By Martina Liebsch, Caritas Internationalis Director of Policy and Advocacy
It has become a tradition that faith based organisations host a side event together at major global conferences, like at the UN conferences on climate change in Cancun and Durban. Over 120 people gathered in one of the last of the side events at the Rio+20 conference, which, in spite of the general frustration about the outcome of the summit, gave some hope. The title of the event was “Ethical and Religious Insights on the Future we Want” sponsored by the World Council of Churches, the Lutheran World Federation, Religions for Peace and Caritas Internationalis. Continue reading
Adriana Opromolla, Caritas Internationalis, depuis Rio de Janeiro
On peut voyager physiquement et découvrir d’autres mondes en termes géographiques. Actuellement, je suis en train de le faire à Rio de Janeiro, à l’occasion de la Conférence «Rio + 20». C’est une première pour moi, la découverte du Brésil. Mais également, on peut voyager par l’esprit et par la connaissance, et découvrir d’autres mondes en termes économiques, sociaux et culturels. Cette conférence me donne la chance de voyager dans les deux sens. Continue reading
By CIDSE/Florian Kopp
By James Stella
On entering the Rio+20 Conference centre, the participants are instantly greeted by an enormous blue coloured digital billboard displaying the extensive list of side events scheduled for the day.
Listed on the board one will find the name, location and time of the event. With events scheduled around the clock, from 9:00 in the morning to 8:00 in the evening, there are approximately 55 side events everyday with each having a duration of one and half hours.
Some of the wide array of topics include, ‘Glaciers and Sustainability in the Anthropocen’ by CEDHA, ‘Motorcycle Safety al Rio+20′ by Ecuadorian Motorcyclists Association; ‘The Forest Green Economy and South-South Cooperation’ by WWF International and an event presented by a Palestinian organisation that focused on sustainable development under the Israel occupation. Continue reading
Caritas disappointed with Rio text and says world leaders have much to do.
Commenting on the new text released at the Rio+20 conference Tuesday for discussion by Heads of Delegation, Caritas Internationalis Director of Policy and Advocacy wrote:
Caritas welcomes that the fight against poverty is put at the forefront of all concerns for achieving sustainable development and that a ‘Common Vision’ starts with the commitment to free humanity from hunger and poverty. However, many of the important points mentioned throughout the document, related to poverty, remain declaratory in nature.
In addition to poverty eradication, changing unsustainable production and consumption patterns, protecting and managing natural resources are recognised as overarching objectives and essential requirement for sustainable development. Continue reading
Marching for change at Rio+20. Credit : Elodie Perriot/SC
By Roeland Scholtalbers, CIDSE Media and Communication Officer (Caritas and CIDSE Catholic networks are working together in Rio)
In Rio de Janeiro, the differences between Copacabana and the Rocinha favela exemplify what is wrong with our world, but hopes that Rio+20 will result in bold action are fading.
The bustling beaches of Copacabana and the centre’s shiny skyscrapers show participants to the Rio+20 conference on sustainable development the bright side of Brazil’s booming economy. But the country’s economic growth is leaving many behind, like the inhabitants of the Rocinha favela. Here, nearly 200.000 people live in less than one and a half square kilometers, struggling to make a decent living.
The gap between Rio’s rich and poor is only one example of the consequences of our flawed economic system, but it is an unmistakable one. Sadly, the final declaration text of the conference, which negotiators have passed on to their heads of state and government for approval, makes no serious attempt to bridge this gap. Continue reading
Caritas at Rio+20. Credit : Elodie Perriot/SC
Solidarity can be the currency of an alternative economy agreed Caritas representatives at a panel event during Rio+20 Summit, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development taking place in the Brazilian capital.
Caritas Brazil, France, Peru and Costa Rica and other staff of the Catholic confederation of aid agencies reflected on how to democratize economics so that it works for all humanity and for a greener planet.
Humberto Ortiz from the Church in Peru presented an overview on the impact extractives industries such as logging and mining were having on the Amazon basin. He urged for an economic model for Latin America that promotes solidarity and a green economy through dialogue between the public, private and civil society sectors and that policies must work on all levels. Continue reading
By James Stella
On Sunday, 19 June, Caritas members attending the Rio+20 Conference on Sustainable Development enjoyed a memorable day when they participated in a Holy Mass with Archbishop Orani Tempesta of Rio de Janeiro at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Rio de Janeiro.
Dedicated to the patron saint of Rio de Janeiro, St. Sebastian, the conical shaped Cathedral is located in downtown Rio. Over 60 Caritas Members filled the Cathedral and their presence was noticeably visible as one could see them proudly displaying their Caritas Rio+20 bandanas.
After the mass a delegation of church and civil societies leaders held a press conference to outline their positions for the much anticipated Rio+20 summit. The delegation emphasised that despite the significant strides made since the advent of Conference 20 years ago, much still remains to be done for governments to embrace the green economy approach and to ensure individuals economic and social rights are preserved. Continue reading
Caritas hosted a side event on the 18 June on ‘Achieving Sustainable Development through Solidarity Economy: Outstanding Issues and Perspectives of “Converting” Economy into Ecology’.