Environmental Literacy Program Theory of Change Report
Report on the NOAA Office of Education Environmental Literacy Program
Climate change is the most pressing issue of the century. Already, its impacts are testing our emotional,
infrastructural, and societal tolerances. Damage from extreme weather and susceptibility to pandemics have increased, and communities of color and poverty are bearing a disproportionate share of the burden. This report outlines how creating a more environmentally literate society can help us face climate change and other threats to build a safer, healthier, and more resilient future for people and the planet. It means rethinking everything we do, from how we produce and consume energy, food, and water to how we protect the planet’s biodiversity.
Using multiple disciplines, the theory of change underpinning the report shows the pathways through which environmental literacy leads to resilient communities, whose members are hopeful, motivated, and skilled in addressing the tough environmental and social issues of our time. It provides a conceptual framework for tracking how community resilience education leads to increased community engagement and civic action—tackling both climate change mitigation and adaptation, since both are equally important and urgent.
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