[New York, 21.09.2019] Today, the first-ever Youth Climate Action Summit is taking place at the United Nations’ headquarters in New York. More than 500 students and young professionals gathered on this day to discuss the way forward. The summit, which convenes world-leading experts, key figures of the United Nations and pivotal climate activists such as Greta Thunberg, is a strong signal for youth engagement and action around the world. Also, the International Forestry Students’ Association (IFSA) is represented by a number of young leaders, who have been invited personally based on their commitment and dedication to take climate action. Throughout the day, sessions on mitigation and adaptation measures, climate policies as well as innovations will aim to collect inspiring and novel ideas from the youth.

Among the IFSA delegation is also Maximilian Schubert, IFSA Board member and Councilor for External Affairs, who emphasized the magnificence of this opportunity: “The invitation of IFSA by the United Nations does not only acknowledge our global efforts towards a world that appreciates forests, it further is a statement for the tremendous role forests have to play in climate action. And we are here to ensure that forests are at the centre of this discussion.”

Despite the summit only being one day, it already accelerated action and created countless synergies between the young stakeholders and organizations. “There were discussions beforehand, of course. And currently we are working on several projects together. Among other things, we are aiming to adopt a Global Youth Climate Declaration.” said Steffen Dehn, former focal point of the Major Group of Children and Youth (MGCY) to the United Nations Forum on Forests and IFSA representative, “but of course, the real action is being done by millions of youth out there.”

The Youth Climate Action Summit is an event in the lead-up to the Climate Week from the 23rd to the 29th of September in New York. Throughout this week, several events will highlight the importance and urgency of climate change. Several IFSA partners will host their own events tackling a multitude of land-use issues and advocating for sustainability. On Monday, the United Nations’ General Assembly members are going to come together under the motto of Climate Action.