Yoof climate conference in Sydney - it's all about "social change"
THEY are the new generation of climate warriors. They are smart, politically savvy, idealistic, apparently indefatigable and very young. They have more technology in their mobiles and laptops than NASA had when it sent men to the moon, and they are "beginning to use them for tools, not toys", as one campaigner said.
For the next three days they will be at Power Shift, the Australian Youth Climate Coalition's first major summit.
About 1500 Australians aged 16 to 26 are descending on the University of Western Sydney to learn about organising and to hear speeches from Tim Flannery, senators Nick Xenophon and Christine Milne, the NSW Premier, Nathan Rees, and via video link from Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the United Nations panel on climate change, and the former US vice-president Al Gore, who is training an older generation of climate change campaigners in Melbourne this weekend.
Here's an extract from the web site:
Conference attendees will learn the best practices of climate organising, including campaign and event planning, recruitment, media liaison, public speaking, lobbying, leadership development, coalition-building, campaign strategy and community and campus organising. (source)
What's the very important thing missing from all this? Any discussion of the actual science of climate change. In fact, "science" just one tiny session out of nearly 60, but there are the following sessions (I'm not making these up):
- Graphic design and climate change
- Media training
- Gender and climate change [useful one that - Ed]
- Climate change & Hip Hop workshop [seriously]
This workshop will ask participants to explore an issue around climate change using hip hop. The hip hop debate combines traditional debating with the MC Battle and is an interesting and challenging platform for exploring different sides of an issue. The young ‘Eco Ninjas’ crew from Alstonville High School will be performing their hip hop debate piece at Powershift and will also be assisting with facilitating the workshop. (source)
They're not interested in boring old stuff like science, of course - hey, the debate's over, you denier you. What they are interested in is something quite different, as this session indicates:
Civil disobedience - It’s Role in the Movement
Non violent direct action has played a crucial role in creating social change throughout history. This session will reflect on the history and discuss the future of non-violent direct action in the climate movement.
In other words, non-democratic means to force "social change". This conference has little if anything to do with averting climate change, just imposing "social change" through the back door of environmentalism. It stinks.
Read it here ("Sick Bag Required" Alert - you have been warned...!)