COP21’s Youth and Future Gen Day focuses on new energy, ideas for solving climate change

Le Bourget, PARIS — What the next generation can do to cool a warming planet was the focus of today’s “Youth and Future Generations” day at the COP21 climate change summit in Paris.

Students from France's Maison de Vigiliance and the U.K.'s Trident Ploughshares use a ceremonial dragon head to campaign at COP21 against the development of nuclear weapons that take money away from efforts to prevent global warming. Photo by Adam Handoko.

Students from France’s Maison de Vigiliance and the U.K.’s Trident Ploughshares use a ceremonial dragon head to campaign at COP21 against the development of nuclear weapons that take money away from efforts to prevent global warming. Photo by Adam Handoko.

Dragon parades, bicycle-powered battery charging stations and art masks for climate change were only three of the dozens of activities underway at the Le Bourget conference center.

Approximately 30 protesters from “Kick Polluters Out” staged an “action” Thursday morning to advocate for new solutions to old problems, including chanting and holding up signs.

“The solutions have to come from the people, not from the big corporations, so kick the polluters out of the COP21,” said Adam Greenberg, 26, one of the protest organizers.

“My interest came from a program I did in Sweden, called Summer Soil,” said Kailea Frederick, a member of the Hawaii youth delegation and the International Youth Initiative Program, which is based in Sweden. “That got me into all of these different interests, and how earth systems are related and changing.

“My passion is young people,” said Frederick, 24. “I’m always interested in how I can engage people my age and younger in my community.”

—Reporting and photos by GSS correspondents Leander Ganzert, Adam Handoko, Audrey Sparks and Melati Wijsen of Green School in Bali, Indonesia.