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Southport & Mersey Reporter® covering the news on Merseyside.

Date:- 24 September 2007

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HUMOROUS WEB FILMS TO ENCOURAGE TEENAGERS TO QUIT

Figures to be published in Towards Sustainability - SMMT's eighth annual sustainability report - will show annual CO2 emissions from UK car and CV manufacturing have fallen 36.5 per cent from 2.14 to 1.36 million tonnes in just four years. This improvement follows figures in SMMT's new car CO2 report, published in July, which revealed average new car CO2 emissions fell 12 per cent in a decade, saving an estimated one million tonnes of CO2 each year.

In addition to charting progress on environmental measures, Towards Sustainability highlights sector economics.

This year, it will show the value of Britain's largest manufacturing sector which employs more than 850,000 people and has a turnover of £48.5bn.

However, despite the improvement in sustainability and importance of the sector to jobs and the economy, government and opposition parties are currently battling to out-green each other with a series of disproportionate and unworkable policy measures for auto makers and their customers. SMMT has called for an end to the hollow gestures which undermine confidence and send a message that threatens jobs and investment in UK plc.

"In the hunt for a good sound-bite, politicians are losing sight of good policy,  Ideas like banning petrol cars or slapping £2,000 on the purchase price of a new car might make headlines, but they offer little in the way of practical solutions to the very real issue of limiting climate change." said SMMT chief executive Christopher Macgowan.

The automotive sector is Europe's largest investor in R&D, spending €20bn annually, or four per cent of turnover in bringing cleaner technologies to market. But in parallel with the development of cleaner vehicles, industry argues that cost-effective complementary measures like wider biofuel distribution and congestion reduction must be at the heart of government policy.

This integrated approach also means developing measures that help improve driver behaviour, a point made last week in a report published by the Commission for Integrated Transport.

According to CfIT, measures like eco-driving and better speed limit enforcement could save 1.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2020 alone.

Towards Sustainability will be launched on 9 October 2007, available to download.

Double top for Gilmour Juniors

TALENTED children at a Liverpool school have double cause for celebration after two outstanding achievements.

Gilmour Junior School, L19 has received the highest possible marks in its latest OFSTED report. It follows hot on the heels of the school earning the Artsmark Gold Award for excellent provision in the arts.

The school achieved the maximum score in every category of its OFSTED inspection. Inspectors called the school "outstanding", highlighting the quality of leadership and management and commenting that everyone “works enthusiastically and purposefully to ensure pupils get the most out of their education.”

Inspectors also praised the school’s “vibrant learning environment” and “exciting opportunities” which are helping children “develop into happy and confident young learners.”

And the praise didn’t end with OFSTED. Arts Council England has given the school another boost by awarding it the Artsmark Gold Award for the second time. Artsmark is a national award scheme which recognises schools with a high level of provision in art, dance, drama and music.

Head teacher Peter Gibbons said:- “Everyone at the school is absolutely delighted with this double boost. Gilmour is a wonderful school where everyone works in partnership and it’s really pleasing to earn national recognition for the achievements of our pupils, parents, staff and governors.”

OFSTED inspectors were quick to highlight the part pupils at Gilmour play in the development of the school. They praised the wide range of initiatives pupils get involved in, including anti-bullying strategies, healthy eating projects and recycling schemes.

Artsmark Gold is the highest level of achievement a school can receive from Arts Council England. It is awarded to schools which integrate first class arts provision into the curriculum and successfully raise the profile of the arts in the school and local community.

Councillor Paul Clein, executive member for children’s services, said:- “This is an excellent achievement for Gilmour Juniors, highlighting all the fantastic work that is going on at the school. I’m delighted OFSTED has praised the stimulating and exciting learning environment which is raising pupil attainment across the board.

The school also does a lot of great work to encourage young people’s development in the arts, and the award from Arts Council England is also thoroughly deserved.”

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