This week, the Brighton and Hove Climate Assembly meets for the first time.
We don’t know who the participants are – key to this process is the support from organisations Sortition and Ipsos Mori who have now identified 50 of the city’s residents to meet online to discuss how we tackle the climate crisis through transport measures.
The selected residents, who have been chosen to represent a diverse range of the population, will be meeting a few times over the next few months.
Guided by experts, they will together come up with proposals on how we can meet our goals to lower toxic emissions – or become “carbon neutral” – by 2030.
But this is only one part of the engagement – alongside the Climate Assembly we’re also hosting a Youth Climate Assembly.
The Youth Assembly starts tomorrow (Thursday 24 September) at 5.30pm with an introductory session and will give young people aged 13 to 19 – or up to 25 for young people with SEND – their chance to have a say.
Young people’s voices are crucial. A year ago this week, thousands of young people took to the streets, alongside many others, to raise their voice in support of the Global Strike for Climate action.
The Youth Strike movement woke many people up to the need for change.
As young people led the way, many were inspired by their actions. But inspiration isn’t enough. Their voices and our commitment to their concerns must not be forgotten.
Young people’s voices in tackling the climate crisis are crucial. It is young people whose future is most at stake from ever rising global temperatures.
And it’s generations of decision-makers who haven’t acted quickly enough, despite decades worth of warnings.
What happens next? I’m really pleased that we’ve been able to create this space for our younger residents to discuss solutions to the climate crisis and I look forward to seeing what they come up with.
Over four sessions, the Youth Assembly will analyse and critically reflect on information given by experts, advise on concrete solutions to the crisis and push for reassurance that Brighton and Hove City Council will follow through on suggestions from both the Climate Assembly and the Youth Assembly.
But if you know a young person passionate about climate – it’s not too late. There’s still chance for more young people to get involved too.
You can find out more detail about the Youth Assembly at https://new.brighton-hove.gov.uk/climate-change/young-peoples-action-climate.
We encourage everyone to reach out to young people they know, spread the word about the assembly – and also remind them that their voice matters.
Councillor Hannah Clare is the Green deputy leader of Brighton and Hove City Council.