• Lydia Ferrari Kehoe

Meet the students from Ireland's first plastic free school

The global day of protest for the ‘School Strike for Climate Action’ movement in happening on March 15th. Many Irish schools have voiced their support for the cause, including Newpark Comprehensive School in Blackrock.

Newpark is Ireland’s first single-use plastic free campus, a goal the students achieved last year following their ‘Plastics out of the Park campaign’. Clic news spoke to some of the students about their achievements so far, and why they are so passionate about demanding action against climate change.

“When you here about climate change, you either fall into apathy or you get angry and want to do something about it. That’s how I got involved in the campaigns.” Speaking here was Cian Parry, a 17-year old 5th year student who is determined to be part of the change.

Cian spoke on behalf of himself and his fellow students when he said, “I do feel burdened by the mistakes of past generations. But I think this generation is definitely more politically engaged.”

Nathan Moore is also a 5th year student, and when asked about his involvement said; “Last year, the sustainability module really opened my eyes to what was going on. The affect that climate change is having on us and what will happen in the future. I also think that in the last year kids and adults have become extremely aware of the climate crisis.”

The sustainability module mentioned is run by Susan Adams, who works in a number of schools in Ireland educating students about the environment. “Young people have such an influence and I’m not sure they realise how powerful they are.”

“This March is an amazing opportunity because they can’t vote. This is how they can get involved and say ‘this is wrong on all levels and we’re not going to take it anymore.’”

Liza Kurevleva, a classmate of Nathan and Cian’s spoke to Clic about the severity of the crisis. “At this point all we can do is call for action. We have a reached a peak in awareness, but we have also reached a boundary. We need the people that are in power to step up and do the things that enable everybody else to improve. Students don’t have the means to do that.”

The students of Newpark are fantastic ambassadors for their school, and are part of a fundamental shift that is happening across the globe. They will continue to do what they can to bring about a change, and Clic echoes their thoughts when we say, we hope you’ll do the same.

Newpark Comprehensive School, photo taken from newparkschool.ie

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