1.4 Thinking point: Activism
When you looked at the Sustainable Development Goals earlier in the week, there were some startling statistics about the looming climate catastrophe. As a result, some may say that this is a really awful time to be born.
Take a look at the goals listed below in this link: https://unstats.un.org/ sdgs/ report/ 2019/ storymap/ [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]
Look at the goals addressing climate change, specifically Goals 13, 14 and 15. Climate change is now at the top of the global agenda.
- Goal 13 Climate action
- Goal 14 Below water
- Goal 15 Life on land
Certainly, the eyes of world are now being drawn to climate change as never before because of a series of climate scientists’ reports and climate emergency activists. In 2016, Greta Thunberg, a climate change activist, appeared on the world stage. Her speeches have contributed to a global youth movement, challenging world leaders to declare a climate crisis and act to implement a radical and extensive series of changes to avert it.
However, many national leaders remain unconvinced that they need to drastically remodel their economies or abandon a constant drive for economic growth. It is this drive for economic growth which also raises climate change as an inequality issue because countries with more wealth will be provided with many more options to tackle the situation compared to poorer countries.
In the following activity you’ll consider the extent to which there is an urgent debate about meeting the Climate Change Sustainable Development Goals where you live and what part children and young people are playing.
Take ten minutes to find out about whether your country, or a country that you are interested in, is playing a part in the Climate Change youth movement.
Using your preferred search engine, search ‘Climate Emergency’ along withthe particular country you have chosen and select items from the past year.
As you find articles, consider these questions:
- What kind of people are at the forefront of climate change activism?
- Are children and young people in your country (or the one you have chosen to focus on) involved in climate change activism?
- Should children and young people be more involved in your opinion? Why or why not?
- Is the issue of climate change rising up the political agenda where you live and what evidence do you have for that? Note down your findings.
As an example, this is some of the media coverage of youth activism in the U.K.
As mentioned before, climate change too is an inequality issue, with some countries being able to take action to protect themselves and other countries finding themselves in the front line as the consequences of climate change begin to have an impact.
In the next section you will return to considering the issue of gender equality.