The World of 7 Billion student video contest encourages students to think critically about the challenges facing the planet today and to take that understanding to the next level through problem solving. One component of the video is to offer a sustainable solution to their chosen global challenge. Students take their newfound knowledge and apply STEM principles to design a sustainable solution to the global challenge and in doing so, begin to think like engineers, scientists, and future policy-makers.
The Paris Agreement was discussed throughout the 2016 election and became a contested topic - something that one candidate, who is now our President-elect, said he would “ditch.” This may not have garnered as much attention as some of the other controversial things Trump has said, but it may have the most far reaching consequences for our environment. To “ditch” the Paris Agreement is to “ditch” weather patterns as we know them and everything they impact – crops, plant and animal habitats, etc. It is to ditch clean air that we and our children breathe.
Last year, world leaders representing 192 countries gathered to adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The 17 goals serve as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.
Your students can play a part in helping the world achieve these goals by participating in the World of 7 Billion student video contest. The contest presents an opportunity for students to familiarize themselves with the global issues addressed in the SDGs and offer their thoughts on sustainable solutions.
While people are moving from place to place more and more, the world is undergoing the largest wave of urban growth in history. More than half of the world’s population is living in cities and this is increasing at rate of 1.5 percent.
Throughout human existence we have relied on oceans for many things: food, recreation, medicine, economic opportunities, among many others. They play a significant role as both the world’s largest habitat and its climate regulator. However, the world’s oceans have suffered a lot at the hands of humans and population growth has increasingly compounded the problem by pushing oceans to their limits and altering ecosystems beyond their natural state.
Like many Americans today, I am still processing how life in our country will be different with a President Trump. It remains to be seen how he will govern and how his priorities expressed in the campaign will manifest themselves in new national policy.
In just 50 years, the world’s population has more than doubled to over 7.4 billion people. That’s more than 7.4 billion bodies that need to be fed, clothed, and kept warm, all requiring a large amount of energy. Alongside this consumption, these 7.4 billion people are also producing vast quantities of waste. Consequently, the demand for energy and the production of waste are significant producers of greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change.
Since 1948, October 24 has been celebrated as United Nations Day, a chance to focus on global cooperation, peace and now, sustainability. For this anniversary, the UN is focusing on “concrete actions people can take to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), an ambitious set of 17 goals adopted last year to improve the lives of people around the globe and protect our shared ecosystems.
America’s parks are considered one of our country’s national treasures so it’s a fitting tribute that the theme of this year’s Geography Awareness Week is “Explore the Power of Parks.” And parks are just that – powerful. Parks have the power to bring people together, connect us with nature, and offer peace and beauty for all who visit. But our park lands serve a more utilitarian task as well.