Studies have shown that the higher the level of education an individual has, the more concerned they are for the environment. The 2012 World Values Survey showed that when forced to choose between protecting the environment and increasing the economy – those respondents with secondary education favored the environment more than those with less than secondary education. By making education a forefront throughout the globe, we can shift our awareness in the value of protecting our planet.
Changing The World Through Education
Education is a key factor in developing our knowledge and awareness about the issues affecting the nation’s future, and subsequently, the world. It gives individuals the tools and knowledge to encourage them to work toward reducing the negative impact they have on the environment. It helps individuals to assess their impact on the planet; and then make the necessary adjustments to reduce their dependence on natural resources, preserve energy, and use their buying power to promote a sustainable planet.
Benefits of Education
- Education increases the desire to protect our planet. Studies show a 23% increase in environmental concerns for those with secondary education, further increasing to 46% for those with tertiary education – compared to less than a 25% concern for the planet for those with no education.
- Educated households are also more likely to use different methods of water purification through filtering or boiling.
- Education can reduce vulnerability to climate change.
- Education supports sustainable farming. When farmers received more education, they reduced their environmental impact by 39% and pesticide use by 17%.
- Education slows the population growth. Slowing the population growth reduces the amount of greenhouse gases in the environment. Women with at least 12 years of education have 75-80% less children than women with lower levels of education.
- Education creates an opportunity for more green initiatives, and incubates environmentally sustainable business inventions.
How can I make an impact?
Tier 1: Global Goodness
- In America, we have the resources to receive a basic education, as well as options for secondary and post-secondary education. Making our own education a priority can aid others who are less fortunate in receiving their education.
- Volunteer at libraries to assist with reading to children.
- If you are an educator, make it a priority to share sustainability methods with your students.
Tier 2: Planet Protector
- All of Action 1.
- Support community education initiatives for low-income communities in your area.
- Donate to environmental education organizations (such as Heal the Planet) that are working to help foster education and environmental stewardship.
- Think globally. We are all one race, and the condition of our planet lies on all of our shoulders. By assisting developing nations with more education – we can further impact the health of our planet in positive ways.
Tier 3: Earth Angel
- All of Actions 1 & 2.
- Get involved. Volunteer with educational assistance programs. If you are feeling extremely passionate, go overseas and work in a teaching field.
- Research non-profits that are working to educate people in developing countries. Many of our natural resources come from developing countries; by educating those communities, they can learn to create better sustainability practices for the preservation of their natural resources.
- Choose to be an Ambassador for Change, and always Spread Love and Spread Light.
Education increases awareness and concern for the environment