Fifty-two students including eight from Mumbai have been chosen as Indian ambassadors to the International Climate Champions 2009 programme. It is a youth-oriented programme that aims to inspire young people,especially students,to spread the word about climate change,its effects and what can be done to mitigate them.
The programme has been launched by the British Council in partnership with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). It is a part of the British Councils international programme conducted in the G8 countries along with five other countries (Brazil,Canada,China,France,Germany,India,Italy,Japan,Mexico,Russia,South Africa,UK and USA).
Selected from over 1,200 applications received in the first round,140 aspiring climate champions were interviewed by the British Council in January after which 52 students were chosen as the International Climate Champions 2009 on the basis of their project proposals. The one-year project entails students to communicate the message of climate change,and work towards mitigating its effects in India.
Four champions out of 52,including a former student of Bhavans college Nirupama Nathan,are now in Scotland to attend a week long international workshop where they are learning the principles of project management.
As a climate champion,I want to spread the message of climate change among the youth in my campus through a programme called Reduce Your Carbon Footprint. This programme will incorporate reducing energy consumption by adopting less carbon intensive methods like using CFLs,solar cookers etc, said Utsav Shashvatt,a first year Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science student at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB).
Saahil Waslekar,a second year economics student of Bhavans college Andheri is working on a project on sustainable transportation and would like to spread awareness about green transportation through informative presentations at various Rotaract Clubs,build a website on the topic,organising at least two rock concerts with the theme of climate change among other activities.
The competition for India sets out to identify outstanding young people aged 18-21 who can carry out a climate change project in their school/college or community,network with like-minded young champions from around the world,share ideas and best practice,represent India on climate change, said Manjula Rao,Manager- Education,Governance and Science,British Council.