Throughout recent years we have become more environmentally conscious about the decisions we make and the effect of them, so much so tackling climate change is now an integral part of many people’s everyday lives. Tackling climate change is no longer simply a question on government agendas, and people of all ages from all walks of life have become more proactive in their attitudes towards the environmental crisis which is unfolding.
Regardless if your job title is a teacher, parent or entire corporation we all carry the responsibility of tackling the problem of environmental change and informing the younger generation of the importance of this. Let’s take a look at how businesses, classrooms and social media activists are amplifying this extremely important message.
It’s time for schools to make a change
When it comes to delivering lessons on climate change, a survey by Yougov found many teachers feel ‘ill-equipped’ with the resources and knowledge needed to inform students. In fact, prioritising climate change education is an issue supported by over 69% of those included in the survey and calls to add it to the school curriculum in the UK are only growing. In June 2019, Labour announced its pledge to make the climate emergency an inherent part of the national curriculum in primary schools and onwards. While climate change is currently taught in key stage 3 (age 11-14) and key stage four (age 14-16), many key activists and leaders have stressed that this isn’t enough.
After Greta Thunberg, a social media activist, skipped lessons to undergo a solo protest outside the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm, this triggered a wave of strikes throughout many schools. This had a domino effect across the globe and Greenpeace have curated a worldwide map of strike locations with most being held every Friday, known as ‘Fridays for Future’. Children of school age on every continent have organised themselves and led a call to action, and education methods are changing as a result. EduCCateGlobal have generated a training plan to be put in place for teachers, and more than 600 teachers have signed up to the module-based program through which they receive UN accreditation as a ‘climate change teacher’. This is an extremely positive step towards building a strong system of education which tackles the biggest issues surrounding climate change.
Speaking of climate change: The Greta Effect
The platform for young social media activists is continuously growing as before mentioned. These youngsters are equipped and ready to spread awareness surrounding our ecological crisis. Greta Thunberg has become a prolific figure for tackling climate change, addressing the topic with a no-nonsense, factual based approach.
After Thunberg’s solo protest, it had a domino effect across the globe. So much so the likes of Greenpeace have even designed a worldwide map of strike locations. Most are held every Friday, known as ‘Fridays for Future’. Children of school age on every continent have organised themselves and led a call to action, and education methods are changing as a result.
After her appearance at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in 2018 and the global spark of #FridaysForFuture movement, this has triggered two efficiently organised events in March 2019. These events saw more than 1.6 million people from 133 countries become active demonstrators. Greta has taken her campaign to grace covers of some of the biggest publications around the world, from Teen Vogue to TIME. She told the latter: “Young people who are in developing countries are sacrificing their education in order to protest against the destruction of their future and world”. Young people are certainly listening to Greta as a voice of their generation.
Greta said “I realised that no one is doing anything to prevent this from happening so then I have to do something” when asked her view on how she thinks politicians are addressing climate change. From sailing across the Atlantic on a zero-carbon yacht, to helping all of her own family give up meat, Greta is certainly leading the way towards a greener future.
Go greener in everyday life
To inspire young people to care for the climate, simple things such as being conscious about it in our own home can be extremely beneficial.
How to live green
We can teach children some good, green habits from within our own homes. 43.2% of households recycled their waste in 2018, but this figure needs to reach 50% by 2020 in order to comply with the EU target. Teaching kids to recycle can be fun, and you can get your little ones involved by getting crafty with some DIY recycling bins. You could push them to come up with creative ways to reuse household products such as cardboard cereal boxes and milk bottles. Composting is also becoming a popular choice in many households. You don’t have to be an expert gardener to get started with some kitchen composting! From banana skins to apple cores, avocado pits and more, anything can be composted, and over time you’ll create your own nutrient rich fertilizer.
It may come as a surprise, but did you know we can be green when shopping too? While there’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding what the best eco-friendly clothes materials are, many fashion companies are striving to use more recycled materials in their garment production processes. Muddy Puddles is amongst these brands. They are proud to produce boys waterproof jackets using more recycled fabrics. They’re perfect for dressing your mini eco-warriors in!
When combatting climate change, whether we’re teachers, parents or companies we all have the power to make a change. There are so many innovative, simple life changes that you can make to get started.