Increase climate literacy and action throughout the Bay Area by sharing successes and by building capacity of climate educators and messengers.
Climate literacy and action are universal throughout the Bay Area. Climate science is an integral component of learning in the region. A culture of sustainability has become the social norm and communities are taking an active role in building their own climate resilience.
What's at Stake for Climate Education in the Bay Area
The San Francisco Bay Area is the fifth most populous metropolitan area in the United States, an economic powerhouse, one of the most visited places in the world, and historically and ecologically rich. It also faces unique threats from climate change, ranging from sea level rise to wildfires, which will have implications on integral elements of the Bay Area like our agricultural systems and public health. Climate change science is complex, requiring clear explanations and interpretation, which educators are uniquely positioned to provide.
In addition to these defining qualities, the San Francisco Bay Area has a strong community of environmental educators with expertise in how climate change might affect the region’s precious resources, from its national parklands to its marine life. BayCLIC is supporting local educators who are well positioned to engage the hearts and minds of nearby communities to ensure that this valuable place and its residents are protected from climate threats.
The Critical Role it Plays in Combating Climate Change
When it comes to climate change, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. However, there are many bright spots out there. Recent studies show that the number of Americans who accept climate change is at a record high and over 70% are supportive of climate actions like investment in clean energy.
At the same time, there are significant gaps in climate literacy and education. Even among individuals that accept the scientific consensus on man-made climate change, only one in ten know that 97% of scientists agree on the issue. Climate change science is complex, requiring clear explanations and interpretation, which educators are uniquely positioned to provide.
BayCLIC’s foundational belief is that education is inherently powerful; however, research also shows that climate literacy does not necessarily equate to action on climate change. Because of this BayCLIC has a dual mission: one, to ensure that visitors to the Bay Area’s array of renowned educational institutions learn about core elements of climate change but also that they feel motivated and empowered to take action.
BayCLIC will develop a climate education guide with a short, step-based process for educators interested in incorporating climate change into their work. Topics will range from climate communications framing to promoting solutions.
BayCLIC has created a climate science database specific to the Bay Area and will be hosting seminars for environmental educators and climate scientists working on climate change research in the region.
Tapping into the power of collective impact, BayCLIC is developing a common marketing campaign that will empower multiple organizations to speak with one voice on climate solutions.