The first interactive lesson on climate change under the “Simulator-Simulator” project was held at the Varna Vocational School of Electrical Engineering by the Public Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development. Students of the 9th grade, specialisation “Artificial Intelligence”, took on the roles of politicians, farmers, industrialists, representatives of clean technologies and producers of conventional energy. Using the En-ROADS online climate simulator, they created their own simulation model in which they changed the world’s coal production, renewable energy, nuclear power, oil, electrification of transport and energy efficiency of buildings, and deforestation. They predicted economic growth, the price of carbon and the world’s population. All students were able to meet the requirements of the Paris Agreement by limiting global climate warming to 1.5-2 degrees/year. The government group was the most pessimistic in their projections, limiting the temperature to 2 degrees, while the industry group was more optimistic at 1.4 degrees. However, all of them, realistically or not, assumed a reduction in the world’s population, a halt or reduction in economic growth, and a significant increase in the carbon price paid by business.
More than 200 students between 8th and 12th grade in Varna will receive climate change education in the school year 2023/2024. They will all be involved in creating a climate change mitigation scenario. The best three will be awarded at the end of the project.
The activities will be organised by the Public Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development as part of the “Simulator-Stimulator” project, one of the fourteen finalists in the eighth edition of the Vivacom Regional Grant.
“Our mission is to introduce the online simulator into school programmes in Varna. We will train more than 20 teachers to work with the educational software, which they will then use in their teaching practice in geography, chemistry or biology classes”, said Ilian Iliev from the Public Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development. To help more students understand how their choices affect the effects of global warming, we will prepare video teaching content on the topic and additional online information materials”, Iliev added.