Challenging climate change with generation green

We have all become more environmentally conscious about the negative effects we have on climate change, so for may of us, caring for our planet has become an integral part of our every day 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.

Whether you are a corporation, a teacher or a parent everyone shares the same responsibility to inform the younger generation of their duty to take care of the climate for the following generations ahead. Let’s take a look at how businesses, classrooms and social media activists are amplifying this extremely important message.

Curriculum changes are needed in schools

When it comes to delivering lessons on climate change, many teachers feel ‘ill-equipped’ with the resources and knowledge it takes to do this, according to a survey carried out by Yougov. 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.

student Extinction Rebellion climate change activists
student Extinction Rebellion climate change activists By gregg jaskiewicz | Shutterstock

After she skipped lessons to hold a solo protest outside the Swedish Parliament in Stockholm, Greta Thunberg triggered a wave of strikes across 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. EduCCate Global 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.

Tackling climate change with The Greta Effect

The platform for young activists on social media is growing. 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 skipped lessons to hold a solo protest, it inspired numerous school strikes across the globe — Greenpeace have even curated 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.

current Fridays for Future event map from Greenpeace

After her appearance at the 2018 United Nations Climate Change Conference the #Fridaysforfuture movement sparked a global following and in March 2019 it triggered two coordinated events. 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.

After Greta pointed out Politicians’ inability to correctly address the seriousness of climate change, she said “I realised that no one is doing anything to prevent this from happening so then I have to do something”. 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.

Being climate conscious in the home and elsewhere

We can teach and inspire young people to tackle climate change by being conscious about it in our homes and beyond.

Pick up greener habits

We can influence our children with 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.

food waste recycling by By Gary Perkin | Shutterstock

We can also be green when it comes to 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 a boys waterproof jacket using more recycled fabrics. They’re perfect for dressing your mini eco-warriors in!

We’re all empowered to inform and join youngsters in tackling climate change whether we are teachers, parents or companies. There are so many innovative, simple life changes that you can make to get started.

Sources:

https://www.statista.com/statistics/444744/household-recycling-rate-uk/

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/784263/UK_Statistics_on_Waste_statistical_notice_March_2019_rev_FINAL.pdf

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jun/21/teachers-want-climate-crisis-training-poll-shows

https://time.com/5595365/global-climate-strikes-greta-thunberg/

https://medium.com/uncclearn/5-young-environmental-activists-making-a-difference-in-climate-change-f211e070ab53

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/feb/15/planet-children-protest-climate-change-speech

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/family/life/greta-thunberg-generation-children-pushing-parents-go-greener/

https://www.edie.net/news/9/In-numbers–the-UK-public-s-attitudes-towards-climate-change/

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/sep/01/swedish-15-year-old-cutting-class-to-fight-the-climate-crisis

https://www.greenmatters.com/food/2018/12/07/ZboPlt/what-is-composting

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Author: Laura

A 70's child, I’ve been married for a Very Long Time, and appear to have made four children, and collected one large and useless dog along the way. I work, I have four children, I have a dog… ergo, I do not do dusting or ironing. I began LittleStuff back in (gulp) 2004. I like huge mugs of tea. And Coffee. And Cake. And a steaming cone of crispy fresh fluffy chips, smothered in salt and vinegar. #healthyeater When I grow up I am going to be quietly graceful, organised and wear lipstick every day. In the meantime I *may* have a slight butterfly-brain issue.

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