University's environmental successes highlighted at Greater Manchester Green Summit

Delegates hear about projects such as Fuel Cell Innovation Centre and carbon literacy

Amer Gaffar, Director of Partnerships of Manchester Fuel Cell Innovation Centre

Amer Gaffar, Director of Partnerships of Manchester Fuel Cell Innovation Centre

Manchester Metropolitan's environmental credentials were highlighted at the first Greater Manchester Green Summit.

The gathering, called by Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and held on Wednesday, brought together representatives from politics, charities, companies, the education sector and interest groups to discuss the way those in the region can better address ecological, pollution and sustainability issues.

Delegates heard from a series of influential speakers and took part in workshops and Q-and-A sessions examining how to realise the Mayor's vision of making Greater Manchester one of the leading green cities in Europe. 

There's lots of appetite for change and Manchester Metropolitan is definitely part of it

Streamed presentations

Manchester Metropolitan's Amer Gaffar, Director of Partnerships at Manchester Fuel Cell Innovation Centre, was one of the guests invited to give a presentation streamed live on the BBC website.

He said: "It went really well - the main topics were plastic and transport. The basis of the summit was to get everyone together and make firm commitments.

"We'll meet in a year to see how we are acting on those commitments.

"It was good to see a real drive and a real political push. There's lots of appetite for change and Manchester Metropolitan is definitely part of it."

Amer had a five-minute slot during a session called Local Successes and Provocations in which he discussed the new £4 million Hydrogen Fuel Innovation Centre due to open at the University in May.

Student Georgia Bulled, who studies on the BSc Environmental Management and Sustainability degree course, spoke about her experiences and involvement as a carbon literacy trainer and a sustainbility ambassador.

Both speeches were well received by the receptive audiences and generated many talking points.

Amer said: "We also had a stand in the Market Place and were approached by a number of different organisations - lots of consultants looking to work with us - and enquiries about the Energy Catapult, a network of Government centres to transform UK innovation and the growth economy."

Separate from the stand about the University's fuel cell projects was a stand about the Waste 2 Resource Innovation Network, which brings together academic expertise and practical waste management experience from the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

Pledging commitments

Professor Jean-Noel Ezingeard, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Manchester Metropolitan University, said: "Manchester Metropolitan University is proud to be involved in the important work of the Greater Manchester Green Summit in identifying the region's ecological, urban and climate problems and together deliver solutions.

"The aims and outcomes of the event echo and reinforce the University's successful ongoing efforts to encourage environmental change and sustainable living locally and globally, which have earned us the title of the greenest university in the UK.

"I was therefore delighted to sign a pledge to commit the University to work even further with its staff, students and partners on reducing its environmental footprint, supporting innovative energy projects, and educating the wider community on the green agenda’s challenges and opportunities."

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