Six schools from across Solihull came together to discuss climate change at the Model Climate Conference on Thursday 30 November in the Civic Suite.
The Mayor of Solihull, Councillor Stuart Davis, welcomed the participants to the Council Chamber and Councillor Ian Courts, Solihull Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Managed Growth, opened the session.
CTC Kinghurst Academy, Grace Academy, John Henry Newman Catholic College, Lode Heath School, Park Hall Academy and St Peter’s Catholic School pupils all took part in the conference, which was organised with the InterClimate Network. The charity runs conferences across the UK and was delighted to work with Solihull Council’s Sustainability team to hold the event in Solihull for the first time.
The conference aimed to give students the experience of what it feels like to negotiate in a model UN Climate Conference. The pupils received background papers and a country that they would represent at the conference.
Following the debates and negotiations in the Council Chambers, pupils from each of the schools were tasked with coming up with a series of pledges that they will have to persuade their school to sign up to.
Some of the commitments made by pupils included creating art pieces using only recycled materials, hosting Great British Bake Off style competitions using only fairtrade ingredients as well as one group of pupils saying they were keen to work with the caretakers and financial department to make sure their school becomes more energy efficient.
Councillor Ian Courts said “It was great to see so many pupils attend the Model Climate Conference in the Council Chamber. I enjoyed sharing our plans for sustainability with such enthusiastic local students. After reading the pledges that each school made, it’s clear that the attendees not only have a clear understanding of the global challenges we face in combatting climate change but also of what they can do at grassroots level to improve their local environment. I look forward to hearing about how they get on with their pledges.”
More information on InterClimate Network and their Model Climate Conferences can be found on their website.