UAE schools bag global climate action honours

Shining Star International School in Abu Dhabi and Dubai’s Pristine Private School recognised for their work on environmental awareness



Students of Shining Star International School, Abu Dhabi work on their project as part of the Climate Action Project. Supplied photo
Students of Shining Star International School, Abu Dhabi work on their project as part of the Climate Action Project. Supplied photo

By SM Ayaz Zakir/Ashwani Kumar

Published: Tue 9 Nov 2021, 6:10 PM

An Indian and a British school from the UAE are among 250 global educational institutes to bag the ‘Climate Action Project School of Excellence’ honour.

Shining Star International School in Abu Dhabi and Dubai’s Pristine Private School have been recognised by Climate Action Project and Cartoon Network for their work on environmental awareness.

The Climate Action Project is a six-week initiative launched by US-based non-profit Take Action Global, involving more than 2.7 million teachers and students across 146 countries. It is conducted in collaboration with World Wildlife Fund, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (Nasa) and backed by conservationist Jane Goodall, Ireland President Michael D. Higgins and environmental activist Kumi Naidoo.

The project aims to help students learn and discuss issues related to climate change. As part of the project, between September 25 and November 4 (climate action day), schools had to make different presentations related to environmental protection.

Principal Abhilasha Singh said that Shining Star collaborated with educational institutes in India and Poland to find solutions to the climate crisis. “Our students contributed to air quality improvement by planting trees on the school campus. We pledged to minimise our carbon usage. We managed to reduce our carbon footprint to 128.1kg, ranking us at 115 among 2.5 million classrooms globally. Our commitment to environment conservation will continue with further activities in the annual calendar.”

Meanwhile, Pristine Private School has taken an initiative to contribute to environmental sustainability through several curriculum-integrated activities.

Zehra Islam, humanities coordinator at Pristine Private School said: “If we all pledge to educate young minds about environmental sustainability at the grassroots level, we will be able to achieve our primary goal of saving our beautiful planet for future generations. Leaving this legacy of positive education to young adults, who will be the torch bearers for future generations, will bring about the change we seek.”

The award winners were announced during an eight-hour online event live-streamed at the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow (COP26). The speakers at the event included Britain’s Prince William, former president of Seychelles James Alix Michel, Princess Marie-Esmeralda of Belgium, Richard Davis from Nasa, Juan Celis Garcia from UN Environment Programme and climate activist Elizabeth Wathuti, among other leaders, scientists and activists.

Abhilasha said the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals is everyone’s responsibility. “We are extremely grateful to the Climate Action Project for this brilliant initiative and opportunity to contribute to environment conservation and feel privileged to be awarded the School of Excellence award. This is evidence of our commitment toward ‘Education for sustainable development’. We believe the UN’s 2030 Agenda is a collective responsibility. With advocacy, activism and action, we think global and act local to impact our communities to save our planet.”

Shagufa Kidwai, principal, Pristine Private School, highlighted how such initiatives promote and encourage students to learn more about climate change and raise awareness.