Education forms the basis of everything in today’s world including environment. Environmental Education imparts knowledge about the current situation and future prospects of nature. It teaches people to explore all the problems related to environment, and engage in wise ways of preserving it.
A number of schools have taken the initiative to provide practical as well as theoretical knowledge about the impact of human activities on Nature. They take students out of the four walls of a classroom and make them do activities like gardening, watering plants, meditation in community parks etc. Education is the only way to make the best minds work productively.
In this era, the natural world is under threat. Different species of Flora and Fauna are on the verge of extinction, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat – everything is polluted or has contaminants. By including Environmental studies as a subject in schools, as well as in higher education, we can make coming generations more sensitized and encourage them to find innovative solutions and methods for the way ahead, in order to protect nature.
Here are 5 reasons why there is a need that the learning years should be integrated with environmental education.
In order to take any step towards protecting our environment surroundings, we need awareness, which can come only from studying subjects related to our ecosystems. What are the issues the world is facing today? What are the components which constitute the universe? What are the different species of plants and animals? How can we ensure their long term survival? What is sustainability and how can it be achieved?
All these questions will be answered only if we learn about the environment and apply that knowledge practically.
Making sure that the needs of future generation are met by the earth’s resources, would a Sustainable form of consumption of those resources today. At the current rate of consumption, Natural resources will be depleted far too fast for future generations to survive. Our irresponsible usage of these resources will leave our future generations to bear with the consequences of this exploitation. Environmental education help people understand the repercussions caused by over exploitation, and act accordingly
Both physical and mental health get affected with a depletion of the environment. These can instead flourish if we come more in contact with Nature.
One of the best benefits of this type of education is that it takes place outside the confines of a classroom. Students, who would not have otherwise spent this time outdoors, experience serenity and the healing powers of nature. In fact, treatment through natural means is called Eco-therapy. It helps patients recover from depression, cures heart ailments, maintains Blood Pressure, sleep longevity, improves eyesight etc. It’s a no hidden fact that a person who remains closest to nature is likely to stay healthier.
Places with natural surroundings are best for artists to create their masterpieces. Poetry, painting, sculptures etc are all products of imagination, inspired by nature quote from the cult film Dead Poets Society says
“ Medicine, law, engineering, these are the noble pursuits, necessary to sustain life but poetry, romance, love, beauty, these are what we stay alive for”.
Such creative work, more often than not, are the products of nature. Environmental education can make people recognize the hidden artist within them.
Raises Awareness about Environmental Threats
It can encourage today’s generation to switch to safer and better choices. One would know the rescue drills for natural calamities better, how to use your greens better (they can do what no medicine can) etc. Environmental Education is one subject that warns you against everything which may go wrong.
Renewable sources of Energy: Environmental education makes people understand the importance of renewable energy. Non renewable sources of energy like petrol, diesel etc are the major sources of the world’s pollution. Using renewable sources like solar energy, wind energy etc is encouraged Environment Education, and is imperative in our fight against global warming.
There are various projects being taken by Governments and organisations for enhancing Ecological education throughout the world. The Indian government has established The Environmental Education, awareness and training program with an objective of spreading this in remote areas of the country as well as other developed parts. The National Environmental education act 1990 requires to provide national leadership to increase environmental literacy. It also established the office of environmental program to implement this. CPR environmental education center was set up by the ministry of environment of India to increase environmental consciousness.
Environmental consciousness is being spread through cinema and digital media as well. Al Gore’s documentaries and Amitav Ghosh’s books have been revelations, as have been Leonardo Di Caprio’s efforts. Social Media campaigns daily publish more and more information on environmental conservation.
All such initiatives will help making world a better place to live.
Apart from these the students who study environment will further educate people about the importance of nature. They will make people aware about the traditional and technical ways of protecting the planet.