Climate Change

Should schools teach climate change studies? 5 climate change stories to read this week

Unexpected impacts of drought, the US Inflation Reduction Act and rising sea levels - here are the latest stories on climate change.

Unexpected impacts of drought, the US Inflation Reduction Act and rising sea levels - here are the latest stories on climate change. Image: Unsplash/Kelli Tungay

Tom Crowfoot
Writer, Forum Agenda
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Climate Change

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  • This weekly roundup brings you some key climate change stories from the past seven days.
  • Top stories this week: Climate studies; Drought impacts; US Inflation Reduction Act; Efficient air conditioning use; Adapting to rising sea levels.

1. Should schools teach climate change studies? These countries think so

As the effects of climate change become ever more apparent, this summer has brought intense heatwaves, severe flooding and damaging storms. Last year, climate anxiety was revealed to affect the daily lives of nearly half of young people, according to a global study.

Young people in the UK are calling for more climate change education in schools.
Young people in the UK are calling for more climate change education in schools. Image: TEACH THE FUTURE

Despite the UN calling for climate studies to be part of teaching in all schools by 2025, a UNESCO study into 50 countries revealed that more than half make no reference to climate change. However, some countries are making good progress, such as Italy, which in 2019 became the first country to make climate-related studies compulsory in schools.

Find out how other countries are teaching climate studies and why it is important for tackling global warming.

2. 5 unexpected impacts of drought in Europe

Many parts of the world are experiencing severe drought, with impacts ranging from crop failure, worsening water security and risks to life. In Europe however, drought has had some unexpected impacts too.

Many parts of the world are experiencing severe drought due to climate change.
Many parts of the world are experiencing severe drought due to climate change. Image: REUTERS/Susana Vera

The drought in Spain has caused a prehistoric stone circle to reemerge from the dried-up Valdecanas reservoir in the central province of Caceres. This impressive circle of stones is believed to date back to 5000 BC.

Discover more unexpected impacts of drought in Europe.

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3. Why the US Inflation Reduction Act is an important step in the transition to clean energy

US President Joe Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act into law on 16 August 2022.

The bill utilises nearly $800 billion of investment, with $369 billion earmarked for clean energy and climate change mitigation initiatives.

modelled net US greenhouse gas emissions climate change
Modelled net US greenhouse gas emissions (including land carbon sinks). Image: Inflation Reduction Act Preliminary Report

The Act incentivises a portfolio of clean energy sources, including energy storage, nuclear power, clean energy vehicles, hydrogen and CCUS, as long as they are carbon neutral.

Learn more about the Inflation Reduction Act and why it's a big step in tackling the climate crisis.

4. Air conditioning: How to run it most efficiently for your wallet and the planet

Which is more efficient: running the air conditioning all the time without a break, or turning it off during the day when you’re not there to enjoy it? The answer isn't straightforward, according to three experts.

It depends on how well your house is insulated, the size and type of your air conditioner and outdoor temperature and humidity. These experts compare central air conditioning, air source heat pump and minisplit cooling systems in two different climates to find out the answer.

Find out what they discovered.

Have you read?

5. 6 ways the world is adapting to rising sea levels

As climate change causes global temperatures to rise, ice sheets and glaciers are melting, meaning since 1993 sea levels have risen by around 10cm. As a result, as many as 410 million people could be at risk of coastal flooding by the end of the century.

The cost of damage caused by rising sea levels this century could potentially cost as much as $5.5 trillion. So, how are countries adapting to this change?

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Explore how countries are adapting to rising sea levels.

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