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Climate Change Action Plan

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					                       Climate Change Action Plan
   Recommendation Template on Energy Efficiency and Conservation in School
                               Curriculum

                         Nancy J. Nichols/Environmental Engineering & Education
                Energy Efficiency and Conservation in School Curriculum/RCI 3.3.2


SUMMARY: Enhancement of existing school curriculum standards and initiatives
to promote energy efficiency and conservation. Curriculum standards and
initiatives are to provide for a comprehensive understanding of the relationship of
global warming to greenhouse gas emissions caused by human activities, impacts on
human health and safety as well as natural ecosystems, and specific efficiency and
conservation measures that can be taken by individuals and communities to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions.

The objective of this program is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through
sustainable behavior by the students and their families and communities, and to
inspire and prepare students for engagement in solutions to global warming
challenges. Sustainable behavior is to include facets such as daily habits, life-long
decisions, individual advocacy, and community involvement.


Program Description and Justification:

The New Hampshire Curriculum Framework for Science Literacy (June 2006)
generally addresses local and global environmental issues such as the reduction of
waste, available types of energy (eg., solar energy and fossil fuels), and how the use
of technologies at a local level may contribute to global environmental problems.
This framework provides the opportunity for NH science teachers to discuss global
warming and how greenhouse gas emissions are linked to individual behavior, but
does not currently require it. The current framework does not require discussion of
efficiency and conservation measures that students, and their families and
communities can take to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Consequently, most
(or many) NH students do not have an appreciation of the significance of global
warming and the impact of their behavior on this problem.

Instructional materials on global warming are available in a variety of sources;
however, interdisciplinary materials that can be incorporated into existing
curriculum and meet new curriculum standards are needed.

Supplemental learning opportunities for students are currently available through a
variety of programs; however, access to these programs by the majority of students
is not feasible due to location, funding, and/or small capacity of the program.
Initiatives are needed to make advanced academic programs and extracurricular
activities that address global warming, efficiency, and conservation available within
all NH schools systems and to all NH students.
Mechanism: The New Hampshire Curriculum Framework for Science Literacy
(specifically Earth Space Science Curriculum) are to be amended to specifically
include global warming, impacts on human health and safety as well as preservation
of natural ecosystems, and specific efficiency and conservation measures that can be
taken by individuals and communities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
New/amended instructional materials are to be developed for multiple grade levels
to meet the new curriculum standards, and are to include open enrollment as well as
advanced academic study curricula. These materials are to be made readily
available to NH educators.

Opportunities and resources are to be made available in every NH school system for
extracurricular activities that engage students to actively learn about global
warming issues, and participate in greenhouse gas emission reductions. Programs
are to be developed to challenge students and encourage competition between
schools in greenhouse gas reduction initiatives by students and their families and
communities. Support and leadership by teachers, parents, green businesses, and
advocacy groups for programs at the school level (i.e., mentors and coaches) are to
be sought. Training and educational materials for these supporters and leaders is to
be provided.


   1.   How the policy or program achieves the desired result

Childhood education is paramount for behavior changes affecting long-term greenhouse
gas emission reductions. Education starting in early grades and extending through high
school will provide reinforcement of concepts, more in depth instruction, and eventual
modification of behaviors that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Students who
understand the significance of global warming and individual responsibility will modify
their own behavior in the long-term, as well as engage their families and communities to
take steps in the short-term to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Extracurricular
programs focused on global warming and greenhouse gas emissions will serve to educate
and inspire students as well as their program supporters and leaders.

   2. Party in Charge of Implementation:

   NHDES, The Energy Conservation and Efficiency Board to be established by the
   RCCI, NH Board of Education, and Local SAUs.

   3. Parties Affected by Implementation: (residents, businesses, municipalities, etc.)

All NH students in K-12, and their families and communities

   4. Timeframe of Implementation
Amendment of the New Hampshire curriculum framework and
development/dissemination of necessary instruction materials is to be achieved by June
2009. Extracurricular programs are to be initiated within schools in September 2009.

   5. Anticipated Timeframe of Outcome

Estimated CO2 Emission Reduction: (need assistance to determine estimates)
    1. Short-term (2015) – Small
    2. Mid-term (2020) - Moderate
    3. Long-term (2050) – Large

Cost Savings:

Resources invested in the short-term will be offset my relatively large savings in the
long-term compared with slowly developing educational initiatives or “business-as-
usual.”

Benefits: (non-carbon environmental benefits, etc)

Secondary benefits include behavioral changes that improve environmental conditions in
numerous areas (e.g., solid and hazardous waste reduction, reduced sprawl), inspiration
of future generation in development of alternative energy sources and technologies,
preparation of future generation for green business practices, and increased awareness in
environmental impacts on health.

Cost:

(need assistance from consultants to determine)

Feasibility: (Obstacles - legal issues, resources, etc; and Opportunities)

Existing framework for Earth Science Space curriculum provides a basis for future
modifications; however, school curriculum must meet federal requirements, which
currently strains resources and school day time allowances. Implementation of available
instructional materials may impose greater, potentially unrealistic demands on existing
curriculum and schedules. Development and dissemination of multi-disciplinary
instructional materials are needed.

Limited resources are currently available for use within NH schools for implementation
of advanced study and extracurricular activities that engage students in global warming
issues, especially grassroots efficiency and conservation measures. The existing
resources need to be expanded. Recruitment and training of educators, parents, and other
volunteer entities (e.g. green businesses, global warming advocacy groups) is also
needed.

Other Factors of Notes:
                           Climate Change Action Plan
                           Option Evaluation Criteria

The following criteria will be used to select the final recommendations that are sent
on to the Task Force. The criteria will be applied to the higher priority items that the
working groups identify throughout the process.

The working group’s final decisions will be made by weighing the total impact of an
option based on all criteria. While the recommendations target CO2 emissions, there
will not be any thresholds set or weighting factors applied.

1. Estimated CO2 Emission Reduction
       a. Short-term (2015)
       b. Mid-term (2020)
       c. Long-term (2050)
2. Cost Savings
3. Other Benefits
       a. Environmental Benefits
       b. Health impacts
4. Cost
5. Feasibility
6. Other Considerations

				
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