The Green & Blue Economy

Culturally Relevant Climate Action

As the world stands at the midpoint on its journey towards achieving the global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), youth-led and grass-root coordination has never been more crucial in transforming these aspirations into concrete realities. In this collective global endeavor, the active involvement of young people at grass-root climate action level becomes even more pivotal.

The following action portfolios below are marine and terrestrial ecosystem-based solutions, all connected and dedicated to more synergized environmental conservation and the promotion of climate-smart community development. What sets them apart is their interconnectedness, not merely as isolated projects, but in terms of their underlying principles, practical implementation, and supply chain integration.

Action Portfolios

Eco-Tourism & Nature based Solutions

Green Thinkers Integrated Community Development Organization (C.S.O) – is youth-led civil society organization founded in 2010 in Kambata Sidama Region of Ethiopia that works on holistic environmental conservation and climate-smart community development. The organization was nominated this year by UNFCCC’s youth constituency (YOUNGO) as the official organizer of the Local Conference on Youth (LCOY) for Ethiopia, entrusting to engage, raise awareness and mobilize local youth voices from various part of Ethiopia feeding to the UNFCCC COP28 to be hosted in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E. 

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Emerging Tech & Data for Climate Action

Data Governance, Emerging technologies & Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Smart Development. This track will be a discussion about the state of data progress in Africa as it relates to informing and tracking sustainable development. It will involve assessment of the main challenges around data on the continent and how these affect achievement of Agenda 2063 goals and the SDGs. Beyond applications in industries, big tech and academia, how do we practically adopt emerging technologies that speak to the local realities of grass-root communities and youth-led initiatives?

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Aquaculture & Marine Conservation

Cultivating pathways for more easeful connection between the Caribbean and the African Continent is important to creating a  more peace global community.  Supporting people of the African Diaspora, the 6th Region of the African Union, develop meaningful relationships throughout the African continent is critical for achieving AU Agenda 2063 for the Africa that we want and achieving the UN 2030 Agenda on Sustainable Development.

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The formation of the Afro-Caribbean Network for Climate Action was one of the key outcomes from our convening during the Pan African Climate Justic Alliance (PACJA). This network was timely in bringing together the two regions i.e., Africa and the Caribbean. A culturally relevant climate action is at the core of this alliance. We realized that the challenges of environmental degradation are not just natural disasters, they are also societal and human in nature. Therefore, social sciences such as humanities, culture, heritage, philosophy, indigenous knowledge and wisdom have a huge part to play in bring people together for collective action.

Working Group

Assefa Lintiso

Founder & CEO, Green Thinkers Integrated Community Development (C.S.O) – Kambata, Ethiopia. Assefa coordinates remarkable biodiversity and integrated environmental protection and conservation projects in Mount Hambaricho (777), Kambata Sidama region of Ethiopia. His organization is selected as the focal organizer for the Local Conference of Youth (LCOY) for Ethiopia, along with other 107 LCOYs globally.

Abiy Shimelis

Abiy is a Community Builder and solutions advocate for Sustainable Development and Tech Governance. He is also the Projects Communication Lead at the Digital Center of Excellence operating under the Technology, Climate Change, and Natural Resources Division at the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). He is also the Campaign Lead for the Action4Peace2030 Forum & Initiatives – a Pan-African Campaign for Peace and Sustainability launched in December 2022 at the African Union HQ. 

Nikita Shiel-Rolle

Founder & CEO, Young Marine Explores (YME) & The Cat Island Conservation Institute (CICI) The Bahamas. Nikita is multi-faceted mermaid, an ocean conservationist and diving instructor who specializes in climate solutions. She is our Ambassador to the Caribbean region and its Small Island Developing States (SIDS). YME has also been instrumental in organizing the Regional Conference on Youth (RCOY) for the region.