I am afraid to go out in the sun now because of the holes in our ozone. And now we hear about animals and plants going extinct every day — vanishing forever. You grown-ups say you love us. Twenty years have passed, and everybody wants to know what have we done, how have we progressed. As the summit gets set to return to Rio next month, she is reflecting on the moment that changed her life forever. But I challenge you, please, make your actions reflect your words.
In my anger, I am not blind, and in my fear, I am not afraid to tell the world how I feel. In 1992, delegates from around the world gathered in Rio de Janeiro, for the first United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, also known as Earth Summit. In my life, I have dreamt of seeing the great herds of wild animals, jungles and rain forests full of birds and butterflies, but now I wonder if they will even exist for my children to see. But this time it will be human-caused, and it will be orders of magnitude faster than the thousand-year transition that happened last time. I am afraid to go out in the sun now because of the holes in the ozone. I am fighting for my future. All this is happening before our eyes and yet we act as if we have all the time we want and all the solutions.
As we wrap up, Severn, can you talk about the effects of climate change? Can you talk about what has happened in the intervening 20 years? In -- In my anger, I'm not blind; and in my fear, I'm not afraid of telling the world how I feel. Coming up here today, I have no hidden agenda. I used to go fishing in Vancouver with my dad, until just a few years ago, we found the fish full of cancers. And yet, northern countries will not share with the needy. Severn Cullis-Suzuki says she'll make sure her voice is heard.
You grown-ups say you love us, but I challenge you. The estimates that 40% of all organisms on the planet are now facing the risk of extinction. The goal was reached when 12 yr old Severn closed a Plenary Session with a powerful speech that received a standing ovation. At school even in kindergarten, you teach us how to behave in the world. I am afraid to go out in the sun now because of the holes in the ozone. In my country we make so much waste, we buy and throw away, buy and throw away, buy and throw away and yet Northern countries will not share with the needy. I used to go fishing in Vancouver, my home, with my Dad until just a few years ago we found the fish full of cancers.
Along with group members Michelle Quigg, Vanessa Suttie, and Morgan Geisler, Cullis-Suzuki presented environmental issues from a youth perspective at the summit, where she was applauded for a speech to the delegates. Then why do you go out and do the things you tell us not to do? If you don't know how to fix it, please stop breaking it! Even when we have more than enough we are afraid to share; we are afraid to let go of some of our wealth. In Canada, we live the privileged life, with plenty of food, water and shelter — we have watches, bicycles, computers and television sets. All this is happening before our eyes, and yet we act as if we have all the time we want and all the solutions. We are a group of twelve- and thirteen-year olds trying to make a difference: Vanessa Suttie, Morgan Geisler, Michelle Quigg and me. Did you have to worry of these things when you were my age? And finally, we heard about the Earth Summit, after a few years of this, and decided we wanted to go.
But I challenge you, please, make your actions reflect your words. We welcome you to Democracy Now! Do not forget why you are attending these conferences -- who you're doing this for. At just 12 years old, Severn Cullis-Suzuki gained international attention when she delivered her famous speech at the Rio Earth Summit, pleading for the delegates to preserve the planet. I could be a child starving in Somalia, or a victim of war in the Middle East, or a beggar in India. In my life, I have dreamt of seeing the great herds of wild animals, jungles, and rainforests full of birds and butterflies, but now I wonder if they will even exist for my children to see. The list could go on for two days. Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro.
A video of it has been viewed more than 18 million times online, but ask her now, at the age of 32, if she was successful, the answer isn't easy. And if I were, I would give all the street children food, clothes, medicines, shelter, and love and affection. At school, even in kindergarten, you teach us how to behave in the world. I mean, for him, climate change is an issue of survival of his people, in—I mean, in direct terms. And a geneticist and environmental activist David Suzuki, a third-generation Japanese Canadian. You teach us to not fight with others, to work things out, to respect others, to clean up our mess, not to hurt other creatures, to share, not be greedy.
I am fighting for my future. I refuse to concede the argument to the skeptics who see the U. I don't -- I want you to realize, neither do you. At school, even in kindergarten, you teach us to behave in the world. Today, 17 years later, nothing much has changed, some problems are even more acute than they were two decades ago. You don't know how to bring back an animal now extinct.
No small feat says Cullis-Suzuki. So, in the face of this looming crisis, does it give you much hope at all that the world leaders are couching this agreement in such weak terms? You are deciding what kind of a world we are growing up in. As always, your reactions and comments are welcome. Then, why do you go out and do -- do the things you tell us not to do?. Losing my future is not like losing an election, or a few points on the stock market.
I was on a panel the other day with a minister from New Caledonia, a small island nation. You are deciding what kind of world we are growing up in. Two days ago here in Brazil, we were shocked when we spent some time with some children living on the streets. Coming up here today, I have no hidden agenda. In his remarks, President Obama said his administration has authorized enough gas pipelines to encircle the earth. Born in November 30, 1979, Sever Suzuki Severn Cullis-Suzuki is a Canadian environmental activist, speaker, television host and author who has spoken around the world about environmental issues.