International Climate Champions
The International Climate Champions initiative is part of a range of activities within the British Council designed to build understanding of and drive action on climate change. As part of the British Council’s International Climate Champions, young people around the world have been helping to influence and educate their peers and the general public on the urgency of climate change.
In 2008 the program launched in 13 countries (Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States) and then grew to encompass more than 800 International Climate Champions in 29 countries.
In 2009 the program expanded to 60 countries across the globe, recruiting over 1,300 young people who are passionate about and committed to taking action on climate change. These champions are not only leaders in their communities but are also participating in international peer networks, both in person and online, to share ideas, projects and experiences.
US Climate Champions
The British Council and the California Air Resources Board sponsored competitions in 2008 and 2009 to identify climate champions from high schools across California. In 2008, fifteen students were selected, and ten additional California high school students were announced in 2009.
In 2010 the partnership expanded to include the Will Steger Foundation, and the Midwest Climate Champions delegation was established with 13 new Champions.
The Climate Champions are engaged in a range of activities that raise awareness about climate change, including participating in media interviews, building online networks of like-minded peers and launching projects in their schools or communities that not only spread the word but also take steps to mitigate the causes of climate change.
During the next year, the Climate Champions will attend and speak at events such as the Governors’ Global Climate Summit and COP16.