Greta Thunberg and climate activists

Youth in Action

Climate change has increased levels of uncertainty about our future. As its impacts intensify over time, one thing has become certain: We will leave the Earth to today’s children and young people, and to future generations.

The world is home to 1.8 billion young people between the ages of 10 to 24 — the largest generation of youth in history. Young people are increasingly aware of the challenges and risks presented by the climate crisis and of the opportunity to achieve sustainable development brought by a solution to climate change.

Young people’s unprecedented mobilization around the world shows the massive power they possess to hold decision-makers accountable. Their message is clear: the older generation has failed, and it is the young who will pay in full — with their very futures.

Young people are not only victims of climate change. They are also valuable contributors to climate action. They are agents of change, entrepreneurs and innovators. Whether through education, science or technology, young people are scaling up their efforts and using their skills to accelerate climate action.

 

My generation has largely failed until now to preserve both justice in the world and to preserve the planet. It is your generation that must make us be accountable to make sure that we don't betray the future of humankind. — United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres

 

 

 

Deputy Secretary-General's Virtual Youth Dialogue on Climate

Youth leaders met with the UN Deputy Chief to push for action on climate finance and adaptation. Tune in to see what they had to say about accelerating solutions to the greatest challenge facing our world today.

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Loving nature as we love ourselves

Climate activist and youth advisor to the UN Secretary-General Archana Soreng belongs to an indigenous community in India. She takes inspiration from her grandfather, a pioneer of community-led forest protection, and her father, an indigenous health practitioner, in her call for upholding the rights of indigenous peoples, and restoring the world’s relationship with nature. Read her remarks to the US Leadership Summit on Climate.

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Learn more about Archana

Sport for Sustainability and Climate Action

At the “SDG Zone at Tokyo”, leaders of climate action and sustainability from different specialties - sport, space, and indigenous communities – share the urgency to tackle the climate emergency. Climate activist and youth advisor to the UN Secretary-General Archana Soreng discusses our relationship with nature and the role of indigenous knowledge in the fight to save the planet.

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Photo of Vladislav Kaim

Perspective: Make a deal on debt and for green jobs

Absent an urgent, coordinated international intervention on heavy debt burdens, many countries may “default” on national climate action plans. Youth Advisory Group member Vlad Kaim argues that debt swaps can unleash resources for climate as well as green jobs for young people concerned about economic fallout from the pandemic.

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Young people band together to save the planet.

Young people saving the planet

Hundreds of young people from around the world gathered at the Virtual Youth Forum to explore the most pressing environmental issues facing the planet, including climate change and pollution.

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portrait of Paloma Costa

“I just want to do things without thinking the world is ending”

Meet Paloma Costa. This Brazilian climate activist, lawyer, and member of the UN Secretary-General’s Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change is gently shaking the world with her passion for climate justice.

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Young people are the solution

That was the message youth activist Nisreen Elsaim delivered to a recent high-level session of the UN Security Council on climate change. Describing how climate vulnerability feeds conflict, she welcomed a new political mission in her country, Sudan, that prioritizes climate change and youth participation.

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Secretary-General António Guterres attends a virtual meeting from his office with the Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change.

To the Secretary-General: youth press for climate priorities

The seven members of the global Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change met with Secretary-General António Guterres for a spirited discussion on climate action priorities for 2021.

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Young activists photo gallery

In the spotlight: The Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change

Building on the youth climate movement, the Secretary-General launched his Youth Advisory Group on Climate Change on 27 July to amplify youth voices and to engage young people in an open and transparent dialogue as the UN gears up to raise ambition and accelerate action to tackle the climate emergency.

Its members will bring the voices of young people into high-level decision making and advise the Secretary-General on the implementation of his 2020-21 Climate Change Strategy.

Take a look at the Outcome Report of the Global Youth Outreach here. Press release.

Meet them here

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THINGS YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW

  1. Join the United Nations’ #ActNow campaign for climate action and sustainability
  2. Calculate your carbon footprint
  3. Learn from your peers on the Reach Not Preach platform
  4. Educate yourself on the impact of climate change through an online course offered by UNICEF
  5. Play Mission 1.5 and cast your vote for climate action
  6. Participate in the Youth4Climate virtual event series in advance of pre-COP and COP26
  7. Submit content for the annual Global Youth Video Competition by UNFCCC
  8. Take on the climate challenge by joining the #Youth4Climate initiative
  9. Speak up! Share this information through social media

Youth Climate Action Summit 2019

Young leaders from around the world convened on 21 September 2019 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York to showcase climate solutions and engage with global leaders on the defining issue of our time.

The Youth Climate Action Summit brought youth climate champions together from more than 140 countries and territories to share their solutions on the global stage, and deliver a clear message to world leaders: we need to act now to address climate change. The event gave voice to the demands of young people for swifter action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.