The wildfire season is under way in California, USA. As a resident, I am prepared for hazy skies, raining ash, the smell of burning wood, poor air quality and restricted outdoor activities.
More than half of the land being burned in the western United States can be attributed to climate change as the increase in the number of hot, dry and windy days caused by global warming have fostered a more favorable fire environment.
The latest report from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), that draws on more than 14,000 scientific studies, says that human activities are “unequivocally” to blame for climate change.
Young activists for a livable planet
Young people are not responsible for climate change, but they will experience the worst of its effects as extreme weather events, droughts, floods, heat waves and massive wildfires increase in both frequency and severity across the planet. This unfortunate fact is not lost on them as youth around the world have raised their formidable voices to ensure they will have a future on a livable planet.
Education is the foundation of advocacy related to climate change. Sustainable Development Goal 13 focuses on “urgent action to combat climate change” and specifies the need to “improve education [and] awareness-raising” on the issue.
Schools can ensure that students and their communities have the necessary knowledge about the climate crisis to demand that elected officials hold corporations accountable for prioritizing profits over the health of the planet.
Global book series on climate change
Room to Read is developing a global series of expository nonfiction books that support children’s literacy development with engaging informational text while also teaching them about climate change.
An author from each participating country highlights a local issue related to climate change, from the loss of biodiversity in Nepal, to the melting snowcap of Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, to the drying up of the Mekong delta in Vietnam, and the effects of deforestation in Indonesia.
While each book is originally created in the language of the author, the full series will be versioned across all languages so that children in all countries of distribution will be able to read about the impact of climate change in different parts of the world.