The project People & Planet: A Common Destiny, funded by the European Union, aims to contribute to the development of policies for sustainability at the glocal (global + local) level while promoting the participation of young citizens as change-makers.

That is why we were very pleased to reinforce the link between global and local agendas by marking presence at a COP27 side event. The invitation came from BRIDGES Sustainability Science Coalition, an UNESCO initiative, whose mission is to integrate the humanities, the arts, the social sciences and educational sciences as well as local and indigenous knowledge into mainstream sustainability science.

Under a session dedicated to “The Role of Youth & Gender in Just & Resilient Global Futures: Amplifying Marginalized Voices for Positive Climate Impact”, this participation was an opportunity to showcase how youth can contribute to resilient sustainable development. International representative Gabriela Ramos, Assistant Director-General for the Social and Human Sciences of UNESCO was also present.

Through a pre-recorded video, the project explained how it works with and for youth as key agents for development: by promoting the adoption of sustainable behaviours and young people’s active engagement in the local policy-making process.

To guide the project’s approach, we had to learn about what views and expectations young people have about the climate crisis. The project carried out a baseline survey with the participation of over 3500 young people from our partnership’s EU countries and the results can now be found on the report ‘European Youth and Climate Change: A Community Baseline‘.

The main conclusion is obvious to everyone: most young European citizens think that protecting the environment is very important. However, young people do not always have access to the right tools to fight for this cause. As such, the report also gave us some insights on the best way to actually move towards that goal. Working alongside young people in the three different education systems while promoting the creation of youth groups to draft their own recommendations towards local authorities are some examples of actions that answer to young people’s expectations. We believe that this overall approach of working for and with young people is aligned with the UNFCCC’s term Action for Climate Empowerment.

Learn more about the participation of the People & Planet here (please note that the video requires registration, but it takes only a few seconds).

You can find the full report here: European Youth and Climate Change: A Community Baseline

And individual chapters for Germany, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, and Spain here

We also made available summary factsheets in national languages for each of these countries, which you can find here

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