include low carbon criteria as standard. Government policy shows that in future these criteria will appear in all tender documents and processes.

Fernando Correia from the University explains ‘Cornish businesses can really take advantage of being the first in this area. Using this new insight into how the public sector, in particular, will be buying goods and services in the future, they can give themselves a competitive edge by including low carbon criteria and information in their proposals when bidding for contracts.’

Stuart Farmer from the Cornwall Development Company added ‘Not only are we developing a template that can be used nationally as part of the ESF Skills Development programme, we are also raising the carbon literacy skills and management capacity of the Cornish workforce. This will enable them to lead the UK in implementing the government’s low carbon transition plan. It’s a real first for Cornwall.’

A number of partners have been involved in delivering the project including the University of Exeter, Cornwall Council, Cornwall Development Company, Duchy College and the Eden Project, with Marchmont Observatory as project evaluators.

More information can be found on the Clear About Carbon website.

Date: 6 July 2010

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