Last Thursday, September 30, the Global Youth Coalition for Road Safety along with FIA Foundation and Restless Development led an official side event under the All4Climate – an event that gathers different stakeholders on climate, mobility, and air quality where they can share their contributions to the upcoming Conference of Parties (COP).
The event featured speakers from different sectors around the world including; Jean Todt from FIA, Estiara Ellizar, Omnia el Omrani, and Soumita Chakraborty from the Global Youth Coalition for Road Safety, Maíne Celidonio – the Secretary of Mobility of Rio de Janeiro, Andrea San Gil Leon – the Founder of the Center for Urban Sustainability in Costa Rica, Welmoed Neijmeijer – the co-chair of Micro Mobility for Europe, and Prarthana Borah – the Director of Clean Air Asia. The session was hosted by Sheila Watson from FIA Foundation and Benard Isiko from Restless Development.
The session began with a message from Jean Todt encouraging stakeholders to involve young people in global and local efforts to address the climate and mobility issue. “Young people are at the heart of the climate agenda. Not only are they the victim but they are also the ones taking charge to address climate issues”.
Global Youth Coalition members Estiara Ellizar and Soumita Chakraborty talked about the policy papers they created through the Coalition that ties the Climate and Sustainable Mobility targets with road safety and sustainable mobility. Both highlighted the efforts young people could take to contribute to the efforts in creating streets for life and curbing climate change.
The session also included a panel discussion participated by Omnia El Omrani, Maíne Celidonio, Andrea San Gil Leon, Welmoed Neijmeijer, and Prarthana Borah. The panel talked about issues from youth initiatives to address climate and road safety concerns to the challenges being faced by the global and local communities when it comes to turning cities into safer spaces.
In her discussion, Andrea talked about the importance of prioritizing city design to help further efforts to achieve the targets set in the global goals.
“Sustainability needs to go beyond green - cities are where most people live and most of the environmental issues happening now will happen in cities” - Andrea San Gil Leon
To share his experiences and motivations to continue his climate activism, Loay Radwan from the UN Youth Envoy talks about the importance of youth coming together to fight for their space and take the lead when it comes to climate action.
"Youth need to stand together and keep up their demands. Don't let anyone undermine your work and don't let anyone make fun of what you're doing because we are the ones who will inherit this planet. Just like the road, this is our responsibility"
The session was capped off by World Health Organization Director of the Department for Social Determinants of Health, Dr. Etienne Krug, who encouraged the participants of the event to take everything from the session to COP. He also expressed how creating streets for life is crucial to fighting the climate crisis, saying “make walking cycling and public transport safe if you want to address climate change”.
If you want to get involved in efforts to curb climate change and address road safety and mobility issues, join the Global Youth Coalition!
Join the Global Youth Coalition for Road Safety