29 October 2021
With the high-profile UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) coming up, we recently got our A Level Government and Politics learners and A Level Geography learners to seriously consider what they’d like to see from the conference. There are so many aspects of climate change that we’re passionate about at Coleg Gwent, from embedding sustainability in our new campus developments to educating the future workforce in electric vehicle technology. So last week, our learners were given the unique opportunity to speak to local Senedd Members who will be attending the conference, to express their thoughts on climate change and discuss the topics they’d like the conference address.
Local Senedd members John Griffiths and Jayne Bryant met virtually with a group of students to hear the priorities and issues they want to see tackled at the upcoming COP26. Both Jayne and John will be attending the conference in Glasgow in their roles as Chairs of key Senedd committees. As well as quizzing their elected representatives, our Geography and Politics students were also posed questions by John and Jayne, with the discussion including topics such as the accessibility and affordability of public transport, taking steps to eat less animal products, and the recent protests by groups such as Insulate Britain.
Following the discussion, Ffion Burton, this year’s Chair of our Politics Society explained that: “COP26 has given hope to us young people that there may finally be some action against climate change. It is needed now more than ever to acknowledge this issue and for countries all over the globe to work together at such a crucial moment. It is reassuring that people like John and Jayne are working with the younger generation to find out our views and to hopefully spread awareness of this issue even further.”
With COP26 starting on Sunday 31st October, the meeting was a fantastic and timely opportunity for our learners to have their voices heard ahead of the summit. These are the kind of experiences we tie into our courses and curriculum at Coleg Gwent to enrich your learning experience.
John said: “Tackling the Climate Emergency is the most serious challenge our generation faces – not just in Wales and the UK, but across the planet. COP26 is a huge opportunity for countries to come together and commit to working together and find solutions to both reduce carbon emissions and protect our environment.
Our young people are the future – and they must be listened to by world leaders. Their ideas to fight back against climate change must be acted upon at this conference. By failing to do so, we will be letting them down.”
Jayne commented: “John and I were inspired by our discussion with Coleg Gwent students last week. It was a fantastic meeting and it is so clear that young people’s voices need to be heard. We owe it to this generation – and the generations that will come next – to make a better future. The climate crisis really is central to that.
At COP26, politicians must have vision and ambition to address the climate and nature emergency. Young voices in Wales will continue to demand those things at every possible occasion; it is the duty of world leaders to listen.”
Meeting local Senedd Members to discuss COP26 allowed our learners to apply their learning and understanding of politics, geography and the environment to real world issues, exploring how they can have a real impact by making their voices heard. Find out more about studying Government, Politics and Geography at our next Open Event.