On Monday, Binit were invited to the Sustainable Schools Challenge held at the University of Exeter, in collaboration with Next Steps South West. Schools including Marine Academy, Dartmoor Community College, Strode and Kingsbridge attended and were presented with the task of developing a proposal for making a new school in Exeter more environmentally friendly by 2025. Some key areas that the students were encouraged to focus on included food and nature, energy, recycling and waste, and transport.
Our very own CEO Philippa was one of the three judges of the competition. It was incredibly refreshing to hear all the students’ innovative ideas such as teaching pupils to grow their own produce onsite, vertical farming, and sustainable uniform made from bamboo. Great work guys!
We also asked the students what they thought the main challenges regarding sustainability are both on a local and global scale. Some of their answers for environmental problems within their own schools included litter and a lack of recycling and food waste bins, healthy vegetarian lunch options, green spaces and education on sustainability.
On a global scale, the students expressed that advocates for the environment should come across as more optimistic, emphasising that it is possible to mitigate the effects of the climate crisis if we act now, as opposed to the “we are all doomed” narrative that is often portrayed to spark immediate action. Interestingly, the students also conveyed that it is difficult to stay motivated because they feel as though their efforts to be more sustainable are counterintuitive in relation to the large negative impact that corporations continue to have on the environment.
However, most importantly, every little action we take towards tackling the climate crisis does count and it does matter. We must remember not to be discouraged, but remind ourselves that we are helping the world become a better place.