‘Climate education is absolutely vital – but the world is failing dismally’

A new report reveals the world is failing to prioritise climate education and that without it the impacts could be ‘catastrophic’

Pathway to COP26 report

With the climate crisis a key part of conversation these days, are countries educating the new generations on what can be done to tackle it?

The resounding answer is no from a new report by Education International, which claims the results of global climate education are a dismal failure.

The study scored countries based on their policy ambition, pervasiveness, inclusivity, quality of climate education, climate justice and systems strengthening through finance and adequate teacher training.

All countries failed the test, which required a 60% minimum score to pass. The three best performers were Cambodia (58%), Dominican Republic (51%) and Colombia (50%) – no other country scored 50% or more.

The report also reveals the quality of teaching is poor, with none of those that are calling for climate change education are calling for an education based in science.

Out of the countries surveyed, only the Marshall Islands recognised the pivotal role teachers have to play in greening the education system and only Cambodia specified the need for more funding to bolster climate education.

The top 20 global emitters and 20 richest countries do not mention climate change education whatsoever according to the study and Education International claim that if this does not change then neither will the fate of the planet.

David Edwards, Education International General Secretary, said: “Amid the global climate catastrophe, climate education is not optional – it is absolutely vital.

“Students need the knowledge and skills to navigate this crisis and effect positive change. Their lives depend on it. Governments need to step up urgently and ensure quality climate change education for all. Teachers are ready to do their part.”

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