‘Climate education is crucial for raising the ambition we need to address the existential threat of climate change’, said the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, in celebration of the issuance of 100,000 certificates of course completion on UN CC:e-Learn platform.

Check out the full letter sent by Mr António Guterres to the UN CC:Learn Partnership and its community.

On 18 September 2020, the UN CC:Learn community celebrated the issuance of 100,000 certificates of course completion on our e-learning platform – a milestone for climate literacy worldwide. On this occasion, an event was held with high-level representatives from the United Nations, including the Deputy Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC, Mr. Ovais Sarmad, the Deputy Secretary-General of WMO,  Ms. Elena Manaenkova, the Executive Director of UNITAR, Mr. Nikhil Seth, as well as Ms. Janine Kuriger, Head of Division at the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Mr. Angus Mackay, Head of the UN CC:Learn Secretariat, Mr. Vincens Cótê and Ms. Cristina Rekakavas, respectively former and current coordinator of the UN CC:Learn programme.

As if this was not enough, we also had the attendance of more than 1,000 alumni from all over the world who joined via Zoom and Youtube. To close this celebration with a golden key, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Guterres, congratulated the UN CC:Learn Partnership and its community for this accomplishment. In his message, he also challenged our community to leverage climate literacy around the world to enable individuals, organizations, and societies to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

The task is now to scale up this effort and to build a global movement that can help us fulfill the promise of the Paris Agreement.”

Check out the full message sent by the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres.

 

Climate education is crucial for raising the ambition we need to address the existential threat of climate change.

I have been very encouraged to see the way that educators around the world are becoming more involved in climate change, in particular, because of the increasing role of youth in demanding greater attention to the crisis.

In that spirit, it gives me great pleasure to recognize the work of the One UN Climate Change Learning Partnership.

Since 2010, UN CC:Learn has been making the UN’s vast knowledge and expertise more easily available to people around the world, particularly in developing countries and countries in special circumstances.  The Partnership has now reached a milestone: more than 100,000 learners have successfully completed a free online course — and more than 50 percent of those learners are women.

This adds 100,000 informed voices to the cause, with increased knowledge, skills and, above all, the motivation to advance climate science, sustainable infrastructure design, responsible investment and other key dimensions of this challenge.  The task is now to scale up this effort and to build a global movement that can help us fulfill the promise of the Paris Agreement.  The recently launched “United in Science 2020” report from the World Meteorological Organization is a further contribution, cataloging the crisis and ringing the alarm.

I congratulate the UN CC:Learn partnership on this achievement and thank the Government of Switzerland for its long-standing support for this important work.

UN CC:Learn has reached an important milestone: the issuance of 100,000 certificates of course completion from its e-learning platform. And to acknowledge this important accomplishment, an online event was hosted on 18 September. For one hour, people who are part of UN CC:Learn history engaged in discussions about the program, its results, and its future.

In September 2020, UN CC:Learn achieved an important milestone: the issuance of the 100,000th certificate of course completion on its e-learning platform. This special certificate was issued on 11 September 2020 to a who had successfully concluded the Green Fiscal Policy course. In order to acknowledge this important accomplishment, an event – which was held on 18 September 2020 – brought together people both virtually and in-person to discuss the partnership and the challenges of promoting climate literacy.

The event was hosted on Zoom and live-streamed on YouTube. 15 people attended the ceremony in-person and over 1,000 people followed it online. The line-up comprised individuals who have contributed to UN CC:Learn history: Mr. Nikhil Seth, UNITAR’s Executive Director, who highlighted the importance of continuing to promote global climate literacy in innovative ways, Mr. Angus Mackay, Head of the UN CC:Learn Secretariat, who noted the increasingly different audience currently following UN CC:Learn’s courses, Mr. Vincens Coté, who was the programme’s coordinator from 2014 to 2017 and recalled how it all started 5 years ago, and Ms. Janine Kuriger, Head of the Global Programme Climate Change and Environment at the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, who reflected on this milestone and perspectives for the future.

Some partner agencies also joined the celebration. Mr. Ovais Sarmad, Deputy Executive Secretary at the UN Climate Change Secretariat talked about the contribution that UN CC:Learn is giving to the fight against the climate crisis and thanked everyone who took some time to complete one of the 27 e-courses available. Representing the World Meteorological Organization, Dr. Elena Manaenkova, who acts as Deputy Secretary-General at the organization, noted the evolution of the program since its very early stages and its relevance for one UN collaboration in the area of climate change learning, stressing WMO’s support. The event was moderated by Ms. Cristina Rekakavas, UN CC:Learn program coordinator.

As part of the event, a “behind the scenes” video was screened with the purpose of walking viewers through the processes behind the program’s course development, giving them a glimpse of the everyday work being done by the UN CC:Learn Secretariat.

To conclude the event, UN CC:Learn launched a new challenge, engaging the 400,000 UN CC:Learn alumni to take part in the “100k Stories for Climate Action” initiative, which will last for one month and will reward the best 10 stories.

You can access the recordings of the event here.

 

Challenging times require innovative solutions! As the Covid-19 crisis upends the lives of billions of people, UN CC:Learn has taken all the necessary steps to adapt its operation to the “new normal”. Get a glimpse of what has been done to enable the programme to keep carrying out its activities.

The Covid-19 outbreak has upended the lives of billions of people all over the world. This has dramatically modified the way people work, learn, and interact. This sudden change has pushed UN CC:Learn to rethink the way it operates, especially at the country level. Following multiple online consultations with all its key partners, plans for the implementation of UN CC:Learn activities at national, regional and global level have been adjusted.

A new UN CC:Learn Zoom platform has been created, enabling both the secretariat and its partners to set up meetings and webinars with up to 500 attendees. A methodology to convert the face-to-face workshops, which are part of a National Climate Change Learning Strategy development and implementation process, into engaging virtual events has also been prepared. For instance, a meeting to validate Kenya’s background report and its subsequent National Planning Workshop took place fully online during the summer. Another issue that emerged is the intermittent internet connection in some areas, which is also being addressed with UN CC:Learn support whenever possible.

The Youth Climate Dialogues initiative, which has been affected by the closure of schools in many countries, are being re-organized as online events. This is also the case for experience-sharing events among countries, for instance, a discussion on climate change and green economy learning, which took place in September as part of the UN CC:Learn regional hub in West Africa, and climate change trainings.

Over the past months, the UN CC:Learn e-learning platform has also experienced a spike in traffic, with new users accessing it and taking up different courses every day. This may be partly due to the self-isolation measures adopted in several countries. To support all these new learners, the programme has further improved its online infrastructure to deal with increasing traffic and continues to develop new learning products, such as the Green Recovery e-course series and the French and Spanish versions of the Gender & Environment course. In this context, UN CC:Learn has recently celebrated the issuance of its 100,000th certificate.

Moving forward, UN CC:Learn is looking forward to continue to engage with stakeholders through a series of online events and webinars. The Covid-19 pandemic has shown that through innovation and dialogue collaboration can continue.

Under the leadership of the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Ghana Education Service (GES), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) a Core Group with stakeholders from the educations has conducted an audit of the national school curricula and has developed recommendations for further action and a roadmap for implementation.

Sustainable Development Goal No. 13 calls upon all countries to integrate mitigation and adaptation, impact reduction and early warning into school curricula. Ghana is leading the way and has launched a process to include climate change and green economy concepts into the general education system. Under the leadership of the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Ghana Education Service (GES), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) a Core Group with stakeholders from the educations sector was formed. The Group has conducted an audit of the national school curricula and has developed recommendations for further action and a roadmap for implementation.

Children looking up at the camera

As a next step a baseline study to assess the current knowledge about climate change among teachers and school children in Ghana is planned. On 29-31 May 2017, a preparatory workshop was held to discuss and develop a survey questionnaire for the study. Mr. Ebenezer Ampa-Sampong, EPA Deputy Executive Director emphasized that the situational analysis would be important to have a clear picture about the current circumstances and to define effective interventions.

Members of the Core Group at the preparatory workshop for the baseline study

In rolling out the curriculum review, Ghana is seeking to learn from other countries that have already advanced the integration of climate change in school education. Initial ideas with colleagues from the Malawi Institute for Education and the National Curriculum Development Centre of Uganda were exchanged during a UN CC:Learn workshop in Addis Ababa in March 2017. A mission to share experiences is planned for July.

The integration of climate change into school curricula is one of the priority actions included in Ghana’s National Climate and Green Economy Learning Strategy which was launched in October last year. (http://www.uncclearn.org/news/ghanaians-celebrate-climate-change-and-green-economy-week).

 

Do you want to find out why promoting gender equality can help deliver better environmental outcomes, and how you can do it? If so, access the online course on gender and environment on the UN CC:Learn e-learning platform. It is now available in English, Spanish and French.

Do you want to find out why promoting gender equality can help deliver better environmental outcomes, and how you can do it? If so, access the online course on gender and environment on the UN CC:Learn e-learning platform. The course was launched at the at the sixth GEF Assembly taking place in Danang, Viet Nam.

This self-paced free course has been developed by UNITAR/UN CC:Learn, the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP), with valuable contributions from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), UN Women, UNDP, UN Environment and the Secretariats of the Multilateral Environmental Agreements that the GEF serves, including the Convention on Biological Diversity, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, among others.

“The Gender and Environment e-course is the first of its kind and it will be a valuable resource for the environmental community in its efforts to be more gender responsive. This course will also help raise awareness and build capacity to implement GEF’s new policy on Gender Equality” said Francoise Clottes, GEF Director of Strategy and Operations.

“UNDP recognizes the transformative potential of gender equality to advance environmental sustainability. The course is an exciting opportunity to broaden understanding of the important links between gender and environment and offers practical tools, evidence and examples to mainstream gender in key environmental sectors.” said Adriana Dinu, Executive Coordinator, UNDP Global Environmental Finance.

“GEF Small Grants Programme (SGP) is delighted to have led and facilitated the development of this useful course with all the partners. We are also excited to feature concrete SGP project examples where local communities have implemented innovative gender responsive projects and produced multiple benefits on both environment and livelihoods.” stated Yoko Watanabe, Global Manager, GEF Small Grants Programme.

The course allows learners to get a better understanding of the linkages between gender equality, women’s empowerment and environmental sustainability. It highlights how gender-responsive policies and projects support environmental outcomes.

This new e-learning resource is comprised of the following 6 modules:

  1. Gender & Environment (introductory module)
  2. Gender & Biodiversity
  3. Gender & Climate Change
  4. Gender & Land Degradation
  5. Gender & International Waters
  6. Gender & Chemicals and Waste

Each module takes around 1-1.5 hours to complete and includes an interactive lesson, with videos, relevant statistics, case studies, exercises/reflection points, key messages and references to additional resources. A quiz at the end of each module allows participants to measure the achievement of the learning objectives.

Take up the course today: English, Spanish and French.

Through Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Change 2017, 150 students between the age of 17 and 25 years old built their knowledge and capacity to take action on climate change.

Through the Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Change 2017, 150 students between the age of 17 and 25 years old built their knowledge and capacity to take action on climate change. This initiative – promoted by UN CC:Learn and UNESCO Office, Jakarta, in collaboration with the Climate Reality Project Indonesia and Youth for Climate Change Indonesia, with support from the Office of the President of Indonesia’s Special Envoy for Climate Change – contributes to the implementation of the National Climate Change Learning Strategy.

The leadership programme includes a series of three training events organized in February 2017 in different provinces of Indonesia. During the camps, students learned about climate change and its impact in different sectors. They were also coached on how to become actors of change in their communities, and beyond, through the development and implementation of group projects.

A multiplicity of experts presented different dimensions on climate change and showcased ways to deal with this challenge.Students working in groups of 5 reflect on how they can address climate change in their daily lives.

Participants highlight an impact of climate change they can already observe in their communities and post it on social media to raise awareness among the broad public – “We can't go to school because of great smoke caused by forest fire”

During the camp, students were trained on how to develop and film short videos aimed at sensitizing their peers.

Students participated in field visits in UNESCO Biosphere Reserves.

Students in Bukit Lawang had the chance to see orangutans in the wild in Gunung Leuser national park.

Students working on group commitments for post-camp action.Students presenting their plans for implementing their commitments after the camps.

Students completing the post-camp knowledge assessment test. Compared with the results of the pre-camp test, it measured the increase in knowledge achieved through the training.

Each group of students filmed an awareness raising video. These are now publicly available on YouTube.

After the camps, the 150 participants have started applying their newly acquired knowledge and skills, implementing a variety of post-camp activities. These include rolling out of social media campaigns through videos and e-posters, organization of forums and events, delivering of presentations in primary and secondary schools, raising awareness of the Earth Hour and other relevant initiatives among community members, contributing articles for local newspapers, participating in radio programmes and tree planting, among others.

E-posters posted online by the students  Organizing a seminar on renewable energy.Raising awareness through radio messages. Educating children on climate change.

For further information, please visit:

UN CC:Learn will award a special recognition to the most active and committed students, sponsoring their participation in a training event on climate change organized in the United States of America.

UN CC:Learn has revamped its flagship Introductory e-course on Climate Change. New features, tools, videos, and interactive lessons have been added. The instructors will facilitate the learning experience by bringing their practical knowledge and relevant information on climate change into dynamic and engaging lessons.

After six successful years, UN CC:Learn has revamped its flagship Introductory e-course on Climate Change, making it available in three languages: English, Spanish and French. Since its launch in 2014, more than 100,000 people have registered and over 15,000 certificates have been issued, making it the most successful course in the UN CC:Learn portfolio.

From youth climate movements to the rise of environmentally friendly habits, people are more aware of climate change and its consequences than ever and are taking and demanding concrete action. In order to continue to offer the most engaging learning experience, the new course, titled Climate Change: From Learning to Action, improved on the original in several dimensions: 1) inclusion of new and up-to-date information (e.g. NDC process, youth engagement); 2) improved design and usability; 3) more practical use and interactivity for learners.

The e-course aims to enhance climate literacy across all sectors of society; therefore, it is open to anyone interested, from those who would like to learn more about the subject to those who want to turn their knowledge into action to take a stand against this issue. Upon completion of the six modules, users will be able to:

• Explain what climate change is;

• Describe how we plan to adapt to the negative impacts of climate change;

• Identify opportunities for low carbon development;

• Identify ways to plan and finance climate actions;

• Explain how climate negotiations work;

• Formulate a climate pledge, project or policy.

Each module is composed of 4 to 5 learning units featuring a mix of tools that deliver key content and engage the learners.  As part of the course, participants are also invited to develop a concrete action plan or project to tackle climate change.

Each module, which can be accessed in random order, answers a specific question:

• What is climate change and how does it affect us?

• How to adapt to climate change?

• How to mitigate climate change?

• How to plan and finance action on climate change?

• How do climate change negotiations work?

• How to tackle climate change in practice?

The course remains self-paced and free of charge. It takes an average of 8 hours to complete. However, users have the possibility to take only the modules that interest them most. A quiz at the end of each module allows participants to measure the achievement of the learning objectives. A certificate of completion is awarded to learners who score 70% or higher in all six quizzes.

Take up “Climate Change: From Learning to Action” in English, Spanish and French.

UN CC:Learn and WMO launch a joint new e-course to enhance climate information for climate actions. Registration open!

While to date, 197 UNFCCC members have signed the Paris Agreement and 187 ratified it, thus pledging to keep the increase in global average temperature well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, it remains a challenging endeavor.

Source: UNDP

Source: UNDP

Member states need to make choices between a range of possible actions requiring information on past, present and potential future climate conditions. Adapting to climate change requires the development of the best available scientific information about climate change trends and their societal impacts. The generation and use of climate information for planning and decision-making should be strengthened, drawing on the best available climate observations, data and science.

To ensure the best societal outcomes from climate action, information on past, present and potential future climate conditions should be systematically integrated into national adaptation policies and project planning. The relevance and adequacy of climate information for decision-making can be identified through multi-stakeholder and country-level processes, drawing on the resources of the global hydro-meteorological community and information flowing across global to local scales. Synergies must be enabled among communities that produce climate information and those who use it for climate action. While producers gather, analyze and compile climate information, users need to know what kind of information is available out there that can support adaptation planning.

The course Integrating Climate Risk Information into NAPs, developed by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS), and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) comes to support communities showing how to strengthen National Adaptation Plans (NAPs) through appropriate climate information and coordinated policy action, enabling various institutions and actors to work together in a collaborative framework.

The course answers several questions:

  • Why is climate information important in adaptation planning and decision making?
  • What are the technical resources for assessing climate risks?
  • What is the role of National Hydro-meteorological Services in the NAP process?
  • How can priority climate actions be enhanced by climate scientific information?
  • What climate products and services that support NAPs are out there?

The course is available in three languages – English, Spanish and French- and is designed to respond the learning needs of climate services providers (National Hydro-meteorological Services, research/academic and international organizations), and users (e.g. decision-makers, private investors, non-governmental organizations, etc.), as well as of those working at the science-policy interface for outreach or communication purposes.

The course may eventually catalyze innovation in climate services, enabling climate information users and producers to co-produce climate knowledge, sharing feedback, engaging and connecting with different actors along the climate services value chain for the development of tailored information and products for better adaptation decision making.

This course is free of charge and you can register here: English, French, and Spanish.

UN CC:Learn and UNESCO Office, Jakarta, in collaboration with The Climate Reality Project Indonesia and Youth for Climate Change Indonesia, and with support from Office of the President’s Special Envoy for Climate Change, launch this week-end the Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Change 2017.

UN CC:Learn and UNESCO Office, Jakarta, in collaboration with The Climate Reality Project Indonesia and Youth for Climate Change Indonesia, and with support from the Office of the President’s Special Envoy for Climate Change, launch this week-end the Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Change 2017. This initiative is carried out within the second phase of the UN CC:Learn Project to Strengthen Human Resources, Learning and Skills Development to Address Climate Change in Indonesia, and contributes to the implementation of the National Climate Change Learning Strategy.

This leadership programme on climate change includes three youth camps, designed to build the knowledge and skills of 150 Indonesian students aged between 17 and 25 years old to act on climate change. These events will take place in three different provinces of Indonesia, during the month of February 2017:

 

Each camp will last 3 days, comprising 1) training sessions on climate change and its impacts on the agriculture and energy, marine and fisheries and forestry sectors, 2) workshops to strengthen confidence and communication skills, including the development of videos and social media strategies 3) group discussions, and 4) field visits. Follow-up activities, such as the organization of peer learning forums will enable the students to continue engaging after the workshop. UN CC:Learn will award special recognition to the three most active and committed students, sponsoring their participation in a week-long training event on climate change organized in the United States of America (USA) during the summer of 2017.

Follow the activities and news from the Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Change 2017 on the dedicated Facebook page as well as on UN CC:Learn social media (Facebook, Twitter), using the hashtag #ylccc2017.

 

Further information: http://www.unesco.org/new/en/jakarta/about-this-office/single-view/news/youth_leadership_camp_for_climate_change_2017/

 

During the past months, our UN CC:Learn Ambassador for Climate Change Learning from Malawi, Ms. Shamiso Najira, has been very active in promoting informal climate change education, by facilitating the Youth Climate Dialogue (YCD) between a school in Lilongwe (Malawi) and St. Gallen (Switzerland). Here she tells us about this project, from an initial idea to COP21!

During the past months, our UN CC:Learn Ambassador for Climate Change Learning from Malawi, Ms. Shamiso Najira, has been very active in promoting informal climate change education, by facilitating the Youth Climate Dialogue (YCD) between a school in Lilongwe (Malawi) and St. Gallen (Switzerland). Here she tells us about this project, from an initial idea to COP21!

The Youth Climate Dialogues (YCD) aim to provide a forum for youth both in Switzerland and UN CC:Learn partner countries to share their views about climate change. In particular, I have been involved in the organization of a dialogue between high schools students from Lilongwe Girls Secondary School (Malawi) and from the Kantonsschule am Burggraben Highschool in St. Gallen (Switzerland) since the beginning of the project in August 2015. In my role as a moderator, I met various times with the 20 students participating in the dialogue from the Malawi side and helped their preparation, which included undertaking modules of the UN CC:Learn e-course on climate change and preparing pictures on how climate change is affecting them and what they think can be done to address this issue.

Ms. Shamiso Najira, UN CC:Learn Ambassador from Malawi talking with the students in St. Gallen via video conference.

Ms. Shamiso Najira, UN CC:Learn Ambassador from Malawi talking with the students in St. Gallen via video conference.

The dialogue via video conference was held on 4th November 2015 and was very successful as the students were able to share freely their personal views and experiences on climate change for about two hours. This exchange has a strong impact on the students. However, this is not limited to the event, as reflections continued afterwards in school. An official event, in particular, was organized on the 9th November to share the main results of the video exchange with the wider public. On that occasion, I summarized and presented the material produced by the Lilongwe Secondary School. In addition, I made my knowledge and experience available to facilitate the public debate that followed.

Photo project by the Students from the Lilongwe Girls Secondary School.

Photo project by the Students from the Lilongwe Girls Secondary School.

This first ever Youth Climate Dialogue was followed by two additional Dialogues between schools in Switzerland, Niger and Uganda. A video showcasing this innovative initiative was presented by UNITAR’s Executive Director, Mr. Nikhil Seth, at COP21 during the UN Alliance Side Event on Informal Climate Change Education, held on “Education Day” (4th December 2015). It was great to be there in person to see the results of the initiative.

I also had the chance to present my experience with the YCD to UN CC:Learn national and global partners at the UN CC:Learn Annual Meeting on 24 February 2016, in Geneva, Switzerland. I think the YCDs are a valuable initiative and am happy to know that it will be repeated with more schools in the course of 2016!

One of the screens showing the YCD video at COP21, which includes comments from Shamiso.

One of the screens showing the YCD video at COP21, which includes comments from Shamiso.

To know more about, check the videos below:

YCD between Malawi and Switzerland: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaqAAafcRe4&feature=youtu.be

YCD video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTaQ-AIFth4