Skip navigation

Youth Survey: Have Your Say on Victoria's 2035 Climate Target

The Victorian government has opened up a survey for anyone 25 or younger to have a say on what Emissions Reduction Target it will set for 2035. How high do you think Victoria should aim on climate? Continue reading for our guide on how you can have your say...

For the first time, the government has included a specific Youth Survey for anyone 25 or younger in the consultation process. This is no doubt in recognition of the growth of youth activist movements over the past five years such as School Strike for Climate, which have mobilised over 150,000 Victorians on the streets to call for stronger action on climate.

Background and Context:

Under the Climate Change Act 2017, the Victorian government is required to set interim Emissions Reduction Targets every five years to chart the path to its legislated target of net-zero emissions by 2050. 

We know that when it comes to tackling the climate crisis, the deepest emissions cuts must be made well before 2050 to avoid global warming beyond 1.5°C. That is why Friends of the Earth will be calling for a science-based target of net-zero emissions by 2035. 

With the impacts of climate change already hitting frontline communities around the state, it is vital that the government hear from young people about what level of climate policy ambition they expect. 

How to have your say:
Youth Survey

The Victorian government has a survey open for the public until Sunday June 5, 2022. As a guide, we have provided suggested answers below for you to use as survey responses and elaborate on however you want. 

Click here to complete the survey.

Suggested Answers to Survey Questions:

1. What is your age?

Select an option from the age ranges provided.


2. Which of the following climate issues are important to you?

A list of options is provided for you to rank in order of importance to you.

SUGGESTED RESPONSE: Put option 12 - ‘Other’ - first, and then rank others as you see fit. Our suggested extra point for the ‘Other’ option is below.


If you selected 'Other' in question 2, please specify:

SUGGESTED RESPONSE: Adopt a science-based Emissions Reduction Target in line with staying below 1.5°C of net-zero emissions by 2035.


3. Why is your top issue a priority for you?


  • Reduce Climate Risk: Setting a science-based 2035 climate target will decrease the long-term risk of climate disasters, which will fall on the shoulders of younger generations to deal with.

  • Job Creation: Pursuing deep emissions cuts will require the rollout of renewable energy, new clean technology, and upgraded infrastructure and services - all of which will create excellent local job and training opportunities for young people.

  • Public Health: Eliminating emissions by 2035 will eliminate the pollutants from fossil fuel combustion and other polluting industries. This will deliver proven public health benefits.

  • Mental Health: The negative effects of climate change itself on mental health are already well-researched. Anxiety and distress about the climate crisis is particularly high among young people, and much of it stems from the failure of governments to match the scale of the problem with action. Climate impacts such as intensified heatwaves and bushfires are also already negatively impacting mental health in communities; studies have found that during heatwaves, mental health-related hospital admissions soar alongside physical effects. A science-based 2035 Emissions Reduction Target matched with ambitious policies would give young people hope and optimism about the monumental challenge of tackling climate change.


4. What emissions reduction target do you think Victoria should have for 2035?

You are asked to place a marker anywhere on a spectrum between 50% and 100% (reduction by 2035).

SUGGESTED RESPONSE: 100% emissions reduction by 2035.


5. What action do you think the Victorian Government should prioritise on climate change?

A list of options is provided for you to choose your three top priorities from.

SUGGESTED RESPONSE: Put option 9 - ‘Other’ - first, and then choose two others that are important to you. Our suggested extra point for the ‘Other’ option is below.


If you selected 'Other' in question 5, please specify:

SUGGESTED RESPONSE: Adopt a science-based Emissions Reduction Target in line with staying below 1.5°C of net-zero emissions by 2035.


6. How would you like to be involved in decisions about climate change and action?

The independent expert panel has an opportunity to build on its knowledge base by meeting with a diversity of young people from across Victoria.

I call on the panel to meet with a delegation of young people from School Strike 4 Climate and other youth organisations, representing city and regional areas and people of colour to understand their concerns and ideas for action.


7. Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

The Climate Change Act 2017 has two Guiding Principles on Equity when considering long-term emissions reduction:

  • That ‘opportunities should be created by the present generation to increase the capacities within that generation and future generations to adapt to climate change’.  
  • Thatin particular, the present generation should consider the opportunities to increase the capacities to adapt to climate change of those people most vulnerable to the potential impacts of climate change’.

Regarding these two points, the panel should consider the importance of intergenerational equity in recommending targets. For future generations to avoid the worst impacts of the climate crisis, present governments must set and implement science-based targets in the rapidly-closing window of opportunity to limit global warming to 1.5°C. I call on the panel to recommend a science-based target of net-zero emissions by 2035 on this basis.


What's Next?

Stay tuned for further updates from Friends of the Earth's Act on Climate collective on how we can continue to push for a science-based 2035 target this year by signing up for campaign updates here. 

If you're interested in being involved further, please get in touch below through our contact details. There'll be plenty of opportunities for action and we'll need all hands on deck!

Anna Langford - Act on Climate Vic coordinator
[email protected]
0478 031 771

Niamh O'Connor Smith - School Strike 4 Climate Mentor
[email protected]


Continue Reading

Read More