Wednesday, 13 January 2010

A little help from West Virginia

Whilst researching for the 'confused about renewables' strand APTSec came across an amateur blog called:

Allegheny Treasures

APTSec has corresponded with the author of the blog who has kindly provided some information:

"Allegheny Treasures began some weeks ago as a counter to the lack of balance in the reporting of issues surrounding proposed wind installations in the Appalachian mountains, of which the Alleghenies are a part. While focused on local issues I've discovered an excellent network of individuals very interested in distributing factual information expressing the unreliability, cost and environmental impact of industrial wind."

The author recommends :

You find them linked under his category on the blog.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Planning could be fun?

Just to lighten the load for a moment APTSec has been thinking up some planning related 'song titles' (a very loose description) and was hoping the that visitors to the site could do a much better job.

I came up with:

'Midnight Train to Dalcross' by The Aspirations

'I Can't Give You Anything but Love' by The Moneymen

'River Deep and Mountain Higher' by The Surveyors and Engineers

Using social networking sites for consultation

Intrigued by the numbers of responses that a post entitled:

"Planning 2.0 revisited"

Achieved on the Planning Daily' blog I have posted a comment of my own which at the time of composing this post is 'awaiting moderation'. I quote from the blog:

"Why not see this shift in the way we communicate as an opportunity to change the way planning is done? Why not publicise applications on Twitter, map the locations on Google StreetView and invite comments via Facebook? Don’t leave it for residents to find the information themselves but push it out there, and explore new ways to canvas opinion."

More information can be found here

Monday, 11 January 2010

Money for Highland

The latest from the Scottish Government web site:

A European cash injection of more than £34 million will be invested in programmes to develop Scotland's workforce and safeguard and create jobs.

Funding of £18 million will go towards 43 projects in the Highlands and Islands area which will provide more than 5,000 individuals with help and support to enter employment.

The allocations of European funding for projects in the Highlands and Islands are:

* Argyll & Bute - £200,000 from the European Regional Development Fund
* Highland - £1,280,000 from the European Social Fund and £2,441,000 European Regional Development Fund
* Moray - £287,000 from the European Social Fund and £53,000 European Regional Development Fund
* Orkney - £3.7 million from the European Social Fund and £176,000 European Regional Development Fund
* Shetland £2.7 million from the European Social Fund
* Eilean Siar (Western Isles) - £3.7 million from the European Social Fund and £1.1 million European Regional Development Fund

The funding will be used to assist Community Planning Partnerships (CPPS) ongoing work to support employability in their areas.

Convener of The Highland Council Councillor Sandy Park said:

"These latest approvals will greatly enhance the capacity of Highland based organisations to assist some of the region's most deprived and excluded communities to access support services and employment."

For the full item click here

Argyll and Bute council have produced a fairly straightforward description of this type of EU funding to access this click here

"One affordable home per church"

Planning Daily reports:

Up to 10,000 rural affordable homes could be built if churches sold land and buildings to housing associations, according to the National Housing Federation (NHF).

The article quotes
Federation chief executive David Orr as saying:

"If rural parishes could deliver an average of one affordable home per church they would go a long way to helping us end the rural housing crisis."

For the full item click here

The National Housing Federation represents 1,200 not-for-profit housing associations in England and campaigns for better housing and neighbourhoods. for more information visit their web site here

Towards Carfree Cities

The World Carfree Network (WCN) has announced that:

"...the Towards Carfree Cities IX conference will be held in York, England, from Monday 28 June to Thursday 1 July 2010, followed by the World Carfree Network AGM on Friday 2 July. This will be the first time that the conference has come to the UK, and we are ready to make it a great one.

We invite you to join us for this global gathering. We’ll be promoting practical alternatives to car dependence and work to transform our towns and cities into human-scaled environments rich in public space and community life. The focus is on strategy, collaboration and exchange, assisting the practical work of conference participants – whether it be organising carfree days, promoting urban cycling or building the carfree cities of the future."

For more information click here

News on the Inverness City Vision?

One of the last entries on the Council's City Vision blog was:

"We can now confirm that the one-day visioning events, which will be facilitated by the British Council and attended by various community representatives, will take place on 20th, 21st and 22nd January 2010.

Events will take place at the following:

20th January 2010 - Ironworks, Inverness

21st January 2010 - Merkinch Community Centre, Inverness

22nd January 2010 - Spectrum Centre, Inverness

It is anticipated that the event on 20th January will be held primarily for youths to ensure that their opinions are considered, this will allow for the other two events on the 21st and 22nd January to be attended by other community representatives and professionals."

Does anyone know anyone who has been invited to attend?

The City Vision blog can be found here