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The Progressive Policy Think Tank

COP26: Climate awards scheme for pupils is a welcome step to engage young people with the green transition

Think tank responds to the government’s announcement of a new Duke of Edinburgh-style award scheme for climate

Earlier this year, an IPPR convened climate jury of Tees Valley and County Durham residents proposed a similar scheme called the ‘Attenborough Award’.

Becca Massey-Chase, Deputy head of the IPPR Environmental Justice Commission, said:

“A new climate award scheme to recognise pupils for their efforts to protect the environment is a welcome announcement. Everyone, and especially young people, should have the chance to be better informed and engaged in tackling the climate and nature crises. Many pupils already care so much about this issue. Raising awareness and aspiration further through the national curriculum, scholarships and awards schemes such as this can help empower all pupils to be involved in the green transition.

“Through the work of IPPR’s Environmental Justice Commission, we heard from people across the country that education was a priority for tackling the climate crisis. Members of our Tees Valley and County Durham climate citizens jury even proposed an ‘Attenborough Award’ based on the Duke of Edinburgh Award. So we’re delighted to see this idea being taken forward today.

“The next step for the government would be to create a ‘National Nature Service’ to provide opportunities for this passion and commitment to the environment to be directed into meaningful work in low-carbon and nature-friendly jobs.”


Becca Massey-Chase is available for interview


Robin Harvey, Senior Digital and Media Officer: 07779 204798 [email protected]


  1. The Tees Valley and County Durham climate jury is one of four panels convened by the IPPR Environmental Justice Commission. The full recommendations of the Tees Valley and County Durham climate jury are available here:
  2. The IPPR Environmental Justice Commission drew on these cliate juries to produce its final report, which set out a comprehensive plan for reaching net zero. Available here: 
  3. IPPR is the UK’s pre-eminent progressive think tank. With more than 40 staff in offices in London, Manchester, Newcastle and Edinburgh, IPPR is Britain’s only national think tank with a truly national presence.