350.org has partnered with Voyage For the Future–a recent expedition coordinated by WWF that young people from all over the world to see the effects of the climate crisis first hand. One of the “Ambassadors For Change” is Casper ter Kuile, a co-founder of the brand spanking new UK Climate Coalition–here’s his report:
350 is starting to spread all over the world map, like a good, sticky chocolate sauce. Last month, 18 young people from nine different countries took it to the top of the world – to the Arctic.
We were there – not just to be trained in the science of climate change by top scientists, nor just to be given the skills to be powerful communicators – but it energised and empowered us beyond our wildest desires, yet another group of committed and practical-thinking youth to help lead the global climate movement.
We swam in the Arctic Ocean to demonstrate how unnatural the extent of sea-ice loss is, we met the Norwegian Royal Family to talk about their role as state figures, and we decided to develop a viral idea to make it go global. The Green Finger Project. People from the all around the world are showing that climate change matters to them, and voicing what they want to protect.
So for us, the voyage is certainly not over. Since we’ve been back, we’ve become more active on fighting climate change than ever before. And we have a big, common goal. That is – to make sure that in 2009, when decision-makers meet in Copenhagen to follow up the Kyoto Protocol, they will make the right decisions and will unite to fight this global security threat, this major health threat, this climate crisis.
Our generation will not accept failure. A Global Climate Movement will not accept failure.
Young people will lead in this fight. It is our generation who are inheriting this earth, and our generation who will have to deal with, pay for and live with the consequences of today’s actions.
This is why we have created the UK Youth Climate Coalition. To unite diverse groups of young people – be they political, environmental, social, sporting, faith-based, whatever – to create a strong voice that cannot not be ignored. We will stand together with people from all over the world to demonstrate that we are ready to fight climate change, and that our leaders must listen to the science – and to us.
Casper ter Kuile
Co-Founder UK YCC