Tag: environmental education

Why (and How) one North Carolina School is Going Solar

As a society, we expect a lot from our schools. In addition to teaching basic skills, we hope our educational institutions will prepare students to be 21st century leaders. Part of preparing future leaders includes teaching students about environmental topics and helping them develop tools to understand and address environmental challenges.

One environmental topic that many schools are now trying to incorporate into their curricula is energy (in particular the role of energy efficiency and renewable energy), but these can be tough ideas to teach. Energy brings together complex concepts, from the science of electricity to broader questions of how our energy use impacts the environment. In the face of this challenge, schools have a unique opportunity to educate through real-world application of concepts and hands on projects. Schools are in a unique position to become public leaders in taking advantage of new improvements in technology and growing renewable energy markets. Schools have predictable electrical consumption, teachers who are able to take advantage of new educational tools, and generally have enough real estate to install new energy systems.

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A New Environmental Education Framework: The Need for Financial Literacy

Lexi Herndon is the Marketing and Outreach Coordinator at the Environmental Finance Center at UNC Chapel Hill.

Environmental education (EE) is a big fish these days. Programs are flourishing across the country, large and small, public and private, for the young and the old, and on almost every environmental issue we face. Why has environmental education become so big? According to the EPA, EE “provides the public with the necessary skills to make informed decisions and take responsible action.” The North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) explains that EE leads to environmentally literate citizens who know what they need to do to keep the environment healthy and sustain its resources. While the growth of EE has certainly led to significant progress towards this goal, from our perspective at the Environmental Finance Center, something is still missing: environmental finance education. Continue reading