My journey as a youth expert contributing to climate change solutions

Binod Parajuli

Getting into the game

Hey, fellow climate warriors! As I share my recent experiences working as an international youth climate delegate at the UN Climate Change Conference, prepare for a wild trip. I’ve been working relentlessly to address climate change head-on, from rubbing shoulders with international decision-makers to raising my voice with the fantastic YOUNGO – the official young constituency under the UNFCCC. Take a cup of your preferred eco-friendly beverage, and prepare for the inside scoop!

I found myself in a climate change summit in Bonn, Germany, in the early hours of June 5. It was a complete frenzy of fervour, aspiration, and activity. Delegates worldwide came to make plans for the upcoming COP in Dubai, and the atmosphere was electric with anticipation. I was energised by becoming a part of the international youth climate delegation program because I knew I had a big role to play in determining the future.

Uniting with YOUNGO – the youth powerhouse

These inspiring individuals are the epitome of passion and resilience. Together, we pushed for ambitious climate action by raising our voices and working hand in hand. We were on a mission to make our presence felt and make sure that young people’s concerns were heard and addressed, from panel discussions to late-night strategy sessions.

After a meeting with Youngo focal points and CoP28 presidency team

Global stocktake and the power of numbers

Here’s where things got exciting. The global stocktake to the Paris Agreement was in full swing, and I was right in the midst of it. Observing the assessment of our climate targets was like being in the centre of a storm. I witnessed the strength of group action with every presentation, piece of facts, and passionate appeal. Our voices reverberated through the hallways, calling for more robust commitments and audacious actions to combat climate change and hold parties accountable for their promises made in the Paris Agreement.

Link to my full intervention : please tune to 1:07

From vulnerability to resilience – the loss and damage fund

A significant focus of my advocacy revolved around the operationalisation of the loss and damage fund. I strongly believe in the need to address the challenges the most vulnerable communities face. In informal consultations, I addressed the UNFCCC secretariat and the incoming COP28 presidency, stressing the necessity of swift climate action. I emphasised the significance of inclusivity, transparency, and capacity building to guarantee that no one is left behind in our battle for a sustainable future.

Discussing our demand as a youths for an operational and inclusive Loss and Damage Fund.

Empowering governments, youth, and our generation

I wasn’t just there to stir things up; I wanted to have an actual influence. I actively connected with other young people while supporting my government delegation, imparting knowledge and giving them the tools they needed to contribute effectively. As a unified front, we steered the COP presidency and our generation toward ambitious climate goals. It was inspiring to see youthful thinkers and seasoned figures pressing ahead toward a better future.

I have seen the strength of group action in the face of the greatest crisis facing our world, from the commotion of Bonn to the inspirational and collaborative moments. I am still dedicated to making a difference and will collaborate closely with my varied team as we prepare for the forthcoming COP in Dubai. Keep fighting the good fight, my fellow environmentalists. We can build a just and sustainable society for ourselves and future generations. They are right when they say this is just the beginning, and I can’t wait to share my adventure with you.

Discover more

Learn more about Chevening Scholarships here

Watch Binod’s video about his Durham University experience

Binod Parajuli

Hi, I'm Binod from Nepal. I'm a recent graduate from the MSc Risk programme and a Chevening Scholar.

Related Posts