Winner of the 2022 Being Edinburgh Award
2019 Environmental Protection and Management graduate Laura Young is the winner of this year’s Being Edinburgh alumni award, with 35% of the student, staff and alumni vote.
Laura is a climate activist, environmental scientist, sustainability educator and ethical influencer who has devoted her life to climate issues.
She currently works for the international development charity Tearfund as the manager of their new climate campaign Let’s Change the Climate, after recently finishing a two-year stint as their COP26 Advocacy and Campaigns Coordinator.
It was during COP26 that Laura moderated a meeting between the First Minister and faith leaders from around the global south, which was one of several crucial talks that led Scotland to pledging £1 million towards a loss and damage fund that would help global victims of climate change, a world first for a developed country.
Laura is also a regular media commentator of climate related topics and is regularly seen on BBC, Sky and STV. She also Hosted a TEDx talk in 2019 on ‘Kicking the plastic habit’.
On hearing of her Being Edinburgh win, Laura said she was "shocked but honoured".
The other candidates were all fantastic doing a whole range of amazing work in their own spaces. I was honoured to have been chosen, and hope to do the award justice as I continue to work away in the environmental space. It is great to join all those who have been awarded this beforehand, and look forward to keeping an eye on who wins each year, and be inspired by others!
Laura also runs the environmental platform Less Waste Laura, using it to share tips and resources, and positively influencing her followers to make climate-friendly changes to the way they live. She has so far amassed over 41,000 followers on Instagram and is proud of the effect she can have on people’s ethical living.
I want to change the way we think about ‘influencers’ and I want to be an influencer for good – but also recognise that everyone is an influencer in their own way. I tend to always tag on ‘environmental’ or ‘ethical’ to the term influencer to start a conversation about how I try to do it differently, and think about how I can push others in that direction.
Professor Bryne Ngwenya, Head of the School of Geosciences, sent this video message to Laura to congratulate her on her win.
We would like to thank everyone who voted and campaigned for Laura, Martha, Riaz and Judith, four outstanding candidates, all of whom garnered enthusiastic support in the voting.
Less Waste Laura (external)