With the attention of the world focused on Scotland, and Glasgow in particular, as COP26 kicks off and world leaders, climate activists and global communities meet to try and create a sustainable future, we in the Arcadia Scotland office are thinking about our impact and what we can do from operations to community and student engagement. We have always encouraged students to stay local once they have arrived in Scotland using public transport on our excellent train and bus networks and learning about Scotland's history and culture. Europe is on our doorstep, but instead of flying, how about travelling by train or ferry? Instead of checking off a list of European cities every weekend, why not go to just one location and really explore and get to know that place's people and culture a little better?
Our events often tie into Scotland's astonishing commitment to renewable energy with our nation's very ambitious targets to reduce CO2 emissions. This semester we have led tours to one of the largest land windfarms in Europe and hydro power plants established nearly 100 years ago. Scotland has lots of wind and rain. Scotland currently faces difficult choices concerning the massive oil and gas field of the North East coast of Scotland and whether to further develop these at the potential cost of the planet to our future children and grandchildren.
"I enjoyed the Pitlochry hydroelectric dam trip - it is always cool to see how smaller jurisdictions and private sector decide to tackle climate change in their individual communities. That kind of grassroots effort is what will ultimately solve the issue."
All of our partners have a fantastic program of events running throughout COP26 where you can learn about these and other issues and we'd strongly encourage you to check some of these out below. For some of the exciting fringe events associated with the Conference raising awareness of some of the issues see here.