Climate change is one of the defining issues of this century, and it is not only a science issue. From shifting extreme weather that will threaten food production to rising sea levels that will drastically reshape cities and countries, the impacts are going to be felt in every aspect of society and will be unprecedented in scale. Once primarily the domain of climate scientists, the impacts of climate change on humans and environmental systems have become a focus for professionals in many different industries, from education to finance and insurance to construction. Up until now, many attempts to educate learners about climate change have relied on scare tactics to generate fear, but that approach can backfire and actually inhibit learners. Instead, we need to rethink our approach to climate change education and provide learners with academic reasoning, structure, and systems thinking in order for them to be able to contextualize climate change within their worlds.
This panel will constitute climate scientists, world-renowned economists, educators from the Earth Institute, Columbia University. It will also include youth voices as well as school teachers to cover the entire spectrum from k -12 and beyond.