Meet Climate Action Youth Ambassador Jee-Ho Paik
Hi! My name is Jee-Ho Paik (aka Jee-Jee). I am of South Korean ancestry and my family settled in Toronto on the territory of the Mississauga’s of New Credit peoples. I’ve just started a Climate Action Internship with the IISAAK OLAM Foundation (IOF) on the territories of the Songhees and Esquimalt peoples on Southern Vancouver Island.
Over the past 5 years, I’ve been pursuing an undergraduate degree in Environmental Governance at the University of Guelph. Through an experiential learning semester on Haida Gwaii and by joining IOF for this internship, I’m meeting my goal of broadening my education beyond a Western lens. Being a Climate Action Youth Ambassador gives me the opportunity to share my perspective and to network amongst other climate activists to further my understanding of environmental governance and the role that I can play therein.
On Monday, Greta Thunberg shared her “How Dare You” speech at the United Nations Climate Action Summit. This sparked discussion here at IOF over whose voices are being heard on climate action. I was surprised that such a young person could deliver such a commanding speech. However, I was not surprised that the opportunity/attention had been given to yet another white person. It’s imperative within environmental governance to be conscientious of who is given platforms that generate, and benefit from this type of attention. Indigenous Peoples have been speaking up for the environment since time immemorial, so why is it that everyone knows Greta Thunberg but not the Indigenous Peoples who have been working tirelessly for #ClimateAction since before Greta?
What do you think about this? Start a conversation with me on Twitter at @iissakolam!