Meet the Climate Canons – a growing band of teenagers making a change in the world ‘one dent at a time’.
St Norbert College students wanted to reduce the impact on energy and waste in the world and so formed a sustainability committee to get hands on.
The group formed in May last year and ever since they have added solar panels to the college’s performing arts centre, they have removed straws from the canteen, added biodegradable cups to the school’s daily breakfast club and turned all staff room food waste into compost.
All of this started when year nine students took part in the Australian Youth Climate Justice Summit some time ago and within only two days, they learnt about climate science, climate impacts and how they could lead solutions within their school and the wider community.
They then felt the need to create their own committee which they dubbed the Climate Canons.
After forming only 18 months ago, 38 student from years seven to 10 have already joined.
Today the Climate Canons are working on a vertical garden and veggie patch for their school’s canteen and for students to use while learning to cook in food, science and technology classes.
Removing all plastic and styrofoam products from the staff room and from college events, plus adding a worm farm, was next on the agenda.
Year eight student Sophie Griffiths said she wanted to make a change in the world even if it was just a tiny dent.
“It doesn’t have to be anything massive like becoming a billionaire,” she said.
“It just has to be the smallest thing like putting plastics in the right bins and picking up some rubbish.
“I believe that change can’t come to be without a large, motivated and passionate community and this community for me is the Climate Canons.”
Year 10 student Ali Tkacz said he had often felt alone in trying to make a change when it came to sustainability.
“I’m so grateful to have this opportunity to share with my peers who share the same goals and wishes,” he said.
“Our actions have resulted in such a jampacked and successful year.
“With almost 40 students we’ve held an excursion to an e-waste recycling facility, saw the movie 2040, held several planning sessions and rolled out the green batch bins.’’
Teacher Danielle Pisconeri said the Climate Canons had their sights on achievable changes that would be passed on.