What’s Going On Here?
The recent UN Youth Climate Summit put the spotlight on some of the inspiring young people leading the charge for climate justice, but who are they and why is it important to know about them?
What Does This Mean?
In August 2018, a young Swedish girl – whose name we now all know – skipped school to protest in front of the Swedish Parliament about climate change inaction. Thirteen months later, and this solitary act has turned into one heck of a global movement, with the recent Global Climate Strike seeing a whopping estimated 7.6 million people taking part across 185 countries.
In the last fortnight we’ve seen the first ever UN Youth Climate Summit, with attendees from over 140 countries; watched the Fridays for Future movement being awarded the UN Award for Champions of the Earth (they then rejected it in a blistering speech); and heard the news that 16 young people are suing 5 of the world’s top carbon polluting countries!
Greta Thunberg is just one of a growing number of inspiring and unstoppable young people who are setting out to change the world for the better, and aren’t waiting for adults to do it for them.
Why Should We Care?
Many of the young people we have seen leading the way are indigenous and people of colour. This is no coincidence. They come from countries and communities that are disproportionately affected by the climate and environmental crises, yet their struggles and stories often receive too little attention from the media.
To create a system that works for everyone, it’s crucial that any plan to tackle the global climate crisis is intersectional: taking into account the needs and views of those people most affected, to not only save the planet, but fight the systems of oppression which led us to this point in the first place.
Inspired to drive change? Here’s some impact-full advice for ya. ???? Know their names, hear their stories and concerns:
Autumn Peltier, 15
Mari Copeny, 12
Artemisa Xakriaba, 19
Isra Hirsi, 16
Xiuhtezcati Martinez, 19
Helena Gualinga, 17
- Country: Ecuador, Sarayaku community
- Instagram: @helenagualinga