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Resource Language:

English

Regional Focus

Global

The Powerful Role of Household Actions in Solving Climate Change

Authors: Chad Frischmann, Crystal Chissell
Grades: 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th
Subjects: Science, Social Studies, Climate Action
Resource Type:
  • Article
Synopsis
  • This informative article by Project Drawdown highlights the power of individual and household actions to fight climate change and reduce levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. 
  • According to their calculations, 25-30% of the emissions reductions needed to keep our climate from warming 1.5°C could be achieved through individual and household actions. 
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • It provides concrete actions individuals and households can take and the corresponding emissions impacts of those actions.
  • Many other resources are linked with additional information.

Additional Prerequisites

  • To learn more about all of the solutions to climate change, you can explore this table of solutions from Project Drawdown that can be sorted by impact.
  • At the bottom of this article, Project Drawdown notes that "Not all possible solutions that exist in the world are presented here. We select climate solutions that have direct impact on the atmosphere; are scientifically validated, economically viable, and globally applicable; and have many additional co-benefits that solve for other things."
  • The infographic of high-impact solutions is categorized, but it is not a graph. Be sure students look at the values associated with the actions and maybe have students graph them out to see the actions with the biggest impacts. 

Differentiation

  • Social studies, civics, government, and economics classes could use this resource when discussing the impacts of climate change and the importance of individual participation in society.
  • It also identifies many solutions that are aimed at individuals in developed countries that have contributed the most to the problem over time.
  • Science, math, architecture, and physics classes could use this resource to discuss environmentally friendly designs for new buildings; retrofitting existing buildings with more efficient heating and cooling systems; updating homes with better insulation, windows, and appliances; designing homes and neighborhoods to use passive solar or distributed solar energy; and planting native plants, gardens, and green spaces to make buildings more sustainable and energy efficient.
  • Other resources about the top solutions to climate change include this video about changing your diet and this video about food waste.
Scientist Notes
This resource highlights climate solutions and classifies high-impact solutions needed to reduce households' carbon footprint and accelerate climate action globally. The 90 solutions are real and were validated by scientists. Thus, this resource is recommended for teaching.
Standards
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.7.6-8 Assess their individual and collective capacities to take action to address local, regional, and global problems, taking into account a range of possible levers of power, strategies, and potential outcomes.
      • D4.8.6-8 Apply a range of deliberative and democratic procedures to make decisions and take action in their classrooms and schools, and in out-of-school civic contexts.
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