PUPILS at an Erskine secondary school staged a mock COP26 event to learn more about climate change.

First year students from Park Mains High competed in teams that each represented different countries, such as the UK, USA and China, which are currently taking part in negotiations at the Glasgow conference.

In their nine groups, the pupils discussed the impact that climate change was having on their specific country and what they were doing to tackle it.

At the end of the event, the UK team were chosen as the winners for having the most popular proposals to limit climate change, which included cutting fossil fuels, implementing meat-free days and reducing single-use plastic in supermarkets.

Kirsty Scott, Modern Studies teacher, told The Gazette: “The event went very well and the kids got a lot out of it. The S6 pupils were leading the COP26 event in our assembly hall and helped organise the content.

“They got a huge amount of leadership skills out of it, which is great for their UCAS applications, and the S1 pupils really got to integrate with senior pupils, which they really enjoyed.”

The Gazette: Headteacher Alan Dick addressed the audienceHeadteacher Alan Dick addressed the audience

Ross Greer, who represents Renfrewshire as Green MSP for West Scotland, attended the morning event to answer questions from pupils.

Natalie Don, MSP for Renfrewshire North and West, also attended at the school in the afternoon to speak with students as the main part of the mock COP26 event got under way.

She said: “I was delighted to attend Park Mains High School’s S1 COP26 event to see a very informative presentation by the pupils focusing on the contributions by various countries and companies regarding climate change, and the steps they are taking towards achieving net zero carbon emissions.

“It is extremely important that the voices of young people are listened to on vitally important issues such as tackling climate change so it was brilliant to chat to some of the pupils to hear their thoughts on what our priorities should be for the years ahead.”

As well as running the mock COP26 event, the secondary school has a very active eco-club which organises a weekly bottle drive to raise money for charity.

The school is also in the process of working to get its eco-flag and has started collecting crisp packets to help create blankets for homeless people.