AT A GLANCE
Climate change is a problem which does not stop on national borders and thus requires transnational solutions. The European Union showed itself ready to assume global leadership in tackling climate change, in facing the challenge of secure, sustainable and competitive energy production and in making European economy a model for sustainable development in the XXI century.
However, successful tackling of climate change needs an additional bottom up approach, involving young people, civil society organizations and local authorities.
The objective of the eCLAU project is, to raise the awareness of young people of the European Union’s action in the field of environment and hence, to bring the EU closer to the youth and improve their role within the democratic system of the EU in strengthening their participation. The inclusion of young people in the process of tackling climate change is of utmost importance for its success, as young people care about sustainable development and environmental protection. Thus, young people give the necessity for action a strong voice. Furthermore the eCLAU project wishes to build upon the youth’s strong capacities in IC technologies and to promote the use of them to broaden and deepen political participation.
The added value of the project consists of focusing on both of these potentials of young people and helping them via the provision of necessary information to make use of their potentials to become active citizens in fighting climate change.
Most of the young people are not aware of the policies of the European Union in the field of environment and of the central role it plays to face these challenges. The European Union on the other hand has difficulties to reach young people and ensure their active participation as young people feel closer to their local authorities than to the European Union.
The eCLAU project basis on this fact and fosters to reinforce the role of local authorities, civil society organiSations in the field of youth to promote European cooperation in the field of environment. Hence, the project focuses on civil servants of the various local authorities, local decision makers in the field of youth, members of association and nonprofit organizations, youth associations, academics and the general young public.
The central tool of the project will be the creation of a website, which provides information about the project, relevant information on climate change and according actions of the EU and serves above all at the promotion of e-participation. Hosting links to youth blogs, a forum for discussion, opinion polls, questionnaires the website will encourage young people to participate in discussions, networking activities and in local action and will thus strengthen their role in fighting climate change and in the political process on local level.
To ensure an active use of the website, the eCLAU project organises local workshops in each participating countries, to inform the invited experts of the above mentioned target groups about e-participation and the functioning of the eCLAU website.
With the publication of a magazine and diffusion campaigns on local level, the eCLAU projects fosters the dissemination of the results of the project and to inform a larger public about it.
These events are followed by an international meeting in Zaragoza which main aim is to analyze and spread the results of the project in the field of climate change and to provide room for reflection and debate among municipalities and participating associations to exchange opinions and flatten out differences. The international seminar will also give voice to the youngsters that have participated in the eCLAU project and elaborate a set of conclusions about the future of youth participation and IC technologies including new proposals in this field.