Entries by Eva Kloudová

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We are looking for Liaison Officers | Volunteering

Liaison Officers | Volunteering

We are looking for 4 volunteers to join our Advocacy Working Group! Could this be the position for you?
Please apply via the form before September 6th 23h59 CEST.

What is expected of a Liaison Officer?

The Liaison Officer is a volunteer position of one year term (October 2023 – October 2024). All liaison volunteers will report to and be supported by the YEE Advocacy staff (Volunteers Coordinator, Advocacy Coordinator and Project Leads) and the External Relations Officer. While committed to specific and diverse tasks, the volunteer liaison officers will effectively make a team – the Advocacy Working Group – intended to support each other and work with the staff. 

The average time commitment is between 7-10 hours a week, including meetings every two weeks with the External Relations Officer, Volunteers Coordinator, Advocacy Coordinator and Project Leads.

Some of the work tasks expected involve strengthening communication and advocacy with some of our partner organisations as well as creating projects and campaigns of their own.

Who are we looking for?

The Liaison Officer should:

What are the benefits of being a Liaison Officer?

What you can gain from this experience:

Open Positions for the period: October 2023-October 2024

Environmental Law and LitigationLiaison Officer on Environmental Law 

The aim of the Environmental Law Liaison Officer is to help YEE’s work on environmental law and litigation topics and the work on the Aarhus Convention. This person would work closely with the Volunteers Coordinator, the Project Lead and the Project Assistant on environmental law on the Legal Seeds 3 project; and with other Liaison Officers when legal topics are involved, such as with the Oceans and Biodiversity portfolios. The Env. Law Liaison Officer will also work with others on targeted campaigns (e.g. #restorenature) and advocacy initiatives at international and EU level.

A lot of the work would be linked to making environmental law accessible for young people through writing; familiarising with the Aarhus Convention processes and strengthening YEE position there; helping creating partnerships with youth and non youth organisations active in environmental law matters and learning the basics of fundraising. Finally, the volunteer will explore opportunities to promote knowledge and join or launch advocacy campaigns related to the achievement of more stringent legal targets and actions envisaged by the EU Green Deal.

The main topics covered by the environmental law portfolio include the EU Green Deal and its implementation (National Energy & Climate Plans and the FF55); climate litigation; the Aarhus Convention; the Nature Restoration Law and the Right to a Healthy Environment. However, your ideas and interests are of course welcome!

The main tasks will include: 

  • Help our members to engage with our work on environmental law, through liaising and working on our relationship with Member Organisations and partner organisations;
  • Help work with the Project Lead and Project Assistant on Environmental Law on content creation, such as articles and webinars;
  • Support YEE work on the Aarhus Convention processes;
  • Contribute to the general YEE advocacy strategy, such as through participating on behalf of YEE to legal campaigns and external events

YEE Ocean conservation logoLiaison Officer on Ocean Conservation

In the context of the Ocean Conservation portfolio, the Liaison Officer will engage with and consolidate relationships with ocean-related international advocacy campaigns, such as within the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC). They will be able to engage in the dissemination of knowledge to a wide audience, while also getting involved in international collaboration and promotion of youth participation in the Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) Instrument adopted under the UNCLOS framework. They can, in this context and in the context of other potential issues and international processes, seek active collaboration with existing partners like GYBN and NYBN Oceans group. Exploring involvement in other ocean- and water-related processes and issues is of course a possibility and is open to the Liaison Officer’s expertise, interest, and capacity.

The Liaison Officer will regularly communicate with other portfolios, and especially the Biodiversity, Environmental Governance, and Climate Crisis portfolios, fostering collaborative campaigns and initiatives where thematic priorities intersect. Examples of this are the BBNJ Treaty process, as well as the international negotiations towards the adoption of a legally-binding Plastics Treaty under the auspices of UNEP, addressing the Ocean-Climate nexus under the UNFCCC COP process.

At the EU level, the Liaison Officer will represent YEE as supporting organisation to Surfrider Foundation Europe’s Blue-Up 2024 campaign for EU Parliamentary elections. The volunteer will explore opportunities to promote knowledge and join or launch advocacy campaigns related to the achievement of ocean-related targets and actions envisaged by the EU Green Deal – ranging from the Common Fisheries Policy to the EU Biodiversity Strategy. The LO will also support the implementation of the EU4Ocean Coalition for Ocean Literacy project.

The main tasks will include:

  • Contribute to the YEE advocacy strategy, by participating in campaigns, liaising with partners, and representing YEE in external events;
  • Create ocean-related content and blog articles to be published by YEE;
  • Represent the YEE network in the Youth4Ocean Forum and EU4Ocean Platform, especially by taking active part in the youth-led initiatives carried out by the Youth4Ocean Forum community;
  • The LO will also contribute to the implementation of the EU4Ocean Coalition for Ocean Literacy project in accordance with the Oceans Project Lead, supporting the planning of key events and tasks, helping in mapping and liaising with relevant youth networks, initiatives, and youth-led projects in Europe.

YEE Sustainable energy logoLiaison Officer on Sustainable Energy

The Liaison Officer on Sustainable Energy will help to create a stronger basis of Energy knowledge with YEE and to implement and carry out relevant advocacy initiatives and relations on the topic. They will work closely with the Volunteers Coordinator, the Project Lead and the Project Assistant on energy. A great part of the mandate will be to provide support and insights to the Ampower project, the project at YEE dedicated to energy and support the team’s effort to create a knowledge bank on energy transition and the energy crisis.

The Sustainable Energy Liaison Officer would also liaise with other youth and non-youth organisations working on energy-related topics, such as the European Youth Energy Network, the EEB, GCE and CAN-Europe and provide assistance with the teams involvement with UN working groups. The Energy Liaison Officer will also have the possibility to explore opportunities to promote knowledge and join or launch advocacy campaigns related to the increase of sustainable energy targets in the EU. Personal ideas and insights on how to develop the portfolio are more than welcome!

The main tasks will include: 

  • Draft articles on several key points necessary to understand the complexity of energy transition and the ins and outs of the energy crisis triggered by the war in Ukraine.
  • Create a weekly news update on energy matters (Showcasing new interesting projects, new technologies relevant to the energy transition, updates on new national, European and International legislations, and other relevant news).
  • Help our members to engage with our work on energy, through liaising and working on our relationship with Member Organisations and partner organisations;
  • Contribute to the general YEE advocacy strategy, such as through participating on behalf of YEE to energy-related campaigns and external events.

Liaison Officer on Green Finance 

We are excited to say that we also opened a position for a Liaison Officer on Green Finance!

The role of the Liaison Officer 

The Green Finance Liaison will act as a key contact point between YEE and external stakeholders in regards to all matters pertaining to Green Finance. Additionally, during the first phase of the project the volunteer should search for existing projects or work on green finance carried out by other youth organisations with the purpose of increasing capacity on the project and building a coalition of youth organisations active on the topic.

The liaison officer’s main activity will be to provide desktop research to identify important financial actors involved in green finance, in order to monitor financial flows in relation to climate action and energy transitions, with a particular focus on tracking investment banks and their involvement in sustainable initiatives. In cooperation with the communications team, the Liaison Officer will provide regular updates which will be published on social media and on a dedicated page of YEE’s website.

In parallel, the Liaison Officer should keep track of the main policy discussions in the green finance sector and help YEE identify key stakeholders responsible for national, European and International level policy-making to identify where YEE can advocate for further youth involvement.

Finally, throughout the project, and based on the knowledge gathered, the Liaison Officer will create some educational content destined to be shared with YEE’s network as training material.

The main tasks will include

  • In cooperation with the communications team, build a webpage on YEE’s website dedicated to green finance content;
  • Identify meetings, networks and coalitions that currently allow for youth participation;
  • List key stakeholders in international organisations, NGOs and actors of the private sector that are involved in key green investment processes for coalition building; and help YEE advocate for greater youth inclusion in the sector.
  • Engage in desktop research on financial flows in regard to the climate and energy transition.
  • Help in content creation for our social media, such as drafting short posts throughout the project destined to educate our young audience on green finance;

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us:












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One step closer to Nature Restoration – but not yet there | #RestoreNature

One step closer to Nature Restoration – but not yet there | #RestoreNature

The recent positive vote for the Nature Restoration Law by the European Parliament sends a strong message on the obligation to restore nature. While the European Union is positioning itself as a global champion in this area, it's important to acknowledge that almost half of the political representatives did not support this initiative fully. Amendments that substantially weakened the law were adopted, which falls short of what science tells us is urgently needed.

Recently we celebrated the positive vote for the Nature Restoration Law by the European Parliament, which is sending a strong message: restoring nature is an obligation. The European Union has put itself on the path to being a champion and pioneer of nature restoration globally, living up to promises made to citizens and at the global negotiation table.

We thank all the MEPs that listened to our perspective, welcomed our recommendations and voted also for the next generations. We want to particularly show our appreciation towards the work and the words of Rapporteur César Luena, who publicly recognized the efforts made by youth in the advocacy for this law.

However, we cannot ignore that almost half of our political representatives refused to restore nature, cold-shouldered the youth and refused to guarantee us a liveable environment. The law is still far from what science tells us it is urgent to do.
We acknowledge with heavy hearts the adoption of amendments that substantially watered down the law. The amendments, especially those that delay targets and the initiation of actions, significantly shift the responsibility and efforts on us in the future. This is not fair from an intergenerational justice perspective, which the EU has agreed to respect as a guiding principle at COP15. In particular, refusal to accept the principle of non-deterioration means that we will continue to witness the degradation of our habitats, and so will our children and grandchildren.

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“While the unity and the strong, loud voices of young people ahead of the plenary vote on the Nature Restoration Law once again demonstrated the will and drive for positive change, the very close vote showed that this is not the case for a lot of MEPs deciding on policies that will determine the state of the ecosystems we depend on. This law is not only about Nature Restoration. It is about fighting for the continued existence of a liveable planet, which the law that was adopted on the 12th of July, does not do. This is why our work is not done and we will continue to fight for a law that is just - not only for us, but for the planet and generations to come.“

Sophia Ullrich, Liaison Officer on Biodiversity at Youth and Environment Europe

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“Heeding the calls of scientists, young people and environmental activists, a narrow majority of MEPs voted in favour of the Nature Restoration Law during the Plenary of the European Parliament, an outcome that was not guaranteed but one that we celebrate as young Europeans. However, the vote’s close margin of victory underscores the significant opposition still facing the Law. It has been compromised in the voting process and the resulting legal amendments the Parliament agreed upon severely weaken the effectiveness of the NRL in combating biodiversity loss and environmental degradation. We need a more ambitious Law to ensure a future where both people and planet can thrive! Our work is not done and we demand that the Commission, Council and Parliament pass a Law that is as strong as possible and does not put the burden of mitigating environmental damages and economic short-sightedness on future generations.“

Noah Stommel & Fenja Kroos, Project Leads on Nature Restoration at Generation Climate Europe

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european young rewilders logo no background

“The positive vote in the Parliament is a bittersweet success. It is great to see many MEPs that listened to science and young people and to see the EU sending out this message, but the journey is still long. However, laws or not, restoration activities and initiatives have been growing exponentially in the past years. And this will never stop: the restoration and rewilding movement is a snowball in a free fall down a slope, getting bigger and bigger. While politicians discuss in rooms, tons of people, of young people, are out there restoring and rewilding. This is the future. The law is not as ambitious as we wanted it? Then we will be ambitious, and we can be it now.”

Giulia Testa, Coordinator of European Young Rewilders

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“The vote in favour of nature was a crucial and most needed signal to the world.However, the narrow result, the disinformation campaign including blunt claims against all scientific evidence is very worrying for us. Let us hope, that during the Trialogue process some more common sense prevail and get something more ambitious than just restoring Nature 2000 areas. We all, and youth in particular, depend on a healthy environment - and we need to take the necessary steps to ensure them rather yesterday than tomorrow.”

Ronja Fischer, Co-Coordinator of Global Youth Biodiversity Network European Chapter

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“The NRL is the most crucial legislation for european biodiversity of my lifetime. For environmentalists in every part of society to finally have political will on the environments side should be a celebration. But seeing the Law being so close to get rejected and at the moment being so watered down from it's once clear agenda of saving our nature, is a new way politicians have made me disappointed. However, youth will continue our efforts to restore Europe's biodiversity, and we hope one day the elected few will follow the actual will of the people and join us truly in stopping the biodiversity crisis.”

Oliwer Schultz, Coordinator of the Nordic Youth Biodiversity Network (NYBN)

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“The Parliament's vote can be seen as a positive development, acknowledging the efforts made to secure a more promising future for all. The approval of the Nature Restoration Law reflects a significant stance by EU institutions in support of nature, despite the fact that recent negotiations have led to a dilution of its original objectives. Regrettably, at the national level, we, as GYBN Italy, hold the view that the situation is even more unfavorable, and Italian youth have experienced deep disappointment. Italy should ideally take a leading role in the preservation and restoration of biodiversity. However, to our dismay, nearly all Italian MEPs voted against this vital legislation. This decision by the current political power has effectively disregarded the expectations of young people on almost every level. As a result, bitterness lingers among the younger generations, as they feel unrepresented, signifying that our endeavors to conserve and restore nature will not come to an end with this setback.”

Mattia Lucertini, Coordinator of GYBN Italy

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"Even though negotiations for the Nature Restoration Law will see another day, the picture this whole process has painted is bleak, not only for Europe's nature and biodiversity, but for trust into political officials and democratic processes. Are we supposed to celebrate this small majority within Parliament that barely aknowledged science and the nature crisis?"

Julia Balasch, Coordinator of GYBN Austria

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Read the youth position on EU Nature Restoration Regulation.

The coalition of youth organizations whose representatives released the statements above that elaborated the youth position represents more than 20 million young Europeans.

Learn more about the #restorenature campaign

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Green Colonialism​ | Webinar

Green Colonialism

The large-scale deployment of solar and wind capacities, along with electric batteries, is particularly demanding in critical raw materials, most of which are currently imported.

Could this trend amount to a new form of colonialism?

Green Colonialism​

The large-scale deployment of solar and wind capacities, along with electric batteries, is particularly demanding in critical raw materials, most of which are currently imported.

Could this trend amount to a new form of colonialism?

Practical information

  • When

    Monday 3rd July at 17h CEST

  • Where

    Online

  • How

    Register your interest

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In the third webinar of the AmPower series we explore the notion of “Green Colonialism”! What is that all about?

With each new legislative package adopted in the framework of the European Green Deal, the target of renewable energy deployment has increased. The current pledge is at 42,5% of the European overall Energy mix by 2030. But the large-scale deployment of solar and wind capacities, along with electric batteries, is particularly demanding in critical raw materials, most of which are currently imported from 3rd countries.

Could this trend amount to a new form of colonialism? Is the European Commission tackling this issue head-on with its proposal for a raw critical material act?

Speakers

Stephanie RichaniStephanie Richani is the advocacy lead at Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice. Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice is a people of colour-led initiative working to advance rights and justice for all people in Europe. We work in solidarity with a coalition of racial and social justice leaders and organisations to influence European Union law and policy.

Emily Iona StewartEmily Iona Stewart has a background in European labour law. Emily first began working on environment and climate issues a decade ago as the chief policy advisor to the Vice Chair of the European Parliament’s Environment Committee.

She has specialised in European climate and sustainability policy, playing a decisive role in forming the EU’s Sustainability strategy, which eventually led to the European Green Deal. Working across political lines, Emily has also authored legislation on supply chains, biofuels, and land rights. 

Emily is the Climate Advocacy Specialist for the Open Society Foundations Just Transition pillar. In this role, she helps form OSF strategy on European climate policy, as well as maintaining and influencing networks within the European policy landscape.

 

Have questions? Get in touch!



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INC-2: a session for nothing?

INC-2: a session for nothing?

Why is it so difficult to reach an international treaty on plastic pollution?

Why is it so difficult to reach an international treaty on plastic pollution?

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A new phase of the international treaty to end plastic pollution negotiations took place in Paris, at UNESCO headquarters, from May 29 to June 2, 2023.

Plastic has become one of the most significant sources of water and soil pollution.

According to the latest OECD figures, 460 million tonnes of plastic waste are produced every year.  This figure has doubled since 2000 and is set to triple by 2060. 

Although several countries have taken measures to deal with plastic waste, such as the European Union with its Directive on single-use plastic in 2019, or Rwanda in 2008, which was the first country in the world to ban plastic bags, 75% of the plastic waste found in the oceans comes from poor waste management. Indeed, most countries do not have the infrastructure to manage their own plastic waste. 

Others, like Japan, export over 90% of their plastic waste to developing countries that have no means of recycling it. Plastic waste is at best burnt, at worst abandoned in the wild, creating huge open-air dumps. China produces 32% of the world’s plastic, a leap of 82% in ten years. What’s more, 10% of the world’s plastic is emitted by soda giants Coca and Pepsi

Finally, the treaty is also part of the drive to move away from fossil fuels, as plastic is a direct derivative of petroleum.

Why is it so difficult to reach an international treaty on plastic pollution?

The Fifth United Nations Environment Assembly adopted a landmark resolution in Nairobi, Kenya, in March 2022 with a view to negotiating a legally binding global treaty to combat plastic pollution by the end of 2024. It will be based on a comprehensive approach covering the entire life cycle of plastics. To achieve this, five working sessions are planned, the first of which was held in Uruguay in November 2022. This first session laid the groundwork for future discussions by identifying the expectations and ambitions of the main delegations, with France hosting the second negotiating session.

An urgent treaty, yet negotiated at a snail’s pace

The second negotiation session got off to a rocky start, with more than two days lost on protocol issues. A coalition led by Saudi Arabia, Brazil, China, and India clashed with the presidency over whether or not to resort to voting in the event of a lack of unanimity in the future consideration of a draft treaty. The resolution of the controversy was postponed.

Finally, after a week, the Committee decided that “The International Negotiating Committee [INC] requests its Chairman to prepare, with the assistance of the Secretariat, a draft first version of the legally binding international treaty“. The text will be examined in November at the third meeting of this committee in Nairobi, then in April 2024 in Canada, and in November 2024 in South Korea, with the aim of a definitive treaty by the end of 2024.

Non-governmental observers

The treaty process includes the possibility for non-governmental observers to attend almost all the negotiations. However, at the Paris session, due to the size of the room, only one person per NGO could be present. Despite a statement signed by many associations, the length of the negotiations did not allow many NGOs to make any comments. It is therefore very important to follow the treaty news on the United Nations Environment Programme page, and the CIEL page which is in charge of coordinating the youth NGO accredited to the treaty.

An urgent treaty, yet negotiated at a snail’s pace – that’s how we might sum up this second phase of negotiations. We can only hope that future negotiations in Nairobi will be more prolific. In particular, the 175 countries will have to agree on the definition of plastic waste and the potential creation of a fund to help developing countries manage this waste. 

And finally, there remains the thorny question of plastic waste already in the environment: who will be responsible for paying for its management?

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COP27 Reflections – Anna

Even the most optimistic environmentalists have been cautious about having expectations

Since Coca-Cola was first announced as COP27 main sponsor, even the most optimistic environmentalists have been cautious about having expectations of striking a good deal in terms of mitigation, even before setting foot in the venue to find out you were surrounded by 600+ fossil fuel lobbyists.

COP27 outcomes have left many, including myself, with mixed feelings. If mitigation was not going to be a success this year, one thing is sure: this negotiation was a big win for climate justice. Of course, striking the deal is only the first step, now it’s up to us, NGOs, activists, youth and civil society, to keep holding our leaders accountable and push for their commitments on loss and damage to be actually implemented in a fair and impactful way.

Also, I was positively surprised of noticing that the link between the climate and biodiversity crises, was acknowledged and widely discussed in the side events, and when it came to Nature-based Solutions, a very important partnership was announced; many side events and pavilions were also revolving around the climate action-ocean protection nexus. But then, I just didn’t see the connection between these discussions or “thematic days” and the actual negotiations/outcomes – so much so, that the cover decision doesn’t even mention the biodiversity COP which would be happening literally one month from then and will be such an important one.

But behind the chaos (and incredible noise!!!) of the Blue Zone Pavilions, COP can be a great source of inspiration for those who seek it. Being part of a great team of empowered young leaders, listening to people’s stories and hearing about the incredible projects they are carrying out, witnessing the level of mobilisation of the climate justice movement, feeling the energy and drive of all young people who could finally come together in a common, dedicated space… leads me to say that meaningful connections were the highlight of my personal experience at COP27.

As disappointing, mentally draining, and physically exhausting as COPs can be, being reminded that you are not alone in this and that you can do more and better in a bigger community, is a source of energy and motivation to move forward.

COP27 Reflections - Together for implementation?

The motto for this COP was “Together for Implementation” – but have we been able to pass it to action? And are the parties truly “together” in the face of the climate crisis?


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