Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Environmental action in schools and colleges

Questions to be put to Councillor Peter Hammond at the next full meeting of Bristol City Council (13 Jan 2009) along with my e-petition on school environmental charters:

1. What action has been taken by Bristol City Council as a result of recent UK Sustainable Development Commission published research which showed that schools are responsible for 15% of UK public sector carbon emissions (9.4 million tonnes per year)?

2. Can the figures for carbon emissions from Bristol’s schools be made available and if there are none as yet available will the member ask officers to approach the Stockholm Environment Institute, the Sustainable Development Commission’s partner in producing the report referred to, as they hold the raw data and may be able to break it down to give figures for the city?

3. Consistent with objective 10 in the Bristol Green Capital pledge list to enhance environmental education and awareness, will the member circulate a Model Environmental Charter, such as the one described in my petition submitted to this meeting, to all Bristol schools and colleges, accompanied by a letter to governors urging them to adapt the model charter to suit, adopt it asap and agree to annually review and report progress relating to it?

4. Does the member agree that schools can play a major role in tackling climate change, especially through starting with their own school buildings, transport, waste and procurement, helping pupils and communities to learn about the sources of and solutions to carbon emissions and the consequences of not taking urgent and large scale action?

5. Does the member agree that the education system should provide a continuous opportunity to experience, practise and evaluate sustainable behaviours in recognition that empowering people to find solutions to sustainability problems is one of its core purposes and that therefore it is vital for all establishments to adopt their version of an environmental charter or a similar statement of intent, preferably accompanied by action plan?