KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 30 — Acknowledging the significance of engaging young individuals in shaping the future of the planet, the Ministry of Natural Resources, Environment and Climate Change (NRECC) has designated a youth representative to participate in the Climate Change Consultative Panel.

Minister Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad said young voices were much needed in the decision-making process related to climate policy as their passion, innovation, and fresh perspectives were essential in finding solutions for the country to go green. 

He said a meeting was also held with the youth representative on Sept 25, adding that the ministry was excited on the collaboration to tackle climate change.

“The fact is that the fight against climate change will be won or lost with the young. When I was growing up, climate change was perhaps not as ubiquitous as it is today. But I would like to think that for my generation, the need to protect the environment was slowly entering into our consciousness.

“Fast-forward to today, to this current era, and we definitely find that climate change is an undeniable, urgent preoccupation, including on the part of young Malaysians,” he said during the launch of the SAFE STEPS Kids Climate Change series today. 

He said the 2020 National Youth Climate Change Survey Malaysia by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and EcoKnights found that 92 per cent of the youngsters surveyed exhibited high levels of concern regarding climate change. 

“… and there is a consensus among youth that climate change is happening. Nine out of 10 said they were taking individual actions to address climate change.

“Climate change demands immediate action, not just from us but from the very generation that will inherit the consequences of our actions or inaction. We must empower our children to take meaningful steps to address this global challenge,” he said.

Nik Nazmi further noted that the ministry acknowledged the significance of climate change adaptation, which encompassed strategies aimed at mitigating climate change, protecting vulnerable communities, and prioritising the needs of children.

“The development of the National Adaptation Plan will focus on strengthening community resilience, with one of the aims being to minimise the adverse effects of climate change on children,” he said. 

Regarding the SAFE STEPS Kids Climate Change series, he said it would provide simple and easy-to-understand explanations of climate change via Cartoon Network’s beloved characters, leveraging on well-loved cartoon characters to raise awareness and provide simple and educational messages to children. 

The series is expected to reach more than 20 million households across Asia via Cartoon Network.


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