University of Sussex Provost to speak at Greater Brighton City Region climate change conference
By: Neil Vowles
Last updated: Tuesday, 12 October 2021
University of Sussex Provost Rachel Mills will join University of Brighton Vice-Chancellor Debra Humphris and Brighton and Hove City Council Chief Executive Geoff Raw today (Tuesday 12 October) to discuss the city region’s investment plan to become a leader in the UK’s green industrial revolution and transition to net zero at a virtual climate change conference.
The Blue/Green investment plans, which aspire to bring millions of pounds of investment into the region to fund climate change tackling measures and create sustainable jobs, will be among the topics under discussion at the Greater Brighton City Region climate change conference.
The Greater Brighton conference, which can be viewed live on YouTube from 9.30am this morning, will highlight work already underway in the area as the city region seeks to deliver on its GB10 pledges on the environment and also highlight the challenges ahead.
Prof Mills, a world-renowned deep-sea oceanographer, said: “I am really proud that the University of Sussex is involved in Greater Brighton’s ambitious plans to be at the forefront of the UK’s transition to net zero. Coming ahead of the UN’s COP26 climate conference in Glasgow later this month, the Greater Brighton City Region climate conference is a great opportunity to learn how we can make a difference in our own communities on the most important issue facing the world today.
“University of Sussex researchers are working in partnership on a wide range of projects from the use of novel quantum technology to improve electric vehicle batteries to leading national efforts to decarbonise industry across the UK. I look forward to these partnerships continuing to grow as we play our part in helping the city region deliver on its ambitious plans.”
The City Region is governed by the Greater Brighton Economic Board and includes local district, borough and city councils, business and enterprise partnerships, Greater Brighton Metropolitan College, the South Downs National Park Authority as well as the universities of Sussex and Brighton.
Last year the Board launched its GB10 pledges to help tackle the climate crisis with key initiatives for the region’s environment, transport and housing.
The University of Sussex is helping to deliver on one of the pledges to reintroduce a 10-mile kelp forest off the coast of Sussex with a research team led by Dr Mika Peck and Dr Valentina Scarponi, conducting the first baseline survey of Sussex coastline to explore the recovery of kelp forests following a recently implemented trawling ban.
Academics from the University of Sussex’s Science Policy Research Unit (SPRU) have also been helping coordinate innovation forums to help identify the opportunities to meet the city region’s ambitious energy and water plans.
Cllr Phelim MacCafferty, Leader of Brighton & Hove City Council and Greater Brighton City Region’s environment lead, said: “This conference is crucial as it brings together many of the partners- in both public and private sectors- we need to reduce the lasting impact on our emissions. Councils and residents cannot do this alone – we need everyone to play a part.
“I’d encourage residents living in the Greater Brighton area to join the debate and watch the conference if they can. We need you to hold us to account on this important issue and also feel that you can play your part no matter how small it might feel.”