Students' Representative Council, University of Sydney
The USyd Enviro Collective is a grassroots organising space for climate activism, on and off-campus.
We are the USyd branch of ASEN (Australian Student Environment Network): a space for USyd students to have a voice on environmental issues both on and off campus, work together to build community and facilitate environmental activism.
We are the foremost environmentalist group on campus, holding regular weekly meetings during semester. Our other actions consist of stalls, protests, educational events, seminars, film screenings, socials, activist trips to active environmental protest sites and intervarsity/inter-collective collaborations across Sydney and Australia.
Through these events we aim to expose the ties between the university and fossil fuel industry, showing the very institution that claims to be preparing us for the future to be complicit in it’s destruction. USyd still invests millions in coal, gas and oil exploration, research and development, in addition to making few attempts to make campus greener, or more environmentally responsible. The university is not renewable-powered, it has poor recycling practises and the sustainability strategy for the next few years will likely be fundamentally ineffective.
Over the last 2 years we have played a part in the organisation of many of the mass environmental actions in Sydney, including:
December 2020 Town Hall Climate Strike
SS4C 2020 September Strike
Shut Down Coal 2020 Conference
Stakeholder submission to the 2020 Review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999
Stop Adani speak-outs
Students of Sustainability conference – the largest student environmental conference in Australia
The formation and renewal of the NSW Climate Justice Alliance
Climate Crisis: 2019 National Day of Action
March for Morrison: Bridge Walk for Climate Justice
Walgett water runs
You don’t need a comprehensive knowledge of environmentalism in order to join our collective, we are committed to up-skilling all members. You can contribute by writing for our monthly newsletter or publications Combust and Embers, speaking at rallies, representing the collective in off-campus enviro meetings, hosting film screenings, presenting at strategy days, coordinating social media, attending blockades and external protests, and coming along to poster runs, leafleting, banner paints, design and propaganda days. Everyone is needed to spread the word of the climate movement, and our success depends on collective power.
We believe in anti-hierarchical, inclusive and democratic organisation. We are anti-colonial, anti-imperial and anti-capitalist, standing in solidarity with indigenous communities, workers and each other.
We meet and organise primarily upon unceded land of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation. The collective recognises and supports the ongoing struggle for First Nations’ sovereignty across Australia and internationally. Colonial violence and dispossession is ongoing. Issues of land and environment are intrinsically linked with Indigenous identity and there is no climate justice without indigenous justice. Always was, always will be Aboriginal land.
Hello! We’re so glad that you’ve stumbled upon this edition of Combust, the first of what we hope becomes a yearly publication by the USyd Enviro Collective alongside the ASEN publication: Germinate. A big thankyou to all those who helped to edit, write and create this work!
This handbook is a collection of prominent radical ideas currently circulating the environment movement – it’s essentially some of the information that we wish we’d accessed when we first became interested in enviro politics.
It’s hard to enter into a space when it feels as if everyone knows more than you. But you do not need a comprehensive knowledge of environmentalism to join the enviro collective — we are all learning and growing together. But either way, we hope this will help you, make you think, or even reaffirm something you already knew.