Opinion

Re-Evaluating Youth Climate Action In The Face Of A Pandemic!

This opportunity to speak at a regional platform and to interact and discuss the impacts of the novel coronavirus pandemic on the Pacific’s response to climate change is timely. There is no better time than today - to emphasise on the very short time we have for meaningful action
04 Jul 2020 10:09
Re-Evaluating Youth Climate Action In The Face Of A Pandemic!

Opinion:

A week ago I was privileged to be a speaker at the third webinar in the Transitioning to a Post-Pandemic Pacific series hosted by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) based in Samoa. The webinar titled “Double Jeopardy: COVID-19 brings heat to climate change urgency” was organised by the Secretariat’s Climate Change Resilience (CCR) unit and the speakers comprised SPREP senior representatives, climate analysts and experts.

This opportunity to speak at a regional platform and to interact and discuss the impacts of the novel coronavirus pandemic on the Pacific’s response to climate change is timely.

Since the COVID-19 lockdown and social gathering restrictions, I have joined other young activists and have taken our climate campaigns and movement online.

This is an opportunity to relook, re-evaluate and re-educate ourselves and be champions and agents of climate change in our own homes, workplaces, schools, villages and communities.

There is no better time than today – to emphasise on the very short time we have for meaningful action. Climate change has become an in-escapable reality for us in the Pacific region – in the form of frequent devastating tropical cyclones and hurricanes, seawater rise and relocation.

Keeping true to our fight and keeping the fire burning in our bellies – we are asking our generation to post selfies from home showing their protest signs, use drop-banners from their homes and buildings, join our online petitions and use social media platforms to keep the momentum going.

The postponement of COP 26 must not stop us from re-creating, re-evaluating and re-organising the climate conversation. This is a crucial time for climate change because it is not going away – period!

As a teen climate activist – I see potential solutions that lack political will. The speed of border restrictions and lockdowns in the height of COVID-19 shows that governments can ACT if they want to – with a political will.

Climate change and the pandemic affects young and old, rich and poor alike and they both affect society’s most vulnerable. The cost of the recent Category 4 Tropical Cyclone Harold deepens the hole in Government’s already stretched out coffers and having to deal with repercussions from the pandemic, the cost of climate change associated effects will be multiplied if we fail to do our part.

For me and other younger climate activists, the climate movement must continue and we must work together to fan the climate change flame for our future!

Feedback: rosi.doviverata@fijisun.com.fj

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