At Least – Leave Those Kids Alone

by Einar Du Rietz, Bonn

I feel old sometimes. I’m not, according to my doctor, but I’m at least not “Youth”, as defined by the United Nations to be between the age of 15 and 24 (for the first three years in there, you also have the privilege of being “child” at the same time).

Couldn’t care less.

The UNFCCC however, cares a lot, and that’s where I start to care.

The report on youth participation in the climate battle, distributed here at the climate conference in Bonn, is impressive, with government funded youth summits and UN financed education camps. To join in, Alofa Tuvalis together with ADEME, has produced a partly entertaining comic book, where non-environmental decisions in daily life is punished by itching powder thrown by the mysterious bug Sib.

If the island of Tuvalis is really sinking, and if, in that case, it has anything to do with what I have for breafast, is not really explained, but as a pedagogic endeavour, it’s interesting from mainly two aspects.

Good manners is an important virtue, and one that all “youth” should pick up, else they might run into problems later in life. These include most of the things taught in the booklet, don’t throw garbage in nature, try not to work up your parents’ electricity bill too much.

But what ever became of good old youth rebellion against authorities and oppression? Do dress in a UN sponsored T-shirt and harass people, telling them that politicians should “do something”, in other words taxing and regulating people, does not come across as very courageous, or youthful for that matter.

But maybe I’m just too old for this.

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About the Author: Einar Du Rietz

Einar Du Rietz is a journalist and communications consultant based in Europe. He has authored several environmental reports for the Electrolux Group and written many blogs for the Center for the New Europe at CNE Environment.