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Press Release

GENEVA, 23 August 2019 - Marie-Claire Graf, a young Swiss activist who has launched the Sustainability Week Switzerland, the largest student action movement for sustainable development in the country, will be one of the 100 young climate champions selected from around the world by the UN to participate in the Youth Climate Summit, at UN Headquarters in New York on 21 September.

Marie-Claire started the climate strikes (Fridays For Future) in Switzerland after attending the COP24 in Katowice last December and meeting another youth activist Greta Thunberg. She is also the president of the Swiss Associations of Student Organizations for Sustainability.

The “Green Ticket” winners will join more than 500 young climate leaders from all parts of the world, selected to participate in the first-ever Youth Climate Summit. The Summit will provide a platform for young climate leaders to showcase their solutions on a global stage and engage directly with decision-makers on the defining issue of our time. Youth leaders will present the discussions of the Youth Climate Summit at the Climate Action Summit on Monday, 23 September.

The 100 ‘Green Ticket’ winners will receive funded travel as carbon-neutral as possible to New York to attend the Youth Climate Summit, after being selected from a group of over 7,000 applicants between the ages of 18 to 29, based on their demonstrated commitment to addressing the climate crisis and looking for solutions.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres congratulated Green Ticket recipients and all successful applicants in a video message, saying: “I appeal to young people around the world to follow the Summit online and to be drivers of climate action in their own countries.”

Young people who are unable to attend in person are encouraged to participate in the “My Future Our Planet” campaign by sharing a selfie video on Twitter or Instagram with the phrase “Youth #ClimateAction Summit”, declaring what actions they are already taking to fight climate change and asking their leaders to take immediate climate action. They can also get involved in local United Nations Association chapters; continue to make choices to have less harmful effects on the environment and track these efforts through the UN’s ActNow campaign; and tune into the Youth Climate Summit virtually via livestream on UN Web TV.

More ways to engage will be announced in the coming weeks on the UN Youth Climate Summit website.

The Youth Climate Summit will feature a full-day of programming that brings together young activists, innovators, entrepreneurs, and change-makers who are committed to combating climate change at the pace and scale necessary, as demonstrated by science. It will be action-oriented, intergenerational, and inclusive, with equitable representation of young leaders from all walks of life.
The Youth Climate Summit is a key milestone ahead of the Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit, which is calling on leaders from government, business and civil society to boost efforts to tackle climate change and comes just one day after the Global Climate Strike on 20 September.

“Young people are leading the way on climate action,” said the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, Jayathma Wickramanayake. “The Secretary-General’s Youth Climate Summit will provide a powerful global platform for young climate leaders from all over the world to take their rightful place and drive positive climate solutions”.

With the devastating impacts of the climate crisis being felt right now in all countries, the Secretary-General is convening leaders in New York to spark the transformation that is urgently needed to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement and deliver on the Global Goals. He has called for bold actions and concrete plans for carbon neutrality by 2050.

The announcement of the ‘Green Ticket’ call for applications took place in in Abu Dhabi in early July, where the Secretary-General convened over 1,700 people – including youth leaders and representatives from over 160 countries around the world.

More information on the UN Youth Climate Summit can be found here, and all the details on the Climate Action Summit are here. Follow @UNYouthEnvoy on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for the latest updates on the Youth Climate Summit. Follow @ledealba on Twitter for all the latest breaking news on the Climate Action Summit.

For more information, please contact UN Information Service in Geneva: and +41 22 917 23 25.

For use of the information media; not an official record