November 25th, 2018
Often, as people under the age of 18, we are told, "Oh you don't know enough" or, "You haven't seen enough to know anything"; at least when it comes to political activism or activism in general. But here is the thing... we all know that us "kids" have a lot more time on our hands and we have access to more information than any other generation before us. So, for a while, most conversations that had anything to do with changing the world we live in were restricted to voter booths or conferences which had representatives chosen by older generations. And for the first time, we are seeing a trend where we, yes us, the young adults of the world, have a chance to take a seat and take part in a discussion that is going to shape the world that we are going to inherit... and that discussion's topic is Global Climate Change.
On December 3rd, 2018 COP24 will be held in Katowice, Poland. COP24 is an unofficial name for the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). All of the countries that have validated the convention will be sending representatives to take part in this conversation. This year they are planning on doing something different by allowing people like you and me to join the conversation. According to the official UNFCCC website, "The 'People's Seat' initiative combines digital technology, polling and the involvement of passionate climate change advocates... to deliver messages about the need to act on climate change—and to engage people in the growing movement to take climate action." This is an important step in helping build not only a better and stronger democratic presence in our world, but it also allows people to start having a first-person "view" and influence on the things that, in the past, happened behind closed doors.
The article continues, "This is an opportunity for people from across the globe, regardless of their nationality or circumstances, to be part of the most important discussion of this century; the unprecedented action needed to reach the Paris Agreement targets.". I found out about #TakeASeat on Twitter when the UNFCCC (@UNFCCC) Tweeted the following Tweet: .
I went on to retweet it and then I started to get even more involved. I was intrigued by the idea because it really was something new, and it gave so many more people the ability to have a chance to fight against climate change. Climate change, being a problem that impacts each and every single one of us on this earth, really is a problem that we need to solve collectively. Different countries are trying different things, such as Kazakstan going on to the #2 leader in solar energy, behind China, or France raising the prices of gas as an "Incentive" for people to switch to electric vehicles. But really, Kazakhstan has only seen success in its capital city, while the rest of the country still has problems with irrigation and modern farming. France on the other hand... well they decided to take to the streets. No one country or one president or one parliament can solve these issues. We all are living in a global community, and so we all need to be involved in solving an issue we all added to. So take action and take a seat.
The UNFCCC is trying to make it super easy by using the program www.actnow.bot, "ActNow.bot will make it easier than ever before for people to understand what actions they can take personally in the fight against climate change. ActNow.bot will recommend everyday actions – like taking public transport and eating less meat – and track the number of actions to highlight the impact that collective action can make at this critical moment in our planet’s history". Check it out and see what you can learn from the website. But really, take a stance and go on and help solve this. Tweet about it. Write an article about it. Post about it on social media. Tell your friends and family. Really, do as much as you can for as many people as possible to get involved. We are better together, so let's work together. Especially us students. We finally have a chance to make a difference. Let's show the adult world the influence and power we have.
Thank you for reading. I wanted to write this article because I really do believe in everyone having a voice and the ability to change the world. I also thought it would be a nice piece to have in my portfolio!