Our crowdfunding campaign aims to establish 10 Nature Learning Centers in sub-urban and rural China: it is the first step to achieve our global vision and we believe that everybody should care. No solution to climate crisis is possible without China.
no solution to climate crisis is possible without china
All climate change mitigation measures implemented by the Western world will not bring about the needed impact to avoid runaway climate change if China does not join forces. The Chinese society needs to be integrated and aligned to global efforts and Chinese consumers need to make a great leap forward in regard to system awareness and respect for the environment. There are several indicators which underline this challenge:
All climate change mitigation measures implemented by the Western world will not bring about the needed impact to avoid runaway climate change if China does not join forces. The Chinese society needs to be integrated and aligned to global efforts and Chinese consumers need to make a great leap forward in regard to system awareness and respect for the environment. Several indicators underline this challenge:
1. China is the most populated country on this planet
China is the most populated country on this planet and its citizens have over the last four decades increased their consumption exponentially. Therefore, China has turned into the single most important country which needs to implement climate change mitigation measures;
2. china is the biggest producer of CO2
China has overtaken in 2007 the United States as the world's biggest producer of carbon dioxide, the chief greenhouse gas;
3. half of worldwide plastic pollution is attributable to china
The Yangtze river alone is responsible for 1,5 Million metric tons of plastic in the ocean, which is almost half on the worldwide plastic pollution through rivers. Five of the 10 most plastic polluting rivers are in China. Better waste collection and management practices in the most polluted regions would help stem the tide, but raising public awareness is also crucial.
4. more than 1/4 of world's meat is consumed in china
One of the main drivers of climate change is the extra proportionally high meat consumption. It is a fact that eating more meat generates more heat. China consumes more than a quarter of the world’s meat and farms e.g. half of the world’s pig life stock.
5. intensive farming in china is a global threat
Moreover, there might even be a connection between the recent corona virus outbreak, and life stock farming. A swine fever pandemic forced the Chinese government to cull in 2019 up to 60% of its 200 million pig life stock – which is half of the world’s. This animal genocide went largely unnoticed by the general public, because media reporting was mostly limited to the life stock industry.
6. china is like us. In 1980
China’s environmental education - due to a delayed industrial revolution - is in a very early stage, probably comparable to 1980s Western Europe. Waste separation laws have only recently been implemented in first tier cities like Shanghai and it is not expected that consumption behavior or waste volumes will change significantly over the next decade.
7. CIVIL ACTION IS NOT A THING (YET) IN CHINA. and we cannot wait for it
Western civil society answers to urbanization and nature disconnection like the Boy Scouts of America or the German allotment garden movement are either not allowed or only just in a formation period.
8. china urbanization has a snowball effect on climate crisis
Chinese economic development policies foresee more urbanization which will lead to further nature disconnection and more consumption. The country’s leadership sees urbanization as a way to maintain growth and counter an economic slowdown by boosting the number of consumers, as urban residents have been shown to purchase significantly more goods and services than their counterparts in the countryside. Despite the economic benefits, a rise in the urban consuming class could exacerbate China's environmental problems. According to a World Bank study, China's urban residents use three times as much energy as rural residents.
China's growing role in driving man-made global warming piles pressure onto World politicians. We need a new global agreement on climate change that includes the booming Chinese economy. Since agreements with China in top-down policies have been hard to find, bottom up strategies might be the only chance we have. Chinese population needs to be included in the effort to avoid runaway climate change.
Our bottom-up strategy is called Green Steps ARK.
The ARK is a platform that accelerates sustainability education and connects learners with teachers. Help us to introduce the ARK in China in 10 other locations besides Shanghai. If you want to know more about the ARK, get in touch with us or read the in-depth multilingual description of our crowdfunding campaign here.
we double your effort
We decided to put a "Warranty clause" for every contribution to our crowdfunding campaign. In order to make sure we will achieve our funding goal for real, any contribution will be doubled by Green Steps itself. This may not be fully in the pure spirit of crowdfunding, but is our way to tell you that every single drop counts. Because in order to achieve our goal, we are keen to make it double. No matter what, your support will trigger an effect.
our vision is global
Green Steps has also had a location in Europe since 2019 and, starting from Autumn 2020, we will be pushing the Green Steps ARK from our new regional headquarters near Vienna. The European Commission has already promised us a first small EU grant for this undertaking.
3. Amanda Montañez; Source: “Export of Plastic Debris by Rivers into the Sea,” by Christian Schmidt et al., in Environmental Science & Technology, Vol. 51, No. 21; November 7, 2017
10. Journal of Social Science Studies, ISSN 2329-9150, 2016, Vol. 3, No. 1
Little Boxes: how our property laws impact climate change
On December 2019 Green Steps registered an NGO in Austria to tie China activities closer to our European home countries. One year later, after all the required steps of preparation, staff recruiting and networking, we finally got to do what we are here for: providing education in harmony with nature. Our first activity was a Plastic Pirates: 13kg collected and much more waiting for our upcoming monthly clean-ups
Befriend Nature in a non invasive way
On November 15, following the lead of us Nature Guides, a big group of children went to explore Zhongshan park, in the middle of Shanghai central district, with their parents to get away from the metropolis in this natural oasis. In the depth of the forest, they became little explorers: assisted by Green Steps Nature Guides and by their parents, they take a step out of the comfort zone and another one into the adventure.
Behind Green Steps: Sam Xichao Zhang
From Hunan countryside to a Shanghai: Green Steps and him met at the intersection of technology, society and education. The aim? Building a sustainable and respectful digital platform. Possibly, with a powerful soundtrack in the background. Get to know our Sam!