Environmental Education

Environmental education as a tool for awareness.

Its history can be briefly described by the following steps:

1968 – Founded as the Club of Rome brings together scientists, economists and senior government officials from several countries to analyze the world situation and make predictions and solutions for the future (in an ecological perspective, the global system). The studies and proposals of informal association, sponsored by the Volkswagen Foundation, the first report of this organization was published in 1972 under the title: “The Limits of Growth.”

They pointed out some factors that could lead a global crisis ever seen:

– Exhaustion of Natural Resources, an energy crisis, population growth, food shortage, mass unemployment, environmental pollution (the industrialization of the modern world is rapidly destroying the environment with effect no return and above any estimate).

1972 – The United Nations Conference in Stockholm occurred under the theory of thought originating from the Club of Rome. Ecological politicized the issue and opened a new field in international relations: the eco diplomacy. When the United Nations (UN) was established in 1945, highlighted as priorities for peace, human rights and equitable development are not priority or concern in their first years of existence the environmental issue, much less the welfare status. Only from the Stockholm Conference on Human Environment in 1972, the ecological security has become the fourth priority of the United Nations.

1987 – The World Commission on Environment and Development (CMMAD), known as Brundland Commission, recommended the creation of a letter or a universal declaration on environmental protection and sustainable development.

“Answering the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to also meet their”. Our Common Future, Report of the Commission Brundland that inspired the Rio-92.

1992 – United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, also known as Rio-92 and ECO-92, twenty years after the Stockholm Conference also felt the impact of theories of the Club of Rome , mainly in the form of approaches and proposals made by developed countries.

However, in the interval between the two conferences, significant changes occurred in both societies and the ecological and environmental thinking. The Rio-92 was also the scene of the critical theories of the Club of Rome. Eco 92 started the process and reached an initial consensus on the Declaration of Principles of the Rio, “to continue the project of the Earth Charter.

This time, it was officially the Agenda 21, as a document of international problems of today, preparing the world for the challenges of the 21st century.

1995 – International Seminar on the Earth agreement, held in The Hague, Netherlands. There were defined the needs, the main elements and the way of drafting the Earth Charter.

1996 – Conference on Climate Change held in Kyoto in Japan and known as Rio +5 was held for five years after the Eco 92. The official document of the Conference was known as the Kyoto Protocol, was adopted on 11.12.97, seeking the involvement of a reduction of about 6% of emissions of greenhouse gases in industrialized countries until the period 2008 to 2012.

1997 – During the Rio was formed a Commission of the Earth agreement. At that time it was the first draft text of reference, the discussions today that beacon in the world. The Earth agreement and the Rio Declaration which seeks to establish international respect the interests of all and protect the integrity of the overall ecology and development. It is understood that environmental education is essential for the formation of the individual as citizen.

Provisions of article 2 of Law 9795/99 establishing the National Policy of Environmental Education (PNEA) should be present in articulated at all levels and modalities of the educational process in all sectors of society.

Thus it is legal instrument to the citizen is environmentally aware, it can be charged by society and political responsibility and obligation to its institutionalization. Should be worked as a transversal theme, according to the National Curricular Parameters and Guidelines, as the law prioritizes the projects of environmental education in the disciplines of basic education.


The aspirations of a community or population should be considered in environmental planning which will be subject, as it seeks to solve the problems that alarmed by the diagnosis. These characteristics show that the knowledge of the environment by people who live and understand this area, generating data from the development of business activities and relationship with nature.

The community, for being there, has the power to transform and build new landscapes, new spaces, as well as their mental images, then revealing, perceptive plans more or less clear, according to their vital needs or limitations, as his social and cultural priorities .

As proposed Lerípio (1996): The perception inevitably influences human behavior, but to maintain a quality environment, the behavior must be directed to specific acts. Moreover, the specific acts must take precedence over other possible actions which reflect a different hierarchy of values. The personal habits reflect the priority of value of an individual and treated with consideration to the environment requires a focus on environmental values. Information and education of the public are essential, especially to develop the approach known as environmental ethics.

Lerípio (2001) proposing that complements the environment to influence the behavior group, to raise the participation of many individuals to the achievement of common targets, “A certain degree of consensus must be reached on the definition of environmental quality. The priorities within society must be established for the definition of targets. ”

According to Dias (1994), it is possible to raise the public by passing the three steps: a) raise awareness, b) create attitudes that influence actions and c) gain the cooperation in solving problems. For this, you must first diagnose the real state of public opinion and trends. Research on attitudes can provide an understanding of certain aspects, and interviews with leaders of the public can develop an understanding of dimensions of attitudes and motivations. The awakening of awareness is to inform the public about the importance of a phenomenon in their lives. Inform to educate. Active participation is gained when offering an opportunity to express interest in real issues, especially when the subject indicates that participation can actually influence a result (TUAN, 1980).

Lerípio (op. cit) notes that efficient decision-making on environmental issues requires understanding of how people perceive and evaluate the likelihood of uncertain events. If the human being that makes decisions, you should consider that their behavior is a function of their real-world images and in the extensive system information, which determines the interaction of value systems of individuals and their images of the real world.

The implementation of social mobilization incurs the risk that the mutual influence of psychological factors, economic and environmental activated in the attempt to control the nature and development of laws by government in the direction of policy making, thereby undermining the effectiveness of plans.

The UNCED-United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, the best way of dealing with environmental issues is with the participation of all interested citizens. And environmental education shows itself in the long term – as the best way to create critical awareness in the community, from the analysis of the problems it experienced, and, from this, actually establish their participation in solving these problems.

Education is itself a reading of nature. At the same time, the relationship with nature requires a certain relationship between individuals in society. A debate on when, how, where and why the methodology in environmental education everything leads us to believe in its success.

Environmental education can go in this direction, because that will assess not only the action on the anthropocentric nature, but also the division of interests that permeate it. Establish an environmental awareness not walk in the narrow sense, but to understand, investigate, search, so intense, in the fields of formal and informal education, the best conditions for its practice of teaching.

A key of Environmental Education is to enable individuals to engage in confrontation and resolution of environmental issues that affect them most directly, with a central point where the understanding of the complex nature of the natural environment and the environment created by man, resulting the integration of biological aspects, physical, social, economic and cultural.

Understood as any process of re – learning environment, the objective is that individuals acquire knowledge, values, behavior and practical skills to participate responsibly and effectively to the prevention and solution of environmental problems, and quality management of the environment.

This is only viable allowing it access to correct information on specific problems that require them, leaving the clear economic interdependence, political and ecological, and range of decisions and behaviors.
Therefore, the Environmental Education should contribute to the development of a spirit of responsibility and solidarity (TUAN, 1980, p. 54).

Involves educating receive information, work it, interpret it and act in consequence of the interpretation that has been reached.

There is active involvement of individuals. – Desiring to achieve a specific problem and enable people, it is necessary to know how to do it, how to pass the information, as related to life, the activities of people, so they feel affected and therefore interested in the deepen the least knowledge about.

Activities, practical demonstrations, examples of daily living, are more efficient ways of reaching the target audience. Involving people in a business practice, the scope is even greater. Most projects, environmental education does not reach their objectives, or does not obtain satisfactory results because they are not directed to the practical problems of a particular community or region, or the way work is done is at odds with reality and interests of the target population. It is important to the development and implementation of an environmental education project, which will meet the target audience, with regard to:

a) socio-economic characteristics and educational (level of education),

b) Knowledge about the environmental issue and interpretation, verified through the study of environmental perception

c) Interests and values,

d) Information on the environmental issue and e) environmental characteristics of the region in which they live.

For the satisfactory development of projects of the proposed environmental education days, which is from the profile of the group where it is established, making a full diagnosis to characterization of the group, their needs and anxieties, their values and way of seeing the environment so that added to the makers, teachers, together with the environmental characteristics to be treated then starting a real opportunity for participation by all in a draft environmental education.