Over the years the talk on climate change has caught up with almost everyone. Calls for living in a climate neutral world and in mitigating and adapting to climate change impacts have been heard. Many organizations are more focusing on climate change issues on awareness, advocacy and adaptation. In Africa particularly the campaigns are on going with more and more people becoming aware of what is going on. I beg to take a pause and find out what really is our goal? do we really believe we can be able to adapt to climate change impacts effectively, do we believe we can mitigate the impacts of climate change.
In most Africa countries their economy is struggling to grow, more are more people are working hard and working smart to try to achieve the western lifestyle, novelty is becoming more common. A graduate from university will want to get a good paying job and would hope to either be driving within a year or under-taking further studies and even eventually moving into a bigger house. Our needs and demands for growth both as individuals and as a country in terms of the economy are warranted. These needs then put pressure on the available resources most of which are natural resources. In such a Continent where novelty is the "in thing", then the subject of recycling becomes "unfashionable". It is fashionable to be seen driving a hummer for example as opposed to a vitz, government officials and even big international and national organizations send their representatives to meetings with these "fuel guzzles" for them that is the acceptable form of transport that befits the "honourables"
So do we really want to change? do we really believe we are working towards a climate neutral world? If solutions in energy efficiency are locally available such as using energy efficient bulbs, saving power, re-cycling among other, if these solution are available why is it that we don't make use of them? where is our good will to change? to fight climate change? for this to happen we have to embrace the fear of being "unfashionable" Tim Jackson in his talk on Tedhttp://www.ted.com/talks/
lang/eng/tim_jackson_s_ economic_reality_check.html - economic reality check mentions that we are spending money we don't have on things we don't need to create impressions that don't last on people we don't care about. In his view economic recession is the one thing that has slowed down carbon emission, yet this in it self is a negative factor of our growing economy. His analogy of "keeping out the giraffes" simply points out to the fact that we may try our best to do a lot of "big" things to save the planet yet we in turn neglect the small things we can do to make a change, consumer and behavioral change is a key to this. Prof. Wangari Maathai in her analogy of the humming bird story tells a story of a humming bird that tries to put off a forest fire with drops of water it collects using its beak, while this might be seen as a drop in the ocean and having no or insignificant change it does have a change. To say the least her vision to plant at least one tree proves for sure she was and is a humming bird.
So as the world talks about moving to the carbon neutral and carbon friendly world, i talk of being a humming bird, of being "unfashionable" of doing the best I can in the capacity i have. Of realizing that for this to work it starts with me, it starts with me knowing that recycling my water bottle is seen as unfashionable but will help reduce energy demand, knowing that opting to buy a vitz instead of a hummer goes a long way in reducing the demand for fuel and hence (green house gas) GHG emissions, that talking a walk from point a to b instead of driving, switching off power when i don't need it, using energy efficient bulbs and even planting that one tree on my birthday in turn I contribute to a carbon neural world. I will be a humming bird, I will do the best I can.
@ Lumosi, Caroline 29/10/2010...1211am
Caroline K. Lumosi
Ecological Society for Eastern Africa - ESEA
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Conservation film maker
October 30, 2010
October 29, 2010
October 28, 2010
"National Youth Conference on Climate ChangeInstitute for Peace & Conflict Resolution, Central Area, Abuja 28th October, 2010 Climate chan..." http://nigerianyouthclimatecoalition.blogspot.com/2010/10/national-youth-conference-on-climate.html
As the National Youth Conference on Climate Change is ongoing in Kenya, our colleagues in Nigeria is also holding a similar conference.
Its exciting to see the energies of youth being appreciated and upscaled in different parts of the African continent. The youth are showcasing their efforts to respond to climate change in their societies including practical projects on ground, policy and advocacy work and capacity building.
Prof. Naituli, of the Multi Media University, and MESA (Mainstreaming Education for Sustainability in African Universities) representative for the East Africa, is at the conference. "We need to ask why people do things that lead to unsustainability before we prescribe to them our half baked solutions on what to do. That’s what learning is all about: interaction to produce Education or Sustainable Development to all", he says.
He is the advisor to the Inter Varsity Environment Network (IVEN) one of the networks that supported the founding of the African Youth Initiative on Climate Change (AYICC) in 2006.
Dr. Ali Kaka, the IUCN(International Union for Conservation of Nature) Regional Director for the East and Southern Africa, also attending the conference mentioned that the Union and other partners are working very hard to create a climate finance mechanism to aid in adaptation and mitigation. Young people should take up this opportunity. "We will not be young for ever, decisions made today will affect us and our children so we have to decide wisely", he concluded.
Achieng Abura, a renown Kenyan musician, and the WWF Goodwill Ambassador, also present at the youth conference, stressed that everyone should plant a tree during their birthday and grow it.
The Coast Chapter of the African Youth Initiative on Climate Change (AYICC Kenya) was sharing how they will be launching an eco friendly currency form called Eco Pesa in collaboration with the Eco Ethics and International NGO based in Mombasa.
The national youth conference on climate change happening this week is the third one of its kind to be held in Kenya. The first one was held in Matuu organized and supported by the Norwegian Church Aid Kenya which brought together over 20 Kenyan youth organizations. The second conference was held in 2009 November at the Sportsview Hotel in Nairobi which was co- organized by the African Youth Initiative on Climate Change, Kenyan Young Greens, Matuu Network, Koch FM among other youth groups under the Kenyan Climate Youth Network.
This year's conference is remarkable with more youth organizations being involved in the planning of the conference and with support from the Office of the Prime Minister, Oxfam GB and Norwegian Church Aid. A Back to Eden programme and a video conference will be the climax of this great conference.
With all this momentum and action growing among the Kenyan youth in the past 5 years, it just gets me thinking about the potential that we need to exploit and the probable impacts we would expect from positively influencing the actions of young Kenyans.
My gratitude goes to the Office of the Prime Minister, i still remember that one day they called me up for a meeting with them to plan on how Kenyan youth would be supported towards building their capacity on climate change. Much appreciation to Mr. Alusa and Patrick who have worked very closely with the Organizing commitee to ensure the success of the conference.
I am specifically moved by the Mully Children’s family http://www.mullychildrensfamily.org/ , where a teenage girl, Virginia, dedicated herself to go beyond the borders and initiate a climate change club within the home. She teaches her peers and the children how to respond to climate change.
The Back to Eden Tree Planting Project organized by the 3rd Movement ( a Christian based movement of over 20 Kenyan universities) will receive support of seedlings from the home as a result of Virginia's efforts.
As well, I am touched by the commitment of George Auko, the Chief Coordinator of AYICC Kenya. He is dedicating the whole of 2010 to work on building the youth movement in Kenya. This is a voluntary position he is holding but he has been able to immensely influence hundreds of young people to create and take action of climate change and differentiated levels. Having mentored him into leadership since 2009, I see a lot of potential in him to continue leading the youth movement even beyond Kenya.
One more young person who inspires me is Isaiah Kito, working for the Norwegian Church Aid, which for over 3 years now, have dedicated their time and resources to support the capacity building of young people in Kenya especially in climate change, leadership and governance, I salute you Isaiah, we have come this far from you.
Finally i salute the organizing committee for the NYCCC in Kenya, i know it has been hard for you to make it this far, and it just shows me how young people are committed to see change happen- and the change they really need.
That’s why my question still stands? Could the Kenyan youth be the resource that the government needs to address the country’s development challenges (Including climate change?)
October 26, 2010
October 13, 2010
"Hoping you are all well.We got to the ADF forum well and safe and the opening ceremony just happened a while ago.
The ADF VII started on a very high note in Addis with the various clusters discussing the issues in detail for the presentation to the main ADF forum later this week.
During the session on youth and climate change several nissues came up among them the need for African youth to take up transformationl leadership, a need for education and capacity building for the yoputh who are more often marginalized.The issue of inclusion of disabled youth and youth refugees in matters of climate change was also discussed.
As well there was the question of investin more 9in research by youth as well as dissemination of research findings in a manner easily understood by young people across the continent.
Also brought to the forth was the issue of intergenerational knowledge transfer and mentorship to ensure that young people grow into leadership.
I will keep you all updated as we move along.
Many warm hugs from all of us here in Addis(Sylvia,Grace,Lawrence and Kevin"(by Winnie Asiti)
This is a ver enlightening experience for these youth and we cannot wait to benefit from the momentum and the vigor that they will bring with them back home. Blogging on behalf of the kenyan youth in Addis- Margaret demba
October 5, 2010
October 5th 2010
Obama's White House To Get Solar Energy
Announcement Precedes World's Most Widespread Political Demonstration Ever, Calling For Action On Climate
The most famous seat of power in the world, the White House, is going solar.
Barack Obama's Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, today announced that by early 2011 solar panels on the presidential mansion will be generating hot water and electricity. "President Obama has a strong commitment to American leadership in solar technologies and the jobs they will create." he said.
"As we move toward a clean energy economy, the White House will lead by example." Chu added that "Around the world, the White House is a symbol of freedom and democracy. It should also be a symbol of America’s commitment to a clean energy future."
On September 10th activists from 350.org, a global climate action campaign, travelled to the White House with a solar panel originally installed there in 1979 by President Jimmy Carter -- later removed by President Ronald Reagan -- to ask Obama to return solar power to the roof of his residence.
Although the activists were greeted with a non-committal response by White House staff, today's announcement comes just before 350.org is to co-ordinate the world's most widespread political demonstration in history in support of action on climate change.
On Sunday October 10th people all over the world will be joining the 10/10/10 Global Work Party to pressure their leaders to act on climate change. Over 7 000 communities in over 180 countries, including most countries in Africa, will taking action to reduce their climate impacts by planting trees, building cycle paths, and promoting renewable energy. This will make it the most widespread demonstration in history for any cause.
Tomorrow, October 6th, President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives will be installing solar electricity-generating panels on that country's presidential residence to promote the Global Work Party. The low lying island nation is threatened by rising sea levels triggered by climate change, and President Nasheed has committed his nation to becoming 100% carbon neutral.
African events planned for 10/10/10 include a climate boxing tournament and tree planting in Nairobi, Kenya, solar hot water heaters for Nelson Mandela's old prison island near Cape Town, South Africa, and an nationwide climate campaign on Mauritius in the Indian Ocean. There are about 200 events planned across Africa.
"Africa will be more affected by climate change than any other continent. We must encourage our political leaders to act by leading the way" said Landry Ninteretse, a 350.org activist in Burundi. "If we can get to work on October 10th to make our communities greener, they can get to work on a strong, enforceable plan to combat climate change. Anyone can visit our website,www.350.org, to register a new event or find out about 10/10/10 events near them."ENDS
Notes for media: 350.org is a growing international climate campaign which last year, on October 24th, co-ordinated what CNN called 'the most widespread political demonstration ever" with 5 200 events in 181 countries. For more information please go to www.350.org and www.350.org/media. Contacts listed at the head of this press release are available for media interview.
For more information on the campaign to get solar power on the White House, please visit www.putsolaron.it
Video of Steven Chu's announcement is viewable at www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCDwffQcMdo
CONTACT: Samantha Bailey (Cape Town, South Africa) +27 79 744 0525 firstname.lastname@example.org
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Adam Welz (New York, USA) +1 631 882 2306, Skype: adamwelz, firstname.lastname@example.org