What if, instead of simply looking at your bank statement every month, you could also review an ecological “bank statement” that would help ensure the planet’s environmental well-being?
That’s what the Arab Forum for Environment and Development aims to accomplish for the Arab Region as a whole, in partnership with the Global Footprint Network. On November 29 and 30, two EARTH students, María Cecilia Rezabala (‘13, Ecuador) and Marisla Patricia Rivera (‘13, Guatemala), will participate in the organization’s Annual Conference in Beirut, Lebanon. Both are interning at American University in Beirut (AUB) this trimester.
The event will include panels on the region’s “ecological footprint,” the benefits of regional cooperation, renewable energy, green economies, better natural resource management, and a special debate on moving beyond this past June’s World Water Forum in Rio de Janeiro (RIO-20) to next month’s Conference of Parties in Copenhagen (COP-18).
The conference will also foster interaction between experts, policy-makers, business executives, and young leaders such as María Cecilia and Marisla. Speakers will include the Lebanese President H.E. General Michel Sleiman, UNESCO Chair on Water, Women and Development Dr. Asma El Kasmi, and Ministers of the Environment of Egypt, Sudan, Israel and Palestine, among others.
For their part, María Cecilia and Marisla will have the opportunity not only to attend panels, but also to educate fellow participants about the Universities’ initiatives. “It’s an honor for us to represent both EARTH and AUB, because these are relevant topics that we have spent a lot of time exploring with our professors and classmates,” Marisla comments. “We feel this information is really valuable, and it also fulfills the goals of our internship course.”
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