Thu. Feb 20th, 2020

Youth plea to candidates, make climate change a platform issue

As the 2020 election draws near, a group of young people in Palau is seeking an opportunity to be heard by leaders and candidates on how climate change impacts their lives and the need for climate solutions.

Alayna Alonzo, one of the Palauan kids of Heirs to Our Ocean said that climate change should be part of their platforms.

Alayna, 16, said although the world has taken notice of youth voices on climate change, it is still concerning that some adults still trivialize their demands for effective policies to combat climate change.

I feel like sometimes we are not listened to, cause we are young, people expect us not to know much, I feel like this time, it is crucial, for the youth especially to encourage others and educate, for the candidates, and educate them on climate change, and how as leaders they can contribute to solutions,” Alayna said.

The Palauan youth in 2019 took part in the global momentum of young people marching in the streets demanding climate action.

Like the other kids in other countries, the young Palauans are also demanding a better climate future.

Hisaye Nakamura said she would like candidates to talk more about their feelings about climate change and programs that will address climate change.

Hisaye said she has “aunts” that don’t even believe in climate change which is why it should be the top issue for the candidates.

Olilai Chilton for her part calls for a school curriculum that aims to educate children on climate change and the environment.

“I think that being educated on climate change, and the different human impacts that contribute to climate change is also important. It’s something they should do, so they are aware of what are the different contributions that add on to the climate change effects,” Olilai said.

She said although Palau might have had some environmental laws already in place, the older generation should always lead by example.

“What I think Palauan leaders should do to help mitigate the effects on Climate Change in Palau, is to do better policy work and enforcement,” she added. (B.Carreon)