The Climate Change Education Act returns to the Senate

03.01.2019

Photograph: Architect of the Capitol, via Wikimedia Commons.The Climate Change Education Act is again in the Senate. S. 477, introduced on February 13, 2019, would authorize the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to institute a competitive grant program aimed in part at developing and improving educational material and teacher training on the topic of climate change.

Among the findings listed in the bill are "[T]he evidence for human-induced climate change is overwhelming and undeniable" and "Only 30 percent of middle school and 45 percent of high school science teachers understand the extent of the scientific consensus on climate change" — a reference to the NCSE/Penn State survey of climate change educators (PDF).

NCSE is among the organizations endorsing the bill. NCSE's executive director Ann Reid commented, "The Climate Change Education Act addresses a critically important need. Teachers urgently need and want support to cover climate change accurately and effectively. Federal funding to support the development of high-quality evidence-based teaching resources ultimately will benefit millions of students."

S. 477 is sponsored by Edward J. Markey (D-Massachusetts), joined by fifteen colleagues in the Senate; Markey previously introduced the bill in 2018, as S. 2740, and a similar measure, SA 2175 to S. 1177), in 2015. A counterpart bill in the House of Representatives is expected but apparently not yet introduced.