Press Release



Urgent discussions and presentations on climate solutions 

WASHINGTON, D.C. — EARTHDAY.ORG today announced its event lineup that will take place in the heart of the U.N. Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, UK. With no time left to waste, urgent action is needed and commitments must be made before it is too late. As an official observer at COP26, EARTHDAY.ORG will bring together youth activists, academics, government officials, union leaders, industry experts, NGO leaders, and scientists to discuss climate education, civic skill building, the green economy, carbon removal strategies, citizen science, climate restoration technologies and more. 

EARTHDAY.ORG also will be presenting an official COP26 side event on Nov. 3. The United Nations Climate Change Secretariat manages side events and exhibits within the negotiation venue. The event will examine the urgent need for universal climate education and how education systems can bring this critical curriculum into schools globally.

EARTHDAY.ORG is an official partner of the Nature+Zone pavilion at COP26. The Nature+ Zone Pavilion is an events space set in the center of COP26 providing an impactful platform to advocate for critical climate solutions. Education International is also a key partner in the Nature+Zone pavilion as well as a long-term partner of EARTHDAY.ORG’s Climate Literacy Campaign. The majority of EARTHDAY.ORG programming will occur in this pavilion right outside the negotiation grounds and next to the country delegations. All events will be livestreamed on EARTHDAY.ORG, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube as well as the Nature+Zone Pavilion website.

“Today’s climate crisis demands a bold response. COP26 may be the last stage for world leaders to come together to enact immediate change before it is too late. We must commit to and implement integrated and assessed climate education in order to prepare the next generation for the rapidly changing green economy, to be able to respond to and prevent further environmental degradation, and to restore our planet’s natural resources. Global leaders need to stop talking and start taking action. The people’s voices must be and will be heard at this COP,” said Kathleen Rogers, President, EARTHDAY.ORG.

Schedule of Events *all times are in GMT

Nov. 3

4:45 PM – 6:00 PM
Room: Strangford Lough
Climate Education and Youth Empowerment: The key to meeting our climate and environmental goals 
World leaders and youth voices discuss urgent reasons and benefits for universal access to climate education and outline potential implementation strategies as well as funding options. 

Panel 1: The Roadmap for Promoting Universal Climate Literacy 
Moderator: Kathleen Rogers – President, EARTHDAY.ORG
Panelists include:

  • Haldis Holst – Deputy General Secretary, Education International
  • Aysha Al-Mudakha – Director of Strategic Initiatives & Partnership Development in CEO Office, Qatar Foundation

Panel 2: Innovative Climate Education Solutions and Practices for Youth Empowerment 
Moderator: Derrick Mugisha – Regional Director Africa, EARTHDAY.ORG 
Panelists include:

  • Donna L. Goodman – Founder, Earth Child Institute; Author,  
  • Ismail Farja – Coordinator of the Youth Climate Hub, Foundation Mohammed VI/African Youth Climate Hub 
  • Naomi Nyamweya – Research Officer, Malala Fund 
  • Kazi Zubair Hossain – Bangladeshi Youth Representative, World Organization of the Scout Movement 

Nov. 4   

11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
The Green Economy 
Creating systemic change for a more regenerative economy by realizing the “potential of the system.”

Moderator: Emilie McGlone, Director, Peace Boat US
Panelists include:  

  • Michele Bongiovanni – CEO/Founder, HealRWorld and Founder Music4ClimateJustice
  • Peta Milan – CEO, Jet Group
  • Henk Rogers – Founder & Chairman, Blue Planet Alliance
  • Yoshioka Tatsuya – Founder, Peace Boat

3:00 PM – 4:30 PM  
Doha Debates  
Climate Change: Can we rise to the challenge? Doha Debates will livestream a debate on climate change with live interaction from the audience at the pavilion. International journalist and Doha Debates moderator Ghida Fakhry will be joined by award-winning journalist and New York Times bestselling author Naomi Klein, president of Copenhagen Consensus Center Bjorn Lomborg, and former president of Mauritius Ameenah Gurib-Fakim. Each invited speaker will present a view and opinion on a possible solution for the world’s climate crisis.

7:00 PM – 8:00 PM 
Education in Climate Policies: Are Countries Making the Grade? 
Which countries are prioritising quality climate education for all? Education International launches ground-breaking research on national commitments to climate change education. Join us for a dialogue between policymakers and union leaders on how countries must step up their climate education ambition. 

Moderator: Haldis Holst – Deputy General Secretary, Education International
Panelists include:

  • Larry Flanagan – General Secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland and President of ETUCE, the European Region of Education International
  • David Sengeh – Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Sierra Leone 
  • Shirley-Anne Sommerville – Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills for the Scottish Government
  • Shreya KC – Climate Justice Activist, Campaign Coordinator of Mock COP26, Nepal

Nov. 5 

11:00 AM – 11:15 AM
Keynote by Dr. Bertrand Piccard, President of the Solar Impulse Foundation
Psychiatrist and explorer Bertrand Piccard made history by accomplishing two aeronautical firsts – flying around the world non-stop in a balloon, and more recently in a solar-powered plane without fuel. He has long pioneered the thinking that ecology should be considered through the lens of profitability and that clean technologies are the market opportunity of the century. As President of the Solar Impulse Foundation, he has since succeeded with his team to identify 1000+ efficient solutions to protect the environment in a profitable way. And education is definitely a key component to ensure a new generation of entrepreneurs tackling climate change.

11:15 AM – 12:30 PM 
Roundtable: Why Climate Literacy & Civic Skill Building Will Solve the Climate Crisis – Answers from Civil Society, Educators, and Governments 
This is a discussion highlighting EARTHDAY.ORG’s Climate and Environmental Literacy Campaign and its mission to ensure every school worldwide has compulsory, assessed climate and environmental education with a strong education component.  

Moderator: Andrew Jack – Global Education Editor, Financial Times
Panelists include:  

  • Kathleen Rogers – President, EARTHDAY.ORG 
  • Stefania Giannini – Assistant Director-General, UNESCO 
  • A. Alonso Aguirre DVM, PhD – Chair and Professor, Department of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia
  • Haldis Holst – Deputy General Secretary, Education International

1:00 PM – 2:00 PM 
Teaching for Climate Action: Schools Shaping the Future (OECD, UNESCO, & Education International co-organized event)
The education sector has a unique role to play in building a greener twenty-first century. The OECD, UNESCO, and Education International have launched a joint initiative to gather teaching expertise on what makes a difference in empowering students for climate action. This event seeks to present the initial insights that have emerged and, from this, to highlight the future directions that climate action in education can take.  

Moderator: Rodolfo Lacy, Director of the Environment Directorate at the OECD
Panelists include:

  • Haldis Holst – Deputy General Secretary, Education International
  • Stefania Giannini – Assistant Director-General for Education, UNESCO
  • Andreas Schleicher – Director for Education and Skills at the OECD (remote)
  • Larry Flanagan – General Secretary of the Educational Institute of Scotland and President of ETUCE, the European Region of Education International

3:00 PM – 4:30 PM 
Young Climate Activists:  Why Climate Education and Civic Skill Building are the Keys to Climate Justice and Equity 
Youth leaders outline their demands to governments. This will be a discussion on why governments have failed to prioritize climate literacy and civic skills, and how youth can pressure them to act. 

Moderator: Derrick Mugisha – Regional Director Africa, EARTHDAY.ORG 
Panelists include:

  • Alexandria Villasenor – Founder, Earth Uprising 
  • Johnny Dabrowski – Co-Founder of the Climate Education Team, Fridays for Future
  • Ayisha Siddiqa – Co-Founder of Polluters Out, and a Pakistani-American Environmentalist
  • Helena Gualinga – 19-Year-Old Environmental and Human Rights Advocate

5:00 PM – 6:30 PM
The Crucial Role Climate Literacy Plays in Building a Just Green Global Economy – The Economic Value of Climate Literacy
Workforce leaders and government agency officials emphasize the nexus between climate literacy, green jobs, and a sustainable economy.  

Moderator: Vicky Allan – Senior Features Writer, The Herald (Glasgow)
Panelists include:

  • Sharan Burrow – General Secretary, International Trade Union Confederation
  • Moustapha Kamal Gueye – Global Coordinator, Green Jobs Programme, International Labour Organization (ILO)
  • Joy Zheng – Founder & Executive Director, Youth Leader Fund 

7:00 PM – 8:00 PM 
The role of youth towards a sustainable future: A cross-cultural session with youth from Qatar and Scotland
“Nothing About Us Without Us!” is a slogan used to communicate the idea that no policy should be decided by any representative without the full and direct participation of members of the group affected. To take care of our planet, there is no substitute for action. Qatar Foundation believes that education, and youth empowerment are catalysts for this action, and for energizing and mobilizing the youth of every country to lead the charge for change. Qatar Foundation will host a session with youth from Qatar and Scotland to discuss the impact of climate change on our future and the role of youth as global citizens guarding our planet.

Panelists include:

  • Abdalla Al Darwish – Qatar Academy Student
  • Sama Ayoub – Qatar Academy Student
  • Giulia Pinna – Secretary General, THIMUNQatar

Nov. 8 

9:00 AM – 9:30 AM 
Climate Restoration – The Only Future to Save the Planet  
Reducing carbon emissions won’t restore the conditions that historically enabled humans to thrive. How can we make climate restoration possible? Which climate restoration technologies are most promising? And what are the likely costs, the possible risks, and the potential benefits? 

Speakers include:  

  • Interviewer: Nick Nuttall – International Strategic Communications Director, EARTHDAY.ORG
  • Peter Fiekowsky – Author, Entrepreneur, & Founder of global initiatives for climate restoration

9:30 AM – 10:30 AM 
Scaling Carbon Removal Worldwide to Achieve the Paris Agreement and Beyond: The Power of Global Partnerships and the Oceans
This session will highlight two bold and ambitious efforts intended to massively scale safe, durable and financeable carbon removal (CDR) through both natural and technological solutions.  There will be breaking news from a cross-sectoral multi-stakeholder Task Force on Carbon Removal that has met over the last 16 months, and a deep dive into pathbreaking work to accelerate absolutely critical Ocean-Based CDR approaches.


  • Dr. Sanjeev Khagram – Dean of Thunderbird School of Global Management, Arizona State University
  • Brad Ack – Executive Director, Ocean Visions 

Panelists include:

  • Ukur Yatani Kanacho – Minister of Finance for Kenya
  • Ambassador Ertharin Cousin – Senior Advisor to the City of LA
  • Kumi Naidoo – Former Global Head of Greenpeace and Amnesty International
  • Margaret Leinen – Director of Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Kilparti Ramakrishna – WHOI Senior Advisor on Ocean and Climate Policy 
  • Anne-Marie Laurie – Director of Climate Policy, Ocean Conservancy 

Nov. 9 

11:00 AM – 12:30 PM 
We Can’t Solve the Climate Crisis (or Anything Else) without Citizen Scientists 
This discussion will explore the relationship between citizen science and activism and how citizen science is the next frontier for building a movement and creating science-based solutions. Including a discussion on one such platform, Global Earth Challenge. 

Moderator: Matt Lefler – Director of Citizen Science, EARTHDAY.ORG
Panelists include:

  • Kathleen Rogers – President, EARTHDAY.ORG
  • Anne Bowser – Chief of Staff, NatureServe
  • Landon Van Dyke – Senior Advisor for Energy, Environment & Sustainability, U.S. Department of State
  • Michelle Wyman – Executive Director, Global Council for Science and the Environment

For more information about EARTHDAY.ORG at COP26, please visit: 

EARTHDAY.ORG’s mission is to diversify, educate, and activate the environmental movement worldwide. Growing out of the first Earth Day (1970), EARTHDAY.ORG is the world’s largest recruiter to the environmental movement, working with more than 150,000 partners in nearly 192 countries to build environmental democracy. More than 1 billion people now participate in Earth Day activities each year, making it the largest civic observance in the world. Learn more at

About the Nature + Zone at COP26:
A meeting and events space set in the heart of COP26, the Nature + Zone brings to life the momentum, action, and impact that surrounds nature-based solutions, to create a coherent and integrated experience for the nature theme across COP26. Map of the Nature + Zone here.

This space provides opportunities to meet and engage with the key spokespeople from leading climate groups in exclusive interviews, panel discussions and keynote addresses. Housing the Nature’s Newsroom, this pavilion is a central hub for the nature and climate conversation at COP.