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HSBC helps bring green lessons to the classrooms

HSBC has formed a partnership with the Ministry of Environmental Protection's Center for Environmental Education and Communications (CEEC) to deliver environmental education to more than 700 Green Schools in China over the next three years.

The partnership is part of the HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative launched by HSBC Holdings and the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) to teach five to 18 years olds about the environment through FEE's Eco-Schools Program.

Backed by a financial commitment from HSBC of US$2.5 million over three years to 2011, this initiative will involve HSBC employees, from 11 countries, who will volunteer their time to help schools address a variety of environmental themes ranging from energy, transport and waste to water and biodiversity in relation to climate change.

Through the HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative, over 400 HSBC China employees will help the CEEC's network of Green Schools to apply for FEE's Eco-Schools Green Flag award, the world's largest environmental program for children and acknowledged as a symbol of sustainable excellence by the United Nations Environment Program.

Jiao Zhiyan, director of the CEEC says: "CEEC is delighted to join hands with HSBC to launch the HSBC Eco-School Climate Initiative among China's Green Schools. This innovative environmental education program is guided by FEE and aims to inspire China's youth to proactively tackle climate change. In recent years, China has joined international efforts to enhance environmental education, which can make a substantial impact on behavior in later life."

The HSBC Eco-Schools Climate Initiative will encourage students to make decisions about how their school addresses issues associated with climate change and enable schools to enhance their local surroundings, save money and reduce their carbon footprint.

Richard Yorke, group general manager, president and CEO of HSBC Bank (China) says: "Tackling climate change is one of the biggest challenges we face. It is important that we equip our children with the skills they need to make informed decisions about protecting the environment. HSBC is committed to addressing the impacts of climate change and understands that education is one part of the solution."

Students, with help and support from HSBC volunteers and staff from Eco-Schools and CEEC, will join an eco-committee and help conduct an audit to assess the environmental performance of their schools.

Through consultation with the rest of the school and the wider community, pupils will decide which environmental themes they want to address and how they will measure and monitor progress. The program will culminate each year with the HSBC Eco-Code Climate Competition to encourage the sharing of best practices and the celebration of achievements with other schools around the world.


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