Power Shift, for me, is what Never Neverland is for Wendy, what Narnia is for Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy, and what Hogwarts is for Harry: a magical place where dreams really do come true. In my case, those dreams are being part of the global divestment movement, feeling included in something bigger than myself, and broadening my skill set to become an all-round better activist.
In the 21st century, materialism is heavily ingrained into our society. Clothing trends change on a seasonal basis and electronic gadgets are constantly being updated and improved, with new models of some of our best-known brands regularly being released. Ever improving technology and aesthetics, along with wide spread advertising across all media platforms, have contributed massively to society’s insatiable demand for the latest trends. However, do we really understand where our gadgets, clothes and electronics come from?
As People & Planet’s annual University League is published, the University of Manchester has ranked in the middle of the road in 71st place. This is yet more evidence that the University is lagging behind on sustainability and ignoring its students’ demands for action for the environment.
Determining the environmental impact of your degree course can be tough – between greenwashing, behind-the-scenes investments and dodgy supply chains, it can be really hard to know how Green your University really is. That’s why I find the People & Planet University League Table so informative – they ask the big questions, and crunch the big data, then rank Universities accordingly on several different criteria including Environmental Policy, Waste & Recycling, Education and Ethical investment.
Not only has the 2015 #1 failed to make any recognisable progress this year, the University of Plymouth has also failed to maintain it’s ranking between 2016 and 2017, falling a further two places down to 14th.
Two of the University of Plymouths lowest scores are for Ethical Investment and Workers Rights.