Monthly Archives: January 2015

Renew Wales / Adfywio Cymru: Helping you tackle Climate Change

‘Renew Wales’ is a practitioner led programme, delivered through the Big Fund, to help Welsh communities tackle the impact of climate change. It has been running for two years but now has an extra year to help more communities and groups to take action and respond to climate change. The support will be through advice, training and mentoring with particular focus on areas of fuel poverty, and people and communities of interest not previously involved in climate change activity.  Activities could include developing community renewable energy resources, starting local food clubs, making land and buildings more sustainable and energy efficient, sustainable travel projects, establishing community owned enterprises and engaging schools and business in climate change action.

The aim of the project is to develop the capacity and capability of communities to take action by engaging communities or groups in an innovative programme of advice, training and mentoring, led and delivered by a partnership of sustainable development, community energy and enterprise practitioners.

Delyth Higgins, from the Sustainable Swansea project based in the Environment Centre is a co-ordinator and is waiting to hear from groups or organisations in the Swansea area who are keen to get involved and have some additional support for their project or idea.

So why not get in touch now for more information?


Fairtrade Coffee Morning

As part of Fairtrade Fortnight, the Environment Centre welcomes you to our Fairtrade Coffee Morning on Wednesday 4th March from 10am to join us in a cup of Fairtrade tea or coffee, and other goodies. We will be showing ‘Fairtrade Matters’, a short film about tea producers in Malawi, and also offering free samples of Fairtrade nibbles, as well as free refills for every bought cup of tea and coffee!

Fairtrade fortnight is taking place from 23rd February to 8th march 2015, and there’ll be lots of events happening around the Swansea area. Click here for more information.

Fairtrade Fortnight is run by the Fairtrade Foundation. Click here for more information about what they do.


Spring Tonics Workshop – March 1st 2015

Kate Haworth is back at the Environment Centre to run another of her popular home remedy courses. Jump into Spring and learn how to make cleansing tonics on this fantastic 2 hour course!

In this workshop you will discover how to use local herbs as tonics to refresh your body ready for Spring. Using interactive and creative techniques you will gain deep understanding of these plants and how to make the most of springtime remedies.

Running on Sunday March 1st at 2 – 4pm, the course is £15 per person for the 2 hours. Booking is essential and payment secures your place, so please contact Phoebe on 01792 480200 or for more information.

For more information on courses held at the Environment Centre, Click HERE

Solar ‘Pride’ in Banwen

A pioneering Welsh co-operative, Egni, is celebrating the installation of solar panels at the Dove Workshop in Banwen, the village which featured in the recent film, Pride. Egni raised £171k from members to fund 130kw of solar panels in Banwen and at four other community buildings in South Wales.

The launch was attended by the Minister for Natural Resources, Carl Sargeant.

Dan McCallum, a Director of Egni, said “We are delighted that the Minister and the Leader of Neath Port Talbot, Councillor Alun Thomas, are joining us to help launch the panels. The panels will save about £7k per year for the community buildings and cut carbon emissions by 1000 tonnes over their lifetime.  It is vital that we all engage at a community level to tackle climate change. We are expecting about 50 people. Anyone else is welcome to come along”

The development of Egni was supported by Renew Wales whose Project Director, Rob Proctor, said “Renew has supported over 200 communities with peer mentoring in the last 2 years including Egni.  It is great to see practical action on climate change happening through this approach.” If your community organisation wants support from Renew Wales, contact our Renew Wales officer at

RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch – Sat 24th and Sun 25th January

Bird populations are a great indicator of the health of the countryside. That’s why it’s so important to take part in surveys like Big Garden Birdwatch to keep an eye on the ups and downs of the wildlife where we live.

All you need to do is spend an hour over the weekend of 24-25 January counting the birds in your garden. It’s that simple!

The more people involved, the more we can learn. So, grab a cuppa and together we can all help to give nature a home.

Find out more and register at


Say “I Do” with Fairtrade Gold!

An eye-catching human ring of gold was formed outside Britain’s most iconic church, St Paul’s Cathedral, to symbolize the human chain of miners who toil to make our gold rings in difficult circumstances.

See the video HERE

The event launched the Fairtrade Foundation’s new national ‘I DO’ campaign to encourage brides and grooms in the UK to buy Fairtrade gold rings ahead of Valentine’s Day. An estimated $1 million (£650,000) in Fairtrade Premium could be generated through 50,000 couples choosing 100,000 Fairtrade gold wedding rings to invest in improving education, healthcare and livelihoods for some of the poorest mining communities across the world.

There are 15 million artisanal and small-scale gold miners globally producing 10-15 % of the world’s gold supplies. Despite the alluring promise of a better livelihood this is actually one of the world’s most dangerous industries with miners earning as little as $1 per day. It is rife with exploitation and daily contact with toxic chemicals used to process gold such as mercury, cyanide and nitric acid means workers risk disease, serious injury, premature births and even death.

A dedicated website has been created for the campaign. It will offer one lucky couple the opportunity to win a set of 18ct wedding bands worth £1,500 made from Fairtrade gold from Ingle & Rhode. Couples will be asked to upload romantic stories to the hub and the winners will be selected by the public who will vote on the most romantic story submitted. In addition, the website will contain inspirational wedding stories, tips on how to choose the perfect ring and suggestions about where to buy.

The campaign, which launches first in the UK will be replicated in other Fairtrade markets globally starting with Switzerland, aims to sell 100,000 wedding rings to 50,000 couples. Around 250,000 marriages take place annually in the UK.


River Tawe Images on show in Civic Centre

The Sustainable Swansea project “Digital Streams” has a well deserved reputation for beautiful, inspiring and sometimes challenging images. Their most recent  exhibition covering the River Tawe is on display at Swansea’s Civic Centre this month.

This exhibition tells the story of the River Tawe from source to sea.  The images were produced by local people, who through the Digital Streams have been given the chance to explore this great river, in all weathers and from many angles.

This project is part of the Clear Streams Swansea Initiative.Click Logo for more Information

Click Logo for more Infomation