Marine student raises issue of young people's initiatives at UN Ocean Conference
Lydia Rysavy, a student at the Department of Marine Sciences, is in Lisbon to attend the UN Ocean Conference. She wants to highlight the importance of young people's voices and initiatives for the ocean.
What are you going to do at the UN Ocean Conference?
“I will participate in the conference both as a student, and also as an ocean and climate activist. I will partly be in the conference room together with other young people, and partly participate in several different events and activities.”
Among other things, you will participate in the event The Ocean Literate Society - Youth Engagement and Intergenerational Collaboration. What’s it about?
“It's about young people's commitment and about ocean literacy. We want to highlight the importance of young people's voices and show examples of how young people around the world work to create change and build commitment to the ocean, locally and globally. At the same time, we want to show what is needed to create the conditions for young people to get involved, and to increase ocean literacy in all parts of society. The event is organised by the University of Gothenburg, among others.”
What does it mean for you to attend the UN Ocean Conference?
“What really important to me is to meet others who create change at the grassroot level, and also the opportunity to create collaborations. The conference brings together not only decision-makers, but also researchers, activists, and many of those who are already affected in their daily lives by the changes in the oceans. I don’t see any major significance in what is happening in the large conference rooms. Most conferences where politicians and decisionmakers gather are dominated by greenwashing and empty words.”
Interview: Annika Wall
"The Ocean Literate Society - Youth Engagement and Intergenerational Collaboration" is a side event to the UN Conference on the Sea in Lisbon 2022. The organiser is the Centre for Sea and Society, University of Gothenburg, and others.
The event highlights young people’s initiatives in demanding change from those in power while using their own voices and tools to act for a better world and healthier ocean. Few people have missed the communicative power and impact of international movements such as Fridays For Future, initiated and driven by children and youth.
During the first section of the event there will be a mix of short presentations and a short follow up discussion. The latter part of the event will be in the form of a “mini fair” where visitors get the opportunity to interact with representatives from youth organisations and projects working with youth engagement and ocean literacy.