Climate change is real. This year’s BerlInMUN-COP23 debates on reviewing and improving carbon emission trade and on the development of renewable energy technology in developing countries. As the environmental improvement should take precedence over economic interests of countries, it is important to convince climate change sceptics of the importance to launch measures of prevention and combat.
In these interviews, the representative of Russia of the COP23, Piotr-Pawel Larysz, and the representative of Mexico, Stef Stollenwerk, talk about themselves, climate change, the COP23 and pineapple on pizza (or vice versa). Two young MUN enthusiasts who aim to spread diplomacy and campaign the analysis of the threatening climate effects on everyone and adequate proposals for solutions.
Can you tell me a little about yourself?
Piotr: My name is Piotr-Paweł, I’m 21 and originally from Poland, as evidenced by my unpronounceable name (that’s why everybody calls me Pi- yes, just like the π-number). I’m currently studying economics at the Free University of Berlin in the 2. Semester.
Stef: I’m 21 years old and I study Chemistry in the University of Antwerp. I’m vice-president of the student community for Chemistry and Biochemistry and I also like to meet new people.
Why did you choose to be in the COP23 as the country you are now representing?
Piotr: I think that the topic of climate change concerns all of us, so I consider it to be my duty to really understand what the international community is doing in order to achieve the goal of saving our planet. Although Russia wasn’t my first choice, I perceive this position not as a challenge, but as an opportunity to truly understand the mechanisms behind their policy, as I personally do not agree with Putin’s political agenda.
Stef: Since it’s my first time at an MUN I realized that representing one of the major countries (China, USA, Russia,…) would not be possible since they usually require a delegate with more experience in MUNing. When I read the topics, I was interested in representing Mexico because they are still a developing country, but are also quite big. There was the added interest of being the neighbor of the USA and working with them as well. And of course, let us not forget tequila!
Please briefly state the position of your country.
Stef: Mexico are committed to becoming a low carbon economy and are one of the leading developing nations against climate change. However, we see the need to communicate and negotiate with more developed countries and also with other developing countries. Only together can we achieve meaningful steps to assure that the Paris Agreement is fulfilled. Furthermore, Mexico is committed to securing access to modern energy sources for the 3 million citizens who still lack this access.
Piotr: Russia considers climate change as a serious threat to the world. They slowly move towards reaching their goal of emission reduction, however Russia does not condemn the United States for withdrawing of the Paris Agreement.
What do you like most about BerlInMUN 2017? What are your further expectations?
Piotr: I think it is a truly extraordinary experience. The work with so many inspiring, outspoken and political active people from all over the world, really encourages me to involve in this undertaking even more. It shows that change is possible we all have an impact on the future of the world.
Stef: What I liked most about the conference until now was meeting a lot of new people. The diplomatic aspect is also quite interesting, but for me the main aspect is the social aspect of the conference. I look forward to continuing the debate in our council and hopefully pass a successful resolution. Another thing which I look forward to is the gala night.
How would you convince someone to do something they don’t want to do?
Piotr: I believe in an egalitarian world. Who am I to judge anyone? I am not superior to anyone, we are all equal.
Stef: Talk with them and learn to see their point of view, and then spin what I want them to do so it sounds like their own idea. People like to think they are doing what they want, so you must give them this illusion.
Compliment your chairs:
Piotr: Christian studies economics so he’s soul mate (for obvious reasons), Mai on the other hand is one of the calmest people I met in my life (which is very nice as I have an extrovert personality and cannot sit in one place for more than 2 minutes).
Stef: Our chairs should really be appreciated for their patience. How many times delegates in our council still say ‘I think’ instead of ‘We think’ is not to be underestimated. They also should be lauded for making us feel welcome in Berlin and always being accessible.
Fun fact about me:
Piotr: Me and my friends used to crush weddings in Disney costumes just to get this free bottle of vodka. But it doesn’t really sound so funny on paper, such a shame.
Stef: I love to do shots, but I don’t like to do them alone. If I’m a bit drunk and you ask me to do shots, I’ll probably pay for them.
Pineapple on pizza: crime or necessity?
Piotr: Maybe pizza on pineapple?
Stef: The right to put pineapple on pizza should have been adopted in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Personally, I love it, but I can understand that people don’t like it. As long as they don’t expect me to abandon this life choice, I’m fine with them.