Report from Ocean Youth Summit 2018
Hi, I’m Don Crowley, an 18-year old-student in Newpark Comprehensive school in Blackrock. From the age of 13 I have been very involved in the Green-Schools programme and I have a strong interest in taking action against all issues our planet is facing.
In the middle of Summer 2018 I got an email from my Water Ambassadorship mentor, Ruth, about applying to a youth summit about helping our oceans so I applied and was immensely lucky to get in! And even luckier to secure funding through An Taisce Green-Schools from Minister Creed from the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government to be able to go!
From the 29-30 of October I had the once in a lifetime opportunity of being able to attend the Sustainable Ocean Alliance international youth leader summit; this is the event to be at if you are interested in helping our oceans heal from the centuries of torment we have put them through. The summit is comprised of 200 youth leaders from around the world (this year it was held in Bali so 100 of the youth leaders were from Indonesia) from the ages 18-35 and it is focused on networking and educating us on the current issues plaguing our ocean.
The theme for this years’ summit was “Our Ocean, Our Legacy” which I think is fitting as even though our generation didn’t cause these issues it is our responsibility to take action and stop accepting anything but action and results.
Throughout the event I met the most amazing inspirational people (which makes sense as they were cherry-picked from around the world!) and I took part in really stimulating conversations.
During the summit we had fascinating talks from world leaders like the UN Special Envoy for the Ocean Peter Thompson, where he brought to light the problems our ocean is facing like the 400 dead spots in the ocean where there is absolutely no life, and how every second breath we take is from the ocean. He states that now is the “era for ocean action” and how we have a choice as a consumer and a voter to lead to more conservation and sustainable use of the ocean.