Basque Youth proposes, on Europe Day, daily gestures on energy consumption, transport, food, recycling and digitization
- The Euskadi Youth Council delivers a Declaration to Ministers Mrs Arantxa Tapia and Mrs Beatriz Artolazabal that prioritizes "changing consumption habits" and "empowering oneself as agents of social transformation in the immediate environment"
- Today in the Salburua wetland (Vitoria-Gasteiz) and tomorrow in Azkuna Zentroa (Bilbao) Europe Day is celebrated, in the European Year of Youth
VITORIA GASTEIZ 2022 05 08
A group of young people from EGK-Euskadi Youth Council presented this morning, at the Salburua Wetland Interpretation Centre in Vitoria-Gasteiz, the document called "Basque youth commitments for a more sustainable Euskadi" detailing the positioning that young people in favour of sustainability and the environment.
The event, chaired by the Ministers of Economic Development, Sustainability and the Environment, Arantxa Tapia, and of Equality, Justice and Social Policies, Beatriz Artolazabal, culminates, together with the debate that will take place tomorrow, Monday at the Azkuna Centre in Bilbao, a process participatory initiative. It´s promoted by Ihobe, the Basque Government's Environmental Management Public Society, in collaboration with the Euskadi Youth Council. In which the group of young participants expressed the "need to change their consumption habits and empower themselves as agents of social transformation” in their close environment of family and friends.
The initiative is developed to coincide with the celebration of Europe Day, in the European Year of Youth, to enhance the role of young people in building a ecological, inclusive and digital future for the Basque Country and Europe.
The latest citizen perception studies carried out by the Basque Government show that citizens are highly aware of sustainability and the climate emergency: more than half of the Basque population, especially young people, express a feeling of helplessness in the face of climate change phenomenon of climate change, a challenge that they put before any other policy.
During the presentation, held at the Ataria/Salburua Interpretation Centre in the Basque Country capital, Ministers Tapia and Artolazabal listened to the Declaration, analysis and conclusions reached by the youth work groups. Basque youth propose to the administrations "the design of instruments that encourage and facilitate sustainable youth behaviour, while, in the case of companies, it focuses on promoting efficient and local production."
The participants have highlighted their potential as transforming agents and point to their creativity, adaptability and permeability to change as tools with the potential to carry out the transition of society towards more sustainable parameters.
On the other hand, they recognize the efforts of the Basque Country and its institutions in terms of sustainable development and climate change and ask public administrations "to promote their communication, awareness and education work to raise global awareness among all citizens and, in particular, to young people."
Mrs. Arantxa Tapia highlighted that “the European Green Deal proposed by the European Union is emerging as one of the main mechanisms to promote a way out of the crisis and achieve a more sustainable future”. In the Minister's opinion, “it is a sustainable growth strategy that will enable us to achieve climate neutrality in 2050”. Minister (Sailburu in basque language) Arantxa Tapia has highlighted that Euskadi has drawn up its own strategy: Euskadiko Itun Berdea.
For Tapia, it´s important that Basque society and youth know the main axes of this economic and environmental roadmap “a challenge that we know society shares”. She stated, “as a whole, the institutions and citizens participate actively in action for climate change, although we need greater acceleration and intensity in all public policies and in individual actions, each action, no matter how small, It is important".
The Minister Beatriz Artolazabal has indicated that "as a woman, I especially highlight the role of our young women: you are essential in the social change we are experiencing, in intergenerational collaboration, as well as in the fight against climate change and the commitment to sustainability that Europe leads in the whole planet”.
Mrs. Beatriz Artolazabal has commented that, “in the Basque Country we have the role of youth in all management areas of the Basque Government. We have just approved a new Youth Law; we launch new Youth Strategies in our autonomic semester before the Council of the EU/Youth. We dedicate special attention to the spaces shared between youth and the elderly and we promote social policies in which youth always reflected. We promote youth debates. We promote proposals to the need for emancipation; and we increased actions in the Euro region (Nouvelle Aquitaine, Navarra and Basque Country) and in our Pyrenean regional area related to youth”
Basque youth commitments
The document presented today establishes a series of concrete commitments where young people prioritize three principal objectives. The first of which is "the need to progressively change habits to reduce their ecological footprint in order to move towards a more sustainable horizon through the responsible use of heating and light; the commitment to public transport and zero km food consumption, waste recycling or greater use of digital technologies to avoid the consumption of new natural resources”.
The second challenge for Basque Youth consists of "using their potential to raise awareness, educate and prescribe among their friends and family, thus highlighting their role in the processes of social validation and identity of belonging as socialization mechanisms that can be used from the point of view of sustainability”.
As a third, young people consider that they must "reinforce their environmental pressure and demand work before companies and public administrations through their own empowerment, both from the political point of view and from their role as consumers, with the aim of transferring a clear demand for the environment to be a priority”.
The Basque Youth Council (EGK), as a collective representation entity, also expresses a “solid commitment to promoting a sustainable and coordinated agenda between the different associations that make it up. Thus, the document establishes the creation of a permanent working group within the Council itself to give continuity to this process and integrate the young and sustainable perspective in the different regulations and plans that will be promoted in the future by the institutions of Euskadi”. In the same way, the Basque Youth Council offers itself as a reference interlocutor before the Basque public administrations to establish a continuous channel of contrast and contributions.
The Declaration establishes a series of projects that young people demand from the administration in the short and medium term. Among these initiatives the training and awareness strategy called the "Anti-rumours Environmental Program" to counteract and combat false myths about climate change and sustainable Development.
On the other hand, it proposes the promotion of the 'Erronka Garbia-Sustainable Event' initiative based on the methodology developed by the Ihobe Environmental Management Public Society, which certifies events that have carried out a procedure that reduces negative impacts on the environment during its development. The proposal seeks the promotion of this environmental certification in events aimed at young audiences.
Finally, the participating young people request the creation of recognition programs, promotion of sustainable initiatives and the creation of an environmental-themed video contest in order to denounce environmental situations or convey the importance of caring for our environment.
In the act, in addition to reading the Declaration, the young people planted a sampling of oak. The Vice-Minister for Environmental Sustainability, Mrs Amaia Barredo; the director of Youth, Mrs Agurtzane Llano; and Ihobe director Mr Alex Boto.