In the end of August 2022, EcoNusa organized a School of Eco Diplomacy (SED) activity for the 35 shortlisted youngsters across from Indonesia. The goings-on here is deemed the EcoNusa’s effort to build the youth capacity so as to be a leading generation in promoting, conserving, and defending the diversity of culture and natural resources in Indonesia, particularly in Tanah Papua and Maluku Island.
SED has become a nouvel model to encompass and organize both rural and urban young people nationwide to be connected in one spirit, namely to save environment that has been neglected for a long time. In my opinion, both urban and rural youths should nurture their concerns and empathy when forests have been degraded, climate has been unpredictable, and climate disaster happened everywhere.
I have confidence that SED will serve as the entry point to build critical awareness on ecological crisis, including climate, among young people. Such awareness will trigger a follow-up action plan as part of the solutions of the ongoing conundrums.
Read Also: Future Young Leader Not Impossibility
These youngsters are equipped with various knowledge and skills from some resource persons such as green activists, practitioners, and other notable figures. One of them was Abetnego Tarigan from the Executive Office of the President of the Republic of Indonesia. He gave reminders that youth has adaptability to the happening change. By doing so, youth has agility and guts to take risk of their decision making. Youth should also have the capacity and preparedness in response to any shock that happen anytime due to the rapid advancement of technology.
Unfortunately, there are still many who fail to believe that climate crisis is happening today. Some others have not realized that it is very serious problem. In such a situation, youngsters should play their roles to give knowledge and call to public to perform real actions.
I quote the words addressed by Dino Patti Djalal, the former Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Ambassador to the United States of America, who gave insights and motivation to the SED participants. These youngsters are expectedly to transform their surrounding world wholeheartedly. In the context of climate change mitigation, youngsters should know how to achieve it so that SED program gives benefit to youth, public, and various communities in Indonesia. Youth is expected to perform green diplomacy by utilizing digital technology so the green diplomacy is not restricted by space and time.
Youth is trained to be green diplomat who could negotiate all parties’ interests to protect and save ecology. The attempt could be done through public diplomacy when they articulate or observe critically public policies. Youth could perform public diplomacy by sharing knowledge, skills, and activities among the community. It is also important to note that the Z and Millennial Generations should also have the capacity to perform digital diplomacy by technology advancement to campaign ecological issues to the wider public.
I really hope that young people could pose themselves as the environmental or green diplomat. Let alone, this is the warming political year gearing the upcoming 2024 general election. It becomes a strategic momentum to build diplomacy by voting future leaders who have concerns and commitments to environmental protection. It is no longer leader who is merely oriented for economic growth by exploitation of natural resources without putting environmental sustainability and conservation into their serious considerations.
SED is deemed a start of a long process. Young people will become an initiator, motivator, as well as facilitator of youth movement that could begin from their smallest surroundings. In my opinion, the future of Indonesia requires the role of green diplomats for a better future.