Skip to content
Green
Politics

China Teaches Kids Its Own Version of the Climate Change Story

Students are encouraged to shrink their carbon footprint, not question how the country should decrease its environmental impact.

Gao Ximan reads from a presentation about Siberian tiger conservation that she prepared for an online workshop about climate change, in Beijing on Jan. 14.

Gao Ximan reads from a presentation about Siberian tiger conservation that she prepared for an online workshop about climate change, in Beijing on Jan. 14.

Photographer: Yan Cong/Bloomberg

For most of her young life, nine-year-old Gao Ximan dreamed of becoming a policewoman. But after attending an eight-week online workshop about climate change this summer, she decided being a conservationist was a more important ambition.

“Siberian tigers and snow leopards are so cute, but they are dying out,” said Gao, a fourth-grade student at one of the top public schools in Beijing. She stopped using the air conditioner in her bedroom and insisted her family use public transport instead of their car for weekend outings.