SE24 welcomes Will Shanks to the volunteer team


My name is Will and I am the newest member of the SE24 team. Very much a local, I grew up in Dulwich (SE22 unfortunately), and attended Alleyn’s school for sixth form. I have just finished studying Engineering: Energy, Sustainability and the Environment and  am hopeful that a couple of the skills I picked up at university will be able to help the team.

Brought about by (amongst other things) unchecked capitalism, I see the multi-faceted threat of the climate crisis as requiring a multidisciplinary defence, marrying social, economic and technological change. Unfortunately, I came to believe at a reasonably young age that achieving genuine social and economic change cannot be successful in the required time frame, so I threw myself into becoming part of the technological solution.

To this end, I think that the most potent defence is efficiency – efficiency in what we do and what we use. At university I studied ‘material efficiency’; how can we do the same things using less stuff? Outside of SE24, I work for a digital energy efficiency provider. We try to incentivise people to be more sensible in how they use energy, from putting a lid on the saucepan to retrofitting their houses. (I tried having cold showers for a while but it wasn’t for me).

Efficiency can only get us so far, however, and that is why groups like SE24 are so important. We need clean energy. Community solar projects are great in so many ways; they reduce our carbon footprint, benefit the community, and essentially, raise the profile of renewables amongst the public. I hope we will continue to bring about these benefits – despite our Government’s best efforts.

In just four days so far I have attended an SE24 planning meeting, helped bring the Walworth Methodist Church one step closer to having their own clean power and met with an industry specialist. I am really excited about how much about the energy industry I will be able  to learn, and hopefully how much I can contribute too.

Outside of my obsession with the energy sector I spend lots of time listening to music, playing drums in what cannot reasonably be called a band, kicking a football, consuming (literally) any kind of sport on TV, and watching films.”