Colombia

Colombia
Overview

Since 1990, Colombia has prioritized the environment and environmental education in national policy. In addition to directing environmental education initiatives, Colombia has partnered with its neighbors in Latin America and the United Nations to expand the scope of its environmental protections. The Environmental Ministry partners with other agencies and local interests to foster support for sustainability and citizen led educational projects. 

The National Constitution of 1991 declared the environment a common heritage and protects the right to a healthy environment and the concept of sustainable development. Law 99 of 1993 created the Environmental Ministry and established the National Environmental System (SINA) to oversee environmental protections.

EE in the National Government

The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Environment created the Interinstitutional Technical Committees of Environmental Education (CIDEA), which implement national environmental policies and environmental education in accordance with local guidance for each region.

EE in K-12 Education 

The Environmental Ministry developed the National Environmental Education Program in coordination with the Housing and Land Development Ministry and the Education Ministry . The program directs School Environmental Projects (PRAE) and integrates the Citizen Projects for Environmental Education (PROCEDA) into the formal education curricula.

Professional Development

While the government of Colombia does not offer a certification in environmental education, universities and educational institution provide opportunities to people seeking additional training. The National Service of Learning (SENA) hires professionals in environmental management, the University of Caldas offers a bachelor’s degree in environmental education, and the University Santiago de Cali offers a master’s degree in environmental education and sustainable development.

Professional Organizations

The Colombian Network of Environmental Training (RFCA) is a national civil association supported by the Education Ministry. This association implements research programs and national environmental policies as well as coordinating work between private and public institutions.

EE in the National Government

The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Environment created the Interinstitutional Technical Committees of Environmental Education (CIDEA), which implement national environmental policies and environmental education in accordance with local guidance for each region.

National EE Campaigns and Funding

The RFCA is part of the Environmental Training Network for Latin America and the Caribbean (RFA-ALC), the regional affiliate to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The University of Applied and Environmental Sciences of Colombia (UDCA) and the Latin America and the Caribbean Regional Office of the UNEP work together to promote the participation of universities and government offices in RFA-ALC initiatives.

 The principal source of international funding comes from the Inter-American Development Bank, while the main sources of local funding come from the General Budget of the Nation, the Ministry of Environment, and the Ministry of Education.

Organizations

Colombian Network of Environmental Training (RFCA)
ENVIRONMENTAL CONSCIOUSNESS ASSOCIATION
Ministry of Environment
University of Caldas
University Santiago de Cali