Tag Archives: UKYCC

Youth of past present and future

14 Aug

In this video, around 3.40mins a young person states ‘The youth aren’t the leaders of tomorrow, they are the leaders of today.’

Not only that, this video is full of further statements saying that governments should act for our future, groups of people getting together to shout, Chant, annoy and protest for there to be great change. Problem is, this video is from the Earth Summit 1992
19 years ago, the same actions and concerns of today were being acted out. In a depressive way, you could conclude that we have not moved a single foot towards a sustainable future.

Next year Earth Summit 2012 will take place, where issues of sustainable development will be discussed (again) and just like in the above video, expect young people to tell it straight, governments saying the time to act is now and large groups of people chanting and maybe holding hands…
This may sound like pre-defeatism, but from a point-blank view this is how it looks.
Not everyone hardly anyone knows how far we have come since 1992. Especially when thinking about youth involvement.

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When governments noticed that young people are important, are the future and are the leaders of tomorrow – there was still a focus on adults teaching young people skills and knowledge or arranging events. Whether they were paid or voluntary, this emphasis on engaging, inspiring and motivating youth like we were at school lasted until quite recently.
In fact you could say it lasted until those youth of 92 who were involved in the Earth Summit and who understood that we are the leaders of today, grew up into official adults.

Here is the theory:
Youth of the early 90’s involved in sustainable development found themselves in their working adult lives taking up those positions of ‘teaching’ a younger generation to be motivated, engaged and inspired. They used their own tales for this purpose; believed in us being the leaders of today and told us to go out there and just do-it ourselves and BINGO! – what you have is an increase in youth involvement, with little adult involvement.
Of course, this is not shunning all adults, we still need you to teach us complicated things, give us opportunities and network contacts.

However now a youth who wants to volunteer and get involved has the ability to search the Internet and find people the same age, discussing the concerned issues on a local/national/global scale. These youth may of even set up there own organization growing in numbers and totally youth led, they may even gain opportunities to attend youth congress’s, powershift’s, or UN meetings.

The best thing about this though – Us youth of today will grow up and be the adults

who turn around to the next generation and say you are the leaders of today.
We did this, you can go on and do so much more –  a pyramid scheme of influence leading to more youth getting involved at an early age, pushing all the issues connected to and involving sustainable development into the forefront.

We are on the cusp of all youth really, truly being the voices of not only the future but today.

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Greenwashing Gasland

27 Jun

Gasland is the 2010, Oscar nominated documentary by Josh Fox, which focuses on Hydraulic Fracturing.
The process of collecting deep underground natural gas, by drilling a hole and via the use of pressure fluid, extracting the gas.
Simple engineering science – However, this process has left hundreds of people around America with flaming tap water, balding farm stock/pets, major health problems and water contamination.

Of course, the companies that deal in Fracking, are a bit pissed off with the statements that have been made in Gasland.
So they have made a ‘quality’ greenwash 4 minute video and a special website page – http://anga.us/truthaboutgasland

Lets study this video in detail:

It contains 10 shots of children, 5 of parents, 1 of grandparents, 11 shots of smiling people, 2 counts of hugs, 6 shots of natural environments, a shot of a kid on a bed, kids on swings, a fairground, a naked mum sitting on the floor with her (presumably) naked child and a couple of shots taken from the p.o.v of a car on a street. *

Then what about these sound snipits read out by a very pleasant-sounding woman.

  • 0:04 ‘We have something special in this country, our people and our freedom to express our opinions and beliefs’ – This is good, this makes the viewer think, Josh Fox is entitled to his opinion. Note: no other country on earth apparently has special people.**
  • 0:21 ‘Natural gas provides clean domestic energy’ – I’m guessing this means clean as in no dirt, not CO2
  • 0:26 ‘Its our neighbours who work every day to produce it’ – Broad statement, that includes everyone and no one.
  • 0:38 ‘Responsibility to develop this natural resource with the constant sense of stewardship of our land, our air and our water’ – Not people, they can die because of Fracking
  • 3:05 ‘New innovations’ – Some environmental operation’s they are doing to make them sound really good, they only mention 1, but still.
  • 3:20 ‘Natural gas supports 2.8 million American jobs, it is reducing our nations dependence on foreign oil’ – Yay America, boo foreign oil.
  • 3:27 and its advancing clean air in our communities’ – Advance of making it a very rare thing.
  • 3:31 Natural gas emits virtually no mercury, or pollution creating particular matter’ – Natural gas also emits virtually no dark matter or environmental degradation particular matter…..

Some Gasland claims are also looked at.
That natural gas is exempt by feudal regulations. – Natural gas is more than likely looked at by feudal regulations, but the actual question raised is, why isn’t Hydraulic Fracturing. On top of that, at this point the video shows a list of regulations, no dates, or where these regulations are set (it uses the idea that most viewers will jump to the conclusion that these are the national regulations.)
That flaming tap water is caused by Fracking – This is false, as everyone knows flaming tap water is normal…
That fish are being killed by Fracking – Wrong again, as everyone knows it’s those dirty fossil fuel coal companies…

What this video gives you, is a blueprint for all company greenwash videos – just add some children, smilies, quotes that aim to focus on the morals of your audience and some claims that you can disprove via images and blaming others for environmental pollution and bingo a divided opinion on a non-clean energy source.

I also found this article on  Talisman‘s friendly Fracosaurus, Terry.
YES ladies & germs, a children’s colouring book aimed at promoting Fracking as smart and safe.
There is even a page to colour in, all about the fact gas rises into the air, where it can be forgotten about and not cause any environmental damage….

This blog has not been brought to you by America’s Natural Gas Alliance.

*0 shots of Hydraulic Fracturing, Fracking workers or Fracking neighbours.
** At some points, I’m being very sarcastic in this blog. Get used to it idiot.

Wave your hands like you just do care

13 Jun

I’m going to add a new hand signal to consensus based decision-making and to life in general.
It’s an important one, as it confirms feelings and positive vibes, more than high twinkles ever can.

It will be based on this.

and it concerns when you are feeling –

So flipping amazed that things are coming together and you feel like you are one step closer to solving an issue which is going to make the world a better place
+
those around you make you feel so positive you need to get rid of built up energy quickly.

Reasons for this, have been gained from other youth I have worked with via UK Youth Climate Coalition and Peace Child International.

We are all trying to get ahead in the world as well as improve the world – making other youth engaged, inspired and motivated to creat positive change for a clean sustainable future.

This takes planning, meetings, emails, networking and valuable pub time – which does sometime leaves your brain a bit frazzled.
However once in a while – usually when you least expect it and within a few minutes.
Things just click – the event, campaign, policy or outreach takes one giant leap leaving you full of excitable 6-year-old energy.


My new hand signal combats this issue
& shows everyone that your really really really
happily excited!!!

The issues with climate sceptics

4 Jun

OK number 1 reason why there is a problem, is that they are wrong;

This is the kind of statement which will lead to sceptics themselves commenting on this blog and purposely leaving their own scientific
findings for why climate change is a myth/ conspiracy/ fairy-tale.

Of course, they are entitled to their opinion.
I used to be sceptical of Marmite, thinking it was made by the devil; but one day I decided to try it, I didn’t particularly like it, I won’t fight for it but I came to mutual understanding that some people really do care for Marmite and its future.

Anyways I believe the science behind climate change, as scientists are a lot smarter and spend more time studying the facts compared to myself and tons of other people around the globe.

Though, even with B GCSE science & maths grades I can make a perfectly correct climate change equation.

CO2 + atmosphere = OMG

See its really simple – only 23 characters long and made up of 5 words..ish

Or it can be shown via a talking penguin or a funky video

Now look at this

How? What? 4826 words of something or other
+

This is teeth x-rays, right...

Actually its labelled as –
Zonally-averaged distributions of predicted temperature change in ºK at CO2 doubling (2xCO2 – control), as a function of latitude and pressure level, for four general-circulation models (Lee et al., 2007).

????

Now why can’t the sceptics shorting this whole argument to a few words or a Marmite metaphor or art?

And that’s they problem, along with other conspiracy theories
http://www.elvis-is-alive.com/
http://www.ufos-aliens.co.uk/cosmicapollo.html

They need to use so many words, use graphs that make sense to no one, unless they are on hand to explain and they need to look at so many out-of-this-world tiny details that our brains become fuzzy.

So much so that Climate Change for all its future horror is just a more simply idea to digest, even if some do not rate it high on there agenda.

And if you dare to look at this video involving Lord Monckton, just concentrate on the audience, how old are they?

Competition Time: If a climate sceptic would like to comment on this, I bet you can not keep their argument under 100 words. (no links) If you are able to, you shall receive a Fairtrade biscuit.

If no climate sceptic can, then I guess you will just have to suffer the fact that those who believe in climate change are able to use more persuasive arsenal like art, humour and simply terms to justify their thoughts and are also going to outlive most of your OAP followers.

Tough break.

What is a Post-Environmentalist?

23 May

A Post-Environmentalist is a term environmentalists use to make themselves seem up-to-date and cool.

OK there is a bit more to it then that, Post-Environmentalism is a new way of thinking for creating long-term sustainable change and not just hugging trees like normal environmentalists.
Scrap that, lets call them Retro-Environmentalists.

Tube armies...

Of course the Post-Environmentalist movement isn’t going to last that long though, because its going to be followed by the Hipster-Environmentalists, who live and dress like Retro-Environmentalists, but think like Post-Environmentalists.
& thus maybe, just maybe everyone will get sick of the word environmentalist.

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As you may of guessed I am already pretty sick of the use of the Post-Environmentalist words, as it is now being used as a means of people differentiating themselves from Retro-Environmentalists.
But I can not fathom how they are able to do this, whilst using the same E word.

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So, lets first take a step back to look at the basic ideology of this ‘PE’.
Micheal Shellenberger & Ted Nordhaus wrote a paper in 2004 called The Death of Environmentalism  which stated that for the last 40 years the environment has been thought of as a thing and has not included all the other encompassing aspects of politics, economics culture etc..
Which are fundamental when looking at a world wide issue like climate change.

It makes good points, which all make sense to me and I would follow
(Yes, meaning that I can now can be classed as a PE)
However since 2004 this term has moved onto dismissing other RE ‘customs’ or stereotypes.
No PE would go

  • and hug trees
  • wear macs and green stuff
  • say the word peace
  • do direct action of the illegal kind

 + As I haven’t done any RE type stuff, then how can I be a PE? Surly I’m now just an E..

What we have here is  misplaced name syndrome.
Its like calling the Sex Pistols a Post-Rock& Roll band; Yes there are in essence, but everyone those them as a punk band.

So here’s the challenges for all us Post Environmentalists, we need a better name.
& I don’t mean, setting up a think-tank for a better name otherwise we could have something just as horrible as the Toyota Picnic.

Why Picnic. WHY!?!

Taking Punk as another perfect example, it was originally just the name of a fanzine that commented on the early 70’s New York band scene.

Thus I’m thinking out there somewhere, in the Post-Environmentalist world is a name already being used that today’s PE’s can take as their own.
Then when those Hipster-Environmentalists come along, they will also create they own name and we can all be under the same Post-Environmentalist banner.

Right… Anyone got any ideas of where to look?

Bonn climate change intersessional Pt3

15 May

The best way to understand what actions the youth took at Bonn, to change negotiators opinions and their actions within the many meetings their attend.

Is to let you click on these two videos made by Danny Hutley, a Southampton Uni student.

 

not bad for us youth.
and has lead to us making a difference, connecting to those in suits.

You can tell, the time was taking to learn about what was being talked about; so that the actions we took were accurate and made the negotiators think.

You can also tell that the youth from around the world were truly united in what they were doing and what they believed in.

you may also be wearing a smile on your face because of the shear
AWESOME-NESS of it!!!

 

Bonn climate change intersessional Pt 2

15 May

The youth within the Bonn climate change talks going on this week, are from a mixture of nations, UK, Nepal, Australia, German, French, Zimbabwe, Sweden, Denmark and others.
Many of them have also gone there out of choice and not getting paid for their efforts. (Including moi)

Thus if you were going to split this motley crew of climate campaigners into certain categories, you could go for the groups of –

Unaccredited: These youth turned up for the excitement, because they knew it was important and to check out the stuff going on in Bonn (talks, climate camp) which they could gain entry for.

Accredited: many of those from the UK were accredited via http://www.350.org, meaning they could enter certain UN talks and gain experience on what it was all about. Here’s a blog all about it – UK youth at UNFCCC

Young Friends of the Earth: Two people gained accreditation via the organisation that had 25 placements in all. Two out of 25, does not sound like much, but be assured that they were loud and passionate enough to kick up a good UN fuss.

UNFairplay: A group of youth were there to support smaller nations, who could not afford or have several negotiators at Bonn, giving them a bigger voice amongst those who actually are causing the most carbon emissions.

Adopt a negotiator: This scheme started of in Copenhagen, but gathered speed and lead to being part of YOUNGO– a youth movement that gained constituency status within these UNFCCC meetings. That we all then fell into.

But no matter if their gained entry to the conference or got paid for their efforts. What brought them all together was the aspect of action and making the negotiators discuss and act in making the low-carbon future we all would want and are aiming for.

All of these young people (or shall I say YOUNGO) met up daily to discuss what is going on and what actions can we take.
We talked to negotiators from around the world and mingled with those from Non-Government Organisations. We even had an international youth meeting to discuss goings-on globally, COP16 in Mexico and what we could do together as a collective.
But did we actually make any sodden difference whilst at Bonn? did the actions we take lead to anything?

Bonn climate change intersessional Pt 1

15 May

Bonn in Germany is famous for a couple of reasons – Beethoven, Haribo, being the capital of West Germany and for being the home of many a UN Intercessional.
Last December, the latest craze within the media and the environmental world was Copenhagen and the climate talks. Everyone was hoping for a deal to be placed on the table which would save the world from future climate change, for every country represented in the UN to agree on a certain percentage to cut down their carbon emissions by. – For there to be a moment, that would change history and would become as significant as the fall of the Berlin wall or man walking on the moon.

However- we know this did not happen, for what ever reason no country could agree on a percentage of carbon cuts. At the end of this conference we were left with defining images of human failure.

But what next? Climate issues may not grab the front headlines like it did in December anymore, but that does not mean talks are still happening.
The meetings are giving the catchy abbreviation of UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) and they happens roughly 3 times a year, in the lead up to a huge convention in December a.ka. Copenhagen.
Though this year, it shall be moving to Cancun in Mexico.

These intercessionals, are so much more important then the big end of year events – As it is within Bonn where the little things are sorted out, which can make or break a fantastic climate deal.
It is monotonous as all they do is talk about stuff that makes no sense to a novice or they talk about whether a comma is in the right place of a document statement.
Maybe a metaphor will help in this instance
The UNFCCC is like baking a cake. In December you get the finished product of that years baking. However if you did not put in the right amount of eggs, flour, sugar, or baked it thoroughly – you end up with a sodden mess that no one practically likes.

Youth love cake! Thus it is no surprise to find youth attending the UNFCCC bake off.
Aiming to make it a delicious, sugary mess. That ever nation – developed, developing, small island can enjoy.
But how you ask? What do the youth do?

That shall be answered in part 2

The Fill the fund sea-shantie

15 May

I haven’t gone off my rocker and decided to tell you sea-shanties No….
Instead I’m giving you the info on the International Maritime Organisation and there is a reason why.
The IMO is the United Nations arm that develops and maintains framework on shipping and when you go past their headquarters in central London you expect its workers to be dressed like this
like this

But NO, they are normal business suit types and this week has been a very important one regarding themselves and climate change.

For the last four days, meetings have took place on how to create schemes that will reduce their international transport emissions which holds the potentially to save them $12billion per year and knock off 3% of the worlds total carbon emissions.

Which is amazing and brings to mind slightly over-the-top images like solar powered ships:-

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On Monday myself, and a team of Oxfam and tcktcktck representatives campaigned outside their office dressed in sailor hats and as boats –
images are here << I’M A BOAT
Giving representatives from around the world little origami boats for them to play with and which had on them one simple message. Fill The Fund

At COP16 a Climate Fund was set up to distribute a vast amount of money to poorer countries to assist them against climate impacts as well as aid in low-energy development.
Imagine if this spare $12billion IMO have, goes into the fund!
Imagine the kudos they will get from everyone!
Imagine if they were able to come to this type of decision within four days!
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The final outcome from our work , was…..well…. non-existent.
OK we did not expect them to turn around and complete agree with us on the matter, but maybe, just maybe some of the maritime buisness suit types have listened to us and will one day raise the question
‘Why don’t we do something good with all this money?’

An apology

14 May

We are sorry to inform you that during the hours of Sunday night and Monday morning, the youth in Bonn lost their way, due to feeling all powerful after the first week’s success concerning article 6.
We had basically turned into the UN.

Originally the thought was to have a week long action to raise the spirits of the negotiators especially their feelings of Cancun in December. This action did have a good/great original concept; that is not going to be discussed here as it may be used in the future. (we do not want to spoil the surprise)
But it caused confusion between us; contained mixed messages for Bonn within the week ahead, felt grand but complicated and also had the use of an English word – which within a certain context makes no sense to those who do not fully grasp the language.

However as we started to discuss this whole action, we could not let it lie and be dead in the water, we continued to talk over it, long into the night and brought it up again in the early morning sun.
We even got round to perform a type of action, which I am sure not even one negotiator noticed.

So just like the UN, we were taking a very slow, reparative, route before action. Making false starts and stupid decisions that – if we actually listened to everyone i.e. the other youth in the group would never had happened. (Take that to heart bigger nations; do not forget the voice of those smaller then you!)

Can you guess which nations I’m hinting at here!

Youth are meant to be the complete opposite to this.

We were saved by the LULUCF (Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry) loophole, which was being rushed through the UNFCCC system to end this Friday 11th, basically allowing larger countries for 1. Continue deforestation due to making loose, unbinding promises to replant some trees in a bid to carbon off-set.

This needed action now, it needed clear messaging, it needed youth input.
It was not some secretive action, trying to slyly affect the negotiators feelings for the future.
It was to make them act now on the future. The main reason we are in Bonn.

The youth were back with a bang.