In an unprecedented move towards sustainability and climate education, we can announce that Cardiff is the first UK authority where Algal bioreactors (liquid trees) have been offered to all its schools. This initiative is a key project in its One Planet Cardiff education offer.
Designed by Our Classroom Climate as a segment of its holistic climate education programme, these “liquid trees” are poised to revolutionise classroom experiences. Not only are they simple to maintain and intriguing to manage, but they also possess an exceptional capacity to capture CO2 — up to 400 times faster than traditional trees (under optimum conditions). In essence, each classroom will now house the equivalent of a 10-year-old oak tree, minus the hassle of leaf litter.
Beyond the eco-benefits, these bioreactors will be interactive educational tools. Students will be actively involved in the “capture the Carbon” process, gaining invaluable knowledge while also purifying the classroom air.
Cllr Sarah Merry, Deputy Leader & Cabinet Member for Education, comments:
“Cardiff Council and the Curriculum Team are delighted to be working with Our Classroom Climate to put environment education quite literally at the heart of the classroom experience. With a bioreactor in learners' classrooms capturing carbon at the same rate as a ten year old oak tree, learners can watch the algae improve their air quality and know that they are playing an important part in tackling climate change.”
“Cardiff Council is committed to transforming the capital into a net-zero city by 2030, as outlined in the One Planet Cardiff Strategy. Central to achieving this ambitious yet crucial goal is the active involvement of the city's youth. What makes Our Classroom Climate's approach particularly noteworthy is that it actively engages learners in environmental education, fostering their development as engaged citizens and agents of behavioural change. In doing so, it enables them to embody many of the key principles of the Four Purposes of Learning, which are the driving forces behind education in Wales.”
The Managing Director of Our Classroom Climate, Mark Douglas, stated,
“This is more than just an environmental initiative. It's an innovative way to integrate climate education into the daily lives of students. By giving them hands-on experience with these ‘liquid trees,' we're equipping the next generation with the knowledge and passion to make real change. Cardiff Council's decision to engage schools with the OCC programme is commendable. With this, they're not only combatting climate change but also sculpting a future where every child understands the importance of, and is equipped to handle, environmental challenges. This is the future of education.”
Paul Broderick of Connex Education is a well-known advocate for sustainable measures in education. As a strategic partner of OCC, he commented:
“Connex Wales is delighted to be partnering in this initiative, the first of its kind in the UK. Air quality is a basic human right and Our Classroom Climate not only educates pupils on the science of climate change but it is also direct Clean Air Action in every classroom.”