Following the UN’s Transforming Education Summit in September 2022, the UNESCO Section for Education for Sustainable Development has launched a global, multistakeholder partnership to coordinate efforts to get every learner climate ready.

The Greening Education Partnership brings civil society organisations together with UNESCO Member States to convene joint action that helps learners in all stages of life acquire the knowledge, skills, values, and attitudes required to take on climate action and promote sustainable development.

IFLA’s engagement during the Transforming Education Summit and Pre-summit focused on the vital element of life-long learning and non-formal education in addressing crucial societal and environmental challenges. We stressed that libraries work both within formal education systems and within communities, as well as creating linkages between both, and have the potential to engage all learners.

Libraries in the Greening Education Pillars

We are delighted to see this message reflected in the structure of the Greening Education Partnership, which is organised around four pillars of transformative education:

  • Greening schools
  • Greening curriculum
  • Greening teacher training and education systems’ capacities
  • Greening communities

In a series of preliminary coordination meetings, IFLA has focussed our participation in forums on greening school and greening communities.

Within engagement on the greening schools pillar, IFLA stressed the role of school libraries, and dedicated school library professionals, for enhancing the teaching and learning environment for the entire school community through active collaborations, as upheld in the IFLA School Library Manifesto.

The greening communities pillar envisions engagement of the entire community by integrating climate education in life-long learning, such as through community learning centres and learning cities. This offers a range of opportunities to highlight and expand library strategies for engaging communities in Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE). Read IFLA’s brief for more:

Libraries and the Glasgow Work Programme on Action for Climate Empowerment

Aligning library engagement in climate action with Action for Climate Empowerment can help libraries be recognised as valuable partners in the design and implementation of national strategies for climate empowerment.
This brief provides an overview of the Glasgow Work Programme for Action for Cli...

Across IFLA, our members and Professional Units are exploring what ACE means in their context and in their libraries. As this conversation continues, IFLA will look for opportunities to amplify these outcomes in our engagement with the Greening Education Partnership.

Looking ahead to COP28

In the first Greening Education Partnership Members’ Forum, held on 18 May, participants came together to discuss preliminary plans for the Partnership’s engagement at the 28th UN Climate Change Conference (COP28), to be held in Dubai in December 2023.

IFLA has increasingly been engaging in these conferences, bringing several library professionals to COP27 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, for COP27 in November 2022.

COP28 is planning to include an increased programme of opportunities to highlight climate education. Preliminary plans include a dedicated Youth, Education, and Skills Day and a planned Green Education Pavilion in the COP28 Blue Zone – a space to bring voices together to discuss and exchange perspectives during the conference programme.

IFLA’s engagement with the Partnership in the coming months will continue to integrate the work being undertaken across the library field to help all learners understand and take on climate action. We will continue looking for opportunities to bring these perspectives to COP28, together with our network of volunteers, experts, and international partners.

Stay tuned for more as the Greening Education Partnership continues its coordination!

For more information, follow the partnership online: UNESCO Greening Education Partnership

Contact: Claire McGuire ([email protected])