Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Great Green Debate

You may remember that I mentioned I was planning a debate for World Environment Day, which was on June 5th. Well I'm proud to say it was a huge success!

I planned it with two other people as part of the group I've been organizing, the Sustainability Learning Community (SLC). The evening started off with drinks and dinner for about 60 people including members of the SLC and the debating teams.

The theme of the debate was that Australia's Response to Global Warming is Sufficient and each team had three debaters. It was so much easier to get the negative side on board than the affirmative! The negative side included a member of the legislative assembly for the green party, a climate scientist from ANU, and an ANU student. The affirmative side included a Liberal senator (remember liberal here refers to the conservative side of the coin), an economics professor who at end declared that he didn't believe a word of what he'd just said, and an ANU debating club student. A student chaired the debate and the head of my school was the honorary adjudicator.

We didn't plan on having a winning or losing team but the adjudicator asked for a show of hands by table as to which side won. One table put their hands up for the affirmative! Not surprising considering it was billed as a green event.

It was really a delightful evening, both interesting and entertaining. 140 people came and the hall was full. In fact, the head of the school has requested we do it again next semester!

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