By Harpreet Johal

If you had two minutes to address the world's leaders, what would you say? This is what folks at TckTckTck and Climate Nexus want to know in their Date with History contest. It's an opportunity for young people to share their vision for the type of world they want to live in.

Inspired by Severn Cullis-Suzuki's famous speech at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, the contest encourages young people to upload two- to three-minute speeches that will inspire global leaders attending this year's Earth Summit in June. The idea is to reflect on the UN's theme of "The Future I Want".

The contest is open to people between the ages of 13 and 30 from around the world. David Suzuki Foundation board member Severn Cullis-Suzuki will be one of the judges. And the contest winner will have the opportunity to address world leaders in person at the Rio +20 Earth Summit!

Environmental issues go beyond borders, and this contest encourages different voices and perspectives to way weigh in about the future of our planet. It's a creative idea and one that DSF is proud to support.

Learn more about the contest.

March 7, 2012

Read more

Post a comment


Jun 02, 2012
11:09 AM

If we agree to “think globally”, it becomes evident that riveting attention on GROWTH could be a grave mistake because we are denying how economic and population growth in the communities in which we live cannot continue as it has until now. Each village's resources are being dissipated, each town's environment degraded and every city's fitness as place for our children to inhabit is being threatened. To proclaim something like, 'the meat of any community plan for the future is, of course, growth' fails to acknowledge that many villages, towns and cities are already ‘built out’, and also ‘filled in’ with people. If the quality of life we enjoy now is to be maintained for the children, then limits on economic and population growth will have to be set. By so doing, we choose to “act locally" and sustainably.

More economic and population growth are no longer sustainable in many too many places on the surface of Earth because biological constraints and physical limitations are immutably imposed upon ever increasing human consumption, production and population activities of people in many communities where most of us reside. Inasmuch as the Earth is finite with frangible environs, there comes a point at which GROWTH is unsustainable. There is much work to done locally. But that effort cannot reasonably begin without sensibly limiting economic and population growth.

To quote another source, “We face a wide-open opportunity to break with the old ways of doing the town’s business…..” That is a true statement. But the necessary “break with the old ways” of continous economic and population growth is not what is occurring. There is a call for a break with the old ways, but the required changes in behavior are not what is being proposed as we plan for the future. What is being proposed and continues to occur is more of the same, old business-as-usual overconsumption, overproduction and overpopulation activities, the very activities that appear to be growing unsustainbly. More business-as-usual could soon become patently unsustainable, both locally and globally. A finite planet with the size, composition and environs of the Earth and a community with the boundaries, limited resources and wondrous climate of villages, towns and cities where we live may not be able to sustain much longer the economic and population growth that is occurring on our watch. Perhaps necessary changes away from UNSUSTAINABLE GROWTH and toward sustainable lifestyles and right-sized corporate enterprises are in the offing.

Think globally while there is still time and act locally before it is too late for human action to make any difference in the clear and presently dangerous course of unfolding human-induced ecological events, both in our planetary home and in our villages, towns and cities.

Mar 08, 2012
8:32 PM

Why haven't those in power embraced alternative energy? It seems like there was much more momentum 4 years ago than now.

Mar 08, 2012
1:31 PM

There is nothing more important than our planet. The air, the water, the oceans…all living things depend on these things. Without these things, our planet is just another sphere floating in space. Please choose life.

Mar 08, 2012
12:03 PM

We must start to be kinder and try to overhaul our monetary system in order to eliminate greed. Since the beginnings of organized humanitary living it has been greed that has been a plague .Greed for land,food,water,livestock ,money and people has brought us to where we are today. .

Mar 08, 2012
10:42 AM

I wouldn't need two minutes to say what I'd say, which is…and I quote John Denver…."To Live on The Earth, we Must Learn From The Sea !"

Mar 08, 2012
9:40 AM

Why 13 — 30. I am 58 and worry about what we are doing this world. So, in spite of the fact that this flies in the face of the rules, I am saying my piece.

I can not change the choices made 100 years ago, or even yesterday. All I can do is work today for what I want to see happen tomorrow. At least the people 100 years ago had a lack of knowledge to the damage they were creating, we don't have that, we know. We know that we pollute when we put raw sewage into rivers and lakes, yet we still do it. We know that we pollute when we put toxins into the air, but we still do it. We can not claim ignorance. We can claim greed, selfish greed for our actions. We don't want to pay the price, so we would rather put it on the backs of our children and grand children to pay the price….and they will in spades.

How can you sit here and argue over such an all encompassing issue. How can you put the health of your people at risk along with the rest of the world. We know that the butterfly effect is true, that what happens in Asia affects North America, and what happens in North America affects Europe and so on. We need to make changes today, not next year or next week or even tomorrow — today.

You need to put aside your petty differences and work towards the change that is needed. You need to take action now. You don't want to be remembered as the generation that didn't — but as the generation that did — I would think that you would want to be remembered as the generation that made the hard decisions and made the changes necessary to ensure a decent life for the people of this earth.

The David Suzuki Foundation does not necessarily endorse the comments or views posted within this forum. All contributors acknowledge DSF's right to remove product/service endorsements and refuse publication of comments deemed to be offensive or that contravene our operating principles as a charitable organization. Please note that all comments are pre-moderated. Privacy Policy »