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Youth for climate change

Sep 17, 2008

Two degrees of separation: between hope and despair is a young people’s summary of the Human Development Report 2007-08 jointly developed by the UNDP and Peace Child International. The booklet is a creative document that seeks to inspire youth to take action against climate change.

Two degrees of separation: between hope and despair

Publishers: UNDP and Peace Child International, 2008

This booklet is a young people’s summary of the United Nations Human Development Report 2007/2008.

Launched on Youth Day 2008, this booklet developed by Peace Child International jointly with HDRO includes drawings, poems and human stories on climate change and development.

youth climate booklet.jpg

The debate over the threshold for dangerous climate change is ongoing. However, the Human Development Report 2007/2008 states that we will encounter dangerous climate change if the earth’s temperature rises more than 2°C above pre-industrial levels.

This would dramatically increase the likelihood of catastrophic outcomes. Scientific debates will continue, but the youth must help us make those radical changes in two ways:

• By taking full and active part in the decision-making of local, regional and national governments and by lobbying and voting for candidates who promise to pass far-reaching legislation to combat climate change

• By making low carbon lifestyles and career choices a priority in your lives

Our world is in the grip of a dangerous addiction to fossil fuels. But this fossil fuel addiction cannot continue to deliver the same comfort and prosperity to young generation, or the billions who do not currently enjoy it.

So, finding alternative energy sources will become an imperative for them. Handled correctly, such a transition to green economics could be extremely lucrative for you. Green growth will create new jobs.

The booklet suggests various ways by which young people can contribute in combating climate change. These include:

•  Avoid plastic bags

•  Only buy food that will be eaten! Annually, the UK dumps 6.7 million tonnes of food. Most of the waste is sent to landfill where it rots, emitting the potent climate change gas methane

•  Buy from your local charity shop and donate your own clothes, CDs and books etc.

•  Use websites such as The Freecycle Network  to give and get useful things for free in your own towns or which is full of ideas for reusing items

• Travelling by bicycle is about the greenest way to get around

•  Print out school and college notes on both sides of the paper and encourage others by placing reminder signs at photocopiers

•  Turn off your TV, computer, and phone charger completely rather than putting them on stand-by

• Repair and mend your things rather than throwing them away

•  Make your home eco-friendly. Fit energy saving light bulbs

Today’s generation of young people under 25 is the largest ever – 3 billion, nearly half the global population. Clearly, these numbers can effect change through lobbying.

Young people around the world are brimming with ideas and enthusiasm and already using these tools of activism to make their voices heard. This creative and informative document encourages all to join the choir.

Source : UNDP
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