Time to move on – 21st century transport!

February 16, 2009

The frankly irresponsible government decision to build a third runway this January, has evoked a movement of people to say this is not ok.  Causing much controversy, the airport expansion plan is uniting residents, activists and politicians alike.  It’s actually wonderful to see and be part of.

Already we’ve seen Climate Rush and Air Plot bring the issue to the forefront and if I were in the UK, right now Thursday 19th February would be a key date in my diary for next week.  Not letting the issue be swept under the carpet, groups will be meeting again at 5.30-7.30pm, opposite Downing Street (Westminster Tube), to keep their vision for 21st century transport on the agenda.

Speakers will include John Mcdonnell MP, Susan Kramer MP, Jean Lambert MEP 

21st century transport.  Yes, I really like the sound of that.

P.S. Read more about previous Heathrow protests here.




Sexy new newsletter – February 2009

February 8, 2009


image0031Issue 5, February 2008

The Newsletter of the UK Youth Climate Coalition


Dear Friends of the UK Youth Climate Coalition,

We don’t know about you, but the Big Freeze has been the best thing about this winter so far! So we hope that the papers will stop going on about how much the snow has cost the economy… We think a mass snowball fight between all those depressed men in suits would help them realise the brilliance of our new winter wonderland!

Thankfully we’ve added some new talent to the team, so that if we ever get caught by snowball-surprise, we’ve got a few extra pairs of mittened-hands at the ready..

New Faces

Guppi, our resident expert in snow diplomacy will be working hard on engaging organisations and building a strong coalition membership base. Meanwhile, Kirsty has practically perfect aim (she’s not known as Poppins for nothing!), Anna uses her booming laugh to distract the opposition and Lizzie will finish them off with a lovingly-baked snow pie. All three are going to be working to create the most effective, diverse and successful Youth Delegation to the UN – ever! Applications to join the delegation will open after Easter – so keep your eyes peeled.

Shifting The Power in 2009

To recruit the best team ever for Power Shift 2009, Kate got out her digital camera…

View Recruitment Video

Visit the application site for all the details. We’re going to ensure that Power Shift is going to put our generational vision on the map – a clean and just future for us all. This event is going to be massive, so pass the link on to any friends you think might be up for organising the country’s largest youth climate summit ever – and the best eight months of their life!

(Y)Our Opportunity!

Since our work in Poznan, European youth are beginning to really pull together to ensure that the EU leads the world in improving our energy production. From March 10-12, the city of Copenhagen will host young people from all over the continent to learn how they can play a leading role in pushing this forward. We are looking for 25 motivated young people to take to the conference, and get this – all overland travel and accommodation expenses will be paid! Visit the Our Opportunity website for more details, and email Matt (matt@ukycc.org) to apply.


  • Fancy a little bit of GreenFinger action? UKYCC has been working with universities and organisations such as Oxfam to keep spreading the creative Green Finger action. What’s yours?
  • How about some summer intimacy with your saddle and handle-bars – apply to go on an Otesha Cycle Tour!
  • The most exciting film of the year is coming to our cinemas soon! Check out the trailer for The Age of Stupid, and sign up to their updates!

Until next month,


(Anna, Ben, Casper, Emma, Guppi, Kate, Kirsty, Lizzie and Matt)


P.S. The closing date for Power Shift applications is spooky Friday 13th March!

Sent on behalf of the UK Youth Climate Coalition
hello@ukycc.org | +44 (0) 7944951177 | Skype:
If you would prefer to not receive monthly updates, please let us know!


Backstreet Boys + turbines = HOT.

February 1, 2009

Need I say more?  (From 3 mins in…)


Get into season

January 15, 2009

Kale, leeks, swede, carrots, squash, celeriac and turnips are in season this time of year, how about making a yummy soup to warm up?

Preparation time 30 mins to 1 hour 

Cooking time 10 to 30 mins


1 butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed, cut into 2.5cm/1in cubes
2 tbsp clear honey
2 tbsp olive oil
1 white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
110ml/4fl oz white wine
500ml/18fl oz vegetable stock
20g/¾ oz fresh basil leaves
20g/¾oz fresh chervil
75ml extra virgin olive oil
150ml/5fl oz double cream
3 limes, juice and zest only
salt and freshly ground black pepper
50g/2oz crème fraîche
25g/1oz pine nuts, lightly toasted

1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
2. Place the squash onto a baking tray and drizzle with the honey and olive oil.
3. Place in the oven to roast for 30-40 minutes, or until tender.
4. Heat a frying pan until hot, then add the onion and garlic and fry for 1-2 minutes.
5. Add the wine and stock and bring to the boil. 
6. Simmer for about 3-4 minutes, then add the cooked squash.
7. Meanwhile, chop half of the basil and all the chervil and place into a food processor with the extra virgin olive oil and blend to a fine purée. Pour out into a bowl and set aside. 
8. Place the butternut squash soup into a clean food processor. Add the cream, lime juice and zest and blend to a purée. 
9. Return the butternut squash soup to the saucepan, heat through and season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.
10. To serve, ladle the soup into serving bowls, then top with a dollop of crème fraîche. Add a sprinkling of toasted pine nuts, drizzle with the herb purée and then garnish with the rest of the basil.


More like hardJet now

January 15, 2009

Lord Turner: Domestic emissions from homes add up to 28%, by 2050 aviation industry will account for 35% of emissions in the UK.  EasyJet’s Andy Harrison didn’t do a very good job in defending aviation expansion…



UKYCC January Newsletter

January 4, 2009

Dear Friends of the UK Youth Climate Coalition,

Happy New Year!  

As we were all celebrating at midnight, it was exciting to look ahead to 2009 knowing this is going to be a massive year. We know that with you, we are a vibrant, strong, generational movement that will achieve many victories! But first, a look back at December… 

UN Climate Change Negotiations

After a lot of preparation and exciting night train journeys, we made it to the UN Climate Change negotiations in Poland, ready to spend the next two weeks living cosily all under the same roof and sharing beds. Fortunately, we didn’t get too much time to sleep, as we were out and about, suited and booted, running from press conference to side-event, from action to meetings with the big cheeses.
And one particular big cheese invited us for a beer! You guessed it, we had a date with Mr Ed Miliband, the Energy and Climate Change Minister. For over an hour we gave him food for thought on new coal-fired power stations, Heathrow expansion, popular mobilisation and more. He sounded promising, but the proof will be in the pudding.
We also delivered some damn good speeches during the negotiations sharing our vision of a 2050 world where countries worked together to safeguard our future.
We were there with over 400 international youth from over 50 nations. Together, we lead by example on how to work together by launching Project Survival. Over 90 countries and numerous famous faces signed up to commit to a global climate treaty that safeguards the survival of all countries and peoples. Our message: Survival is not negotiable.
Finally, we got hundreds of people from around the UK to call Gordon Brown to demand sensible EU climate targets. The campaigndemonstrated that people want to engage our decision makers and are ready for a safe climate future! Thank you for calling!
If you want to check out a nice little video roundup, have a look over here.  

Our Time Is Now Round-Up 

A massive thank you to all of you who marched with us at the National Climate March!    

Dancing around with high spirits and colourful banners (like “coal is so 1908”), UKYCC joined people all around the world calling for the change that we are ready for. Whilst Matt bravely spoke to a crowd of 10,000 next to climate heroes such as Caroline Lucas, hundreds of young people joined together in Poland to call for global action on climate change.  It was chilly but up-lifting day with young people finally taking a platform on this issue.

Thank you for all your support during 2008. Now we’re going to work as hard as we can to ensure that 2009 goes down in the history books for the right reasons.

Bring it on! 

Casper, Emma, Matt, Ben and Kate

*If you would prefer to not receive monthly updates, please let us know!


Marching in the streets and meeting Ministers…




Rocking the UN floor

December 10, 2008

What an awesome day!

Young people met with Pachauri (Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) , called EU heads of state, had interviews, blogged, planned actions, met with Nicholas Stern, delivered a postcard to Peggy Wong, found countless nations and had them commit to safeguarding the survival of all countries and peoples.

And we also delivered two speeches (a special round of applause to Hanna, Marcie, Josh and Guppi for their awesome deliveries).

Youth LCA speech during Plenary session on 10 December 2008 

Scenario: Flashback to the successes achieved during COP 14 and 15, presented by a youth representative from a 2050 perspective.

All youth gather in the back of the plenary hall 

‘My grandfather told me a story about the cold December of 2008. He told me about car fumes that used to dominate the atmosphere, coal-fired power plants, polluted rivers and massive deforestation. Famine, drought and tropical disease were running rampant, while new coal-fired power plants were built next to poor communities every day. I thought he was joking, but the more history I read and pictures I saw, the more I realized he was telling me the truth.

But 2008 marked one of the most significant turning points in world history. Motivated by a global sense of urgency, countries put aside differences and decided to take bold necessary action.

What follows is an account of what happened in Poznan:

Countries stopped waiting around for Copenhagen and decided to take immediate action. In Poznan, a strong negotiating mandate was established, which enabled the most effective and equitable climate action in history.

Recognizing the dangers that climate change posed to the basic rights of billions of people, the parties acted on the targets that AOSIS, LDC’s, thousands of scientists and youth from around the world had been advocating: bringing the world below 350 ppm CO2 equivalent within a framework that ensured the right to development for all.

A strong shared vision was established to protect the most vulnerable and ensure the rights of generations to come. This vision included robust targets of 80% global emissions reductions by 2050 and comprehensive support for low-carbon development around the world. Industrialized countries took the lead and committed to repaying their ecological debt by making 95% reductions. 

Countries enacted a Green New Deal, investing in sustainable sectors of the economy and creating millions of green jobs, to pull the world out of the financial crisis. 

They also dramatically increased adaptation funding through the UNFCCC in addition to existing aid commitments. This helped millions of people cope with climate impacts already being felt.

All conference parties agreed to safeguard the survival of all countries and peoples.

The rational, informed and visionary voices of youth were heard. Starting in Poznan, there was a movement among conference parties to include youth representation on every single country’s national delegation. 

This is a nice story, isn’t it? But we’re not in the future, we’re in the present and unfortunately, at the moment it’s closer to fiction than the truth. If the current pace of negotiations continues, the world is at serious risk of runaway climate change. Many small island states will be condemned to drown, and my children will grow up in a very uncertain world. Is this even the kind of world where I’d want to have children?

However, young people are coming together in increasingly strong numbers to tell you that we demand more. Over the last eight days, we have sat in plenary listening to excuses and delay tactics and non-commitment from a select group of countries. 

We are tired of seeing bold suggestions from the smallest and most vulnerable countries completely disregarded by most wealthy countries, who instead counter-propose that all they can do is take shorter showers.  

We are here to tell you that will not stand for countries to continue to bicker and stall and play games with our future. We are here, standing before you, making concrete proposals, and we expect them to get taken up. In the spirit of long-term cooperative action, we have come together, over 500 of us, from 50 countries and many different backgrounds, to create a strong common vision.  More than any moment in history, you must follow our lead and do the same. 


Youth Speech to SBSTA Plenary Session, 10 December 2008.   

On behalf of the International Youth Delegation, thank you for this opportunity.

It is well known that forests play a critical role in regulating carbon in the atmosphere.  But they are also the home and source of the livelihoods of 1.6 billion people.  They protect our watersheds, regulate water flow and disease, and recycle nutrients.  Their contribution to the world’s biodiversity is unparalleled.  

We cannot continue to view forests in a utilitarian, compartmentalized, reductionist manner.  Forests are more than trees and carbon.  Forests are life.

Given the crucial roles played by forests, the International Youth Delegation has been closely monitoring the negotiations surrounding REDD.  We are encouraged to see that REDD is a priority here in Poznan, but are gravely concerned about certain proposed features and omissions within the REDD mechanism and the weak recommendations SBSTA has made to the UNFCCC. 


Any REDD mechanism must be first and foremost a mechanism for forest protection and climate stabilization, not a mechanism by which Annex-I countries avoid domestic mitigation actions. An offset mentality and massive corporate profits are not, and should not be, the aims of this scheme.  Buying a plantation in a developing nation cannot replace genuine reductions at the source of emissions – in nations like mine.

Going back to first principles, it is vital that the UNFCCC definition of forests be changed to exclude woody-crop plantations.  They store less carbon, less securely and less permanently. We are truly astounded that this seemingly obvious point requires comment.  The conversion of natural forests to plantations is deforestation, pure and simple. The perverse outcomes of the Kyoto definition have shown us that. Moreover, forest degradation should be wholistically defined as any loss of carbon carrying capacity or any harm to biodiversity.  

Critically, a REDD mechanism must clarify and strengthen the land tenure rights of local and indigenous peoples, not further degrade them.  It was shocking to hear yesterday that some nations here – including my own Australia – wanted to negotiate away the rights of first peoples. Our message on Human Rights Day is that these rights are non-negotiable. 

Representatives of indigenous peoples have come all the way to Poznan to speak with you here.  Why should they wait until February 15 to submit this recommendation to the UNFCCC?  How can we expect someone to be a responsible steward of the land if he or she knows that it could be wrested from them at any moment?  Land scarcity and insecurity have been at the root of countless conflicts throughout human history, but we remain confident that we can find a way to secure Green Carbon that won’t ultimately require the deployment of the Blue Helmets.  

I know that the indigenous peoples here, and the International Youth Delegation, will express our views to you throughout this process, for as long as it takes. Just be aware that, for many peoples, and the ancient forests that sustain them, every day that we take to deliberate is another day of irreversible destruction.

We ask only that you take our thoughts into account when planning for the future of our generations.

Your children are tired of dressing up like polar bears and penguins in and effort to convince you to act in a manner consistent with science and conscience, a manner that respects the natural cycles and systems that govern us.  

Your children are tired of being called foolish for prioritizing the preservation of our common home over profit margins.  

Your children are tired of reminding you that we are here to safeguard the survival of all countries and all people.  

Shalt thou be saved but hear the whole world cry?

I once heard that the single thing that all humans share is a desire to pass on to their children a secure future.  Please – give us a reason to believe this is true.  Give us a bold, binding and just climate treaty that features science-based targets, effective LULUCF rules, and an equitable REDD mechanism. 



I am so proud to be a part of this movement that is transcending national borders, bringing so many amazing people together, and pushing the whole world in the right direction.