As climate school strikes take place around the world, policy makers look for adequate responses to the generations who will suffer the consequences of climate change. Meanwhile, a citizens’ initiative in Finland proposes Climate Change Education for a school subject. If the initiative manages to collect 50,000 signatures from private citizens, it will proceed to the Finnish Parliament.
around the world have recently reported student strikes, publicly protesting
against ignorant climate policies. Extreme measures taken by the generations
who will predictably suffer most from the consequences of climate change, have
awoken international discussion on what is to be done.
climate change undeniably requires immediate action, but also continuous
efforts in the long run. As a response to the climate anxiety felt by students
globally, a citizens’ initiative in Finland now proposes to include Climate Change Education (CCE)
as a legitimate school subject.
change is already taught at Finnish schools, but the topic is fragmented and
dealt with under different subjects, such as biology and geography. As a
result, students might find it challenging to form a comprehensive
understanding of the phenomenon.
CCE taught as its own subject, it could ascertain that climate change related
issues are dealt with in a multi-disciplinary context, a logical order, and
within an atmosphere that encourages students to understand the issue and find
solutions for adapting to the changing climate.
to exceed 50,000 signatures
Finland, citizens have a unique opportunity to influence national laws by
proposing changes through a citizens’ initiative. If an initiative manages to
collect 50,000 signatures from private citizens in six months, the Finnish
Parliament is legally obliged to process it. Former successes include equal
marriage law, which began as a citizens’ initiative and came to action in 2017.
citizens’ initiative “Climate Change Education for School subject” is currently
live on a national online platform kansalaisaloite.fi, and within two weeks has
collected over 8 000 signatures from private
We hope the initiative manages to collect the necessary signatures and proceeds
to the Parliament. Climate change took our generation by surprise and we have
to find effective ways and willingness to fight the phenomenon today. But it’s
also our responsibility to make sure that future adults have all the skills and
knowledge in order to cope with climate change. That’s why we need to pay
attention to basic education, says
one of the initiators.