The Green Horizons SERA Rally

SERA had a strong line-up for this year’s Green Horizons conference rally. A packed room heard future visions from Labour Mayors and mayoral candidates, MPs, MEPs and councillors. Key themes were widening the environment case outside traditional audiences, fusing social outcomes with green policies, the challenges post-Brexit and agency of being in power. 

Some highlights include:

  • Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees outlining his city plan with carbon neutrality by 2050, clean fuel public transport, clean air zones, a local energy company and posing a challenge to the environmental movement on how green action be joined with social and race progress.
  • Lisa Nandy MP and Kerry McCarthy MP offering compelling cases for environmental action with powerful accounts of the challenges we face post-Brexit especially on energy and food.
  • Caroline Flint MP highlighting the government’s short-term environmental thinking, the opportunities of green gas and winning green arguments on the doorstep.
  • Mary Creagh MP outlining her committee’s work (Environment Audit) championing greater resource efficiency such as doubling recycling, scrutinising failure on flooding (funding cut when dry; emergency spending when raining) and success in banning microbeads in 2017.
  • Perspectives from Scotland, Europe and local government leadership including Plymouth and Siôn Simon, Labour’s Mayoral candidate for the West Midlands, outlining the opportunities for green leadership for manufacturing in the region.
  • Leonie Cooper AM, London Assembly Environment Committee Chair, on Mayor Sadiq Khan’s green ambition for London including air quality plan and her wish to phase out diesels.



The Green Horizons SERA Rally kindly supported by Calor Gas.
Monday 26th September 2016 from 18:00 to 19:30
Room 11A, ACC Liverpool

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol
Siôn Simon MEP, West Midlands Mayoral Candidate
Seb Dance MEP, member of the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee
Theresa Griffin MEP, spokesperson on energy
Mary Creagh MP, Chair of the Environment Audit Committee
Lisa Nandy MP, former Shadow Secretary for Energy & Climate Change
Caroline Flint MP, former Shadow Secretary for Energy & Climate Change
Kerry McCarthy MP, former Shadow Secretary for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs
Daniel Zeichner MP, Shadow Transport Minister
Leonie Cooper AM, Chair of the London Assembly Environment Committee
Claudia Beamish MSP, Shadow Minister for Environment & Climate Change
Cllr Tudor Evans, Leader of the Opposition on Plymouth City Council
Paul Blacklock,‎ Head of Strategy and Corporate Affairs Calor Gas

Chaired by Melanie Smallman and Jake Sumner, Co-Chairs of SERA.

The SERA Rally is the flagship event in SERA’s programme for Labour Party Conference. This year, the rally is taking the theme of ‘Green Horizons’ and the aim is to give the audience chance to hear five-minute future visions for a brighter, greener Britain from MPs, MEPs, AMs, Councillors, and Trade Unions.

More information available here.

Growth, Homes & Greenery: The Fight for the Floodplains kindly supported by the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust.
Monday 26th September 2016 from 12:30 to 14:00
The Quaker Meeting House – 22 School Ln, Liverpool, L1 3BT 

Mary Creagh MP, Chair of the Environmental Audit Committee.
Cllr Lucinda Yeadon, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Environment and Sustainability.
Liz Hutchins, Senior Campaigner Political and Legal Unit Friends of the Earth.
Richard Benwell, Head of Government Affairs Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust.
Chaired by Polly Billington, SERA Executive Member.

As we know the UK has seen significant flood damage across many communities over the past eight years. Forecasting and climate modelling suggests such events will only increase in number and scale. With austerity affecting state investment in hard defences, and there being limits to the level of defence they can offer, there is a growing interest in alternative, more sustainable solutions.

A growing number of so called soft solutions relate to landscape and water management at the catchment scale, including everything from releasing Beavers, to recreating salt marshes, and reforesting upland moors. While they may be technically viable solutions, experience across the country increasingly suggests that the tech is only half the challenge.

What is key to their successful deployment is proper engagement of people and communities that live in the landscape and the catchment area, so that people can understand and own the changes being proposed, and make their own contribution to the deployment and use of these ‘soft’ solutions, especially if some expect hard solutions. This Fringe will look at how to marry the best of nature with the best of community, to change the impact of future rainfall events.

More information available here.

Sustainability Hub with SERA sponsored by the Environmental Services Association
Monday 26 September from 20.00 to 21.30
Room 11A, ACC Liverpool

Melanie Smallman, Co-Chair of SERA.
Leonie Cooper AM, Chair of the London Assembly Environment Committee.
Barry Gardiner MP, Shadow Secretary of State for International Trade.
Jacob Hayler, Executive Director Environmental Services Association.

We are once again partnering with the Sustainability Hub at party conference. The Sustainability Hub supports dialogue and debate to promote a low carbon society by bringing together businesses, NGOs, academics and Government leadership. The Hub’s 2016 event provides a forum for industry leaders to add their voices, and to engage with key political stakeholders to impress upon them the broad and diverse support for action on sustainable growth.

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  • Melanie Smallman
    published this page in Latest Posts 2016-10-14 18:26:20 +0100