By now you’ll probably be aware that COP26 – the United Nation’s annual climate conference – is taking place this week in Glasgow. Its importance can’t be overstated, as representatives from nearly 200 countries will come together and share their plans for cutting carbon emissions.
But will it be enough? According to the UN, carbon emissions are on track to rise by 16% by 2030, a far cry from the cut needed to keep global warming under the internationally agreed limited of 1.5C.
Young climate activists have long been advocating for governmental action on climate change, with Greta Thunberg recently dismissing world leaders’ efforts as “blah, blah, blah.” A recent global survey even found that 60% of young people said they felt very worried or extremely worried about climate change. So, who is actually listening to these young people?
Well, the Extreme Hangout – which will run alongside the COP26 in Glasgow – was set up to do just that. Created by environmental activist Amber Nuttall and Alistair Gosling, the Founder of Extreme International, the Extreme Hangout will be the creative hub for young people to set own their own vision for a greener future.
GLAMOUR spoke to Amber Nuttall, who co-organised the Extreme Hangout, to find out it’s so important for young people to have this space at COP26.
Amber points out that so many young people are disillusioned with the pace of progress, saying that, “You only have to look on the streets and see the young people either with their placards, marching around or gluing themselves to the sides of buildings.”
Amber continues, “[Young people] feel totally desperate because they don’t feel heard and they don’t think that anybody’s acting with urgency. It doesn’t matter what they do – no one is listening to them.”
The Extreme Hangout seeks to change that, as Amber explains, “We wanted to provide a space where [young people] could challenge the politicians and the business leaders […] And I imagine their biggest question will be ‘Where is the urgency?’”
What is the Extreme Hangout?
It will be taking place on The Ferry, which is permanently moored at the Anderston Quay on the River Clyde, in between the main COP26 conference venue and Glasgow city centre. It will consist of 11-days of live energetic discussion from 9am to 6pm and evening entertainment from 7pm to midnight, with panels curated by One Young World.
Crucially, it will be a positive, solution-orientated experience, as Amber explains, “People aren’t talking about the solutions enough. We all get scared to different degrees talking about climate change, but I want young people to know that there are fabulous solutions out there and they exist today.”