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Climate emergency: The view from ex Green Party MEP Elie Chowns

Posted on 16th November 2022

Students with Ellie Chowns and Marco Martinelli

Last week, the top floor of Risbury was packed out as students from Environmental Science, Politics, Geography and Biology waited for the first Guest Speaker of the Debate Society. Ellie Chowns is currently serving on Herefordshire Council after being a representative for the Green Party in the European Parliament.

Ellie’s talk focused on how individuals and small groups can make a difference in two main areas. Firstly, emphasising how citizens can take small practical steps focusing on sustainability to address Climate Change that have value when accumulated. Secondly, how citizens can mobilise at grass roots level to enact changes in their local communities. The message was very much of the adage “Think Global; Act Local”. Ellie concentrated on her view of the need to make clear statements of “Climate Emergency” in democratic bodies at all levels; this would then help to ensure that public policy would be conducted with this as a priority. Her message was that through dialogue, those of differing political views can come together, and mindsets and opinions can be altered over time.

Guest Speakers form an integral part of the Enrichment opportunities at HSFC. The Debate Society has a rolling programme of prolific Guest Speakers who are experts in their relevant fields. Students benefit from hearing “real world” experiences in the easily accessible Friday lunchtime sessions. They are intended to provide diverse views, opinions, and up-to-date perspectives on contemporary issues – beneficial for HE interviews and contributing to students becoming overall well-rounded individuals.

If you have never been to a Debate Society meeting there is no need to book- simply turn up at an event that interests you!

M Martinelli