This post was compiled from a number of blogs from the international youth climate movement and edited by Casie Reed. It was originally published at sustainus.org/blog.

I have to say, I’m pretty disgusted with many of the developed countries speaking. They are  more than willing to talk about progress and how much they care – and then block text necessary for the survival of entire countries. Countries are essentially trying to decide if the most vulnerable countries are worth saving at this point. For some countries, such as Australia, Canada, Japan, and the US, Christmas bonuses for multi-millionaires and bailing large corporations out of debt seem to be more important.

As one minister from a small island put it this morning, we are talking about mass murder here. Mass murder of nations, peoples, and cultures. Again, as another minister put it, we are asking small island states to sign onto a suicide pact with the way negotiations are currently proceeding. I don’t know about you, but I’m going to put everything I have into reshaping the political landscape over the next year so that we leave no one behind in this process. Survival is non-negotiable.

Negotiations are moving slow here, which is bad. We have less than a year at this point to get an incredibly strong international climate agreement –

Youth Demonstrate in Support of the Survival of All Countries and Peoples

Youth Demonstrate in Support of the Survival of All Countries and Peoples

that is not a very long time. Especially with the level of ambition many developed countries have. But there is hope!

As negotiators hide behind technicalities and acronyms, youth are uniting around a strong shared vision for an equitable climate treaty. We need to make sure Poznan and the year leading up to Copenhagen are both successful. We need leadership and a commitment by parties to the survival of all countries and peoples.

Yesterday, international youth launched a new campaign – the Survival Campaign. The international youth delegation is asking all countries to commit to ‘safeguard the future of all countries and peoples’. Committing countries to negotiating based on this principle means they have to do more, faster. That would mean, for example, taking responsibility to prevent small island nations, sovereign under the UN process but weak politically and economically, from slipping beneath the waves.

This is especially important for developed countries who must reduce emissions at least 40% by 2020 compared to 1990, with an overall global goal of reducing CO2-e concentrations below 350ppm. Developed countries must also massively increase financial and technological support for both adaptation and mitigation to help achieve this global goal in an equitable manner. Young people have laid out a clear challenge to these countries: take immediate action to safeguard the survival of all countries and peoples.

To ensure the principle is formalized we are meeting with a number of countries and asking them to support our message. We are asking countries to support this text:

I, the undersigned, commit my delegation to a global climate treaty that: safeguards the survival of all countries and peoples.

Climate change threatens the very survival of island nations and other impacted communities.

Join international youth to ensure that a global climate treaty includes the principle of safeguarding the survival of all countries and peoples.

We need a successful outcome from Poznan. Reassure the world you are committed to a climate agreement that protects the most vulnerable among us.

Ninety countries (and counting!) have committed. We also printed out placards that read “Survival” on one side and “safeguards the future for all countries and peoples” on the other for delegates to have with them at their tables during the ministerial high level segment. Unfortunately the UNFCCC doesn’t allow delegates to have unapproved things on their tables, so security took some away.

Youth Demonstrate in Support of the Survival of All Countries and Peoples

Youth Demonstrate in Support of the Survival of All Countries and Peoples

Despite this, Uganda, Sweden, and Iceland placed the sign prominently in front of them during their speeches.  Solomon Islands, Venezuela, Djibouti, Madagascar, Maldives, Costa Rica, and Papa New Guinea also displayed their Solidarity placards next to their own, displaying solidarity in the commitment to the survival of all countries and peoples. While not all countries have signed on (countries like the US, for example), we have received incredible support from almost every delegation.

The youth movement here is absolutely inspirational. That’s the only way to describe it. We are  transcending our national boarders and working together for our common future. We are determined to remove the brackets that have been placed around our planet. We are uniting to safeguard the survival of all countries and peoples. We need all of your help. That means telling everybody we know about the issue and doing everything we can in terms of lifestyle, as well as political action, to stop catastrophic climate change.

If we wait any longer, it will be too late. Join us: www.350.org/survival

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