This week, 12 FLEXIS employees took part in Cynnal Cymru’s Carbon Literacy Training.
Our very own Monitoring, Evaluation and Cross Cutting Themes Coordinator, Dr Jamie Lewis, tells us more about his role at FLEXIS and the Carbon Literacy training he organised for the team.
Carbon literacy is “An awareness of the carbon dioxide costs and impacts of everyday activities, and the ability and motivation to reduce emissions, on an individual, community and organisational basis.” (The Carbon Literacy Project). It is a step towards a better understanding of how the way we live, work and behave can create a positive shift in carbon emissions and influence others. The training was delivered by Cynnal Cymru, who are the official partner of the Carbon Literacy Trust in Wales. The participants will all be certified by The Carbon Literacy Project.
This training was for anyone working on the FLEXIS project, whether Professor, researcher, delivery team or PhD student. As a team, we all work with technologies designed to reduce carbon emissions and improve energy efficiency, but beyond the research, how often do we look at how else we might impact sustainability, both personally and professionally? This training is about raising awareness amongst the FLEXIS team about how the choices we make contribute to reducing the global carbon footprint.
It is also a chance for personal development and reinforces FLEXIS’ commitment to a net zero future. We had a good mix of participants on the course covering all types of FLEXIS job roles and from across the three partner universities, bringing a diverse mix of skills, knowledge and experience – they were really interesting and lively training sessions which was great!
I have a dual role within the project. Firstly, I ensure all the results we claim are recorded and evidenced accurately so that FLEXIS can report accurately to our funders and show that the project is achieving its targets. Secondly, I oversee the FLEXIS Cross Cutting Themes (CCTs). This is how FLEXIS approaches sustainability, issues of equality and gender mainstreaming and how we impact on wider society (such as alleviation of fuel poverty). Although the monitoring work is critical for the project, it can be a little dry. The work on the CCTs however gives me an opportunity to work in sectors that have an immediate, positive impact on individuals and society. I get to enthuse people about topics I am passionate about and try to make the world just a little bit better.
I am in the middle of managing the final evaluation of the FLEXIS project. This is a complex task that requires lots of stakeholder engagement, working with external evaluators and the distilling of five years of project activity into a concise report. No easy task! I have also been organising the week long training session for FLEXIS employees on Carbon Literacy as part of my work on sustainability within the project.
As part of the training we are getting three members of FLEXIS trained to deliver the Carbon Literacy standard. By doing this we can ensure that staff who missed out on the first round of training will have an option to participate and that researchers on FLEXIS won research grants can also benefit. It will also be a fantastic opportunity for those learning to deliver the training to improve their skills and to help others to become more carbon literate too.