By Era Environnement
The United Arab Emirates Presidency is launching on Thursday 16 March an international programme for negotiators for young people from least developed countries and small island developing states. 100 young people mainly from small island developing states, as well as other countries directly impacted by climate change will be selected. These young people will participate in climate negotiations and public and private initiatives for, according to the United Arab Emirates Presidency, to ensure the representation of diverse voices and the inclusion of their priorities in the multilateral process.
The aim of the international YCDP programme is to help strengthen the skills, knowledge and networks of young people, especially those from the most vulnerable countries, so that they can engage in the process of combating climate change. It should also develop a new model of youth inclusion at the COP, with the aim of building a sustainable youth engagement over several generations.
At COP 27, the voice of youth was heard through the Children and Youth Pavilion, the first of its kind, as well as the first ever youth-led Climate Forum. At COP 27, a 10-year-old environmental activist Nakeeyat Dramani Sam spoke at a plenary session. Speaking to a hundred delegates a few hours before the end of the negotiations, her gentle voice and direct message had left their mark. Speaking of the suffering caused by the floods in Ghana, she held up a poster that said “Payment Overdue” and asked delegates, “When can you pay us back? Because the payment is late.” She was referring to climate finance issues.
Sponsored by the COP28 Young Climate Champions team and the COP28 Presidency, the programme will be coordinated in all its components jointly by youth-led organizations, including YOUNGO, the official body for children and youth of the UNFCCC. The YCDP is designed to highlight needs and to include youth proposals in global climate decision-making, build capacity, Youth climate knowledge and network to establish a model of equitable inclusion for youth in all future COPs.