Registration open for the 2024 Environmental Communication School, focused on empowering citizens in the face of climate crisis


The sixth edition evolves into an event format of conversations with professionals contributing to the advancement of the energy and climate transition, and deepens the focus on changing the narrative to communicate more and better on environmental issues.

The programme includes two practical sessions: a boat trip to Santa Clara Island and Hondalea, and a workshop for a Climate Mural co-creation.

The sixth edition of the Environmental Communication School already has a date: it will be held on 12 September 2024 at the Miramar Palace, in San Sebastian. The conference may also be followed online.

The event is organised by the Association of Environmental Information Journalists-APIA and the Public Society for Environmental Management of the Basque Government, Ihobe, within the framework of the Summer Courses of the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) and the Donostia Sustainability Forum, it will focus on the empowerment of citizens in the face of the climate crisis and other environmental challenges.

The main goal of this edition is to provide a space for reflection and offer key insights on the loss of biodiversity, the conservation of the natural environment, the implementation of the circular economy, and sustainable development. To this end, the School is transforming and evolving the event into a format of inspiring conversations with professionals who are contributing to advancing the energy and climate transition and changing the narrative to communicate on environmental issues more and better.

These talks are completed by two practical experiences: a boat visit to the island of Santa Clara and Hondalea, for those attending the in-person event; and a Climate Mural co-creation workshop for those attending online.

A space for conversation and reflection

Environmental professionals and specialists will star in a programme that will become a space for reflection on how to move citizens to climate action or how to face the climate crisis and other environmental challenges, and will delve into new formats, supports, and channels for environmental communication.
The opening session will be chaired by the School’s co-directors, the chairwoman of APIA, María García de la Fuente, and the Ihobe Head of Strategic Communication, Yolanda D. Rodríguez, who will give way to a series of round tables. The first, entitled Estamos a tiempo (We are still on time), will feature the participation of science communicator Javier Peña and Fernando Valladares, CSIC scientist and professor at the Rey Juan Carlos University, with the participation of the journalist Adela Úcar, current host of the show Reduce tu Huella (Reduce your Footprint) on TVE's La2.

It will be followed by a panel discussion on how to communicate to drive citizen action. The discussion will feature Yayo Herrero, consultant, researcher, and professor, and Asunción Ruiz, executive director of SEO/BirdLife. The conversation will be moderated by environmental journalist Rafael Ruiz, currently at the helm of the digital publication El Asombrario.

This will be followed by the challenge of promoting a citizens' assembly and a climate deal in the Basque Country. Mari Mar Alonso and Mari Luz Gómez, director of Climate Action and head of the Ihobe Citizenship project, respectively, will be in charge of this part of the programme. The morning session will be closed by Naiara Goia, General Director of the Arantzazu lab Social Innovation Laboratory. Her speech will focus on "Innovation Perspectives for Strengthening Democracy and Empowering Citizens."

After the morning's conclusions, facilitated by APIA's environmental journalist Luis Guijarro, the afternoon programme will be completed with a practical workshop and a practical experience. Those attending in person will visit the natural and artistic environment of the island of Santa Clara and Hondalea by boat, thanks to the Cristina Enea Foundation. On the other hand, online participants will take part in a workshop on the co-creation of the Climate Mural led by Stéphane Kosinski, from the Adesio consultancy firm.

As a complement to the sessions, all those attending the UPV/EHU Summer Courses at the Miramar Palace will have the opportunity to see the exhibition El cambio climático no tiene gracia (Climate change is not funny), created by the environmental magazine Ballena Blanca, where cartoonists from all over the world show their particular vision of this serious problem and its effects on health, the environment, the economy, and agriculture, among others.

About the School

The Environmental Communication School is one of the activities included in the Summer Courses programme of the University of the Basque Country-UPV/EHU; it’s also part of the Donostia Sustainability Forum, the forum for an interdisciplinary approach to sustainability from a social, environmental, and economic perspective.

The Environmental Communication School, organised by Ihobe-Public Society for Environmental Management of the Basque Government and APIA-Association of Environmental Information Journalists, is a forum for debate that promoted the role of communication as a tool for mobilising action. The first edition, in 2019, focused on communicating the climate crisis; the second edition addressed communication on biodiversity and natural heritage; the third edition, in September 2021, was dedicated to energy and climate transition; the fourth edition addressed the relationship between the climate crisis, ecosystem preservation, and human health; and the last edition focused on how to communicate environmental issues with young people.

Registration is now open and can be completed using the following link: