ROME — Italian public schools will soon require children in every grade to study climate change as the unelected leftist government aims to put Italy “at the forefront of environmental education worldwide.”
Italy’s education minister, Lorenzo Fioramonti, told New York Times reporter Jason Horowitz that the environmental indoctrination will be introduced as part of the students’ civics education as a sort of “Trojan horse” that will eventually “infiltrate” all courses.
The environmental lessons, which will begin next fall, will be adapted to each age group, Fioramonti said. For example, “we are thinking of using the fairy-tale model” for children aged six to 11, he said. Stories from different cultures would stress a connection to the environment.
As children get older, their climate education will become more technical, he said, and high school students will be required to study the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in depth.
Mr. Fioramonti, who has pushed for taxes on sugar and plastics, is a member of the Eurosceptic Five Star Movement (M5S), one of whose stars stands for environmentalism. M5S broke with its conservative populist governing partner La Lega in August to join with its former sworn enemy, the left-wing Democratic Party (PD) in order to stay in power.
Fioramonti said that teachers at every grade level will impart lessons in climate change and environmental sustainability in a 33-hour-a-year pilot program, which will eventually imbue the entire school curriculum with the climate agenda of the United Nations.
Starting in September 2020, even unrelated courses such as geography will be tweaked to study the impact of human actions on climate in different parts of the planet, Fioramonti said.
The education minister has enlisted a group of climate experts — like Jeffrey D. Sachs of the Harvard Institute for International Development and Kate Raworth of Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute — to act as “peer reviewers” in preparing the new ecological curriculum.
Fioramonti also said that he intends to act fast in case there is another change in government and climate change skeptics like Matteo Salvini — Italy’s most popular politician — return to power.
We want to teach children “that this is the most important challenge humanity has ever faced,” he said. “And I want to secure this before there is any change in government that can imperil that kind of process.”
Every country needs to do what it can to stop the “Trumps of the world,” Fioramonti said, referring to recent statements by the U.S. president that he intends to fulfill his promise of withdrawing from the 2015 Paris Climate Accord.
Meanwhile, in Great Britain, children are now receiving psychological treatment for “eco-anxiety,” an overwhelming terror of “environmental doom” as climate alarmists spread fears of an impending climate disaster.
“Protests by groups such as Extinction Rebellion, the recent fires in the Amazon and apocalyptic warnings by the teenage activist Greta Thunberg have prompted a ‘tsunami’ of young people seeking help,” reported the science correspondent of the Telegraph.
“A lot of parents are coming into therapy asking for help with the children and it has escalated a lot this summer,” said psychotherapist Caroline Hickman of the Climate Psychology Alliance (CPA) last September.
“The symptoms are the same [as clinical anxiety], the feelings are the same, but the cause is different,” she said. “The fear is of environmental doom — that we’re all going to die.”