Blue Flag Beaches as Place-based Climate and Sustainability Education Sites in India

Case Summary: 

India is highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, increasingly experiencing sea-level rise, weather events, and cyclones in its coastal areas. The lives and livelihoods of coastal communities, many of them fisher people, are becoming increasingly affected by the impacts of climate change. In this case study, the Centre for Environment Education harnesses the educational value of beach and coastal settings.

The Centre for Environment Education is India’s national Blue Flag Beach operator. This program, offered by the Foundation for Environmental Education, aims to connect people with their surrounding environment through beaches. Blue Flag Beaches adhere to stringent environmental, educational, safety, and accessibility standards, and environmental education activities must be offered.

The case study highlights the transformative educational potential of beaches as place-based learning sites. This participatory approach allowed the Blue Flag Beach program to be adapted to local community needs. The beach has become a pedagogical site that reveals the risks and vulnerabilities of climate change. Place-based activities are supporting beachgoers to develop critical thinking, self-reflection, community action, and collaboration skills. In this way, education through beaches can help to improve human understanding of the environment, raise awareness about the impact of human activities and climate change in nature, and ultimately foster community resilience and wellbeing through environmental management and sustainability practice.

Action Area 
Planning and Implementation Activity 
Governance and Stakeholder Engagement
Sectors and Themes 
Barriers overcome 
MECCE (Monitoring and Evaluation Climate Communication and Education Project), CEE (Centre for Environmental Education)
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