Planet A, a challenge for a more sustainable future, will take place in only a couple of days. The challenge revolves around two main themes – Environmental education and Limited resources. What do these themes actually consist of? Read more from below.

We live beyond our planet's limits

We’ve all heard it: how can an infinitely growing economy exist in a finite planet? Many agree that something should be done to this obvious discrepancy between nature and human actions. So now it is time for everyone to think about the solutions. The limited resources section will focus on the topic of resources and their usage at large. If you are interested in a forward-thinking but practical solution to the wicked problems of limited resources, this is the challenge for you!

Limited resources refer to natural resources that are non-renewable. These include the traditional ones such as fossil fuels, natural gases, and coal but also a wider array of resources such as clean water, certain metals, or even plants. Basically, anything that cannot be replenished at the rate of its consumption will become a limited resource. We have known for some time that humans live beyond our planet’s limits. Yet our consumption habits or general energy policies have not (yet) adapted to more sustainable ways. Solutions to these problems are both technical and social. Changing our energy infrastructure is the necessary technical side but it has to be accompanied by a change in our ways of life. One suggestion is moving towards the circular economy in which the use of materials is reduced through recycling and reusing. Other suggestions include scenarios of degrowth and environmental decoupling.

The problems that management of limited resources possess should be solved at many levels. In this challenge, we mainly focus on solutions at a community level. So you don’t have to be an energy policy specialist or a power plant engineer to participate in this section (but if you are, you are very welcome!). We’ll keep the bigger picture in mind but focus on what the problems and solutions of limited resources mean to us all in everyday life.

“In this section, we try to cook up solutions that can be implemented to everyone’s life. These can include anything from individuals apps to help people choose more environmentally friendly products to form a business model around planting trees.”

The planet needs environmental educators

In a time of ecological crisis, ignorance can be bliss but it can also drive us away from each other. All the while, false information gets mixed up with the truth in the flood of information we take in on a daily basis. The expectation is to learn to live ever more sustainably, but how does one find the right way if there even is just one. Is there a way for us to come together as a people instead of pointing fingers? Environmental education plays a key role in these and many other issues as the work towards a common goal continues.

Who are the environmental educators, you might ask? It can be anyone and everyone. In the information society the exchange of knowledge can be limitless but what really makes a difference, is how it’s done. In this challenge, the focus is on finding new solutions to enhance environmental education in the society. And who are the targets of environmental education? It’s up for you to decide. Join the challenge, and show us.

Apply by May 6!

text: Roope Keränen & Varpu Savolainen