Climate Change

Education is essential to help people of all ages understand climate change and take informed action to prevent it and mitigate impacts.  The U.S. Global Change Research Program worked with myriad agencies and organizations to develop Climate Literacy: Essential Principles of Climate Sciences which identifies the knowledge and abilities individuals and communities need to make informed and responsible decisions about actions that impact our climate.  Use the resources below to help build our collective climate literacy.

Guidelines:
  • Fairness and accuracy
  • Depth
  • Action orientation

The effects of climate change on mental health are rarely highlighted in textbooks or the media, but it is a major concern, especially for communities disproportionately affected by other environmental injustices. This report is published periodically by the American Psychological Association with the latest version (2021) linked here. Students in my college course on intersectional environmental communication highlighted this resource as the most impactful subject they learned about. Teaching about mental health and climate change is essential for promoting civic responsibility and centering curriculum on equity and inclusion. This report is written in clear language that is easy to assign as readings or develop lectures from. Students will likely personally identify with many of the themes, and therefore instructors should exercise caution in leading discussions to respect student experiences.

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This report provides the latest information on the multiple effects of climate change on mental health, the structural inequities that lead to some populations bearing greater impacts, and how people think about and respond to climate change.

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Publication, Article/Report
Guidelines:
  • Fairness and accuracy
  • Emphasis on skills building
  • Action orientation

Written by Leah Thomas, the founder of popular Instagram account @intersectionalenvironmentalist (which is also a sizable brand crossing social media boundaries), this book explores how environmental injustice disproportionately affects communities traditionally silenced and marginalized. Increasingly, young people are passionate about the undeniable link between climate justice and social justice. This book will appeal highly to readers feeling a sense of urgency in the climate action movement and spark group discussions beyond climate science into civil rights and action. This is a fantastic way to reach individuals who recognize this work from social media activism and bring those conversations into the classroom.

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The Intersectional Environmentalist is written as a general primer on intersectional environmentalism (EI) for the next generation of activists, appropriate for high school students. EI is an inclusive version of environmentalism that advocates for both the protection of people and the planet. It identifies the ways in which injustices happening to marginalized communities and the earth are interconnected.

Resource Category:

Book
Guidelines:
  • Fairness and accuracy
  • Depth
  • Emphasis on skills building
  • Usability

LiMPETS is a citizen science program that gives 6th to 12th grade students a chance to participate in monitoring research that is used to track trends in ecology and the effects of climate change, among other environmental phenomena, along the coast of California. Students build science skills in data collection, analysis, and presentation in their classrooms and backyards. The program, based on outstanding high-quality science, provides instructional training and materials that are usually only available at the college level. Supported by the National Marine Sanctuaries, it can also connect educators to broader resources on ocean and climate science on our coasts.

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LiMPETS (Long-term Monitoring Program and Experiential Training for Students) is a citizen science program that monitors the coastal ecosystems of California and helps youth develop a scientific understanding of the ocean.