UNITED NATIONS – (TURKISH JOURNAL)- Nishat Mirza- Abdulla Shahid, President of the 76th session of the UN General Assembly, says, “Change should start from within on an individual level”, when asked about combating climate change on a local level.
The World Economic Forum has estimated that by 2050, 80% of the world population will be impacted by climate change. Maldives is only 1 meter above sea level; low lying countries such as Maldives and Bangladesh are on the verge of disappearing. Numerous countries have been affected by Sea Level Rising. Maldives, Bangladesh, and many other countries are already working on a local level to combat climate change, by reducing dependence on fossil fueling and transforming to clean energy such as hydrogen gas.
Mr. Shahid said, “One should always ask oneself, what can I do to contribute in saving the planet unless individually you commit in saving the planet, you have no right to ask others to do so”.
The UNGA president is fond of young people who are fighting for the climate. He said, in combating climate change, young people are voicing their concerns; they march, they demonstrate, and at the same time they have the commitment to bring about the change to save our planet.
Today the world has 1.8 billion young people, this is the largest youngest population the world has ever known. The young generation will inherit the world from us, they must have climate change education incorporated in their curriculum and in their daily lives, otherwise, we will have 1.8 billion young adults tomorrow not knowing how to deal with the changing climate and our planet.
When asked about UN Common Agenda Commitment 11, “Listen To and Work with Youth”, the President said, his agenda involves everyone, including the youth. He calls his term at the UN, a “Presidency of Hope for everyone, including the Youth.”
He has established a youth fellowship program to invite young diplomats from underrepresented countries to come over to the United Nations and work in his cabinet.
This way young people will have a voice and understanding of multilateralism firsthand.
He added, “Every country I go to, I meet the youth, including young boys and girls, to understand them and to learn what the youth wants. In my recent travels to Dubai, Maldives, and Belgrade, I spoke to many young people and came back much more knowledgeable about what the youth of today are concerned about.”