UNESCO Forum Living Together on Earth: taking action to support biodiversity, 27 May

UNESCO will host an online forum, Living together on Earth, on 27 May (3.30 to 5.30 pm, Central European Time, 1.30 to 3.30 pm UTC) with a wide range of speakers who will explain how anyone can take action in favour of biological diversity and discuss their relationship with the living world on the basis of their own experiences.

In the wake of the International Day for Biological Diversity (22 May), the forum will consist of four parts: 1. highlight the role of the artistic experience through the participation of two poets, 2. explore the links between humanity and nature, 3. sharing of experiences, and 4 a call to action following the launch of the living together on Earth movement at the UNESCO Forum on Biodiversity on 24 March.

Programme:

1. Artistic introduction

  • Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner (Marshall Islands), poet and writer committed to nature conservation
  • The Explorers, an audiovisual project using the latest technologies to allow the public to become a witness to life, biodiversity and ecosystems
  •  The Earth Keeper, a poem by Scott Momaday, a Native American writer (USA) read by the American actor David Coburn

2. Going back to the origin of the link between human beings and nature, and understanding humanity’s place as an integral part of the living world

  • Bill McKibben (USA), journalist and environmentalist, founder of 350.org
  • Vik Muniz (Brazil), artist, transforming waste into portraits
  • Valérie Cabanes (France), international lawyer campaigning for the recognition of the crime of ecocide
  • Sandra Diaz (Argentina), biologist, expert in ecosystem and community ecology

3. Inspiring examples of citizens taking action to preserve biodiversity around the world

  • Nnimmo Bassey (Nigeria), Director of the Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), named Environmental Hero by Time Magazine
  • Rabecca Yego Laibich (Kenya), MAB Youth Representative (UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere programme)
  • Shubhendu Sharma (India), founder of Afforestt, working for urban reforestation
  • Mauro Colagreco (Italy/Argentina/France), environmentally friendly three Michelin star chef
  • Jérémy Gobé (France), international artist using art to reconnect with nature, initiator of the Coral Artefact project to preserve the coral reef.

4. Conclusion

  • Presentation of the Living Together on Earth movement.
  • Presentation of a fresco drawn live during the event. Call for everyone to commit to becoming part of the solution.

We only have one planet, not one for nature and another for humans. For all too long, we viewed the planet as a place or a setting, disregarding local and indigenous representations that often affirm a more holistic perspective. The ethics of living together with Earth play out on several levels. If it is first and foremost an ethical knowledge system, it must also be an ethical blueprint for action reflecting the question: What is our responsibility in the face of the foreseeable, conceivable or simply imaginable consequences of our collective actions? The participants will endeavour to provide answers to this question.

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