Set against the backdrop of the Youth Climate Mentorship Programme launched during COP23 in Bonn, Germany, the workshop brought together 40 students and young professionals with climate change experts from the UAE and the Republic of Korea, who shared insights on local and international practices on adaptation and interacted with audience members.
The UAE fully supports its youth and seeks their involvement in the national response to the challenges of climate change," said Fahed Mohamed Al Hammadi, MOCCAE’s Acting Assistant Under-Secretary, Green Development and Climate Change Sector. "Engaging with young people is a priority for our leadership and we are happy to cooperate with our friends in the international community in this regard. We are building a climate-resilient society to ensure a sustainable economic and environmental future for our nation, and young people must be a part of this process."
The seminar comes as part of the Green Growth Youth Programme, which kicked off in 2015 with an introductory workshop and continued in 2016 with several student internships at GGGI’s office in Masdar City, Abu Dhabi.
The Youth Programme will continue in 2018 with internships and further workshops planned on various climate and green growth-related topics designed to develop skillsets for potential future careers in a more diversified and sustainability-oriented job market.
"The transition to a green economy cannot happen without engaging young people in green growth and climate change policy," said Dr. Frank Rijsberman, Director-General of GGGI. "GGGI, through its UAE programme, will continue to invest in the coming years in youth training and internships to support this transition," he added.
The Korean Embassy also highlighted this event as an example of the robust cooperation between Korea and the UAE in addressing climate change issues.
Joint youth workshops are great opportunities that empower the youth to express their opinions regarding current issues and enable them to find solutions for global challenges. These events also allow them to meet with decision makers to discuss the best ways to contribute their creative ideas to advance various sectors towards a better future.
In the face of global climate change and resource scarcity, the UAE government has begun the transition to an environmentally, economically and socially sustainable development model by adopting a national green growth plan that emphasizes opportunities for a prosperous, inclusive and climate-resilient future. The National Climate Change Plan was approved by the UAE Cabinet in June 2017, which charts the path of climate change mitigation and adaptation into the future. Youth are an important element in the nation’s plans, and encouraging their participation is a priority for the government.