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Eco councils to be created in schools

02 December 2022

Young people taking part in a schools’ climate conference have pledged to create Eco Councils at their schools.

That was the top pledge at the COP27 conference hosted by Sawston Village College, which was attended by over 200 pupils from 14 schools.

Break-out workshops at the event discussed six key areas including managing waste, reducing carbon footprints, creating more green space and the importance of renewable energy.

Keynote speaker at the event was Dr Simon Morley, a marine biologist from the British Antarctic Survey, who has spent over 30 years researching how the resilience of marine animals varies between environments. He uses these findings to predict the vulnerability of life in ocean to climate change to advise governments.

Students also planted trees following presentations by the Babraham Forest Garden Project and Natural England.

Among those present were Cllr Bryony Goodlife and Cllr Maria King, Chair and Vice-Chair of Cambridgeshire County Council’s Children and Young People’s Committee, together with Director of Education for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Jonathan Lewis and Assistant Director Carley Holliman.

Comberton Village College is taking the lead to establish a Schools Sustainability Network, which will bring schools together to work on the commitments from the conference, as well as other climate change priorities.

The schools which took part in the conference were Sawston, Linton, Bassingbourn, Comberton, Bottisham, Impington and Soham Village Colleges, together with Littleport and East Cambs Academy, Chesterton, Cromwell and Coleridge Community Colleges, Northstowe Secondary College, the Netherhall School in Cambridge and Joyce Frankland Academy in Newport.

Cllr Goodliffe said: “I was deeply impressed by the energy and commitment of the young people at the conference and their determination to tackle climate change and make a tangible difference to their lives now and in the future. Their initiatives have the full support of the Children and Young People’s Committee and will inform its future work.”