A SCHOOL in Workington has become the first in the UK to declare a climate emergency.

Local councils and even Parliament have declared climate emergencies across the county but the Energy Coast UTC is the first school in the country to take this step.

The student-led eco-energy group took their proposal to declare an emergency to the governing body after they became aware of just how large the problem is.

Eddie McCurrie, 17, from Ravenglass, said: “We explained what it means to actually declare a climate emergency which is that we put the environment at the front of all the decisions that we make in school.

“The governors decided that they would support our proposal.”

Cherry Tingle, principal of Energy Coast UTC, said: ‘The Energy Coast UTC is pleased, but at the same time wish we did not have to declare a climate emergency. We know that, unless we do something now, we are heading towards an irretrievable situation.

“We are thoroughly committed to considering the environmental impact of everything we do.”

Bearing witness to the beauty of the Lake District has propelled the three boys into acting.

“Living in the Lake District, people come down and see it’s

all luscious and green with

lovely weather, but when you start to dig in you see next to all the roads there’s just loads of rubbish and plastics,” commented Monty McCurrie, 15 from Ravenglass.

“All the different habitats that are being changed, affected and damaged due to the plastics and rubbish - that made me want to do the eco-council.”

But, there is more to their eco-drive than preserving their local environment - they represent a generation that will deal with the fall-out of a negligence towards the environment.

“We’re the ones being affected by the last generation’s choices,” said Monty.

The eco-group have introduced litter pick-ups around the school as well as encouraging students to recycle their single use plastics and refill their water bottles.

Although they initially struggled to get other students motivated to look after the environment, gradually more people have become involved in the group.

The declaration of a school-wide climate emergency will hopefully bring the issue to the forefront of the student’s minds.

Jack Farrington, 15 from High Harrington, said: “It feels really good to be able to help the environment and lead on that as a subject.”