Teens seek green solutions

About two dozen students from around Langley and Cloverdale gathered for the second annual Langley Green Team Conference on Dec. 13.

The teenagers met at the Langley Events Centre to hear from speakers and to plan projects they can undertake at their schools.

Members of the R.E. Mountain Green Team organized the event, and have been actively been planning it since August.

Six schools sent representatives from their local Green Teams and environmental clubs this year, said Sumara Stroshein-Blagborne, co-president with Ali Geum.

“We just want to make it bigger every year,” said Geum.

The assembled teenagers heard from local officials like deputy Township mayor Bob Long, and young environmentalists like Kate Hodgson, founder of Kids for Climate Action.

A high school student at Kitsilano Secondary, Hodgson talked about how she got involved in environmental activism after learning about climate change in Grade 9.

She was unsatisfied with the message to simply recycle, walk instead of drive, and avoid using bottled water, Hodgson said.

It wasn’t until after she went to a rally with her father that she understood the issue has to be addressed through advocacy and action, Hodgson said.

Since then, Kids for Climate Action has held a number of events, including a bike ride from Vancouver to Victoria to present the provincial government with a petition against the Enbridge oil pipeline.

Hodgson urged the participants to stay positive.

After hearing from Hodgson, the students broke into groups to brainstorm ideas. They were planning to have each group design a project that students can implement in their schools or in their surrounding communities.

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