Ambition and Adaptation
At Economy Scrutiny committee this morning where the most substantive item was the draft Manchester Strategy 2005-2015, currently out to consultation. Although committee members were largely positive about the draft there were a lot of questions covering, amongst other things targets and metrics, housing strategy, business involvement, resilience to an ever changing economic climate, the impact of cuts, leadership and inclusivity, and the level of ambition.
One specific area was climate change and given that we are now behind schedule to meet our 2020 target should we be changing it. The 2020 target was always ambitious particularly as meeting it has always depended on central government action on top of what we can do locally. But it isn't an arbitrary target and was calculated as Manchester's " fair " share of CO2 emission reductions if the UK is to meet its requirements to avoid a two degree plus global temperature increase. The ambition was right and five years out we shouldn't be giving up on it.
After Scrutiny a session with government ministers to discuss the Devolution Bill currently going through parliament and then a meeting with the Leader and Deputy Leader of Blackburn to discuss what Lancashire is doing to develop a Combined Authority, what lessons they can learn from Greater Manchester's experience and how GM, Blackburn and Lancashire can work together to our mutual benefit.
Then a walk down to MMU's wonderful business school building to welcome the World Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation to Manchester. Lots of things we need to do to adapt to a planet that is already overheating and we do need climate scientists to come together to help us devise the most effective strategies.
Later this afternoon we will be launching Health Innovation Manchester, a new partnership bringing together health and social care providers, academics, and industry collaborators to work together to find new solutions to health issues, to test them and get them to the point and the scale where they can be applied. The aim is obviously to improve health in GM, but also to use all our health assets to improve our economy which in itself will help us further to improve health.