To me, the most interesting question in this story about Environmental Literacy is whether advocates will be able to frame the proposed graduation requirement as a tool to help teachers and students excel in a system focused on evaluation (in other words, improve test scores) or whether it will be seen as one more subject to be squished into an already-packed school year. It’s a relevant debate.
Unfortunately, my suspicion is that as soon as the words “climate change” enter the story (which they do, at about 1:14), there are some people who will immediately see this as a political issue.
Despite the fact that 47 percent of Americans think global warming is a result of natural causes (only 14 percent of the world shares that opinion), among scientists there is little question that climate change is real and caused by humans.
It’s a sad irony that a lack of scientific knowledge among the general public could be a factor in preventing students from gaining access to that knowledge in the future.
Barbara Garrity agrees: “(It’s) unfortunate because Republicans and Democrats and Independents all live on this earth. We all want clean air to breath, we all want clean water, we all want a healthy planet. And I think that we have to seek that common ground and work together.”