Is the future worth a conversation?
Carbon Conversations is a 6-session course that is designed to lower your personal carbon impact. It is not a taught course, but a facilitated discussion, a space to share and explore ideas and develop interpersonal connections. Interactive board games facilitate active engagement with the subject material, visioning exercises allow a creative and self-reflective approach, and short-talks supply assessable information on climate change.
It has been celebrated as one of the top 20 ways to combat climate change by the Guardian (http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/jul/13/manchester-report-climate-change1). While this course is aimed at an aware audience (meaning, simply, that it is not expected that people who do not know or care about climate change will be attracted by it), Carbon Conversations usually results in a reduction of a tonne of personal carbon emissions.
A couple weekends ago the newest member of the Environment Team, Sustainability Intern Lucy Arndt, and two members from Transition University of St Andrews, Jamie Peter and Rebecca Petford, headed over to Edinburgh to become trained and certified as Carbon Conversations Facilitators. Amid the chaos of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, this two-day course provided a calming yet empowering space for us to develop facilitation skills and explore this unique group learning approach to behaviour change for mitigating climate change. What struck me the most throughout the weekend was the real feel of creating community, fostering discussion and empowering individuals to take responsibility and control for their carbon impact. I was inspired and motivated to make changes in my personal life!
The three of us are now kitted out and ready to launch the Carbon Conversations course back in St Andrews. We have been practicing the board games in the office!
We will be running these 6-week courses throughout the 2011-2012 academic year for staff and students, both postgrad and undergraduate, alike.
Staff- The first courses are to begin right away, kicking off in late-September. To find our more please follow these links!
Students- Stay tuned! Information on student courses will be available soon.