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Section 1: Tell me – Definition of Net Zero? (5 mins)

There are considered to be hundreds of different definitions of NetZero being used across the world. For the purposes of this programme we will consider these 2:

UK Definition: Net zero means that the UK’s total greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions would be equal to or less than the emissions the UK removed from the environment. This can be achieved by a combination of emission reduction and emission removal. (Taken from

United Nations Definition: Put simply, net zero means cutting greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible, with any remaining emissions re-absorbed from the atmosphere, by oceans and forests for instance (Taken from

Task 1: Reflect & Discuss (10 mins)

Read the tweet and pick one environmental change you would like to make. Ask pupils to look at the tweet listing a range of environmental actions and ask:

  • Is there one you think you would be able to do?
  • What are the barriers that stop us? (financial, social, cultural, time etc)

Reflection & Discussion Continued (5 mins)

Show your pupils the following video. Once you have viewed it, split the pupils  into small groups of 3 to 4. Discuss with the pupils what their ‘carbon footprint’ is, ask the pupils for their opinions.

Task 2: Picture Board & Mindmap (10 Mins)

In their groups, ask pupils to explore how they feel when they see the 5 pictures below. (Also in the slides.)  As you work through the images ask pupils to note down the following  in their workbooks for each:

  1. Say what you see 
  2. What’s going on in the image
  3. Describe or name any feelings the images provoke (anger, sadness, confusion etc)

Section 2: Understanding Net Zero: The Key Considerations

Task 3: Reflect & Discuss (10 mins)

Show your pupils the following: ‘Key Considerations’ Crib Sheet

Ask pupils to pick one question from each category that jumps out and explain, Why?

Now pupils must select 1 question that really interests them and answer:

    1. How does it engage in your personal life?
    2. How is it relevant at school?
    3. How can it be addressed in their favourite subject?
    4. Why is it important?

Section 3: How does NetZero affect us?

Task 4: Personal Action Plan

Having these discussions can feel overwhelming  and leaves participants feeling powerless. Units 2 and 3, empowers young people to take control and become innovative changemakers. 

Use the action plan template below to help your pupils consider what they can do in their own lives to reduce their carbon footprint. 

  1. Ask pupils to pick a sustainability theme that resonates with them, it could link to something they are already doing.
  1. Using the Personal Action Plan template, ask the pupils to plan the change they are going to take a positive action linked to their chosen theme