Thursday 3 December 2015

Fast for the Climate

By Paula Sendin, Jesuit European Centre

An inspiring conference about the initiative fast for the climate took place at the Climate Generation Areas of COP 21 yesterday; fasting goes beyond political negotiations and appears as a wonderful way to build bridges. 

This was the forceful message of Barry Coates, who was Executive Director of Oxfam New Zealand. He became part of a group which decided to fast one day, seen as an effective way of giving solidarity to others.

"We are fasting to push the negotiations for millions of people who are hungry", Pranita Biswasi said. All people who fasted yesterday, they did for a more equitable world and for calling leaders to take action on climate change.

They did it because they made clear that limiting global temperature rise to 2 degrees is not enough. They underlined that if we want to bring climate change under control we have no choice but to work together. Thus, much more important that climate justice today is the legacy to future generations.

Philipino diplomat Yeb Sano went on pilgrimage for 60 days from Rome to Paris. But Paris was not the final destination. Action of fasting connects him in solidarity with people that really suffered climate change and have no options to eat. Yeb Sano became the face of the UN Climate Talks in Warsaw (Poland) in 2013 when he broke down in tears while speaking at UN Talks in COP19. According to him, a moral crisis is actually the problem. To try to solve this, one of the most inspiring things now is how faith based communities turns into solidarity.

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