A CliMates project
CliMates is a think-and-do tank gathering students and young professionals from around the world to work on innovative solutions to climate change. To do so, we use collaborative research and interdisciplinary methods. Born in 2011 from climate simulations following frustration arising from the strong expectations of the Copenhagen negotiations, this NGO now regroups more than 400 youth in more than 40 countries. We voice our concerns and engage others with our combined knowledge and our imagination. Through the organization of simulations on issues linked to climate change, participation in major international negotiations and numerous research projects in collaboration with famous scholars, we aim to propose new solutions to the effects of climate change and to empower youth on this issue.
Striving to these objectives, we started a new research project on climate migrants in January 2016. The Youth on the Move project is a research and action project dedicated to the issue of youth and climate migrations. Through interactive tools and the creation of a network of youth initiatives, we aim at enhancing knowledge on the youth perspective of climate migrations.
Today, we are experiencing a large-scale refugee crisis but there seems to be no long term vision, no real information and education of citizens, and mostly no official acknowledgement of the impact of climate change on these population displacements.
Youth on the Move is based on the observation that very little information is given in general news on the issue of climate-induced migrations. Moreover, though scientific studies address this phenomenon, almost none of them underline the interplay between the youth and climate migrations. Focusing on a youth perspective on climate migrations has not been a widespread approach in scientific studies yet, and more generally, studies are lacking focus on the needs and particular experiences of specific categories of migrants. As a youth think-tank, we wish to tackle the issue of climate migrations with young eyes, highlighting both the specific obstacles to which young climate migrants are confronted, but also the crea
tive solutions and ideas youth associations, groups and individuals develop around the globe.
Moreover, climate migration is not an issue affecting only developing countries, but rather a global phenomenon and a common issue. From Alaska to the Lake Chad, from Kiribati to France, climate-induced migrations are a rising issue. This is why we believe the global community needs to be aware and proactive regarding this challenge.
Youth on the Move has two goals: an educational one and a collaborative one. We believe that creative and artistic content can serve both. First, we wish to raise awareness through visual content, for example through “portrait” videos as they make personal stories directly relevant and easily accessible to all. Second, through research work and interactive content, we wish to enhance knowledge on solutions, existing and possible, facing the climate migrations challenge, by creating a global network and promoting innovations carried by experts and empowered youth, thus allowing exchange of ideas through creative content on the topic of climate migrations.
Our project is focused on youth. First, because we believe that youth is of the most affected by climate migrations. Second, because young people are also a legitimate actor in this discussion, and more than ever a proposing force. We wish to raise awareness on the interplay between youth and climate migration, and show the importance of acting, carrying solutions and forming an opinion on this rising phenomenon.
We want to develop an important database for anyone interested in contributing to the development of new ideas and solutions. Youth on the Move is a collaborative project and aims at giving an opportunity for citizens of every country and every background to express their voice, their experiences and their ideas. We want to pass on messages from young migrants and activists coming from both developed and developing countries. But first and foremost, we want to portray this reality in a constructive way to show that young people likely to be the first environmental migrants are ready to mobilize to support their territory, their history and their state.
We want to carry a positive voice and show that, everywhere in the world, solutions exist. National solutions such as the Kampala Convention, international ones such as the Paris Agreement, the creation of conventions to protect environmental migrants in Europe, and local ones. Indeed, we want to promote these local scale initiatives for which people are finding solutions and acting. Young generations are carrying many solutions and ideas to fight against the effects of climate change, either facilitating mobility where necessary and adapting when possible.
“Pourquoi parle-t-on de migrants climatiques ?”
By Jonathan Ouaret-Gave