What is ACE ?
Moving towards decarbonization presents a paradigmatic shift in our economy, society, and way of life. We need to ensure that we have the capacity for that change and that we do so in a just, equitable way. We must enable mitigation efforts, but also to adapt to the inevitable effects many communities are already encountering due to climate change.
Education, training, and capacity building are in so many ways the foundation for our transition, but are consistently underrated.
By effectively educating young people, we can accelerate the push for change – in policy, engineering, economics, art, and every aspect of society – and ensure that the rising generation thrives in the world we hope to create. But climate change education cannot only focus on the young. It is also a necessary component of a just transition for adult workers, especially those in fossil fuel related industries. They should not be marginalized, but instead deserve access to education and training for green jobs.
We need to ensure that young people, workers, and affected communities are given the tools for success, as well as provide them with a seat at the table to enable a better and more representative conversation about the changes we must make in our society.
At the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, the United Nations Framework Convention and Climate Changes was established. Within this convention the principle of Action for Climate Empowerment was included under the Article 6. This article highlights the 6 topics : Education, public access to information, public awareness, public participation, public training and international cooperation.
During COP21 in 2015, ACE was included under the article 12 of the Paris Agreement and relies on the 6 topics previously mentioned. At COP22, the UNFCCC Secretariat released the ACE guidelines.
YOUNGO’s work on ACE
Marrakesh – COP22 (2016)
ACE working group during COP22 in Marrakesh
YOUNGO conducted an analysis on the incorporation of Action for Climate Empowerment (ACE), as described in Article 6 of the Convention and reiterated in Article 12 of the Paris Agreement, in the NDCs released by the Parties.
ACE is integral to accelerating a just climate transition– a transition that equitably prepares and works alongside young people, workers, and society to shift towards decarbonization. Yet, the majority of Parties fail to include any language on Youth or ACE. Only 32 percent of Parties included any mention of ACE; 18 percent Youth; 12 percent both Youth and ACE in their NDCs.
Considering this lack of focus, local COYs, COY12, party delegations, and YOUNGO collaborated to identify major boundaries in the acknowledgement and accomplishment of ACE, as well as steps to overcome those boundaries.
During COP22, YOUNGOs thus met several party delegation to adress these questions and organized workshops. On Education day (11/14/2016), they released a policy paper providing recommendations moving forward for all parties to the UNFCCC to actively educate, train, and empower society to take climate action at both the national and international level. Find it here.
ACE workshop during COP22 in Marrakesh
ACE working group meeting the Guinea focal point