Climate conference 2018
Climate Conference Background
In our modern age, changes to the planet and a mass loss of bio-diversity is happening at such a rapid pace that it is proposed we have entered a new geological epoch called the Anthropocene. This term is used to define an era where human induced behavior has led to dramatic impacts on the Earth’s geology and ecosystems.
The consequences of human enterprise over the last 200 years includes 65 million refugees roaming with no place to call home, a mass extinction of plants and animals on whose existence life depends, and epic floods, historic droughts and super-storms becoming the norm. Projected disaster scenarios that assume apocalyptic proportions threaten the existence of the next generations. Our way of life today, with neo-liberalism as its foundation, pays no heed to what nature is telling us.
The next generations all over the globe face further threats such as breathing contaminated air, drinking contaminated water, eating contaminated food and rising sea levels that will make it impossible to live in certain regions of the world. Many of these impacts will lead to more unstable regions around the world where people will fight each other for access to basic conditions for life such as water and arable land. The Poor are those who suffer the worst impacts today and who will continue to do so in the coming decades.
Will capitalism save the planet?
The neo-liberal system has its roots in the drive to create economy and excess for the 0.01% who own most of the wealth on the planet. This has paved the way for multi-national corporations to take the monopoly of what they produce. These corporations that have been given more legal rights than humans, have put millions of people running small ventures out of business, which in turn has forced many people to cities where they hope to find a way to gather income for survival.
This means that today for the first time in human history, more people live in the cities than in rural areas, and living in such urban environments has a tremendous impact on how we as human beings relate to nature. Fewer people contribute to the production of food, instead the multi-national corporations farm wastelands of monoculture maize and barley desserts where insects and other life cannot survive due to the use of pesticides.
Many young people who grow up in cities are separated from a healthy, intimate relationship to soil, plant life, wild animals and insects, crops, and the other wonders that planet earth has to offer, and this growing large group of people are not able to notice small shifts in weather patterns that a traditional farmer would know at a sniff of his nose.
What generation do we leave behind for the planet?
Furthermore, the education system in general is good at educating individualists and consumers but fails to equip young people with comprehensible knowledge and solutions to the problems we face. This leads to a quasi-climate-literate youth who know something about bits and pieces but not enough in holistic terms – the causes and effects – and who thereby are not able to act into finding necessary solutions, but instead focus on smaller individual actions resulting in little or no impact.
There is a pressing need to hear the voice of youth and young people in the debates about the future. To train the youth to understand and take action towards what is needed to make the future possible. This means being equipped with skills and knowledge, which may also extend into a larger context of globalization, neo-liberalism and social spheres including gender imbalances, oppression of women, racism.
This brings the question about which kind of generation we leave behind for the planet.
This is the foundation of the gathering at Lindersvold.