Rishi Sunak highlights work of Richmond school’s Eco Team

Rishi Sunak MP has praised the “impressive” work of a group of pupils determined to make their school cleaner and greener.

The Richmond MP visited St Francis Xavier School in Richmond after the school’s Eco Team wrote to him about their work.

The team, formed in 2016, has carried out a series of projects to reduce their school’s impact on the environment.

These have included:

  • Cutting the secondary school’s energy bill by 20 per cent by encouraging staff and pupils to turn off lights and computers when not in use
  • Cutting paper usage by 172 reams a year by printing double-sided and using smaller font sizes
  • Cutting food waste in half and composting raw food waste
  • Cutting the use of single-use plastics with the aim of becoming a completely single-use plastic-free school

Led by Charlie Pike, the team made a presentation to the MP and followed up with a Q&A session on environment policy, asking what the Government was doing to combat global warming and reduce unnecessary waste.

In his responses, Mr Sunak outlined a raft of measures the Government had taken and were planned, such as banning the plastic microbeads in cosmetic products previously found in soaps, toothpastes and face wash and the forthcoming ban on plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds. A deposit return scheme in England for single use plastics is also planned

He also pointed out the progress that had been achieved already. Since 1990, the UK has cut  emissions by 42 per cent while growing the economy by 72 per cent - the best performance by any country in the G7 group of nations.

Mr Sunak said: “What the SFX Eco Team has already achieved is very impressive, as are their plans for the future. The Government is also working hard to hit ambitious targets to cut our country’s contribution to global warming. But we can always do more and I am sure the example of pupils at SFX, which I will share with colleagues in Westminster, will help to concentrate minds.”