Environmental Education and Human Adaptation to Climate Change: Considerations and Resources (Krasny, Chaopricha, 2015)

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Is education that accepts climate change as a given and incorporates how to adapt to a climate heavily impacted by humans consistent with the long standing goals of environmental education (EE)? Or does an education that focuses on how to live with—rather than attempting to prevent—climate change deviate from EE’s foundations of reducing human impacts and protecting environmental quality? In this report, we examine issues that climate adaptation raises for the field of EE. We first review scholarly literature on EE and climate adaptation, and present a compilation of existing educational resources on climate adaptation. We next point out approaches to adaptation education that are consistent with EE foundational principles, as well as those that—while crucial for individuals’ survival in the face of climate related risk—do not promote longer-term environmental quality. We close by suggesting implications of our literature and resource review for EE in the face of climate change.

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