The importance of sustainability
A thought leadership piece by David Jones, Vertical and Horizontal Markets Manager at NCFE.
Climate change is probably the most important issue of our time. It’s an issue that will impact and affect us all, and one that everyone has a part to play in tackling.
As recently reported by the IPCC, it now seems inevitable that the world will warm by an average of 1.5c within the next 20 years - even in a best-case scenario. However, it’s important to note that any further rise can still be stopped.
The role of education is therefore critical in fighting climate change and reaching sustainability goals. Education is transformative; it brings about awareness and it champions solutions.
There is a huge opportunity for the UK to become a world leader in green technologies, as we look to recover from the impact of the pandemic. The government’s ten-point plan for a green industrial revolution will see the creation of up to 250,000 green jobs in many different sectors, as we move towards achieving net-zero by 2050.
With an increasing number of jobs being classified as ‘green’, we need to ensure that we truly understand what ‘green jobs’ and ‘green skills’ are.
We must be prepared to equip learners – as well as our educators – with the knowledge, skills and opportunities to be successful in this area. Plus, as more individuals transition from their current roles into green roles, we also need to make sure that we’re providing people with the transferable skills that they’ll need so that no one is left behind.
Educational organisations have the power to shape real change at this moment in time.
The UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals – which include ‘No Poverty’, ‘Quality Education’ and ‘Reduced Equalities’ – align closely to NCFE’s core purpose of promoting and advancing learning to create a fairer, more inclusive society.
What actions is NCFE taking to embed sustainability into our qualifications?
We’re proud to commit to embedding sustainability into the curriculum, throughout all our products and services, using the UN’s 17 Goals as a framework to pin our progress against.
Over the coming months, we’ll be working with established and emerging experts in the industry to identify areas of need and to help develop clear pathways into green jobs. We’ll weave sustainability and green thinking into our qualifications and content, from technical education up to adult education.
With the government’s recent promise to mobilise £12 billion of investment into green jobs, a recruitment boom is on the horizon – one that we simply must ensure we are prepared for.
More information will follow as the year progresses and we’ll keep you informed every step of the way.
Search for our qualifications
We currently offer two pathways for those wanting to gain a qualification in sustainability:
- Level 2 Certificate in Understanding Climate Change and Environmental Awareness
- Level 4 Certificate in Decarbonising Homes: Technologies, Impacts and Solutions (with National Energy Action)
The Level 4 qualification is a newly accredited course developed with National Energy Action, the national fuel charity, to provide a practical understanding of a range of low carbon and renewable technologies, their impacts and how they can help people living in fuel poverty.
We aim to add further qualifications across the sustainability and climate change sector to our portfolio in the near future.