GEEP and the sustainable development goals

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates

I wrote about GEEP yesterday and its call to action.

GEEP's mission and goals are:

"to build capacity to advance policy, governance, and practice in environmental education around the world, including at the local, regional, national and international levels, foster strategic partnerships to create a vibrant "network for networks" resulting in a stronger global environmental education community, and promote and encourage innovation in environmental education on a global scale.

Whilst these are ok as far as they go, they largely miss the point I made yesterday which is that we need to restate the case robustly for the importance of a well-functioning biosphere to all life on Earth. Whilst reducing inequalities is important, doing so in a way that doesn't completely mess up the planet is more important.

The call for action invites you to say what the most important action for the (immediate) future was.  I chose #9:

Strengthen Environmental Education's Role in Achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals.

I said this because the Sustainable Development Goals have both global significance and immediacy and environmental educators have to be able to show the relevance of their work to them (and vice versa).  We can't afford to leave the goals to global learning advocates.

My recommendation for a next step we could take in relation to these is to promote and encourage a critical consideration of the goals by young people in and out of school.  This was my priority because I fear that much of what is happening in relation to them is not at all critical.  For example, there needs to be a prioritisation of the goals as some of the 17 are more important (in the short term) than others.  And that applies to the 169 target outcomes as well, not all of which are coherent, let along sensible: more like a grab-bag of consciousness that reflects how they were put together by activists all of whom had to have their say.

When I first drafted this, there were 37 responses to the call for action, with <10% highlighting the goals.  Although the numbers are rising, a focus on the goals remains a minority interest.  Why? ...

Posted in: Comment, News and Updates


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