The Pulse 7/21/22: Building Coalitions in the Youth Climate Movement 🌎
In the wake of the collapse of meaningful climate legislation in the US as a result of a dysfunctional political system (followed immediately by a record-smashing heat wave in Europe), the impulse to throw up your hands and give up hope is all too real. It is no secret that our “planetary health” is headed in a disastrous direction, and to pretend otherwise is to bury your head in the sand. While climate change is ravaging communities worldwide, leaders with the power to slow the slide towards catastrophe are not those who will experience the worst effects. It is young people who are inheriting a planet deeply scarred by older generations’ poor decisions and inaction. Given these realities, the movements being led by the next generation of leaders are nothing short of awe-inspiring. With their futures on the line, youth activists are rising up worldwide, displaying the type of vision, leadership and clear-eyed assessment of priorities that we should all be aspiring to achieve.
This week, join us in learning from three transformational young climate activists — Alexandria Villaseñor, Kevin Patel, and Nalleli Cobo — who exemplify how youth the world over are taking a stand to create a desirable future.
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Working Together: Building Coalitions of Power in the Global Youth Climate Movement
Building authentic power in order to achieve success in global youth climate movements will require enhancing international solidarity, communication, and organizing capacity. Building relationships with allied groups and organizations is the key to making genuine, lasting change. An international youth organizer since the age of 13, Alexandria Villaseñor shares the unique ways in which a multicultural, geographically distributed youth movement is building trust, negotiating compromises, distributing decision-making and centering the stories, experiences and leadership of those most impacted in each action and campaign. From grassroots movements to national organizations, Alexandria shows us how youth intend to win the climate fight by working together.
Youth-Led Intersectional Environmentalism: Today, not Tomorrow
Kevin Patel, a 21-year old LA-based Climate Justice activist extraordinaire who passionately demands that youth be listened to right now, not marginalized as “leaders of tomorrow,” recounts his own health challenges growing up in heavily polluted South Central Los Angeles and insists that climate action and ending racial and class disparities have to be inseparably linked in our movements.
Youth Activism on the Frontlines of Urban Oil Drilling
After growing up across from an oil drilling site in Los Angeles, Nalleli Cobo and her many neighbors suffered from a wide range of illnesses including heart palpitations, headaches, and nosebleeds. Her firsthand experience of the effects of oil drilling led Nalleli, still only a child, to lead a campaign against the site. She has since become an internationally renowned, award-winning Environmental Justice activist. She shares the story of her trajectory and challenges, the importance of the ongoing struggles in which she’s engaged, the very high price she and many people in disenfranchised communities continue to pay, and how local struggles relate to the larger global fight for climate justice.
More Youth Activism from Bioneers.org
- Mishka Banuri: A First Generation Immigrant’s Perspective on Youth Climate Justice
- 9 Inspiring Bioneers Youth Leaders Share Their Knowledge
- Building An Intersectional Climate Justice Movement | Alexia Leclercq
- Alexandria Gordon – The Power of Young People
- Our Power: Exemplary Young Activists—the 2021 Brower Youth Awards Winners
- How Equity in Education Can Foster Youth-Led Climate Advocacy
NOW AVAILABLE! Nature, Culture & the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership, 2nd Ed.
We are excited to announce that the second edition of Nina Simons’ book, Nature, Culture & the Sacred: A Woman Listens for Leadership, is now on sale! Nature, Culture & the Sacred offers practical guidance and inspiration for anyone who aspires to grow into their own unique form of leadership on behalf of positive change. Join Nina on an inspiring journey to shed self-limiting beliefs, lead from the heart and discover beloved community as you cultivate your own flourishing and liberation.