Environmental Education: The importance of caring for our planet

“Our planet’s alarm is going off, and it is time to wake up and take action!” – Leonardo DiCaprio, actor and activist.

 

On January 26, World Environmental Education Day is commemorated, with the aim of raising awareness in all people about the importance of caring for the environment, protecting the flora and fauna of their localities and joining global initiatives.

The origin of the celebration

 

Different investigations indicate that the origin of World Environmental Education Day was when the International Seminar on Environmental Education was held in the city of Belgrade, between October 13 and 22, 1975. It was at that meeting that the Belgrade Charter was generated, which talks about the importance of Environmental Education.

 

What is environmental education?

 

It is a pedagogical and interdisciplinary teaching model that seeks to make society aware of the impact of human actions on the environment.

 

This model promotes conscious learning, environmental values and practices oriented towards ecology and care for the planet. Environmental education is not only designed for the initial levels, but also includes impacting the different influential agents of society.

 

This discipline creates action plans that seek governments and public and private institutions to generate initiatives that protect the environment, solve problems, create tools for sustainable economic and social development, and prevent future natural disasters.

 

This type of education believes that the action of governments and political agents is fundamental so that they provide their citizens with the tools to have a sustainable life. Through awareness, problems such as the extinction of species, the melting of glaciers, global warming, among others, are evidenced.

 

The role of environmental education

 

In recent years, the effects of certain practices, excessive production, exploitation of natural resources and pollution in the environment have been observed.

 

According to the United Nations Organization (UN), if humanity continues without making significant changes in its behavior, climate change will be irreversible, causing catastrophic effects on the planet, which will have consequences on the development, food and quality of life of all its inhabitants.

 

Main objectives of World Environmental Education Day

 

  • Make people aware of and sensitize themselves to the environmental problems, so that they can search for, protect and offer solutions to them.
  • Educate society so that they understand what the environment is, its importance and the delicate balance that exists between man and nature.
  • Help social groups to develop the necessary skills to seek solutions to ecological problems in their immediate environment.
  • Keep statistics of reality in environmental matters and teach people to evaluate the evolution of the process, either to demonstrate improvement or detect a problem that needs an immediate solution.
  • Encourage the participation of society in the search for solutions to environmental problems.

 

The World Environmental Education Day is a call for all citizens, as well as the political leaders of the world, to generate significant actions to stop the damage caused to the environment. This planet is home to all of us and it is our duty to take care of it.

 

Por: Juan Carlos Ugarelli

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