Environment Minister Eng. Nazeer Ahamed said that the Asia-Pacific region is home to 60 percent of the world’s population and the region is one of the most vulnerable areas to the climate crisis on 1st of October.He said that a recent UNDP survey has found that around 63 percent of people in Asia and the Pacific recognize climate change as a major “global emergency".He added that the youth across the region are frustrated with the lack of climate action by their leaders – and they feel that their voices are not being heard.
"This frustration has been demonstrated over the years by the multiple climate strikes campaigns and other youth-led movements happening across the region" he said.The Minister noted that the Asia-Pacific region must increase youth efforts to prepare and tackle urgent, overlapping crisis if it is needed to strengthen the resilience of its people and the economies.
"So, the youth in this region is a major group to engage with for effective, inclusive and sustainable multilateral actions to tackle climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution which we call, the Triple Planetary Crisis", he said.Addressing the Asia-Pacific Youth Environment Forum 2023 at UN compound on 1st of October, Minister Nazeer said that a coordinated action is needed to address rapid environmental degradation and the challenges linked to the three pillars of sustainable development, that is, the Economy, the Environment and the Society.
He was of the view that, these 3 pillars should be balanced to achieve sustainable Development."This Forum is an important milestone in youth efforts to drive forward Asia-Pacific Regional Environmental cooperation and the integration of youth activities in our region contributing to global processes", he said.
"Many large cities like Mumbai, Shanghai, Bangkok, Ho Chi Minh City, and Jakarta, are coastal and low-lying, making them susceptible to sea level rise and extreme weather events, such as typhoons", he added.
The Minister added that rural areas also remain highly vulnerable to drought and flooding.
"It is the children and young people that stand to be most affected by these impacts of climate change", he said.
The Asia-Pacific Youth Environment Forum will aim to promote collective, impactful and sustainable measures for the Triple Planetary Crisis at all levels - national, regional and global.
Today, due to unsustainable consumption and production patterns and practices, the triple planetary crisis, have created many environment, social and economic disasters. Therefore, I wish to propose that this Forum focus on all the dimensions such as environment degradation, economic draw backs and social disparities in this region.
UN Resident Coordinator Marc Andre Franche was also present.