On December 5, Peace Boat hosted an event at the MOANA Blue Pacific Pavilion at COP25 in Madrid. The event highlighted the testimonies of youth from Small Island Developing States on the frontlines of climate change, along with youth leaders from our nonprofit partners Global Kids and the Sustainable Ocean Alliance.
Emilie McGlone, Director of Peace Boat US, introduced the organization and some of the main programmes related to climate action and the oceans. “As we’re on the boat, we’re not just enjoying the journey, but we are actually learning. You can think of it as having a COP on the ocean, and we provide education onboard. In doing this, we invite guest educators who come on board and share their knowledge with us on climate change, oceans, sustainability, human rights and other important global issues,” said McGlone.
Youth leaders from both Global Kids and the Sustainable Ocean Alliance addressed attendees of COP25 in Madrid.
A core part of the event was dedicated to Peace Boat’s Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassadors programme, an initiative that brings together young people from Small Island Developing States as a platform to share their experiences as youth on the frontlines of climate change.
“I was honoured to join the programme with fellow young leaders from Barbados, Palau, Seychelles, Singapore and Timor-Leste,” said Ms Jiva. “Stepping out onto the deck once we reached open ocean was an incredible experience, because the beauty of the ocean is magical, but also incredibly terrifying. Because, if the current rate of climate change continues, the ocean may be the only thing left of the Pacific islands I call home,” she added.
“This is part of the message I took with me on this programme: that climate change is real, vulnerable communities are already facing devastating impacts, and we need a safe and just transition to renewable energy as soon as possible.”
Genevieve Jiva, Pacific Island Climate Action Network Coordinator and Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassador alumna, shared her experiences as part of the 3-week programme's 2018 cohort.
During the event, Peace Boat also introduced Ecoship, the organization's long-term commitment to ocean and climate action, and an example of innovation for sustainable ocean transportation.
"Ecoship is a transformative solution to protect the oceans, promote higher engagement and trigger creative actions through sustainable tourism and education. It will sail four times around the world yearly, visiting communities on the front line of climate change and ocean degradation, and provide a platform for partnership between civil society, the scientific community, the private sector and governments, including cities and regions", McGlone explained.
The ship will lead the way in sustainable maritime transport, mitigating climate-change-related impacts on the ocean, including ocean acidification, through a 40% CO2 reduction and a zero-emission target in ports.
Watch the full event here online:
Video link: https://vimeo.com/377540284
For more information on Ecoship visit: