Press Release

Iraqi youth for a Sustainable Future: Collaborative Campaign Highlights Environmental Action

24 August 2023

Baghdad, 24 August 2023 – Committed to a cleaner environment, Iraqi youth have launched a climate action campaign, bringing together governments, UN entities, activists, and the private sector to address environmental challenges and to act now to protect our planet. This initiative, spurred by International Youth Day, observed annually on 12 August, highlights "Green Skills for Youth: Towards A Sustainable World",aiming to engage and empower Iraqi youth, harnessing their potential as drivers of change for a more resilient and eco-conscious society.

Youth Empowerment in Action

Kicking off the campaign on 12 of August, an online campaign, followed by a dynamic discussion among 50 students of medicine focused on youth empowerment, active participation, and green skills to address global challenges and come up with collective solutions.

Rallying for a Plastic-Free Future

In a determined effort to beat plastic pollution, more than 500 individuals answered a call advocating for zero-plastic, converging on the banks of the River Tigris in Baghdad on 18 August to collect plastic bottles, bags and litter.

Capturing Climate Realities

An inclusive photography competition in Mosul, Ninewa Governorate, spotlighted the reality of climate change, highlighted environmental shifts, and focused on the needs of people with disabilities. Through impactful images, the contest conveyed change, inclusivity, and awareness.

Rooted in Renewal: Nationwide Tree Planting Initiative

Guided by collaborative efforts of the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment, a back-to-school tree-planting campaign instills responsibility in the young students. Thousands of trees will be planted in various Iraqi governorates, a testament to the resolve to nurture and protect the environment. Simultaneously, the Department of Media and Information will extend the initiative to three governorates in the Kurdistan Region through a seed/tree planting drive.

Digital Waves of Change: Amplifying Environmental Awareness

Two online campaigns are forthcoming. "Less Plastic," a social media initiative, aspires to unite youth and influencers in curbing plastic waste. The campaign highlights the significance of the United Nations Conference of Parties (COP) and the roles played by governments and the UN, and fosters a united call for action.

Resident Coordinator Ghulam Isaczai said: “United by purpose, young Iraqis, influencers, and stakeholders have ignited a beacon of hope through these diverse initiatives in advocating for and acting to protect the environment. With trees taking root, plastic waste highlighted, and voices raised to protect the environment, these dynamic youth are taking the solid steps towards a greener, more resilient future.”

Editor’s note: These activities wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of IFMSA-Iraq, Green Space Organization, Clean Iraq, and the Fighter Life Leaders Team, and the private sector enablers: Careem Taxi, BeCorp Inc., and Hala green water bottles initiative.


UN entities involved in this initiative

United Nations Population Fund
United Nations Volunteers

Goals we are supporting through this initiative