The climate crisis is here, and young people have the most to lose. Thousands of students around Europe are rising up, striking from school, demanding politicians take concrete action on climate change. Political inaction on climate change affects young people more than any other generation. Yet, they have the least amount of electoral power to have their say. A future with climate change will be inherited by the next generation. That's why it's time for countries in the European Union to lower their voting age to 16 and allow young people to have a political say now.
Politics needs a breath of fresh air. Our institutions have to cater and centre young people in the decision making process, especially on climate change. Young people of Europe want their voices heard. More than ever, they're joining non-government organisations, protests, petitions, social movements and engaging in direct action over formal political structures that do not include them. Austria and Malta have both lowered the voting age, and the European Parliament has endorsed this decision. Now, Member States around Europe should follow suit. It's time to lower the voting age to 16.