A panel of 3 young women speaking on stage. A panel of 3 young women speaking on stage.

Youth Summit

Young leaders from around the world are convening on Saturday, September 21 to showcase climate solutions and engage with global leaders on the defining issue of our time.

Youth Climate Summit, 21 September 2019

The UN Youth Climate Summit is a platform for young leaders who are driving climate action to showcase their solutions at the United Nations, and to meaningfully engage with decision-makers on the defining issue of our time.

This historic event will take place on Saturday, September 21 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, as part of a weekend of events leading up to the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit on Monday, September 23.

The Youth Climate Summit will feature a full-day of programming that brings together young activists, innovators, entrepreneurs, and change-makers who are committed to combating climate change at the pace and scale needed to meet the challenge. It will be action oriented, intergenerational, and inclusive, with equal representation of young leaders from all walks of life.

UN Secretary-General stands in the center of a group of young people holding a 'Youth2030' banner.

Be There

Attend

Young people between the ages of 18 and 29 are invited to attend the Youth Climate Summit on September 21, and the UN seeks strong participation from young leaders in the Global South. To attend the summit, interested youth must apply by 11:59 pm on July 19 (EST time, GMT-04:00). Attendees will be selected based on their demonstrated commitment to addressing the climate crisis and their displayed leadership in advancing solutions. Application is now closed.

Climate leaders under the age of 18 have the opportunity to attend through a nomination process. Organizations or schools interested in nominating young leaders under the age of 18 should fill out the nomination form by 11:59 pm July 26 (EST time, GMT-04:00). If selected, young leaders under the age of 18 will need to be accompanied to the UN by an adult. Application is now closed.

Selection Process

On July 1, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General announced that the United Nations is providing 100 Green Tickets - fully-funded, carbon-neutral travel to NYC - to enable youth from all walks of life to attend the Youth Climate Summit on September 21, 2019. Through the support received from the UN system, including agencies, departments, and affiliated entities, as well as civil society partners, more than 7,000 applications were received.

The Office of the Special Envoy for the Climate Action Summit and the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth consulted with the Summit’s youth working group to develop criteria by which to evaluate the applications. For example, a strong candidate will have demonstrated a concrete commitment to advancing climate action, including through leadership positions, as well as clear evidence of impact.

The youth working group is comprised of 30 young leaders from around the world, predominantly the Global South, who were selected to partake in the pre-Summit preparatory meeting in Abu Dhabi in June 2019. The working group will also provide direct input to the preparation of the Youth Summit agenda, to ensure that it is an inclusive, representative, and impactful process.

This team of youth reviewers and staff from the Climate Action Team, the UN Foundation, and the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth are currently evaluating the applications in a two-step review process. Youth from the working group will review the profiles of the 100 Green Ticket winners, and applicants will be notified in mid-August about whether they were chosen to attend the summit. For those who are not selected, the team is preparing a variety of opportunities to engage virtually or to host an event on September 21-23 in your own community. Please check our website for additional details in the coming weeks.

Participate Virtually

Reduce your carbon footprint and participate in the Youth Climate Summit virtually! Check back for more information.

left side: young man on a video conference call, right side: young woman in an auditorium speaking with a microphone.

Cover the event

Media is welcome to the Youth Climate Summit. All journalists wishing to cover the Summit will need accreditation. Accreditation is good for all of the events during the UN High-Level Week, but entry to any specific event, including the Youth Climate Summit, will require a press ticket that will be available through the Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit. Further information for press will be posted here.

Take Action

Develop an innovative, technology-based solution to climate change, and submit your idea to the UN’s Summer of Solutions.

Nominate yourself or a friend to be considered as a 2019 SDG Pioneer by the UN Global Compact.

Commit to individual actions that reduce your environmental footprint with the UN’s ActNow Climate Campaign or the Lazy Person’s Guide to Saving the World.

Egypt Ify Ufele stands next to Colleen Werner and Shadille Estepan with SDG cubes.

The road to the Youth Climate Summit

The Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth briefs civil society leaders on plans for youth engagement and public mobilization PDF document.

The Secretary-General's Special Envoy for the 2019 Climate Action Summit briefs civil society leaders on the summit and calls for creative ideas to engage youth and the public PDF document, including proposals to showcase climate actions in September.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres travels to the Pacific, where he meets with young leaders and civil society representatives. During his trip, he hears from those already impacted by climate change and those who are successfully engaging in meaningful climate action.

The UN Secretary-General's Envoy on Youth hosts a Youth Town Hall at the Global Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction to discuss climate change and youth mobilization for the Secretary-General’s upcoming Climate Summit.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres meets with Greta Thunberg, youth climate activist, at the R20 Austrian World Summit.

At the 68th UN Civil Society Conference, youth leaders will discuss how to build inclusive and sustainable communities, with a strong emphasis on citizen engagement around climate action.