When I joined IEMA back in 2013, one of the most common things Members said to me was “I really want IEMA’s voice to be louder, more recognisable”. Given our global Membership of 15,000 and untold depth and breadth of collective expertise I couldn’t help but agree. That’s why we made a decision to up our game to create a stronger, more resonant presence in the media and policy worlds.

We’ve been working hard to transform the views Members give us into meaningful and impactful statements. You’ve mirrored that by giving us your views so we have a rich collection of statistics and comments to work with, and I’d like to thank you for that.

Let me give you some examples: you may remember the engagement we’ve conducted on the revision to ISO 14001 as a good indicator of how we now use Members’ experiences and opinions to shape global standards. When mandatory GHG reporting was introduced, Members’ views played a part in that Government decision. More recently, the 2015 UK General Election presented us with an opportunity to escalate this kind of activity and I really think that – thanks to the fantastic contributions of Members – this has really paid off.

Starting in February this year we carried out a series of polls among UK Members on key policy and legislation issues that will prove crucial to the next term of Parliament. You responded in droves. Each poll generated hundreds of responses, giving clear and decisive direction on what you want to see from this new Government. And you weren’t coy in your views. Most of our stats were in the 80th and 90th percentiles, meaning that there was little room for doubt as to the strength of feeling on some really important issues like climate leadership and sustainable resource management.

We took those results to the media and found that there was an enormous appetite for our statistics. Just type “IEMA UK” into Google News and you’ll get a good flavour of the take-up of our poll results. You wanted a louder voice? I think this shows we have made huge strides in the right direction.

By getting involved in our Election campaign, you’ve helped generate almost 3000 responses, over 50 headlines and in excess of 60 new policy calls within the relatively tight space of three months. That is no mean feat, especially considering the fight for voice during this time. I think this shows that together, IEMA and its Members can achieve some really impressive things.

Even though the Election campaign is over, our work isn’t done. With the new Conservative Government in place we will be taking your views – particularly your Ten Sustainability Actions - to the new Secretaries of State and doing all we can to transform these steps from a wish-list to new policies.

I think you’ll agree that with our Election campaign we have found a winning formula for communicating your views to Government via the media. We hope to not only replicate the success of this campaign in the future, but to build on it further and further until you hear and see us on national and international broadcast channels. Keep getting engaged in our polls, consultations and events and I it won’t be long until you’re seeing the results in some seriously high profile places.

As a final word, thank you to each and every one of you who took the time to get involved. It’s been impressive and I’m looking forward to seeing much more of this engagement in the future.