What Change?

Rishab KhannaThe challenges we see in the UNFCCC ( United Nations Climate Change Convention), are not very different from the challenges we see among civil society, or the challenges we, the IofC team, have with living in Maria’s ( Our sweet host in Durban) house.  Wei, Firyal, Jennifer, John Liu and myself are going on a collective journey of collectively creating our living and work space. We have diverse perceptions about life and work, which have been upsetting at times, but create a dynamic lively atmosphere to our life. Continue reading


What’s COP-ing in Durban?

COP17 kicked off with a humid, busy daze of mixed emotions and expectations. Day1 in a word was, overwhelming.

If you’re as confused as I was about what exactly goes down at these Conference of Parties (COP), OneClimate (www.oneclimate.net) has put together a short, concise and easy to understand video here. Confusion aside, I quickly learned I was but 1 of roughly 16, 000 ants trying to maneuver my way through an uncharted anthill, the International Convention Centre (ICC) Durban to spend the next two weeks delivering my climate change contribution to the mother climate colony…no small task! Nonetheless, we had arrived, spirit in our hearts and hope in our minds and while Day1 mayhem persisted, reassuring bursts of sanity and sunshine popped in along the way. Here are my personal picks for a high-light and low-light of the beginning of the COP17. Continue reading

COP-16 Turtles and hopes


It has been already a week since the COP-16 started. Many people, including myself have been struggling to commute between the different venues that make it difficult to network.

A couple of days ago I attended the Agriculture and Rural Development day held at the resort area of Cancun. During one of the long breaks of the conference I put on my tennis shoes and decided to go for a run on the beach that is fully covered by five-star hotels and tourist infrastructure. Continue reading

Vigil for Climate Justice

Earlier this evening, I attended a vigil in conjunction with the 24 hour fast.  It was beautiful and reverent.  A great place to be revitalized in this fast.  There are many people here who have never fasted before, but for this cause they have made this choice to stand together.  There is also a person who has been fasting since November 6th: 44 days.  I spoke with her briefly and she took great courage from us joining her in the small way that we did. Continue reading

The Human Face of Climate Change – Tim Costello at the Parliament of the World’s Religions

by Mike Lowe

Following on from previous posts with the contributions of Martin Frick and Mary Evelyn Tucker at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, here is the third speaker in that session – Tim Costello, CEO of World Vision, Australia.  Tim is a very well-known and much loved figure in Australia, a former Baptist pastor and long-term campaigner for social justice issues. He is also the brother of former Australian Deputy Prime Minister, Peter Costello.  Again, thanks go to film maker Ashley Young for these videos. Continue reading

The Human Face of Climate Change – Martin Frick at the Parliament of the World’s Religions

by Mike Lowe

Martin Frick, Director of the Global Humanitarian Forum (set up by Kofi Annan) came to the Parliament of the World’s Religions because, he said, ‘it is the world’s largest gathering of grass-roots organizations’.  He was the opening presenter on a panel on ‘The Human Face of Climate Change’, speaking alongside Mary Evelyn Tucker from the Religion and Ecology unit at Yale University (and a leading force in the Earth Charter movement) and Australia’s Tim Costello.

Here is Martin speaking about the outcomes he is hoping for from Copenhagen, followed by his presentation at the Parliament of the World’s Religions.  Thanks again to film-maker Ashley Young.

Presentation to the Parliament of the World’s Religions – part 1

Presentation to the Parliament of the World’s Religions – part 2

Presentation to the Parliament of the World’s Religions – part 3

Voices from the Parliament of the World’s Religions – Sulak Sivaraksa

Climate Change was one of the major focuses of the Parliament of the World’s Religions which met 3-9 December in Melbourne, Australia.

Film-maker Ashley Young has captured some of the voices from the Parliament, in partnership with Initiatives of Change and Martin Frick from the Global Humanitarian Forum, with the intention that these voices might be heard in Copenagen.  I will post these one per day on this blog, but if you are inpatient, you can access them all here.

Meanwhile, here is the first – Martin Frick interviewing Nobel Peace Prize nominee Sulak Sivaraksa, founder of the Network of Engaged Buddhists.

post by Mike Lowe (buberfan)