The Ecology Reference Group of the Conference of Provincials in Latin America and the Carribean (El Grupo de Referentes de Ecología de la Conferencia de Provinciales en América Latina y el Caribe or CPAL) brings together representatives of works and networks of the social and education sectors in the region.
The social sector representatives to the Group are from the Red de Centros Sociales – Grupo de Homólogos de Ecología Integral, Red de Solidaridad y Apostolado Indígena (RSAI), Red de Radios Jesuitas de América Latina y el Caribe (RRSJ LAC), and Servicio Jesuita Panamazónico (SJPAM).
For the education sector, the representatives are from the Asociación de Universidades Confiadas a la Compañía de Jésus en América Latina (AUSJAL) – Red de Homólogos de Ambiente y Sustentabilidad (FB page and in the IAJU website), Federación Latinoamericana de Colegios de la Compañía de Jésus (FLACSI)- Movimiento Ignaciano por la Ecología, and Federación Internacional Fe y Alegría – Iniciativa Ecología Integral y Panamazonía.
Processes are carried out in relation to socio-ecological concerns such as the environment, climate justice, sustainability, agriculture, integral ecology, among others, to generate dialogue, reflection, and articulation to contribute to advocacy at the regional level and from there, a vision and perspective of CPAL to the Global Ignatian Advocacy Network (GIAN)-Ecology (Ecojesuit).
The Group emerged at the end of 2019 and has since brought several issues of the ecological agenda at the regional level, managing and collaborating in various spaces and initiatives. Among these are:
- Accompaniment of AUSJAL’s activities during Laudato Si’ Week – Activities include sharing experiences and good practices that promote and benefit the care of the common home organized by the following AUSJAL networks: University Social Responsibility Network (la Red de Responsabilidad Social Universitaria), University Pastoral Network (la Red de Pastoral Universitaria), the Inequality and Poverty Network (la Red de Desigualdad y Pobreza), and the Environment and Sustainability Network (la Red de Ambiente y Sustentabilidad).
- Environment and Corruption Research Groups – This effort intends to develop by August 2023 a reference document on environment and corruption in Latin America that also offers the correlation between the two phenomena and propose actions to follow as Apostolic Body and civil society in the face of these challenges.
- Actions and initiatives of the International Federation of Fe y Alegría in integral ecology and Panamazonia (2022) – Voices and learnings from the Amazon (Voces y aprendizajes de la Amazonía), Fe y Alegría grows in Panamazonia (Fe y Alegría crece en la Panamazonía), Fruits and challenges of Pan-Amazonian education in Fe y Alegría
- Laudato Si’ Platform (2021/2022) – Animation and accompaniment of CPAL activities and institutions in the Laudato Si’ Platform
- Support and participation in the World Assembly for the Amazon (July 2020)
- Ecojesuit commitments to build a new normal (July 2020)
- Aurora Magazine No. 17 ECOactivos (March to May 2021) – The 17th edition of Aurora Magazine (Jesuit voices during the pandemic) addresses the ecological theme reflected in the various works and spaces in which the Society of Jesus is present in Latin America, so this edition is entitled ECOactivos. The Group coordinated the concept and development of this edition as well as the management and follow-up of articles with networks and works, and editorial writing.
- Urgent dialogues on the emergency in the Amazon (May to June 2020) – Carried out from CPAL to report on the emergency situation in the Amazon due to Covid-19 and evaluate possible collaboration scenarios
- Webinar on the Analysis of the ecological impact of Covid-19 (Análisis del impacto ecológico del Covid-19) (April 2020)
At the global level, the Group coordinates and collaborates with Ecojesuit and there were key actions in 2020 and 2021.
In 2020, the Group coordinated and managed the participation of young high school graduates in a series of virtual dialogues carried out within the framework of The Economy of Francesco. The Group also joined a process to identify Ecojesuit’s main actions to rebuild a new normal and to draft a document with specific commitments for the reconstruction of a “new normal” in response to the consequences of Covid-19 and its global impacts.
In 2021, the Group joined the Ecojesuit process of reflection and preparation for COP26, supporting and following up the appointment of delegates from the region to participate in the preparation, development, follow-up, and support for the process prior to and after its realization. Within this framework, the document Towards COP26: Advocating for Climate Justice, A Commitment from the Ignatian Family (Hacia la COP26: Abogando por la justicia climática, Un compromiso interno de la Familia Ignaciana) was disseminated and supported by various works and networks of CPAL.
For more information on El Grupo de Referentes de Ecología de la CPAL, please contact the Coordinator, Ms Mercedes Solis, through her email RSAI@cpalsj.org.
This article is also available in Spanish.