Climate Action where it Matters: Schools

Climate Action where it Matters: Schools

Reading Time: 7 minutes

Launch of ‘Climate Pioneer Schools Partnership’ to contribute to Mitigate Climate Change and Sustainable Development Goal #3, 7, 13 and 17.

Operation Earth Climate Pioneer School Partnership

Supporting Organization:UNESCO
National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation
Technical Support:TERRE Policy Center
Chief Advisor:Mr. Rajendra Shende, Leading Author of IPCC that won Nobel Peace Prize 2007, Chairman of TERRE Policy Center


Climate Change is the most formidable challenge that the humanity is facing today. The impacts of Climate Change are already visible all over the world.

In 2016, a total of 177 countries signed the Paris Accord which attracted worldwide attention. One of the most important items is to control the increase of global average temperature within 2 degrees, otherwise the catastrophic deterioration of human living environment may occur in the coming decades.

Greenhouse emissions continue to set a new global high as seen in 2018 which has ended up as the planet’s fourth warmest year on human history.

On October 8, 2018, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming at 1.5 Celsius, which once again sounded the alarm: the global temperature will rise by 1.5 Celsius between 2030 and 2052, while the global warming should be limited to 1.5 Celsius, otherwise the catastrophic deterioration of the human living environment in 2040 will lead to a crisis in the world.

The global warming is resulting into extreme weather events including, droughts floods, hurricanes, sea level rise, destruction of natural resources, world natural heritage sites, coral reefs biodiversity and social cultural dimension of our daily life.

China is now largest emitter of the Green House Gases in the world. At the same time China is in the top 10 percent of countries at the high risk of climate related natural disasters as well as in the top 1 percent of countries affected by drought and its impacts on agriculture, as per Global Risk Report of World Economic Forum. Climate Impacts on biodiversity and ecosystem in China have been severe. Floods in Sichuan and the southeast region of Gansu Province and elsewhere in 2018 have caused heavy economic, biodiversity and human losses.

Health impact in China due to climate change is another serious issue that has been aggravating with rising temperatures. Air pollution and heat waves are the most serious issues impacting the older and younger population of China. Air pollution is other side of the Climate Change.

Chinese Government, recognizing the risks have taken proactive steps nationally by taking advance action on adaptation and mitigation. It also has pledged the ambitious targets for reduction of Green House Gases.

It is now important that Chinese schools are not only aware of all above development but start addressing the climate change challenge in their schools and at individual level.


Advocating public participation in field research and coping with climate change is one of the core areas of Operation Earth in the Arctic tundra, African savanna, Amazon rainforest, reintroduction site of Przewalski Horses and and bimodal wild camels along the Silk Road, Altai Mountains, South China Sea and other places, our field data based on field monitoring, convinced us that the climate change has brought profound impact on many ecological environments on the earth, glaciers are melting and shrinking, drought is intensifying, coral reefs are bleaching, many species of Fauna & Flora are reducing, and the ecosystem on which human life rely on is facing unprecedented threats.

Therefore, Operation Earth, under the technical guidance of TERRE Policy Centre, launched a ‘Climate Pioneer Schools Partnership’ in China, focusing middle schools, to build a platform for international innovative field research, academic exchange, policy dialogue and inter-school cooperation and to contribute to mitigate climate change and Sustainable Development Goal #3,7, 13 and 17. The partnership will also contribute to President Xi’s urgency for ‘Ecological Civilization’ through activities in the schools,

Overall Objective

The next 10 years are the key decade for cope with the climate change and biodiversity conservation. Operation Earth’s decisions now will have an irreversible impact on the environment we inhabited for the foreseeable future. Operation Earth will concentrate on expanding and cultivating our greatest resource, human resources.

To successfully cope with the enormous challenges of climate change and biodiversity conservation, we must mobilize and encourage young people to learn and disseminate President Xi’s ideology of ecological civilization and the shared future of humanity and to cope with climate change by raising their awareness of climate change and taking concrete actions.

To create strong dedication in minds of the young students about ‘Ecological Civilization and Shared Sustainable Future’ which is promoted by President Xi, as priority.

To address the issue of Climate Change through awareness and actions in school campuses and buildings

To inculcate behavioral change and climate consciousness among students towards conservation of nature and sustainable approach to the economic growth.

Guiding young students to change the existing energy consumption mode in their daily life and study, and turn to the green mode of sustainable economic development which protects the ecological environment.

Helping China to fulfill the solemn commitment of the United Nations Climate Conference to reduce carbon emissions per unit of GDP, increase renewable energy and reforestation;

Mobilize students to practice energy conservation and do their best to increase the proportion of renewable energy, so that teenagers can understand the concept of carbon footprint and its impact on biodiversity.

Establishing an inter-school competition platform for schools to strive to achieve carbon neutrality and operation;

Specific Objectives :

  1. To enhance China’s contribution in its pledge for Paris Agreement with United Nations for Climate Change Mitigation in the area of reducing emissions of CO2 per unit of GDP, increasing renewable energy and tree plantation.
  2. To engage students in saving energy and increasing renewable energy share hence, promote better understanding about carbon footprints and impacts on biodiversity.
  3. To create positive competition among school campuses for achieving net carbon neutrality

To achieve this, the short-term activities in school premises and long-term activities of skilling and training minds of school students in addressing Climate Change are proposed.

Specific Objective

From 2019 to 2020, teenagers from 100 schools will be called on to join the defensive battle against the global environmental crisis of climate change.

In next 10 years, we will organize field research volunteer expedition teams with 10,000 teenage field research volunteers to go to 30 field research sites worldwide, to support field researches by direct participation to cope with climate change and biodiversity conservation. At the same time, through hands on learning during the participation of these field researches of global significance, transferring environmental knowledge and skills to young people, and improve their environmental literacy, positively influences behavior, and inspires a new generation of global environmental leaders, and through them, influence one million people around the world.

What will be the nature of Initial activities?

  • Enhancing awareness campaigns through fun-learning campaigns, i.e.
    • promoting essay,
    • video and online promotions on use of renewable energy devices like, solar calculators, solar lamps, educational toys based on solar energy,
    • installation of mini solar rooftops and other renewable energy devices
  • Learning calculations on GHG emitted from lighting, fans and ACs.
  • Inducing behavioral change in improving energy efficiency of lighting, fans and air conditioning and other appliances in schools/campuses and homes
  • Learning calculations on CO2 absorbed by trees.
  • Planting and growing trees in school premises and surroundings to create carbon sink
  • Undertaking Field Research expeditions for assessing and addressing the climate impacts on nature and biodiversity, include the Monitoring of Ecosystem around the site of 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games.
  • To display the activities and experiences of Climate Pioneer Schools at UNESCO Pavilion of Beijing Garden Expo.
  • Select excellent Climate Pioneers, to participate in major international conferences on climate change and biodiversity conservation, as the observers, such as the United Nations Climate Conference, the Conferences of the Parties of Biodiversity Conservation, IUCN and wetland convention, etc.


‘Climate Pioneer Schools Partnership’ is a partnership with multi-vision approach and hence, it has direct as well as indirect expected outputs, which are mentioned below but not restrictive to;

  1. Awareness on climate change and about for China’s pledges to United Nations Paris Climate Agreement
  2. Reduction of use of fossil fuel related energy in the schools, and also saved the funding of water and electric bills;
  3. Dissemination of the knowledge that action to mitigate climate change also helps in saving cost and reduce of air pollution.
  4. Partnerships among the schools for generating positive competition on energy efficiency and renewable energy.
  5. Environment and Energy-smart students
  6. Annually awarding best climate pioneer schools at National level in China.
  7. In a hands-on way, a new atmosphere of energy conservation and emission reduction will be promoted, and positive development for building ecological civilization will be disseminated in response to climate change and biodiversity conservation.

Operation Earth and TERRE Policy Centre strongly believe that young people are the most energetic, creative and passionate forces of the society, engaging the students in ‘Climate Pioneer Schools Partnership’ would broaden their approach towards their lifestyle choices and serve in choosing the suitable field of interest while seeking their career. Young Students are known for their creative and innovative minds. Hence, this project would also generate new ideas and approaches to contribute in fulfilling China’s pledge to Paris Climate Agreement, broaden young people’s global vision, and .forstering their sense of social responsibilities and build positive and healthy image of Chinese youth.

In the summer of 2019, the first batch of “Climate Pioneer School Partner” mobilized and organized 50 young volunteers for field scientific research to participate in the field research expedition of Operation Earth.

By the end of 2019, 20 more schools will be enrolled in the Climate Pioneer School Partnership.

Funding Sources:

Referring to the organizational mode of the field research volunteer expedition teams, field research donations and the economic savings of electricity, water, paper and oil of “Climate Pioneer School Partnership” (compared with that of the 2018 freezing level).


TERRE Policy Centre is a non-profit, non-partisan and independent organization dedicated to sustainable solutions to our developmental imperatives. TERRE also is the abbreviation for ‘Technology, Education, Research and Rehabilitation for the Environment.’ TERRE strives to reach all strata of society, particularly the young generation and people at the bottom of the pyramid with capacity building tools on energy and food security. Its motto is: “To think is good but to act is better”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *