According to Aoife Fleming, chair and co-founder of World's Youth for Climate Justice, there is a clear correlation between environmental protection and peace or, in other words, there is a link between global warming and the causes of conflict:
World's Youth for Climate Justice is the global sister organization of the Pacific Islands Students Fighting Climate Change (PISFCC), founded in 2019 by 27 law students, to raise awareness for the rising sea level and the threat to Pacific Islands like Vanuatu. The youth movement is known worldwide for promoting the request for an advisory opinion from the International Court of Justice (ICJ) regarding states' obligations in respect of climate change.
United Nations General Assembly
On 29 March 2023, the United Nations General Assembly adopted this historic resolution requesting an ICJ advisory opinion on climate justice. Applications for the Youth Carnegie Peace prize were received from all over the world and the jury was impressed by the commitment of young peacebuilders.
After reviewing all the video submissions, the World's Youth for Climate Justice was selected as the winner of the 2023 Youth Prize. The jury explains: "This youth movement is a very good example of how young people can cooperate internationally and make a difference. That the work of these young peacebuilders is not blind activism, but well thought out actions and strategies based on international law is shown in their publications such as the "Youth Climate Justice Handbook", which presents legal arguments to help parties make submissions to the ICJ, and to make sure that young people's voices are taken into account during the hearings.
World's Youth for Climate Justice conducts in-depth research, creates awareness and lobbies for actions. The members of this youth organization are role models and we hope that their courage and confidence will inspire young people around the world.
Youth Carnegie Peace Prize
The Carnegie Foundation, owner and manager of the Peace Palace, and the Youth Peace Initiative award the Youth Carnegie Peace Prize every two years in order to garner best practices from young individuals or youth-led organizations and to put them in the spotlight. The prize recognizes the work of young peacebuilders and aims to encourage others to start their own projects. In 2021, Rhea Mahanta and her Peacebuilding Project from India won the Youth Carnegie Peace Prize.
The Youth Carnegie Peace Prize will officially be awarded to the World's Youth for Climate Justice on Thursday 7 December 2023. The award ceremony will take place in the Great Hall of Justice of the Peace Palace and can be watched live online. More information about the program can be found on the Peace Palace's website.