On October 29th, SCOLAR Network just held the first Dialogue on Climate Change and Youth Actions as a part of the “United with Pakistan” one-month campaign.
The online event gathered experts from the SCO region working on various climate-related issues – from disaster relief and disaster management to university cooperation.
Speakers included Dr. Majid Khan, an Associate Professor at the University of Science and Technology Beijing, Reeju Shrestha, a Researcher at the Climate and Disaster Research Center (HiCCDRC), Kathmandu University (KU), and Lucy Tong, a Committee Member of the Planet Positive 2030 Campaign and an Adjunct Lecturer at Tsinghua University.
The Dialogue started with the mini climate hackathon when participants were split into groups and each group presented their solution on improving the flood relief efforts and mitigating the consequences of similar disasters.
During the event, experts shared their rich experiences in disaster relief, disaster management, youth activism, and international cooperation to combat climate change, their personal stories, and what brought them to the field.
In terms of flood prevention, Dr. Mahid Khan highlighted the importance of building a good infrastructure which is possible only under effective governance. Construction works should be regulated well. A comprehensive water monitoring system and real-time data collection are prerequisites for more effective flood control. It should be centralized and analyzed to find out abnormalities as early as possible.
Dr. Majid Khan stressed that climate is not what only scientists should research, it’s an area to which everyone can contribute. According to the professor, climate-related knowledge and information should be easily accessible to the broader audience.
Reeju Shrestha shared that countries like Nepal, Pakistan, and China would be affected by climate change further, and natural calamities would continue to happen if we won’t take action to mitigate it. In the Hindukush region , a mountain range in Central and South Asia to the west of the Himalayas, glaciers are melting. They might affect South Asian countries since climate problems are not the problems of just one country – it affects neighboring countries as well. The largest river in China, the Yangtze river, which 400 million people rely on, is drying. We’ve also already experienced a water shortage and extreme weather conditions.
According to Reeju, countries should treat international agreements on climate change more seriously and stick to their commitments as much as possible. Besides, more digitalization is needed to improve the alarm system on the spot.
Lucy Tong believes climate change is an interregional and intergenerational issue, and youth plays a vital role in climate change mitigation because they shape the world’s future. It is essential to engage youth in all-level dialogues on climate. Lucy recommended that all young people dive deeper into the topic of climate change and understand the case. In her opinion, the younger generation needs to know the problem first to work better on this issue and choose the right way they want to tackle it.
Since the event gathered many young people interested in sustainable development, speakers also shared how to start your sustainability journey, where to get resources, build your knowledge and develop your career.
We are looking forward to making a Dialogue on Climate our regular event, bringing together sustainability experts and young leaders from the SCO region to spark ideas on how to solve the current climate issues and motivate the younger generation to join the movement for a greener world.