Pablo Sánchez-Bayo, student of Master's Degree of the School, participates in the COP27 held in Egypt.

From left to right: Ana Belén Torrejón, Pablo Sánchez-Bayo, María Sánchez-Bayo (in yellow), Ismail Sadeq Dfaili and, on the far right, Professor Julia Urquijo Reguera.

The project presented together with three other university students and a professor was selected by the Climate Generation COP27 initiative to represent Spain at the COP27 held in Egypt.

The COP27 Climate Generation initiative selected the proposal in which Pablo Sánchez-Bayo, a student of the University's Double Master's Degree University Degree in Architecture + design and management Environmental Buildings(MUA + MDGAE), worked to represent Spain at the COP27 held in Egypt. But Pablo did not work alone, he worked in a team with three other university students from different educational centers(María Sánchez-Bayo, Ismail Sadeq and Ana Belén Torrejón) and a UPM professor(Julia Urquijo Reguera).

The project is entitled 'Participatory Flood Risk Mapping for Urban Resilience and Risk Reduction in Makeni, Sierra Leone.'. The possibility to participate in COP27 provided this team with a great opportunity to share their project with other young people and professionals engaged in the fight against climate change at the highest level.

Pablo Sánchez-Bayo tells us how he lived the experience and reflects on what he learned:

"We arrived on Monday at dawn and from then on it was non-stop. At the COP there was practically no time for rest: days of meetings, talks, conferences, learning how the multilateral negotiation system works, talking to professionals from all fields (meteorologists, economists, politicians, disseminators...) and getting their opinion, eating fast, running from one place to the next...

We have learned a lot from these frantic days, but I would like to highlight a couple of things. First, this summit is necessary. Despite the incongruities of the event itself (such as the carbon footprint that has been generated in only two weeks), despite the little apparent progress that is usually made (we have already had 27 summits and the use of some fossil fuels has not yet been restricted), despite the unsustainable urbanism of the city where it is held, despite the fact that there are more lobbyists from the fossil fuel sector than countries represented, despite everything, it is necessary. It is necessary to face the climate emergency head on, to stop postponing meetings and evading e-mails. Solutions must be found and they must be found now.

Secondly, what is the role of youth in an event like this? This has been the question we have been asking all along lecture. The answer is now clear: the young population is the one that will suffer the most from the effects of climate change at a global level and the one that has the most to lose. Our future is at stake, our way of life is at stake and it is not enough to stand still. Young people have a lot to say and many solutions to contribute, we must be the lever of change.

The solution is not only in these two weeks that lecture has lasted, the hard work starts now. At the staff level, each one of us can make a big impact: in the things we buy, in how we move, in what we eat... At final, in everyday things. If society changes, the most polluting companies will change to keep their business going and the politicians who make decisions will change to keep their voters.

As a conclusion to this experience I am left with the conclusion that, although status seems difficult and although apparently not enough progress is being made for the emergency in which we find ourselves, each one of us has the possibility of being part of the solution towards the future we want: greener, healthier and fairer".

Team members

  • Pablo Sánchez-Bayo (University of Navarra). Architect and student of the Double Master's Degree University Degree in Architecture (MUA) and in design and management Environmental Buildings (MDGAE).

  • María Sánchez-Bayo (UPM - UCM). Agricultural engineer and student of Master's Degree in Strategies and Technologies for the development.

  • Ismail Sadeq Dfaili (UPM - UCM). International Office and economist and student of Master's Degree in Strategies and Technologies for the development. 

  • Ana Belén Torrejón (UCM - UPM). International Office and student of Master's Degree in Strategies and Technologies for the development.

  • Julia Urquijo Reguera (UPM). Professor of the School of Agricultural, Food and Biosystems Engineering (ETSIAAB) of the UPM, department of Agroforestry Engineering.

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