Youth Ocean and Climate Summit with Sir David Attenborough

8 June 2021 | 6th Form, School News

Year 12 student Izzy joined Sir David Attenborough and the next generation of ocean and climate activists as part of the Youth Ocean and Climate Summit 2021. 

Held on World Ocean Day (8th June) and organised by the marine conservation and campaigning charity Surfers Against Sewage, the summit aims to raise awareness of the importance of the ocean within climate talks; providing young ocean activists with a platform to voice their story of the climate issues facing the ocean and the solutions it offers. The outcome is to produce a Manifesto that will influence climate discussions ahead of two pivotal events hosted by the UK this year; the G7 Summit (11th – 13th June) and COP26, 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (1st – 12th November).

Izzy is part of a global movement in ocean and climate activism, and the summit offers the chance to engage in talks with some of the most influential youth activists in the UK, as well as key political figures. Participants engaged in live debates and discussions as well as problem solving and solution-based workshops, using their voices of power to influence the people in power! The event was hosted by Marine Scientist Charlie Young with guest speakers including broadcaster and natural historian Sir David Attenborough, Dominique Palmer, a climate justice activist and student, Mhairi McCann, YouthSTEM2030 Founder and CEO, Elijah Mckenzie-Jackson, climate activist and student and Finlay Pringle a marine conservationist and plastic pollution campaigner. 

Izzy wrote a powerful application to secure her place at the Youth Ocean and Climate Summit including an extract from her EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) on the ‘Exploration Into Coral Bleaching, Ocean Acidification and Aquaculture’.  When asked what advice she would give Prime Minister Boris Johnson Izzy wrote:

‘What kind of world would you like for your child? One where beaches are smothered in plastic? One where no fish swim in the sea? Do you want your child to see the last coral reef bleached? No? Then fight with us for an ecosystem we are proud to hand over to the next generation. Please, we cannot hand over a war zone.’

Surfers Against Sewage is one of the UKs leading marine conservation charities. Their mission is to create ocean activists everywhere and our vision is for a thriving ocean and thriving people. They actively campaign for the environmental protection and restoration of the ocean on four main campaign areas; plastic pollution, ocean recovery, water quality and ocean & climate. They also train, mobilise, represent and support over 1 million school children, 100,000 volunteers, 3,000 schools, 700 Plastic Free Community leaders and 220 Regional Reps, underpinning grassroots campaign activities nationwide.