Celebrating its 70th anniversary on November 6, 2022, China University of Geosciences (Wuhan) held International University Presidents’ Forum, themed “Habitable Earth: Mission and Challenges for Research Intensive Universities”.
Representatives from world-renowned research universities in Earth Science, principals of primary and secondary schools, and distinguished scholars from all over the world gathered in-person or online. The participants engaged in discussions on major challenges to the habitability of the Earth, and exchange of ideas on the mission, responsibilities and pathways of promoting the habitability of the Earth through education. The forum jointly released the Wuhan Consensus: An Initiative for a New Geoscience Education. (Full text of the Consensus: https://en.cug.edu.cn/Wuhan_Consensus.htm)
The Consensus emphasizes that a shared future of mankind hinges on the habitability of the Earth. A shared future for mankind is determined by the habitability of the Earth. Due to the combined effects of the Earth’s own evolution and anthropogenic changes, a global shortage of energy resources, environmental pollution, climate change, frequent disasters and ecological damage become increasingly serious, threatening the livability of the Earth at unprecedented rates.
Modern Earth Science has made significant progresses and entered into the era of Earth System Science, with a focus on studying the past, present and future of a habitable Earth by looking into the deep Earth, deep sea, deep space and deep time.
In response to the advancement of science and the call of the times, the Consensus advocates a renewed perception and definition of the role of mankind and its position and living style in the world under the multiverse outlook. The Consensus informs that all mankind should adjust and optimize the value system, knowledge system and dissemination system of geoscience education.
To form a more diversified, comprehensive and inclusive paradigm, under which theories, technologies and methods could be generated, contributing to green and low-carbon production and life styles.
The habitability of the Earth has long been wrecked in the “Anthropocene”. It is high time to initiate, facilitate and practice a brand-new geoscience education that helps to reposition humanity as one of the multitudinous participants and builders of a habitable Earth.
The Consensus calls on global universities, research institutions, primary and secondary schools, as well as all sectors of society for concerted actions to implement the new geoscience education and promote harmonious co-existence between man and nature in a timely manner.
Source: China University of Geosciences (Wuhan)