April 14, 2015

YOUTH POSITION ON THE ROAD TO PARIS.

The Youth Negotiations on Climate Change Conventions (YNCC) Position on
The Road to Paris (COP21)

We, the participants of the “Road to Paris” conference held at the HoAREC headquarters welcome the opportunity for engagement and appreciate the space
to have our voices heard;

Recognizing that youth are one of the most vulnerable groups to disasters, climate
change, fragility and conflict; and aware of the large cohort of youth impacted by unemployment, underemployment, poverty, sporadic crises, recurrent displacement, poor infrastructure and inadequate basic social services and public utilities;

Convinced that the demographic bonus Africa enjoys is as an inalienable asset to Africa’s sustainable development and concerned at the under-representation of youth in policy design and implementation frameworks, yet, we are also powerful agents for change due to our creativity and innovation;
Welcoming the engagement of the youth within regional and global frameworks on climate change, including the recent decision by the IPCC to engage young climate scientists in its areas of work;

Noting the decision of the Committee of African Heads of States on Climate Change (CAHOSCC) on the elaboration of youth engagement within the climate change negotiations;

Appreciating the implementation of the CAHOSCC decision by the African Climate Policy Center; in particular, through the creation of a ClimDev-Africa Youth Platform to facilitate synergy, information sharing, linkages and knowledge management;

Agree on the following:- 

Adaptation, Mitigation and Capacity Building

  • Enhancement of capacity building through environmental education and learning from early childhood. 
  • Investment on the training of a cadre of young climate scientists to mainstream youth priorities, with a particular focus on the disaggregation of data by age, gender and location within the IPCC and other climate processes. 
  • Further focus on the training of environmental youth groups to scale up their capacity to influence national and regional processes, resulting in bottom-up input to climate governance. 
  • Allocation of resources to create an “African Agricultural Innovation Hub” to engender a critical mass of agro-entrepreneurs able to leverage opportunities in agricultural value chains, for example, through product development, use of green technologies, agro-mechanization and agro-processing. 
  • Emphasis on efficient social protection mechanisms to build resilience of marginalized and disenfranchised rural youth against adverse climate change; cushion the risk and vulnerabilities of engaging in agriculture for small holder famers 
  • Full implementation of the Warsaw Mechanism on Loss and Damage to fully account for the dire consequences of climate change. 

Climate Finance and Technology Transfer

·         The Green Climate Fund facilitates access to finance for certain priority areas such as gender based projects. In order to further support young entrepreneurs, implementation the GCF should add a youth component to its priorities areas. In addition, the capacity of the youth to access finds through the GCF should be enhanced. For example, through the accreditation of local financial institutions that currently serve as intermediaries between local youth groups and the GCF.

  • Acceleration of the delivery of the USD 100 billion a year commitment to the GCF, with a focus on financing projects relating to youth. 
  • Promoting efficient technology transfer through knowledge sharing on good practices, disaster risk reduction, meteorological information and access to cost-effective solutions. 
  • New research on the potentials of incorporating technology transfer within existing mechanism of carbon trading. 
  • Engendering young lawyers to serve as experts on climate finance planning to increase Africa’s access to the GCF. 
Means of Implementation, Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) and Youth Engagement in
Climate Negotiations

  • Finance the participation of youth within climate change negotiation processes including the UNFCCC, IPCC, INDC’s, UNCCD, UNCBD, and other MEA’s related to climate change policies. 
·         Creation of an African Youth Group of Negotiators (AYGN), that represent their governments in national delegations. The AYGN should be supported by existing African frameworks such as the African Group of Negotiators, African Youth Initiative on Climate Change and the ClimDev-Africa Youth Platform.

·         We agree that the original interpretation of Common But Differentiated Responsibility as articulated in the UNFCCC should persevere. CBDR should be based on historical emissions. As such, mitigation actions that are beyond national capacities should be financed through multilateral sources.

·         We agree that emissions should be measured on a per capita basis, according to consumption rather than production. There should be a distinction between survival and luxury emissions.

·         We advocate for the support of innovative and creative campaigns for and by the youth who are walking the talk on action against climate change. Examples include: We Have Faith-ACT now for Climate Justice Cycling Awareness Campaign on the theme “Road to Paris”, The Arts and Media for Climate Campaign and The African Youth Conference on Climate Change (AFRIYoCC) to be held on the International Youth Day, August 2015.

We The Youth, Are The Leaders of Today And Tomorrow. We Will Grow and Sustain an Ambitious and Equitable Climate Change Agreement in Paris and Beyond.




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