Next Monday my two friends Alice and Jessie, and I will be going on an adventure to the German city of Bonn for the UN Climate Negotiations.
In between the COP’s (Conference of Parties which meet once a year) there are intercessional, where they discuss the real nitty gritty substance of the treaties and laws they are forming. Here is where we can affect the process and the delegates the most, because not only is this where they properly discuss and hammer out aspects of the new treaty; it’s also a smaller, far more intimate affair. Judging by the success of the youth (with only 30 of them) at the last intercessional in Bonn, I’m expecting to go out clubbing with the official delegates! Last time the youth initiated a campaign which simply asked “How old will you be in 2050?” It seems to have captured the imaginations of the delegates, who even bought them from the youth stand in the conference, and wore them while negotiating! Youth also asked delegates incorporate our message of survival is not negotiable in as many of their statements and texts as possible. For the closing speech of the last intercessional, the conference President wore the t-shirt, and spoke for a good few minutes on how old his children and grandchildren would be in 2050. Here’s a video of one of the youth interventions in a plenary session at the last Bonn intercessional:
The other gigantic leap forward that the youth made in the last intercessional was one of friendship; not between ourselves-that has never been a problem- but between us and the delegates. The problem is they tend to see us as a bunch of renegade youth which they can easily ignore. The thing is, human nature dictates that as soon as you have a face to face conversation, whatever it is about, you will be less likely to dismiss those people’s views in the offhand way they have tended too in the past. There is a new initiative to appeal to the delegates’ human natures, as fellow humans, and in some cases young people, to see our point of view, it really isn’t that unreasonable. So, this seems to have worked to great effect so far, so I look forward to clubbing with Hannah Ryder (a UK delegate) and possibly Ed Miliband in Copenhagen?!
Anyway, the 3 of us will be blogging on my blog, when there’s news to tell and pictures to show. For other youth blogs on this conference and others go to:
We leave London to travel to Bonn by coach, which takes 13 hours! We’re taking the coach because it’s cheaper than the train, and in fact coaches use less CO2 per person on board than a train does. See www.nationalexpress.co.uk for amazing deals in the UK.
In the meantime, I hope you voted in the European Elections! And keep your eyes peeled for our progress over the next week.