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Sustainable communities initiative

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During the weekend of 13 and 14 November Ian Macfarlane attended the Sustainable Communities conference held in Lochgilphead, Argyll.

Run by Big Green Tarbert, supported by the Sustainable Development Commission, the Co-operative Group Limited, NFU Scotland, Community Energy Scotland, Wright, Johnston & Mackenzie LLP, South Kintyre Development Trust, and ALIenergy, the meeting was chaired on the Saturday by Ken McDonald of BBC Scotland and on the Sunday by Jim Mather MSP, Scottish Minister for Enterprise, Energy & Tourism.

The first day of the meeting focused on community resilience and sustainable growth and was addressed by representatives of Transition Scotland, the Sustainable Development Commission Scotland, Argyll and Bute Council and, by videolink from Vancouver, the Canadian Centre for Community Renewal.  Some lively round table discussion ensued.  On day 2 the focus was on generating local income from renewables.  After several presentations from the Minister and developers of a number of local initiatives, the meeting divided into a series of workshops which sought to identify priorities and practical ways forward. This meeting served to demonstrate just how much can be done with local resources and using local skills. 
For a weekend meeting in a rural location it attracted wide participation with well over 100 delegates and some from well outside the local area.  BioMara’s stand proved popular and our activities attracted a great deal of interest.  The conclusions of the conference, once summarized, will be incorporated into the next newsletter. 

More information about Big Green Tarbert can be found at:

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