FUTURE LEADERS’ KNOWLEDGE OF ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY: A STUDY OF ENVIRONMENTAL EDUCATION IN ADOLESCENT SCHOOL CHILDREN OF DELHI NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION, INDIA
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Gurpreet Mehdiratta, Sushil Kumar
adolescents, Delhi National Capital Region, environmental education in schools, environmental knowledge, India, sustainability
Children are the future custodians of natural resources. It is therefore important that today’s adolescents possess the necessary knowledge about environmental issues, as they will be impacted the most by climate change, arising out of business decisions of today. These children will also be responsible for formulating social and business policies of tomorrow. India, like most fast developing countries, faces all common problems of environment degradation and depletion such as green-house emissions, air pollution, water pollution etc. These problems are relatively more severe in the urban areas. For example, Delhi National Capital Region (Delhi NCR), one of the largest urban conglomerations in the world and capital of India, features in 2019’s top 10 most polluted cities in the world as per WHO’s world air quality guideline. The present study tries to assess the level of environmental knowledge of Grade 9 (14-16 years) school students in Delhi NCR (National Capital Region). Descriptive statistics and one way ANOVA were used as statistical techniques. The results indicate that, overall, the students have an average score in environmental knowledge. Private run schools’ children score higher than Government run schools’ children on environmental knowledge. Gender does not have a significant relationship with environmental knowledge in case of adolescents. Father’s education level has a significant relationship with children’s environmental knowledge whereas Mother’s education does not. The study also indicates that newspapers and school teachers are top two sources of environmental information to the school students followed closely by TV and internet. These findings have significance for environmental educators, school administration and environmental education policy implementors.