The Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) region is on the frontline of the climate crisis. Each year natural disasters push between 150,000 and 2.1 million people within the region into extreme poverty.
Despite disproportionately experiencing the adverse effects of climate change, communities within LAC and the wider Global South are consistently sidelined within climate discussions.
Greenhouse is proud to be supporting and sponsoring Unite for Climate Action, a group of young activists campaigning and crowdfunding to ensure LAC activists can go to COP26 and make their voices heard on a global stage.
In the second of a series of three interviews with Unite for Climate Action members, we spoke to Macius Djivenson, an activist from Haiti, on how the climate crisis affects them, why they joined Unite for Climate Action, and what they want to see from global leaders at COP26.
When did you become a climate activist?
I have been a climate activist for about 5 years. It started during my last two years in high school in Haiti. At that time, I co-founded and was part of several youth climate protection groups that would last until we went to university.
How have you been/how do you think you will be affected by the climate crisis?
The climate crisis remains undoubtedly a real scourge for us in Haiti. As a young Haitian, the climate crisis has been part of my daily life for many years, and like many young people in some other parts of the world, I continue to suffer the full force of climate hazards such as floods and droughts which, without a doubt, affect key sectors of national life and therefore impact the most vulnerable in the country. Therefore, the climate crisis affects me severely and it will continue to affect me because our authorities are only practicing procrastination while the pace of climate change continues to accelerate.
Why did you join Unite for Climate Action?
I joined U4CA in December 2020 as a result of the BB4CA (Building Bridges for Climate Action) project. This allowed me to meet and collaborate with climate activists from the Latin American and Caribbean region, as well as activists from the European continent. At the end of this project, I registered to U4CA which was already created by the young people participating in the BB4CA project. I decided to join because I share the values and interests of the team and I am happy to be able to continue with this team.
What will you do if you’re able to get to COP26?
If I am able to attend this 26th Conference of the Parties in Glasgow, I will be able to take part in the various civil society movements and mobilizations in Glasgow throughout COP26. Attending the parties’ discussions would also be a priority for me.
What is your message to global leaders at COP26?
My message to world leaders is very simple and clear: There is no time for climate procrastination. And it is not enough to simply announce ambitious targets for the reduction of GHG emissions. Drastic and concrete measures must be taken now if we are to avoid the worst for our generation and those of the future.
If you want to support Macius Djivenson and Unite for Climate Action in their mission you can donate to their Crowdfunder here and follow their journey to COP via the Unite for Climate Action social media channels.
Macius is also fundraising for a vital climate education project in Haiti, to learn more and donate to this project, please visit his GoFundMe.
To read more on social justice within the climate movement, check out our blog on Reclaiming Our Time, a grassroots campaign celebrating black environmentalists. For more on how the Global South is disproportionately suffering the effects of climate change, read our piece on how rich nations are failing to protect the Global South from Climate change.