Learners in rural areas to be taught about climate change and renewable energy
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The key to explaining the climate crisis to children is finding ways they relate to it in their daily lives. For example, talk about the weather, it changes daily and how it impacts anything from our moods to the rate at which plants grow.
Learners from schools and wind farms in remote communities of the Western, Northern and Eastern Cape will be educated on renewable energy and climate change awareness by the South African Wind Energy Association’s (SAWEA’S) Educational EnergyDRIVE in partnership with the South African National Energy Development Institute (Sanedi).
“With the view that school learners are the leaders and decision-makers of tomorrow, the programme promotes renewable energy and climate change awareness, instilling knowledge to learners across rural communities about the benefits and uses of clean energy technologies,” said Lindo Sibiya, Sawea programmes manager.
The schools involved were direct beneficiaries of the various wind farms’ socio-economic activities in the communities – from at-school programmes and bursaries to feeding schemes and other community support.
Sibiya said they intended to increase awareness to create a generation of well-informed decision-makers who could play an essential role in increasing energy adaptation and mitigation capacities of communities while empowering youth to adopt sustainable lifestyles.
Sanedi Logistics and Events Co-ordinator Bongani Xakaza said they would educate learners on energy efficiency technologies and energy reduction at home, with a presentation informing learners on how renewable energy was contributing towards the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by power stations in relation to the reduction in electricity demand.
“With the current challenges faced by the country in terms of energy supply and demand, it is imperative to sow the seed among learners, as future leaders, so that they begin to think of alternatives that will not only satisfy the energy demand but protect the environment as well.
“It is important that learners are exposed to energy alternatives such as renewable energy, among others, and encourage them to be innovative in their career pursuits,” said Xakaza.
We need to empower our children to understand not only what climate change is all about but also what they can do to help.