I’ve been part of the Good Future Board for seven months and to say that I’ve learnt a lot is an understatement.
Good Energy is the UK’s first 100% renewable energy company. They partnered with Eco-School’s to recruit 6 young individuals aged 12-17 to be part of the Good Future Board; a Board that concludes the vision set by founder Juliet Davenport in creating a better future! Eco-schools received around 1000 applications and narrowed it down to 20 before sending them to Good Energy to further reduce the list: this is how we were chosen.
On a busy afternoon during online learning, my maths teacher asked me to solve a very difficult question. As soon as I pressed the microphone button, ready to share my answer, my phone rang! Embarrassed, I quickly unmuted myself and picked up the phone! “Congratulations, you have been selected onto the Good Future Board, we loved your application!”
After a few days, I was sent paperwork and consent letters to fill out, and that’s when Ian (the messenger between us and Good Energy) emailed me for an informal interview. I won’t lie, I was a bit stressed as I had never done anything like this before, but the meeting and introductions were lovely!
We discussed my application, which was centred around the Global South, more specifically, the Democratic Republic of Congo. I looked at the impact of the West’s renewable energy demand on the nation’s scarce resources, both socio-economically and environmentally. I also argued for a holistic, cohesive and affordable plan to make green energy more accessible for marginalised groups and people on lower incomes. Finally, I reflected on my experiences as someone who has lived in lower/middle/higher-income countries and the urgency of the climate disaster: particularly in my home city of Karachi.
A few weeks later, the 6 of us were introduced to each other as well as all the departments in Good Energy’s annual meeting. We went into breakout rooms and got to experience first-hand both how an energy company operates and how it’s adapting to the pandemic. It was like virtual work experience.
Juliet Davenport, Good Energy’s founder, also gave us an insight into her career journey which expanded my idea of environmental stewardship beyond policy-making.
Since then, we have been busy doing the following:
· attending AGM meetings
· interacting with shareholders
· analysing the company’s energy mix, reports and business competition
· debating about business policies and ethics
· speaking to the “People and Culture” team on diversity and inclusion
In addition, the UK government’s energy/economic policies have been a hot topic among our discussions at the Board as we consider net-zero and greenwashing.
As an A-Level Economics and Geography student, what I have witnessed these past few months as part of the Good Future Board helped me make the connections between the two disciplines. It’s shown me how economics (micro and macro) will have, and is having a key role in driving the UK’s approach to reducing climate change. It also demonstrated the global prominence and importance of the energy sector in achieving net zero emissions targets.