Planting at Castlepoint
Image: DOC


A strategy and action plan to better equip New Zealanders, especially children and young people, with the knowledge, skills and motivation to tackle environmental issues. Published 2017.

Download the publication

Environmental Education for Sustainability Strategy and Action Plan 2017-2021 (PDF, 4,112K)


The Environmental Education for Sustainability Strategy and Action Plan sets out priority areas for government agencies to focus on, towards the goal that all New Zealanders value a connection to our environment by actively working together for a sustainable future.

The strategy updates a previous national strategy for environmental education.

In the strategy and action plan we set out how government agencies will build on previous collaboration and work together to support the delivery of high quality Environmental Education for Sustainability (EEfS) across New Zealand.

Government has developed this strategy to guide government action and support all New Zealanders with an interest in sustainable communities.

We acknowledge that everybody has a role to play in determining the future of our country, and that we must work together to make informed decisions and take action, both as individuals and within communities.

Government is looking to support and enhance the great work that is already happening around New Zealand, and encourage more people to engage in environmental education for sustainability.

Three priority areas guide where government agencies should direct their efforts over the next 10 years to target opportunities and create momentum. They are:

  • enable coordination of EEfS
  • grow capability and capacity in EEfS delivery
  • strengthen pathways in sustainable practice.

The action plan then focuses around short term objectives to direct focus over the first four years.

  • celebrate success to raise awareness and demonstrate value
  • strengthen networks to foster collaborative action
  • build capability and capacity to engage people
  • ensure progress of the Action Plan and measure its impact.

Implementation of this strategy will help the Government achieve its environmental goals. Our agencies will be working together to focus on key overarching aspirational environmental goals, such as Predator Free New Zealand, as 'rallying points' for New Zealand's environmental efforts.

As a nation, we need to recognise the key challenges we must face together and where we can effectively take a global leadership position.

The strategy and action plan considers environmental education is relevant for people of all ages and from all works of life, not just in school settings. Our aim is that New Zealanders can access opportunities in many ways throughout their lives.

Public consultation on a draft of this strategy took place in 2016. While developed by DOC, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry for the Environment, the strategy applies to the whole of government and will direct their efforts over the next ten years.

Back to top