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Fenland student quizzes PM on climate change



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Student Alisha Cox has made her voice heard at the highest level after featuring at the COP26 event in a film about the future of the Fens and even questioned the Prime Minister.

Alisha, a sixth former at Thomas Clarkson Academy, was chosen to take part in one of two films presented by Anglian Water which showcased the voices of young people at the international conference on climate change in Glasgow.

The Wisbech student even had the chance to put a pre-filmed question to Prime Minister Boris Johnson as part of the project and asked him: “How are you going to involve and empower young people in your plans?”

Thomas Clarkson pupil Alisha Cox spoke at the COP26 summit. (52914603)
Thomas Clarkson pupil Alisha Cox spoke at the COP26 summit. (52914603)

Alisha, 18, hopes to become a midwife but knows she will have to move out of the area to train and practice as she wants to work specifically in intensive care for babies.

“It is a shame that we have to move out, but I can’t study here,” she said.

Her segment of the film highlights the issue of a lack of professional job opportunities in the area and the fact she will have to leave her hometown to enable her to follow her career choices. A move Alisha hopes future generations may not have to make.

“Filming it was really exciting - they had proper cameras and we had to go to the North Brink for a location,” she said.

Alisha is studying A levels in maths, biology and drama and hopes to move onto Oxford Brookes university next year for her midwifery course.

The film, Future Fens:Integrated Adaptation, premiered on Friday last week during an event held at the conference. It featured an initiative by Anglian Water, the Environment Agency and Water Resources East to create a blueprint on adaptation through integrated water management,

Academy Principal Richard Scott said: “We were delighted to be asked to take part in such an important project and know how much Alisha valued the experience she had. We all share her aspirations for the people of Wisbech and the surrounding area to have better opportunities.”

The film was shown at The Resilience Hub, created as a physical and virtual presence at the two week convention to highlight the increasing risk of drought and flooding. Anglian Water is co-leading the water theme at the 26th Conference Of the Parties and worked with three schools in East Anglia.

The event also included North East Cambridgeshire MP Steve Barclay in a recorded keynote speech.

Wisbech is at the heart of the Fens, which are low-lying and described as being ‘on the front line’ of rising sea levels and extreme weather events. It is also the driest part of the country with the risk of water shortages and the unique landscape is a risk.

The challenges also create barriers to development across multiple sectors including housing, industry, transport and agriculture, according to Anglian Water.



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