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Signing the Paris Agreement and understanding Earth as our Mother on Earth Day

30 April 2016

Catherine Devitt Earth Day, celebrated 22 April, is the annual event which brings together millions of people from around the globe to express support for environmental protection.  Earth Day 2016 marks the 46th anniversary of the first Earth Day which is often credited as playing a fundamental role in launching the modern environmental movement. More recently, the concept has been expanded to become International Mother Earth Day, based on the simple yet profound recognition of the interconnectedness between all species on Earth and with the Earth itself, and the need for humanity to live in greater harmony with the natural environment. World leaders gathered in New York on the same day to sign the Paris Agreement – the framework put forward by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change for dealing with climate change mitigation and adaptation. Although the Paris Agreement reflects international political consensus on the need to tackle climate change and is ambitious in its aims to limit temperature rise to 1.5 degrees C above pre-industrial levels, strong political and public will is urgently required to translate this ambition into reality.  Challenging decisions lay ahead, especially when we consider the growing body of scientific evidence which points clearly
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Water is life

31 March 2016
“El sexto objetivo de los Objetivos de desarrollo sostenible (ODS) trata explícitamente las cuestiones vinculadas de agua y saneamiento.  Pero algunas de las cuestiones clave en el agua son invisibles.  El agua está en las profundidades o fluye en ríos atmosféricos de humedad alto en el cielo.  El agua puede estar contaminada con productos químicos invisibles, y los cambios en la disponibilidad y calidad del agua pueden afectar a las personas marginadas en zonas remotas.  En algunos lugares, todos coinciden." (Foro Económico Mundial, septiembre de 2015)

Alberto Garrido The big question when a planet is discovered is: Is there water?  If there is no water, there is no life.  We depend on water as much as we depend on air.  We need water to drink and also to wash ourselves and cook.  We need the biggest amount of water to produce food. If we pick a person randomly from any country and we calculate the amount of water used to produce what a person eats, this figure will reach about 4,000 liters of water per day.  This is the amount of water required to produce the food necessary for that person to live a healthy life, about 20 full bathtubs per day. But water is a renewable natural resource.  The number of water molecules on earth and in the atmosphere is constant, and it does not stop flowing.  But when we use water, we usually pollute it.  And when we use it again, we want it to be as pure as possible because our health, the lands we irrigate, and industries require clean water.  That is why we have to purify it, even if that costs money.  It is an investment that benefits us directly because
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“Las sequías plantean la amenaza más generalizada en la región de Asia Pacífico.  La escasez de agua en las economías lluvia sensible podría desencadenar condiciones de desestabilización, como la crisis energética, la migración humana y animal, la escasez de alimentos, y los incendios forestales - que conduce a conflictos y la vulnerabilidad regional.” (Del informe “El Niño: Potential Asia Pacific Impacts” de la Administración Nacional Oceánica y Atmosférica, Octubre 2015)

Responding to the cracks in the planet

Mark Raper, SJ Ecojesuit is happy to share the Earth Day message of Mark Raper, SJ, President of the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific (JCAP) on 22 April 2016, originally published in JCAP eNews. There are “the cracks in the planet”.  As we mark Earth Day today, I am reminded of the startlingly fresh...

Un miembro del movimiento juvenil GROPESH promueve el desarrollo de la artesanía a partir de materiales de desecho. Foto de: D Karnedi

Little concerns I live with

Dieng Karnedi, SJ We are living in an imperfect world and when we look around us, there are many crises and injustices to people and our environment.  The gap between the richest and poorest is very wide.  Natural resources that are meant for all are controlled by a few.  It is no wonder then...

News and Programs

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Jesuits and work colleagues in the Asia Pacific region are gathering at the Culture...

Boboto high school students win national poster competition on nature and environment

Jean-Christian Ndoki, SJ Benjamin Kataliko and Benjamin Kambale, students from Collège Boboto, a Jesuit...