C3SS Promotes Students’ Climate Change & Sustainability Literacy

The Centre for Climate Change and Sustainability Studies (C3SS) held its second climate change and sustainability literacy interaction with students and staff of Association International School (AIS), Airport, Accra on Friday, 22nd November 2019. The outreach event titled “Climate Change and Sustainable Living” formed part of the Centre’s Public Education Campaign (C3SS-PubEd).

The interaction was organized and undertaken by C3SS national service personnel (Mr Ian Afele, Mr Isaac Martey, Ms Josephine Boateng-Opoku, Mr Nicholas Kwapong and Ms Yvonne Mamalia) under the guidance of Dr Yaw Agyeman Boafo, a Research Fellow at C3SS.

The C3SS National Service Personnel (from left: Mr Isaac Martey, Mr Nicholas Kwapong, Ms Yvonne Mamalia, Ms Josephine Boateng-Opoku and Mr Ian Afele)

The event which was scheduled to start at 1 pm, began promptly on the premises of AIS. After a brief introduction by a teacher of AIS, Dr Boafo gave an opening remark which focused on the vision and mission of C3SS, as well as the rationale for the event. He then handed over to Mr Nicholas Kwapong, the lead presenter.

Mr Nicholas Kwapong began his presentation by showing a brief animation video on the theme of the event, which noticeably stimulated the interest of the students and set the tone for the presentation. The video summed up climate change on earth and touched on all the key factors such as greenhouse gases, greenhouse effect and global warming. Mr Kwapong then continued by explaining key terms such as weather, climate, global warming, greenhouse effect, climate change, causes and evidence of climate change with the help of a PowerPoint slide. One key fact he noted was how though there were natural causes of climate change, these constituted only 3% while anthropogenic activities such as burning of fossil fuels and deforestation were responsible directly or indirectly for 97% of climate change or crisis as is currently being communicated.

Students paying rapt attention during the presentation by Mr. Nicholas Kwapong

Ms Josephine Boateng-Opoku, the co-presenter, focused her presentation on the effects of climate change and examples of sustainable living practices at home and in the school. She explained how climate change was causing droughts, food shortages, flooding, extreme weather events such as heatwaves, cyclones and how all these will be exacerbated if measures are not taken to address climate change. She highlighted that Accra is vulnerable to floods and climate change would worsen it. She also noted that sustainable living is the only way to effectively combat and build resilience against climate change. The students were taken through some sustainable living practices such as planting trees, proper disposal and segregation of waste, turning off electrical appliances and light bulbs when not in use and use of litter-free lunch-boxes. She ended the presentation with some interesting facts about climate change.

A student interacting and contributing to the presentation.

The students were then engaged in a Q&A session and they asked some very interesting and intelligent questions which were in line with current events and happenings around the world.  One student asked if genocide could be the solution to climate change. Another student asked what the “economic giants” were doing about climate change. Referring to a slide shown during the presentation, one student asked if the Lake Malawi which had completely dried up could be restored. One other question asked was whether drones could be used for farming to counter food shortage. With all the team members chipping in, all the questions were adequately answered and the students were left satisfied.

A student from the environmental club gave the closing remarks and sought to assure us that our presentation was not in vain and they had indeed improved their climate change and sustainability literacy. They expressed their gratitude and after a resounding round of applause, we proceeded to take some photos.

Ms Josephine Boateng-Opoku addressing students during the Q&A     The C3SS team in a photocall with some AIS students (Environmental Club members)