As of 2014, China had 42 million college students (including undergraduate and graduate students). As the Millennial Generation, they grew up experiencing adverse impacts from climate change and environmental destruction. Rapidly warming temperatures, air pollution, and sandstorms concern them all, even though their parents did not have to contend with these issues.
Every year, thousands of environmental student associations hold events on campus to drive awareness of environmental issues and to facilitate the concept of green living. This year, Earth Day Network has taken a leading role. Partnering with China Youth Climate Action Network (CYCAN), we launched the “A Billion Acts of Green” campaign in China in honor of Earth Day 2016, aiming to collect one billion of green acts by Earth Day 2020. The goal of this campaign is to promote Earth Day in China by mobilizing college students to participate and elevate students’ consciousness of worldwide environmental problems. And then to mobilize them into taking actions to combat these problems.
EDN and CYCAN developed a toolkit with online resources (PDF) to help youth groups organize their Earth Day celebration. The toolkit also includes 6 suggested events for hosts to facilitate on Earth Day, including Environmental Forum, Debate Championship, iCommit, Let’s Make the Spring Even Greener, Movie’s Night, and Performance Art. We asked all participated groups to register their events and to report the number of green acts they collected during the celebration.
The campaign was designed to raise the awareness of climate change and to spread the importance of civic engagement, especially youth engagement, in fighting for environmental concerns. Our goal resonates with a huge number of college student leaders in China who are talented and enthusiastic in making the Earth a better place to live. On Earth Day, they were able to host hundreds of events on campus, getting thousands of students to go green for the day, and hopefully well beyond.
Please check the photo gallery on our website for their incredible events.
Overall, we had 45 civil societies from 25 cities in China participated in the A Billion Acts of Green campaign this Earth Day, including 42 college student associations, 2 government affiliated organizations and 1 kindergarten. With all our efforts, the campaign reached to more than 10,000 people and collected 67,511 green acts in total.
But we won’t stop here – EDN is working on bringing even more exciting projects for the A Billion Acts of Green campaign in China. Stay tuned.