An EUR representative sustainability at the UN: vote for Emma!

Erasmus School of Economics student Emma Clemens is nominated to be the youth representative sustainability at the United Nations. Why, she explains in this interview. In the meantime, don’t forget to vote. It can be done by anybody younger than 30, from 23 till 30 October, here.

What do you plan to do as a youth representative sustainability at the UN?
‘I would like to discuss sustainability issues with children at primary schools and high school students, since I want sustainability to be a much more important subject at schools. At this moment it’s not, while it should be: children are going to be confronted with huge climate problems when they grow up, and there are ways to deal with that. We should make clear how important these issues are, and how we can solve them. In economics at high schools for example you can talk about sustainability and a way to create more sustainable industries.’

How will this help?
‘We grow up with the wrong mindset, since from a young age on we learn to think in terms of economical profit. Instead, we should talk more about environmental profit, and make this an essential part of the student curriculum. People underestimate climate problems, but if we don’t act now, in twenty years we’ll be swimming instead of walking. It’s important young people are well informed and aware of this. And also that they have accessibility to solutions.’

Why are you the perfect candidate?
‘I grew up with sustainable awareness: as a child I was already worried. When I was seven years old, I wrote a letter to former prime minister Balkenende in which I told him I wanted to introduce carless Sundays in Holland. The letter I got back from him said that he was proud I cared about these issues. And now, during my studies, I organised together with the Economic Faculty Association Rotterdam a major event that was called ‘Transform Your World’. CEO’s of big companies came to the Erasmus School of Economics to talk about sustainability issues. It was great. We also developed the minor ‘Advancing new perspectives on economic thinking – sustainability transitions in Rotterdam’. I would like to offer fellow students the opportunity to really learn about sustainability.’

More information

‘Niet lullen maar fietsen’

Don't talk, but cycle. That's the slogan with which Emma and some like-minded will drive their bicycles from Rotterdam to The Hague Friday 27 October to talk to political leaders about sustainability.

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