As negotiations of the United Nations Climate Change Conference are being launched this week in Durban, South Africa, tens of thousands of citizens and activists are also speaking up about both their interest and expectations.
South African citizen (F): I’m desperately hoping that maybe for once some solutions can come out of this conference.
VOICE: Many are participating in events that coincide with the summit, voicing concerns that are based on recent scientific reports of an imminent global warming catastrophe.
Lemuel Vega – Mexican youth activist (M): I’m here because I really care about the climate change, and I will be really involved with the youth movement.
VOICE: Supreme Master Television’s correspondent brings some more details.
Correspondent (M): We’re here at the International Convention Center in Durban. This meeting is seen as the best chance for participating nations to agree on at least a renewed commitment to the Kyoto Protocol, set to expire in just one year.
Severink Apedjagbo – Togolese youth activist (M): We want change because actually, people in Africa are suffering the disasters relative to climate change. Our aim is to claim climate justice and a binding, legal deal for this COP 17 in Africa.
VOICE: The enthusiastic presence of youth is especially apparent in Durban as young people arrive from throughout vulnerable regions of Africa, with hopes that their collective voice could bring tangible results from world leaders.
Mwasu Mghamed Ninga – Tanzanian youth activist (F): What I need is leaders to be as one and take actions. It’s not a time of just making stories and talking and talking. It’s a matter of them to make actions.
Correspondent (M): Members of the Supreme Master Ching Hai International Association are also present to support the organic vegan solution to climate change, which studies have found to be the most effective and rapid way to reduce global temperatures. Our Association members spoke with delegates, distributing SOS flyers on the veg solution to climate change along with tasty, eco-friendly vegan lunchboxes.
David Wainaina Kuria – Youth activist, Kenya (M): What we eat really contributes to emitting a lot of greenhouse gases, especially methane. And we were just at the Conference of Youth where we got a presentation on how much we contribute in terms of when we eat meat.
And all of us decided that we can’t be advocating for climate justice while even our lifestyles is totally contrary to what we’re advocating for. Some of us said that while travelling back to Nairobi, no meat! So we’ll just eat something that is more environment-friendly.
Landry Mayigane, PhD - African Youth Initiative of Climate Change, Rwanda (M): Wow! You know, it was very good. I didn’t know that it was vegetarian until someone just told me. Really, please, if all the world could turn veg, it would be very good.
Correspondent (M): Supreme Master Television in Durban, South Africa.Our best wishes, government leaders and all participants of COP 17, for your meaningful discussions. We pray for a fruitful outcome that will ensure the most effective measures to halt planetary warming, especially the Earth-saving organic vegan diet.
Group of youths (M&F): We are at COP 17. Be Veg, Go Green 2 Save the Planet!
VOICE: During an April 2011 videoconference in Mongolia, Supreme Master Ching Hai called upon both the world’s leaders and people to address the most pressing cause of climate change.