Nature gives us everything we need to survive: water, air and food. We must act to save nature, in order for nature to save us. With half the world’s population under the age of 30, young people today will shape the world of tomorrow. The way we currently feed, fuel, and finance ourselves is pushing the planet to the edge. Nature is in crisis like never before and WEF’s very own Gloabal Risk Reports lists environmental risks as the biggest threat to the global economy. We don’t have much time to put things right. Only 12 years in fact, according to a Landmark UN Report. Never before has the threat of irreversible damage been so close or so clear.
All this means we need to take urgent action to put our natural world on the path to recovery. Protecting and restoring nature is fundamental to economic prosperity, sustainable development and addressing climate change. And it is our moral responsibility to coexist with the amazing diversity of life we share the planet with. Young people have a huge role to play in creating a more sustainable world. Youth have to be part of the solution. After all, they are the environmental leaders of tomorrow. More than ever, we need active young citizens to create positive change in their communities so we can tackle the world’s most pressing environmental challenges.
The voices of many millions of young people are crucial to ensure the environment is top of the global agenda. Nature matters to young people and they are demanding action from world leaders. The next few years are critical to put the planet on the path to a better future, as 2020 sees a historic moment when key decisions will be taken on the future direction of climate action, sustainable development and nature. These decisions will set the agenda for decades to come. We need governments, businesses, financial institutions, civil society and people to commit to halting and start reversing the loss of nature.
Young people now have a unique opportunity to act for the future state of their planet. There is no Planet B and there is no time to lose. Youth can become champions for the environment and demand urgent change. The future is now.