Rwanda is committed to protecting the environment and addressing climate change, and has a vision to be a climate resilient and carbon neutral economy by 2050. The country is working to achieve its 2030 goal of reducing emissions by 38% by engaging with partners, both nationally and internationally, to attract sustainable green investment.
In this light, the Green Growth and Climate Resilience Strategy (2011) was developed, the Rwanda Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) were developed and submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 2015 and updated in May 2020.
In 2019, the Environmental Policy was revised and became the National Environment and Climate Change Policy, all geared to leave no one behind for long-lasting development results. Despite the above mentioned efforts, there is need to carry out environmental advocacy so as to ensure Environment and Climate Change mainstreaming in the country’s sustainable development agenda.
Education has been highlighted as an important tool for the attainment of sustainable development. Environment and Climate Change Education enable the development of knowledge, skills, perspectives and values that empower the citizens to assume responsibility for creating and enjoying a sustainable future. Environmental Education and awareness has been used as a tool to increase public participation in sustainable development, capacity build the future leaders to have the commitment, expertise and leadership to ensure sustainable development; integrate environment and sustainability issues in the school curriculum to improve the quality of learning and make it relevant to the needs of the society; Capacity build the media to report and communicate sustainable development by providing Information required to address pertinent sustainable developmental challenges; Enhance the quality and relevance of Technical and Higher education to respond to local sustainable development challenges.
Environmental Education Programme which include building capacities of teachers, youth, sectors and districts, greening school initiatives, awarded best green projects with innovations, enhanced networking among universities and research institutions have been established to enhance awareness on the integration of environment and climate change issues. Civil Society Organizations have been engaged in public awareness and advocacy campaigns for environmental management. In this regard, several environmental education programmes have been initiated, community participation enhanced, different media are used to report on environmental issues and forge more partnership with all stakeholders to access environmental information.
Environment and climate change Education in schools is mainly through different subjects in primary schools and secondary schools. Environmental clubs have been created and supported to create environmental stewardship among the students. REMA will continue to entrench and strengthen environmental education in schools in ways that positions environment and climate resilience to serve as a pillar for socio‐economic transformation. These should be apply to all educational sectors namely formal, non‐formal and informal in order to empower all citizens to participate in environmental management and climate resilience towards sustainable development.
REMA builds environmental stewardship by training different groups of people from government, private sector, NGOs, CBOs, media and members of environmental committees. This has resulted in mainstreaming of Environment and Climate change (ECC) into strategies, programmes and plans of development sectors of the ecomomy to foster suatainable development of Rwanda.
REMA developed appropriates tools, checklists and guidelines for ECC mainstreaming and conducts on fiscal year basis an assessment of integration and implementation of ECC activities into Sector-Ministries Plans and Programs and makes appropriate recommendations on issues that require special attention to support concerned Sectors to better plan for further achievements.