Youth Gather in Belambangan Biosphere Reserve to Address the Climate Crisis

Speaking to the Media at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2020 about the importance of limiting the rise in global temperatures to below 1.5 degrees, Greta Thunberg, the 17-year old Swedish climate activist said: “Since last summer, I’ve been repeating these numbers over and over again in almost every speech. But honestly, I don’t think I have once seen any media outlets or person in power communicate this and what it means. I know you don’t want to report about this. I know you don’t want to talk about this, but I assure you I will continue to repeat these numbers until you do…”

The importance of engaging young people in communicating effectively on climate change was the focus of the Youth Leadership Camp for Climate Crisis that brought together 50 students and young professionals from across Indonesia for three days of discussions, practical communication exercises and field work during 24-26 January 2020.

Organized by UNESCO and the Climate Reality Project Indonesia with support from UNITAR, the event equipped participants with enhanced climate change communication skills with particular focus on social media – while building a network of committed young Indonesians to mobilize other young people in communicating and acting to address the climate crisis and its impacts.

Held in the Belambangan UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in East Java, the camp also highlighted the potential of UNESCO designated site as hubs for implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals through youth engagement. This potential was brought home during an integrated field visit to the Baluran National Park – one of four national protected areas located within the Belambangan Biosphere Reserve.

This activity supports SDG 13 ”Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts” and SDG 15 “Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss”.