Children of the revolution: nurturing a sustainable future

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Schneider Electric

By Chris Kerr, Vice President Home & Distribution, Schneider Electric

At a time when sustainability dominates the global agenda, parents of the next generation are bearing the responsibility of nurturing eco-conscious children, often with a profound desire to leave behind a healthier environment for their families to enjoy.

Our recent report, entitled ‘The rise of home energy efficiency’, showed that 6 in 10 adults have become more sustainable since having children, and that 78% of those with children under the age of 18 encourage them to perform more sustainable actions.

Living more sustainably is a growing concern for us all, especially for families with the research findings showcasing the importance of action to parents. While it’s important to provide a more stable planet for children, parents and guardians are passionate about encouraging their children to adopt greener practices and ensuring that care and consideration for the planet is continued through the generations.

Key motivators for parents

Given the threats of climate change, parents and guardians must pass down sustainable living practices onto their children. Of course, preventing further damage to the planet is the primary reason for this, but there are other benefits when it comes to ensuring our children pursue sustainable ways of living.

Education and wellbeing

Having conversations about sustainability is a great way to educate young Australians about environmental issues, fostering an understanding and awareness from an early age. As children grow, so can the content, tackling more advanced subjects to ease climate anxiety.

In the climate anxiety in children and young people report, 59% of children reported feeling very or extremely worried about climate change. Therefore, it is important for parents to encourage children to adopt sustainable practices to manage their anxiety around climate change and empower them to take action from an early age.

Economic

In our 2023 report, 86% of respondents reported that rising energy bills would be of concern should the global temperature increase by more than 1.5°C. Based on the potential world temperature increase and in a financial sense, families must become comfortable reviewing and making more sustainable practices around the home.

Tech literacy 

Children today are digital natives, raised with technology all around them. It is important to introduce how technology can help us all to lead more sustainable lives. Smart home devices and home energy management systems, such as Wiser, are invaluable when it comes to managing energy usage at home. By showing how energy is used, and how their behavior impacts energy bills and even CO2 emissions, these systems can build more sustainable habits.

Mindful consumption 

One of the most significant and impactful lessons your child can learn is how to manage their own consumption. From turning off devices when they aren’t in use and conserving water, to making more sustainable food and product choices, and investing in energy-efficient appliances, there are a multitude of ways children can be urged to create eco-friendly habits that reduce unnecessary consumption, with the ability to be tailored to any age.

Incorporating sustainable practices into our daily lives is increasingly important and instilling these values in the younger generation is a great way to ensure we can all enjoy a sustainable and resilient future.

How to encourage children to make sustainable choices? 

Communication, as always, is key. Creating an environment that empowers children to be curious and ask questions is the most important factor, when encouraging them to make sustainable choices. So, while the subject can be complex and there may be many difficult conversations ahead, ensure that you are open to learning together.

Encouraging your children to use public transport, cycle, or to walk to places within a reasonable distance is a great way to help them to make more sustainable choices. Involve them in the planning of journeys from a young age so they don’t feel intimidated by using public transport as they get older. It is also helpful to explain how this helps to create a healthier planet, making their efforts more relatable to the cause.

Through actions big and small, parents have the opportunity to educate and inspire their children to become guardians of the environment, creating a positive future beyond the home, for all.

Learn more about how sustainable solutions can benefit you and your home here.

About Schneider Electric 

Schneider’s purpose is to empower all to make the most of our energy and resources, bridging progress and sustainability for all. We call this Life Is On.

Our mission is to be your digital partner for Sustainability and Efficiency.

We drive digital transformation by integrating world-leading process and energy technologies, end-point to cloud connecting products, controls, software and services, across the entire lifecycle, enabling integrated company management, for homes, buildings, data centres, infrastructure and industries.

We are the most local of global companies. We are advocates of open standards and partnership ecosystems that are passionate about our shared Meaningful Purpose, Inclusive and Empowered values.

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