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Welsh Government Consultation on petroleum extraction policy in Wales

[:en]A Welsh Government consultation on Petroleum Extraction Policy in Wales has been launched. The consultation runs until the 25th of September and Welsh Government wants to know your views on the proposal.

“Following the Wales Act 2017 Welsh Ministers will take over responsibility for licensing onshore petroleum extraction from the UK Oil & Gas Authority (OGA) on the 1st October 2018. The new petroleum licensing powers have provided an opportunity to consider what should be our approach to petroleum extraction in Wales, for now and future generations.   As a new area of responsibility for the Welsh Government, we commissioned a review of the evidence in 2017 to inform our future policy towards petroleum extraction.”

This  consultation seeks your views on that evidence and Welsh Government’s proposed future policy on petroleum extraction, including fracking.

More information can be found on the Welsh Government website: Petroleum extraction policy in Wales[:]

Winning Welsh Journalists for the Future 

[:en]Young Reporters for the Environment Litter Less Campaign is an international journalism competition run in Wales by Keep Wales Tidy on behalf of FEE (The Foundation for Environmental Education). It empowers young people between 11-21 to take a stand on a global fight against litter and articulate these issues through writing, photography and video.

We are delighted to announce the national winning entries in Wales for 2018 were:

Written article 11-14 years –  1st Johnston Scouts Group in Pembrokeshire who wrote a fascinating account of the plight of nesting gannets on Grassholm Island. Read the full article here.

Written article 15-18 years – Pupils from Ysgol Uwchradd Aberteifi tackled plastic pollution and demonstrated how a small town like Cardigan in West Wales can help a global problem by becoming plastic free.  Read the full article here.

Video – The Eco Club from Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy produced a persuasive video challenging their fellow pupils not to drop litter. View it here.

Photography – Gaer Primary School created an image with a powerful message using hundreds of discarded gloves found on a coastal clean up in Newport. View it here.

When asked about winning the competition, 1st Johnston Scouts said:
“It was great working together learning about the problems facing the gannets so close to home, interviewing people and writing the article. We really enjoyed it and learnt so much – from the skills needed to be a good journalist through to the distance marine litter travels and how big the problem is across the world. So many local people had no idea about the gannet’s struggle until they saw our exhibition in the library, so we know we’re already making a difference by raising awareness. “

“We are overjoyed to have won such a challenging competition, and it’s amazing to now be representing Wales in the International competition, and of course reporting on the Volvo Ocean Race Summit in Cardiff next month.”

Lesley Jones, Chief Executive for Keep Wales Tidy and a judge on the national YRE jury said;
“2018 is Year of the Sea in Wales and we were delighted to see many aspiring young journalists around the country using their creative skills to raise awareness of waste and litter and demonstrate how everyone can help locally to deal with a global problem.”

For more information on the Young Reporters for the Environment programme, visit www.keepwalestidy.cymru[:cy]

Mae Gohebwyr Ifanc yr Amgylchedd Litter Less yn gystadleuaeth newyddiaduraeth ryngwladol a gynhelir gan Gadwch Gymru’n Daclus ar ran FEE (Sefydliad Addysg yr Amgylchedd). Mae’n grymuso pobl ifanc rhwng 11-21 oed i gefnogi brwydr fyd-eang yn erbyn sbwriel a chyfleu’r materion hyn trwy ysgrifau, ffotograffau a fideos.
Mae’n bleser gennym gyhoeddi mai’r ceisiadau buddugol yng Nghymru ar gyfer 2018 oedd:
Erthygl ysgrifenedig 11-14 oed – Sgowtiaid 1af Johnston yn Sir Benfro a ysgrifennodd gyfrif ddiddorol am gyflwr mulfrain llwyd sydd yn nythu ar Ynys Gwales. Darllenwch yr erthygl lawn yma
Erthygl ysgrifenedig 15-18 oed – Aeth disgyblion o Ysgol Uwchradd Aberteifi i’r afael â llygredd a dangos sut y gall tref fach fel Aberteifi yng Ngorllewin Cymru helpu problem fyd-eang trwy fynd yn ddi-blastig.  Darllenwch yr erthygl lawn yma
Fideo – Cynhyrchodd Glwb Eco Ysgol Dyffryn Conwy fideo argyhoeddiadol yn herio’u cyd-ddisgyblion i beidio gollwng sbwriel. Gellir ei weld yma
Ffotograffiaeth – Creodd Ysgol Gynradd Gaer ddelwedd gyda neges bwerus yn defnyddio cannoedd o hen fenig a ganfuwyd ar ymgyrch glanhau’r arfordir yng Nghasnewydd. Gallwch ei gweld yma
Pan ofynnwyd iddynt am ennill y gystadleuaeth, dywedodd Sgowtiaid 1af Johnston:
“Roedd yn wych cydweithio a dysgu am y problemau y mae’r mulfrain llwyd sydd mor agos atom yn eu hwynebu, cyfweld â phobl ac ysgrifennu’r erthygl. Fe wnaethom fwynhau a dysgu cymaint – o’r sgiliau sydd eu hangen i fod yn newyddiadurwr da i’r pellter y mae sbwriel morol yn teithio a pha mor fawr yw’r broblem ar hyd a lled y byd. ‘Doedd gan y rhan fwyaf o bobl leol ddim syniad am frwydr y fulfran lwyd nes iddynt weld ein harddangosfa yn y llyfrgell, felly gwyddom ein bod eisoes yn gwneud gwahaniaeth trwy godi ymwybyddiaeth. “
“Rydym wrth ein bodd ein bod wedi ennill cystadleuaeth mor heriol, ac mae’n anhygoel ein bod bellach yn cynrychioli Cymru yn y gystadleuaeth Ryngwladol, ac wrth gwrs gohebu ar Uwchgynhadledd Ras Gefnfor Volvo yng Nghaerdydd fis nesaf.”
Dywedodd Lesley Jones, Prif Weithredwr Cadwch Gymru’n Daclus a beirniad ar reithgor cenedlaethol YRE;
“2018 yw Blwyddyn y Môr yng Nghymru ac rydym wrth ein bodd yn gweld cymaint o newyddiadurwyr ifanc ar draws y wlad yn defnyddio eu sgiliau creadigol i godi ymwybyddiaeth am wastraff a sbwriel ac yn dangos sut y gall pawb helpu i ymdrin â phroblem fyd-eang yn lleol.”
Am fwy o wybodaeth am raglen Gohebwyr Ifanc yr Amgylchedd, ewch i www.keepwalestidy.cymru

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Welsh Government, Living Wage Foundation and TISCreport forge alliance to tackle In-Work Poverty in Wales, and the UK

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Welsh Government, the Living Wage Foundation and TISCreport – the world’s only transparency in supply chains register already monitoring compliance with the Modern Slavery Act – have joined forces to publish which companies have been accredited as Living Wage Employers.

Says Stephen Chapman, Anti-Slavery Partnership Coordinator for Welsh Government: “The Wales Anti-Slavery Leadership Group is determined to tackle slavery and labour exploitation in Wales. We have established our ‘Ethical Employment in Supply Chains – Code of Practice’ for Welsh public supply chains and beyond. Our partnership with the Living Wage Foundation and TISCreport enables us to make the data on Living Wage Employer Accreditation available for all who wish to use it to promote better social outcomes.”

Mari Arthur, Director of Cynnal Cymru, says:

“Cynnal Cymru – Sustain Wales is the national sustainable development charity in Wales, with over 16 years’ experience of supporting change for a sustainable future. We became the Living Wage Accrediting Body for Wales in 2016 in order to work towards getting people in work out of poverty”. She continues “We support ethical employment practices generally and through the Living wage can help deliver real benefits to the people living and working in the most deprived areas of Wales; there are huge inequalities that urgently need redressing. With over 4,000 Living Wage accredited employers across the UK, 150,000 people are now receiving an increased salary (with £613 million extra in low paid workers pockets since the start of the campaign). However, there are currently just 144 accredited employers in Wales. Through working in partnership with the Living Wage Foundation, Welsh Government and the TISCreport we hope to strengthen this work in the UK as well as improving local economies in Wales and making sure everyone has the opportunity of fair wages.”

Jaya Chakrabarti MBE, CEO, TISCreport, adds

“We’re really proud to be able to announce the addition of data showing if an organisation is an accredited Living Wage Employer (or not) to the TISCreport transparency in supply chains register as part of our partnership with Welsh Government to encourage ethical employment in supply chains”. She adds “Further, our partnership with the Living Wage Foundation will enable us to raise awareness with our public, private and voluntary members about which of their suppliers are accredited Living Wage Employers across the whole of the UK. Members of the public will also be able to see this publicly on our site. We will update this monthly and look forward to celebrating more workers in public supply chains paid at or above the Living Wage.”

TISCreport has built its platform to enable buyers to quickly check their supply chains for available corporate transparency data. Just by uploading their suppliers from their systems, public sector buyers can keep their supply chains transparent, and they can check modern slavery act compliance for free.”

In accordance with section 54 of the UK Modern Slavery Act TISCreport tracks websites of all those companies and groups known by the system to be over £36M in turnover as well as recording voluntary compliance from organisations below the threshold. More critically, the system automatically alerts companies that are overdue that they need to take action as long as social media or email contact details are available.

The TISCreport dynamic dataset is continually being updated, and there are now 917 UK public bodies within the system. It is a certified open data provider, free to join, enabling an in-depth drill down of data against shared supply chains via a private, secure dashboard. Uniquely, beyond the UK, TISCreport interlocks intelligently with related global legislations focussing on supply chain transparency and tackling modern slavery/ human trafficking.

Says Stuart Gallemore, CTO of TISCreport,

“We’re worked hard to create a platform to help organisations fight modern slavery collaboratively, compatible with global technology systems and that is GDS compliant. With critical mass reached on the compliance data side we are now looking to join things up quickly with intelligence on the ground that can help real victims of exploitation. We’re integrating rapidly now with numerous related data sets that provide even deeper insights for all our members. The Anti-Slavery Helpline team are on the front foot with their approach to data sharing. These are exciting times!”

As a B-Corp social enterprise, TISCreport funds itself through subscription fees and data services from organisations able to afford the £200 annual fee. 50% of the subscription fee goes directly to anti-slavery charity Unseen, which runs the UK Anti-Slavery Helpline.[:]

WCVA | Nominations are now open for the Wales Volunteer of the Year Awards 2018

[:en]Do you know of an inspirational individual or group that has made a real difference to their area or to the lives of others?

Recent data from the Third Sector Data Hub shows that 28% of people in Wales volunteer. If you know someone who goes above and beyond to donate their time to a good cause, why not nominate them for a Wales Volunteer of the Year Award? It’s your chance to get these remarkable people the recognition they deserve.

There are six categories for nominations:

– Adult  (25 years and over)
– Young volunteer (under 25 years)
– ‘Green’ volunteer (individual of any age who volunteers with an environmental organisation or project)
– Trustee
– Groups (two or more individuals, whether as an informal group or a formally constituted organisation)
– ‘Digital’ volunteer  (an individual who has helped tackle digital exclusion and helped others to experience the benefits of using ICT) supported by Digital Communities Wales

To nominate an inspirational individual or to find out more, visit the WCVA Wales Volunteer of the Year web page.

The closing date for nominations is 20 April 2018.

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Will ultra-low emission vehicles be part of your business?

[:en]Simple answer – yes – if they aren’t already. Welsh businesses should be aware that there is significant pressure on local and national government to do something about air quality. Add to this the slow but inevitable rise in costs of oil and the rapidly reducing costs of electric and you have a business dilemma – when to jump from the sinking fossil fuel ship onto…. what? Hydrogen powered? All electric? Some sort of hybrid?

It’s tricky which is why we are gathering people for a conversation on Car Futures Wales on the 15th February at 17.00 in the Arup Offices Cardiff Bay. BBC Broadcaster Mark Goodier was one of the first people in the UK to drive an electric car and is a keen advocate of the technology. He will be in conversation with Tim Armitage, Arup’s project director of Autodrive, the UK’s first on-road trial of connected and autonomous vehicles.

Mark works with Drive Electric who are the leading provider of electric lease vehicles. Some experts argue that car ownership, as well as they technology that powers them, is set to change in a big way. The pricing mechanisms that may arise in response to congested roads and poor air quality might mean that owning a depreciating lump of metal just doesn’t make sense any more. The car, like the home video, will be claimed by the “service not product” business model.

Tim Armitage will argue that an additional factor in bringing about change will be the advent of driverless technology. Here the service even includes the act of driving. You want to get from A to B in a fast comfortable (and relatively safe) way right? Well do you need to drive then if AI on wheels can do it for you?

Of course there will be some people who just love that physical connection between, senses-mind-hands-road and for them there will always be models available with steering wheels and accelerator pedals. They may even give you a fake Maserati roar.

But for a serious business person looking at margins, predicting trends and future markets, then the reality of ultra-low emission and autonomous vehicles has to be faced.

Join Cynnal Cymru and the experts in conversation on the 15th Feb at Car Futures Wales.[:]

Wales’ Young People Have Their Say About Climate Change In MockCOP Conference

[:en]On Friday 10th November, Welsh students took part in MockCOP, the mock United Nations climate change conference held in Ty Hywel. The conference, jointly organised by climate change charity Size of Wales and Welsh Centre for International Affairs and sponsored by Jenny Rathbone AM, gives Wales’ young people a voice and an opportunity to discuss the issue of climate change.

Small teams of students were assigned a country to represent such as USA, Philippines or Norway. In the build up to the event, teams researched their assigned country’s position on climate change, from their contribution to the Green Climate Fund to the risks they face from the effects of climate change such as droughts or rising sea levels.

The aim of MockCOP is for delegates to agree an international resolution on the issue of climate change, similar to the UN climate change COP23 talks hosted by Fiji and currently taking place in Bonn, Germany. Topics discussed ranged from clean energy, protecting tropical forests, disaster management and how to finance the issues.

Tanya Steele, CEO of WWF-UK and the acting Secretary General, presiding over the nations and organisations represented on the day said “There is no doubt that these young people have done incredible research and articulated it really well. It’s been hugely impressive to hear so many young people both understand the issues and most importantly put forward proposals for the future.

Tanya continued “Many of the proposals will be taken by Size of Wales’s Director, Rita Singh and WWF to the COP23 conference in Bonn next week. We think it’s essential that young voices are heard on this question. This is their world and they have every right to ask us to ensure that we do our very best to protect it for them.“

Janie Pridham, Size of Wales’ Education Programme Coordinator said

“The conference encourages young people to be more engaged with climate change and political issues and it helps to develop an understanding of other nations and cultures. Furthermore, it encourages them to consider the responsibility of Wales, both locally and globally.”

One pupil said

“The conference has widened my views concerning climate change and the need to take action. It has also given me a chance to appreciate the complexity of agreeing on ways to combat climate change and allowed me to develop my debating skills”[:]

Welsh Water Community Fund

[:en]Today  Welsh Water are launching an exciting new initiative – the Welsh Water Community Fund.

The Fund is designed to give back to the communities Welsh Water serve. Welsh Water has customers at the heart of everything they do and want to leave communities and the environment in a better place.

Welsh Water wants to give colleagues and customers the opportunity to make a difference in the communities they live and work by offering three strands of funding:

  • Colleague match funding scheme – match funding up to £200 per individual or £500 per team (minimum of four per team) for a charity of their choice.
  • Community projects – opportunity for customers to apply for funding for a community project up to the value of £1,000.
  • WaterAid and Prince’s Trust Cymru match funding – match funding for each charity which is equal to the amount they have raised to the value of £15,000 for each initiative per year.

The Fund aims to encourage colleagues’ personal fundraising – and pledges to match your efforts and build on the fantastic work being done by individuals and groups across the company year in, year out.

Any directly-employed Welsh Water colleague can apply for the colleague match funding scheme – and it will support fundraising for a charity of their choice up to the value or £200 for an individual or £500 for a team (minimum of four per team) during the financial year which runs from April to March.

The initiative will support a wide range of activities and good causes outside our two official charity partners (WaterAid and Prince’s Trust Cymru) – including charities and charitable trusts, housing associations, sporting clubs, co-operatives, “friendly societies” like working men’s clubs, as well as voluntary sector providers and schools.

You can find out more information on our website, and to apply, you should download the application form from Infozone or email communityfund@dwrcymru.com for a form. Send the completed form to communityfund@dwrcymru.com for consideration by a dedicated Community Fund Panel.

Welsh Water also want to hear about the great fundraising work that you are doing – so send any stories you have through to comms.box@dwrcymru.com and help promote awareness of the Fund among our colleagues.

Please also help spread the message to friends, family and others about the opportunity of funding.[:]

WCVA Launch New Resources and Guidance for the Third Sector

[:en]The Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act marks a turning point in the sustainable development of Wales. In order to create the Wales We Want organisations need to enhance our natural resources as well as championing people power.

To tackle these big issues WCVA/ Environet Cymru have put together some handy toolkits to help you take positive actions for a better Wales, now and in the future.

The third sector contributes greatly towards the achievement of the goals and these factsheets and animation aim to help groups think more about their contributions in the context of the goals; enabling them to demonstrate the impact that they’re making.


The resources include an introduction to the Act, providing an overview of the Well-being of Future Generations Act as an innovative and practical policy; requiring public bodies underpin their work and decision making by working following five principles and in contribution to the 7 goals of the Act. They also provide information about why the Act has been developed and the role it plays in ensuring sustainable development of Wales.

There is a factsheet and animated explanation for each of the 7 goals which gives information about why the goals are important, how the third sector contributes and what we can do maximise our contributions. There are also statistics for reference and links to useful resources and support services.

Environet would like to promote these useful resources far and wide so please feel free to share them with as many people as you can!

Visit the WCVA/ Environet website for more information.[:]

WCVA becomes an accredited Living Wage Employer!

[:en]Cynnal Cymru and the Living Wage Foundation is pleased to announce that WCVA has today accredited as a Living Wage employer.

Their Living Wage commitment will see everyone working at WCVA (Wales Council for Voluntary Action), regardless of whether they are direct employees or third-party contracted staff; receive a minimum hourly wage of £8.45 in the UK or £9.75 in London. Both of these rates are significantly higher than the statutory minimum for over 25s of £7.50 per hour introduced in April 2017. The real Living Wage is an hourly rate set independently and updated annually. The Living Wage is calculated according to the real costs of living.

 

Ruth Marks, Chief Executive, WCVA said: “WCVA has a range of progressive and inclusive working practices.  Our reward and recognition policy values all our staff and the opportunity to demonstrate this by becoming a Living Wage employer is really important to us.

“Many charities in Wales support people through issues connected with ‘in work poverty’ and wider social challenges including health, mental health, transport, housing and digital inclusion. In our view the living wage is a positive movement for society and particularly our members and the organisations we support in the third sector.”

Employers choose to pay the real Living Wage on a voluntary basis. The Living Wage enjoys cross-party political support.

 

Katherine Chapman, Director, Living Wage Foundation said: “We welcome WCVA to the Living Wage movement as an accredited employer.

“Responsible businesses across the UK are voluntarily signing up to pay the real Living Wage now. The real Living Wage rate is annually calculated to reflect the real costs of living.”

“We are a movement of over 3000 UK employers who together want to go further than the government minimum to make sure all their staff earn enough to live on. We have lots of small businesses as well as big household names like; IKEA, Aviva, Chelsea and Everton Football Clubs and many more.

These businesses recognise that the Living Wage accreditation is the mark of a responsible employer and they, like WCVA, join us because they too believe that a hard day’s work deserves a fair day’s pay.”

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WWF’S EARTH HOUR 2017!

[:en]Cynnal Cymru will be once again supporting Earth Hour—the annual, global celebration of the planet.

At 8.30pm on Saturday 25 March 2017, we’ll be joining forces with landmarks across the globe like the Senedd in Cardiff Bay, Sydney Harbour Bridge, and New York’s Times Square by switching off the lights at our offices.

In 2017, Earth Hour marks its 10th year, and by taking part, we’re showing our commitment to taking action to tackle climate change.

Around half a million people in Wales participate in Earth Hour every year, and by taking part, they’re showing that they want to see action being taken to tackle climate change now.

Mari Arthur, Director of Cynnal Cymru, said:

“Cynnal Cymru is very proud to support WWF’s Earth Hour once again this year. Our organisation hase a big role to play in tackling climate change, so we’re looking forward to turning off the lights at Cambrian Buildings at 8.30pm on Saturday 25 March to show our support.”

Anne Meikle, Head of WWF Cymru, added:

“We’re delighted that Cynnal Cymru is supporting WWF’s Earth Hour again this year. Climate change will have a massive effect on people’s lives here in Wales and around the world. So it’s great that Welsh organisations are throwing their weight behind the call for action to tackle it.

“Everyone—from individuals and community groups, to schools and businesses—can sign up to Earth Hour by visiting www.wwf.org.uk/earthhourwales and then switching off their lights at 8.30pm on Saturday 25 March 2017.”[:cy] 

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