Wearing a thick sweater in class because of Warm Sweater Day: ‘Because the climate is going pretty bad’

The children of OBS De Westerburcht in Eelde dressed extra warmly today. And the thermostat in the school has been set one degree lower. That’s because of Warm Sweater Day. The motto of this day is: ‘heat yourself, not the world’.

Warm Sweater Day is an initiative in which hundreds of thousands of Dutch people have participated every year since 2007. The national campaign should help to reduce CO2 emissions. It is also good for the wallet, because energy prices have risen in recent years.

Student Ella is one of the driving forces behind Warm Sweater Day at OBS De Westerburcht. She is also one of the children’s climate mayors of the municipality of Tynaarlo. “We lower the temperature in every classroom by 3 degrees, because the climate is quite bad. If we turn the heater down, we emit less CO2,” she explains.

The Climate Association calculates that if every Dutch person uses one degree less heat, this will save 3.3 million cubic meters of gas and 6.3 million kilos of CO2 emissions. And according to Ella, that is desperately needed. “Nature is not doing well at all. And I really love nature and plants and animals.”

“We are already working on it a bit at home, we have a vegetable garden and we plant trees and a food forest. And we always have the stove at 17.5 degrees,” she says.

According to Ella, Warm Sweater Day consists of all kinds of different activities. “It’s a different one in every class. For example, we’re going to make a candy necklace for birds. And here in class we’re going to knit.”

Miss Hetty says that the initiative makes the children think. “They are becoming aware that they can influence the climate themselves. Warm Sweater Day is very simple, but it has a major effect.”