More than twenty motivated high school students came together in Seoul for a two day seminar in which they engaged in an in-depth discussion about the response to climate change and the impact of energy issues on the environment. Kyung Hee Cyber University and the Asia Institute, with the support of the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat (TCS) of China, Japan, and South Korea, Future Forest (an NGO dedicated to stopping the spread of deserts) and the Center for Women in Science, Engineering and Technology (WISET) teamed up to offer the next generation a chance to present their own solutions.
Last weekend students gathered at Kyung Hee Cyber University’s Aca-Peace Hall to wrestle with some of the most difficult issues of the response to climate change.
The 1st annual East Asia Youth Leadership Forum, held December 20-21, 2014, challenged the students to take a global perspective on environmental issues and to propose creative and readily implementable solutions.
Students broke up into teams that considered the spread of deserts in Northeast China, the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the marine ecosystem of Jeju Island, and air pollution in Shanghai.
The students presented concrete solutions in which they identified the central challenges and made concrete proposals that took into consideration the local political and social context as well as the specific benefits that their proposal offered.
The winning student presentation suggested a new approach to coordinating between NGOs, businesses, and government to combat the expanding deserts in China through the establishment of a global umbrella NGO to coordinate efforts, while also providing education to local populations.
The event opened with an address by Emanuel Pastreich, director of the Asia Institute, and by Kwon Byonghyon, former Korean ambassador to China. Professor Yign Noh of Yonsei University spoke about climate change and human civilization, and Mr. Yongjae Kim of the Trilateral Cooperation Secretariat described the efforts of the three nations to address environmental issues.