The Green Register

Completed the final free module of my course at the University of Westminster. They managed to persuade The Green Register to run a course for us. It was definitely the most rewarding   course and it qualifies all the delegates to become members of their organisation.

We covered a wide range of topics from the basics of life cycle analysis to an in depth look at analysing the performance of different renewable energy technologies. It seems that Solar Thermal is about the most efficient way of generating energy at the moment, unless you happen to live on a hill and have a stream flowing past your house in which case a waterwheel is even better.

The course really covered a lot of useful stuff for sustainable construction and particularly helped me fill in some energy related knowledge gaps. There was also one module on the Code for sustainable homes which came over as quite a long way behind compared to the things we had learnt elsewhere on the course. Still at least it is encouraging people to improve their performance whether they want to or not.

Met up with some friends from previous courses too, I think we all liked this one best. A number of them are participating in projects as part of the course but I will only be able to go along to any fringe events now as I have used up my quota.

The sixty second pitch

Went on another Build Up course at the University of Westminster. One of the things we practiced was the 60 second pitch. Here is my attempt:

Sustainable business development

I can offer you sustainable business development making your business environmentally friendly and more profitable. Working in the environment and construction fields to help you grow.

I can create and develop projects to a profitable conclusion. For instance the training programme I developed at CIRIA reached a turnover of £300,000 in 2007/8 the courses covered a wide variety of environmental topics including SUDS, green roofs and sustainable procurement. Organising and helping to write these courses gives me a broad environmental knowledge to add to my business skills.

I have 15 years experience of sales, marketing and project management in the construction and publishing industries with specific knowledge of the emerging environmental and sustainability sectors.

I can help you sell yourselves and sustainability

Needs some work but you get the idea.

Build it up

Registered for my final courses on the Build up programme at the University of Westminster.  This is for people who’s jobs are threatened or who have been made redundant in the construction industry. So far I have been to a careers workshop day which was very useful. The next three courses I am doing cover built environment topics including Design awareness and a Green register workshop which will allow me to register there as a green professional.

Not only that but I got a University of Westminster student card so I can get discounts at the cinema.

Green careers event

Spent last night at SOAS in London for a green careers evening organised by Positive Change and People Unlimited. Quite entertaining if a little long. There was a wide range of speakers including Blanche Cameron of Reset Development who included a picture of me at the green roofs event we organised earlier in the summer as part of her presentation. Always a little disturbing to see yourself unexpectedly on the screen but at least I wasn’t yawning in the picture.

Most of the speakers agreed that volunteering was the best way to get yourself a green career, good advice to those starting out not sure I want to carry on volunteering until I have a bigger income coming in though. One thing all the speakers had in common was a tremendous enthusiasm for their jobs. Caroline Scott of Islington Council was particularly keen and started by picking up on other presenters negativity to Local Councils generating much laughter and applause.

The final speaker from Worldview Impact, Bremley was particularly inspiring with his rubber tree plantations and pursuit of his dream.

Night time on the M25

Spent last night supervising a destructive search on the M25. A bit cold but a lovely clear evening. We were preparing for the widening works in Essex ensuring that no animals are harmed. Didn’t see anything last night which is good as we were in an area that was supposed to be lacking in wildlife. They shut down all but one lane of the motorway for our safety which made it quite peaceful and also gave us a strange feeling of power.

Alex 2 Lizards 1

I had a successful afternoon chasing lizards at a new development near Crayford for Ecology Consultancy.

I have been to this site a couple of times and only caught 1 lizard before, the little blighters proving too speedy. Today I was particularly prepared using a lizard trap made from a 30cm diameter pipe. Very effective and I took them off in the back of the car to a lovely new home near Welling.Queen lizard

Construction Expo 2009

Hawks30th September (I am doing some catching up). Went to Chatham Maritime for Construction Expo 2009.

I was representing Ecology Consultancy again we had a small stand in the eco village area. The keynote address in the morning was given by Wayne Hemingway, very enjoyable with lots of good ideas. Particularly enjoyed his piece about our neglect of future generations declaring that for each rubbish playground with a springy chicken we are creating another set of ASBO’s.

The rest of the day wasn’t as exciting but we met some good contacts. Apparently numbers were down on last year, not surprising given the current climate but those who were there were keen to talk and develop business.

Late in the day the stand was visited by some guys from NBC Pest Control with their Harris Hawks

Brede Valley

Brede ValleySpent the day with Ecology Consultancy in the Brede Valley near Hastings. We were cataloging plant and animal species for the Friends of Brede valley group. Learnt a lot about grasses and pond weeds.

They provided a great barbecue in the evening and the others camped out in the farmyard. Had to head home to get a flight in the morning. Got some good photos on Flickr

Sustainable living for a sustainable planet