Wanted: young speaker to address UN General Assembly session on climate change

Tokelau's low-lying Nukunonu Atoll, is vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. UN Photo/Ariane Rummery (file photo)

21 April 2015 – Are you or do you know a young person from a developing country with an inspiring story about climate action? If so, the United Nations wants to hear from you.

A global search is underway for this dynamic person and two others from civil society organizations to address a special United Nations High-Level Event on Climate Change, set for 29 June, and convened by the President of the General Assembly, Sam Kutesa.

The event, which will be attended by Ministers, business leaders and representatives from civil society organizations will take place just months before countries meet in Paris in December 2015 to adopt a new universal agreement on climate change.

“The first goal is to check the pulse of Members States to see where we stand. But we also know the world needs to go further to tackle climate change. We are therefore looking for solutions and inspiration from a young person who is already successfully taking climate action in his or her community,” said Mr. Kutesa.

The search for a dynamic young speaker to address the opening ceremony is being conducted by the UN Non-Governmental Liaison Service (UN-NGLS). In addition, UN-NGLS asks for candidates to participate in two other panels during the day of the meeting.

UN-NGLS is asking candidates who are representatives of civil society organizations to share their story of successful local climate action to help shift the world to a sustainable path, enabling economic opportunity, equality, and a healthy environment for all. Civil society representatives may also apply to serve on the Selection Committee for this event. To apply, please visit: http://bit.ly/Apply-29June-UNPGA-climate-change.

The event will be the highpoint of a week of climate change activities at UN Headquarters in New York, which kick off on 23 June with a meeting of business leaders organized by UN Global Compact. This will be followed on 26 June by a two-day meeting of Ministers from the least developed countries (LDCs). The events will culminate in a concert by leading World Music stars and the New York Symphony Orchestra on 30 June. The events will all take place under the banner of the UN campaign “2015: Time for Global Action.”

“This year is both historic and momentous,” Mr. Kutesa said. “We are engaged in three critically important processes – the post-2015 sustainable development agenda, financing for development, and climate change. This year, 2015, is the time for global action and this High-Level Event should highlight and inspire governments, communities and civil society to take further action.”


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