Page last updated at 17:03 GMT, Thursday, 3 December 2009

Youth climate change conference

By Graeme, 14, from Hillpark School, Glasgow
for BBC News School Report in Copenhagen

Graeme at the UNICEF Children's Climate Forum
We have shown it is possible to come together to create fair and ambitious solutions to deal with climate change. Now world leaders must follow.
Graeme, 14

I am one of four young Climate Ambassadors selected to represent the views of young people in the UK at a summit for young people in Copenhagen.

This week, 160 fourteen to seventeen-year-olds have gathered for the UNICEF Children's Climate Forum, where we have shared our concerns and ideas about how we should deal with climate change.

Coming from both developed and developing countries, the forum has given us the opportunity to ensure that the voices of young people are heard by world leaders at next week's UN climate summit in the city.

Although we've only been here for a few days, almost every moment has been action packed!

One of the highlights for me has been the discussion around how we can adapt globally to cope better with the effects of climate change.


The workshop I took part in was focused on climate justice, which is an issue I feel incredibly passionate about.

I was really inspired by the fact that no-one disagreed or argued with one another. Every single delegate believed that developed countries should provide funding so that developing countries can cope with the impacts of climate change now and in the future.

This made me think that if only the world leaders could have acted like this a long time ago, the world wouldn't be facing the climate change problems it is today.


I feel incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to be at the Children's Climate Forum. It is the right of every young person to have their voice heard on issues that affect them - we are the ones who are bearing the brunt of climate change now and will bear it in the future.

I have heard, for example, from fellow delegates from the Maldives that their homes are urgently threatened by rising sea levels and from Kenyan delegates that their peers aren't able to go to school because they have to go further and further to search for water.

The future of all the world's children depends on the deal forged at the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change here in Copenhagen over the next couple of weeks.

We will be presenting a declaration of our concerns to the President of COP15 on Friday - world leaders must listen to us, as almost half of the world's population is below 25.

We, the world's children, have shown it is possible to come together to create fair and ambitious solutions to deal with climate change, to ensure all children can realise their rights. Now world leaders must follow.

Climate Change Interactive
19 Nov 09 |  Have Your Say


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