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Environmental sustainability focuses on protecting environmental resources such as water, land, forests and biodiversity, among others. The relationship between human beings and nature is essential. Human beings need a healthy productive life without undermining the environmental needs of present and future generations. Social communities ought to develop their economy making intellectual decisions pertaining to the management of their natural resources so as not to compromise the needs of future generations. The study sought to establish the effectiveness of the approach used in teaching environmental education in secondary schools in Kenya by investigating the cognition of first year university students about environmental concerns and their effects. Qualitative research methodology was used. The techniques used to generate data were interviews and audio-recording. Findings revealed that respondents lacked cognition about how human beings negatively affect the environment and the challenges experienced by them as a result of the negative effects. The approach used in teaching environmental education in secondary schools in Kenya is not effective. It goes against the principle of using the preventive approach to protect the environment through education. It is essential to develop appropriate policies and reform the curriculum in basic education to enable learners to move from nature appreciation and awareness to education for an ecologically sustainable future. Environmental Education can be used as a context of integration for learning with other subjects including English Language Teaching.
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