The purpose of the event was to raise awareness on climate change and protection of the environment, and took the format of young speakers presenting their ideas and sharing their experience on climate issues and how to mobilise people to do more and help preserve the environment. Government representatives presented recent progress and further planned activities in the area. At the end of the event, all attendees participated in a joint action by committing themselves to make a small difference in their usual lifestyle in response to climate change.
"Protection of the environment and climate change are some of the main challenges we face today. Reduce waste, save energy, and limit CO2 emissions – these are the actions we all need to focus on if we want to limit the damaging effects that affect us all, whether in cities or rural areas. Events like this help to get this message out and I'm very happy to see the high interest and engagement of students today, look forward to working with you on making the change we need to see happen" noted Vincent Rey, Head of Cooperation of the European Union.
Levan Davitashvili, Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture in Georgia remarked: “The climate change is an emerging issue for the countries worldwide and Georgia is among them. It’s time to be more active and take specific commitments. Georgia is part of all international initiatives to mitigate climate change impacts. The forest and its ecosystem pay key mitigating role in response to climate. We have already made significant steps towards it, however more needs to be done. Therefore, we hope to get relevant support from donors and international organizations.”
“Climate change is affecting every country on every continent including Georgia. The engagement of youth and educational institutions to increase the awareness about the climate change is of key importance. The public forum is a new platform offering good opportunity to share ideas and knowledge among youth, field professionals and the government on how to foster the engagement of citizens, particularly youth in actions in response to climate change. I would like to thank the EU for this initiative and believe that through the joint efforts, we will make a difference on climate today”, noted Kakha Shengelia, CEO and President of the Caucasus University.
Maia Bitadze, Deputy Mayor of Tbilisi declared: “The Tbilisi City Hall pays great attention to the implementation of climate change related activities. On the national level, we are actively involved in development climate change policy and have started working on the municipal strategy and action plan on climate change in line with national framework”
The EU is in the frontline of the international efforts to fight climate change and has helped building a broad coalition of countries to push forward joint climate actions. The EU was a key player in developing both the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Kyoto Protocol, and most recently the Paris Agreement on climate change.
The EU, its Member States and the EU Bank the European Investment Bank are the biggest contributors in providing public climate funding to countries in transition. The EU is an active supporter of Georgia in meeting its targets in the area of climate change and supports numerous correlated activities to better protect Georgian environment and the health of Georgian citizens.
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