For the first time in this format, the Bulgarian Commissioner Maria Gabriel, the Ministers of Education and Youth and a representative of young people from each Member State debated the topic “Young Europeans as full actors in Europe: for a greener and more sustainable Europe”. The Education Council High-Level Forum takes place in the context of the European Year of Youth 2022 and will look for answers to environmental challenges.
“It is important to speak with one voice with young people when it comes to concrete solutions on climate change. Education from an early age is key to tackling this challenge. We need to raise awareness among students, parents, the general public about climate change. We need to empower education systems to take concrete action to adapt to the environmental transition,” said Maria Gabriel.
First of all, Commissioner Gabriel drew attention to the Council Recommendation she presented on 14 January on training for environmental sustainability. It aims to help Member States and all educational institutions to provide learners with competences in the field of climate change. Erasmus+ programs and the European Solidarity Corps also contribute to the development of green skills, training and careers in specialties related to the ecological transition.
The Bulgarian European Commissioner also highlighted his initiative “Climate Education” Coalition. It unites pupils, students, teachers sharing ideas about ecological solutions and the readiness to implement them in concrete projects. “Young people can share their good practices on the Internet platform for the European Year of Youth, which I launched this month,” commented Commissioner Gabriel.
In addition, the Green Path campaign calls on young people to actively participate in the debate on the future of our planet and in the initiative to plant three billion trees across Europe by 2030.
“My aspiration is to mobilize all experience and knowledge to connect education, science, civil society, including young people. This is how we can create a common approach to tackling climate change that can be embedded in our education systems. It is important to join efforts towards a greener and more sustainable Europe, in which young people will play a leading role”, concluded Maria Gabriel.