July 9, 2020

“The climate crisis is the biggest problem of our century and our generations, but also the biggest opportunity”

Alejandro Quecedo responds to LA RAZÓN to specify what they request in his manifesto pronounced at the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in 2019. He highlights the role of youth as a turning point to face this environmental crisis.

-Why is the document you read today important?

-The content of that manifesto is the vision of the youth of the climate crisis. In it we demand the measures that we believe are imperative and necessary to no longer be able to avoid the climatic change that is impossible, but to mitigate everything that will entail.

– Was it about unifying the voices of the different groups?

-We needed a document that registered our will. We see that we have a lot of strength in demonstrations but when it comes to dialogue with institutions without a role that unifies all organizations it is more difficult.

What was your impression when writing it?

-The document was written after the New York summit, because we think that we had not been given a voice and that it had been more like a scenario where we should not have discussed what we should do.

-What do you ask for in this manifesto?

-For example, limit the temperature rise below what scientists recommend, which is marked by 1.5 degrees; that solutions based on nature be implemented, and that we move towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 … and many more things that not only have to do with climate change.

-Do you notice any changes since the New York Summit?

-In New York the feeling was puzzling. We did not know what we were going to find. Although when we left there we wondered if it had worked for something, now we see all the route it has had. We see that this summit was necessary for this COP25 to allow us to take the giant step that we need to take to begin to fight immediately not only against climate change, but against the loss of biodiversity and ultimately all the problems that the crisis has environmental.

-Do you come with optimism?

I think optimism is necessary. If we believe that from here we will leave with a definitive agreement that will solve everything, no. But I think that we are going to take a very important step and I think that for the first time we will see the true face of the countries and what they intend to do. The climate crisis is the biggest problem of our century and our generations, but also the greatest opportunity. This crisis has allowed us to put on the table all the debates about the SDGs, about intergenerational justice and about many other necessary concepts that had been completely forgotten.

-What role do young people have?

-Civil society is playing a role that I had not played before. This COP25 represents its consecration in the pressure to all governments to tell them that we want to move forward in SDGs and mitigate and mitigate as far as possible the climatic disasters that lie ahead. I see that it will be a turning point without any doubt.

-In addition to the climate crisis we face the sixth mass extinction of species … Do you think that you are giving importance, you who come from a conservation organization, to these issues?

-Unfortunately, biodiversity conservation is not having the preponderant role it should have. We have to keep in mind that without it, our ecosystems will collapse and with them the economic and political system will do so. It should be more important than it is. We have always seen that we have a flagship animal in danger of extinction and we look closely at it, when in reality what is in danger is not only that, but the whole ecological system.

-One thing goes hand in hand with the other …

-We live in an interconnected world and solutions have to go hand in hand. If we manage to reduce the temperature increase, but not save our biodiversity, we will face the same destination in an irresolvable way.

– From home can you contribute to the fight against climate change?

Fortunately in our society, we increasingly take climate change and the entire environmental crisis into account in our day-to-day lives. We have to try not to consume plastic, move as little as possible in polluting means of transport, use public transport … What is known and has always been said and that we must continue to do and implement more and more. Although I also believe that now the fundamental step that needs to be emphasized is that we not only have to deal with the environment in our private lives, but we have to make the leap to public claims. As a civil society, we have an obligation to be behind our governments to ensure that the environmental crisis is in the foreground all the time. We must increase social pressure so that an agreement can be reached that can change our system as soon as possible.


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