As environmental tipping points continue to be reached across the globe, young people are rightfully concerned about the world they will inherit after decades of insufficient or non-existent climate action. Despite being at the forefront of the environmental movement, young climate activists and professionals often feel sidelined and excluded from the discussions and decision-making spaces at the most influential global event for climate action, the annual Conferences of Parties (COPs) organized by the UNFCCC.
Nevertheless, youth organizations and delegations have made their voices heard among decision-makers at these conferences since COP5 in 1999, and this year will have one of their strongest presences yet at COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.
On 25th October at 13:00 GMT, this youth-led GLF Live will welcome Kaluki Paul Mutuku, the regional director for Africa at Youth4Nature; Amanda Costa, the founder of Perifa Sustentável; and Veena Balakrishnan, the co-founder of the Climate Youth Negotiator Programme. Together, they will discuss the expectations of young people and youth organizations for COP27 and to reflect on how to render this space more accessible for youth.
Kaluki Paul Mutuku is a Kenya-based young climate advocate and an environmental defender, working to champion meaningful youth engagement for Climate action. His background is in Environmental Conservation and Natural Resource Management from the University of Nairobi, Kenya. He has experience in community organizing, climate communication, campaign coordination, and environmental education among many other areas. Kaluki is the regional director for Africa at Youth4Nature. His key focus for Africa is on nature-based Solutions, land restoration, reforestation, ecological farming and youth leadership across the spaces. He is also the Global Youth Ambassador at Global Evergreening Alliance.
Amanda Costa is a climate activist, UN youth advisor, Brazil’s delegate at the G20 Youth Summit and founder of the Instituto Perifa Sustentável. With a degree in International Relations, Amanda was recognized as an #Under30 talent by Forbes magazine, in addition to being a LinkedIn Top Voices and Creator, a Global Shaper (World Economic Forum), and a TEDx Speaker. Today, she is the host of #TemClimaParaIsso? a show about the climate crisis.
Veena Balakrishnan is the co-founder of the Climate Youth Negotiator Programme, a global intergenerational programme aimed at redressing systemic inequality in the representation of young voices in the multilateral processes. The programme is currently working with 25 countries, training young diplomats for the upcoming climate negotiations at COP27. She is also the Co-Founder of Everwards India, a zero-waste lifestyle brand (established in 2018) that focuses on creating relatable, accessible and affordable solutions as a response to serious environmental hazards. Everwards addresses resource consumption through material innovation, innovates the supply chain to be socially inclusive and ensures that the products are ethically made. Veena founded The Green Team at the Technical University, Munich, where the initiative empowers and enables young students to find their purpose and pursue a career in sustainability.
Pedro (Pê) Magalhães (moderator) is a social scientist, development practitioner and an ecossocialist activist from the Brazilian Savannah, the Cerrado ecosystem. Throughout his career, he has amassed experience in political ecology, social protection, community building, and knowledge management. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Brasília (UnB) and a master’s degree in Development Management from the Rühr University Bochum (RUB), having focused his studies on agrarian social movements and the financial inclusion of agroecological producers. He is currently the Youth in Landscapes Network intern for Latin America and the Caribbean at the GLF and the coordinator of the GLF LAC Project Team.
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