Government Policy

Climate action priority for UK, says acting British High Commissioner

Acting British High Commissioner to Bangladesh Javed Patel has said it is extremely important that young people are empowered to be key stakeholders in driving local, national, regional, and global change.

“Climate action is a priority for the UK and I am glad that we supported this year’s National Earth Olympiad, helping to establish the next generation of climate stewards in Bangladesh,” he said congratulating the students on their success.

The acting high commissioner hosted a reception on Saturday to recognise the finalists of the Bangladesh National Earth Olympiad 2022.

Of the 35 participants selected for special awards, five will be going on to represent Bangladesh at the International Earth Science Olympiad which takes place from 24-30 August.

“I am inspired by the young people here today, and confident that their drive and commitment to combatting the climate crisis will help them to do just that,” Patel said.

Climate action priority for UK, says acting British High Commissioner

The National Earth Olympiad is an education and knowledge movement that aims to increase environmental science education across Bangladesh, and has been organised by Bangladesh Youth Environment Initiative every year since 2012.

This year, the Olympiad was supported by the British High Commission in Dhaka, through the UK government’s roles as Commonwealth Chair-in-Office and host of COP26.

Between March and April the Olympiad reached thousands of young people across Bangladesh, and provided in-depth training to 250 young leaders on biodiversity, planetary boundaries, climate justice and environmental conservation. Bangladeshi young people aged between 14 and 18 were eligible to participate.

Professor Dr Kazi Matin Uddin Ahmed, Convener of the National Earth Olympiad in Bangladesh and one of the faculty members of the Department of Geology in the University of Dhaka, said the competition has played a critical role in engaging students in understanding the urgency of the climate and environmental crisis.

“I strongly believe that the collective action that we need to solve this climate crisis will require scientists, scholars and practitioners who can guide policy action and technological innovation. The National Earth Olympiad is an important catalyser in this process,” he said.

Founder of the Bangladesh Youth Environment Initiative, and winner of the Queen’s Young Leaders Award for 2015, Shamir Shehab, said, “Against a backdrop of looming environmental, ecological and climate crises for Bangladesh and the world at large today, Bangladesh Youth Environment Initiative is striving to develop the next generation of stewards to tackle this planetary crisis.”

He said Bangladesh Youth Environment Initiative will continue its journey to educate and empower more young people to take climate actions with a focus on the grassroots level in the coming years to ensure equity and justice for the most marginalized and vulnerable to the impacts of climate change.

Source: United News of Bangladesh