Recently the Social Impact and Environment Societies were fortunate to welcome Matthew Griffin and Erika Scarth, who are volunteers with Greenpeace. A renowned environmental organisation, Greenpeace’s aims to defend the natural world, confront international environmental abuse, and advocate for environmentally responsible solutions to global problems.

Matthew, the Ethical Environmental Officer at the University of Birmingham, explained to our virtual audience exactly how Greenpeace achieves its aims. Whether through lobbying, petitions, non-violent direct action or investigation, the organisation has made significant improvements to global sustainability. Examples of this include bans on nuclear weapons testing and toxic waste disposal, and the recent prevention of super trawlers destroying protected areas of ocean.

Erika, who is Head of Coaching at the Blockchain & Climate Institute, educated us on the ways developing industries are leaching environmental resources, destroying habitats of endangered species and exacerbating global warming. She advocated for tactics to limit this, which include achievable changes to everyday habits, like eating more sustainably and reducing the use of plastics. These are actions that students can get involved with at school and local community level.  

Indeed, whilst global corporations are being asked to change their practices to prevent further environmental disaster, we were reminded that each of us as individuals can also make a difference.

Each of us as individuals can also make a difference in the fight against global warming

Greenpeace volunteers, Matthew Griffin and Erika Scarth