“300 years ago, men and women from the West Midlands started the Industrial Revolution. In 2010, who are the new leaders who will start the green revolution we all require?” (Sustainability West Midlands)

Our own Gareth Williams has been named one of the top 50 Green Leaders in the West Midlands. The competition, run by Sustainability West Midlands, aimed to identify the 50 individuals who were most likely to help the region achieve a more sustainable future with lower carbon. Gareth was chosen by an expert judging panel from over 70 nominations of individuals who are all making a difference for the West Midlands.

A review in 2009 showed sustainability West Midlands’ that the progress on the promotion of good sustainable development practice had little focus or direction, and different actors were not co-ordinating their efforts. This caused a “leadership gap” between the skill of the leaders and action being taken to create a better future for the region. By highlighting and celebrating the top 50 individuals who have made significant contributions towards a more sustainable region, this scheme was designed to narrow this gap and make leaders aware of others in the same area.

This competition was launched by Jonathan Porritt at the annual lecture of the Lunar Society who described it as a great opportunity to raise the profile of our leaders around the West Midlands and create a peer group of 50 green leaders to share ideas and learn from each other. Jonathon Porritt is founder director of Forum for the future, chairman of the UK Sustainable Development Commission and author of Capitalism as if the World Matters.

Dr Simon Slater, executive director of Sustainability West Midlands, the organisation behing the list, said: “We were absolutely overwhelmed by the response and what it clearly shows is the appetite from the West Midlands to meet the 2020 Low Carbon vision. Our Top 50 Green Leaders features a diverse group of individuals who have all helped to implement and run activities that have had a positive environmental impact with additional social or economic benefits. There have been some excellent examples of low carbon innovation, communities tackling key green issues successfully and major public services adjusting the way they work to be more eco-friendly. It proves the great ingenuity that was present when the West Midlands kicked off the high carbon revolution is still alive and well today as we invent the low carbon era.”

To recognise the work that Gareth has been doing at Caplor, Sustainability West Midlands will profile him and the other winners and will support him through networking events and levering with partners so that they can continue working towards the Low Carbon Vision for 2020.  The link to Sustainability can be found here.

Sustainability West Midlands and partners will work with the winners over the next year to help deliver a better future for us all, as set out in the Forum for the Future and Sustainability West Midlands report ‘A low carbon vision for the West Midlands in 2020.’

Also, Caplor has recently been shortlisted for the Wye Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) award for farms run as business enterprises. This involves judging by an NFU representative, the Farming and Wildlife Advisory Group, and the Wye Valley AONB officer. The shortlist has been  decided, and the winner will be announced next week.

Gareth says: “I was delighted to be named one of the top 50 green leaders in the West Midlands and are looking forward to working with the others to make a difference in the West Midlands”.

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