Jamie Peters, a graduate of the David Livingstone Centre for Sustainability (DLCS)/Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Strathclyde, won an award at the Scottish Green Awards 2011 as Best Green Activist/Campaigner for his work in the sector over the past two years. His work at two universities in Scotland as well as volunteer work at a national and international level served as the basis for his award.
Jamie explains the work that led him to being nominated and ultimately successful at the Green Awards:
"Receiving an award from the Scottish Green Awards recently has given me the chance to promote some of the organisations that I have worked with that led towards the nomination I received. Hopefully it also gives me the opportunity to let others get more involved in practical responses to climate change.
I studied for an MSc in the David Livingstone Centre for Sustainability, graduating in 2010. Throughout my Masters, I gained work experience in the environmental sector by volunteering for the National Union of Students' Student Footprints scheme that was about teaching students how to carry out energy audits. This experience was promoted by the department and led to me being offered the position of Project Coordinator for Aberdeen University Students' Association's Climate Change Project.
This project in Aberdeen was a great example of how to get students involved in climate change action in a relatively simple way. Projects that worked well were ones that were not too heavy on the climate change message and were things that everyone could participate in, for instance low carbon cooking classes, organic food collections, tree planting and student 'FreeShop': an initiative where students dropped off and picked up items for free. In Aberdeen we also ran interhall energy competitions, home energy audits and promotions to reduce students' carbon footprints from travel.
Recently I moved to Transition University of St Andrews where the project is very similar. Transition Universities is a concept that is becoming more common and hopefully Strathclyde can make the move soon too!
The other area that made up my nomination was my work with United Kingdom Youth Climate Coalition (UKYCC). This organisation, entirely run by volunteers, aims to inspire youth people to act on climate change and also represent young people at the United Nations climate change talks. I am the Scottish Coalition officer and will also be attending the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change talks in Durban in December 2011 in a self-funded trip with UKYCC. As a delegation we represent 'civil society' and have already attended the talks in June in Bonn where I was lucky enough to deliver an intervention to the UN regarding the participation of non-governmental groups and informal education.
I would really encourage anyone in the DLCS to look into getting involved with UKYCC or in Transition movements where you can really apply what you learn in the department in a practical sense."
Jamie H Peters
Transition Project Coordinator
Transition University of St Andrews (TUSA)