Newsletter of the
INTERNATIONAL ENVIRONMENT FORUM
Volume 13, Number 6 --- July 2011
15 July 2011
Article submission: firstname.lastname@example.org Deadline next issue 13 August 2011
Secretariat Email: email@example.com General Secretary Emily Firth
Postal address: 12B Chemin de Maisonneuve, CH-1219 Chatelaine, Geneva, Switzerland
From the Editor
Please share the Leaves newsletter and IEF membership information with family, friends and associates. Please encourage interested persons to consider becoming a member of the IEF.
Request for information for upcoming newsletters
Please share your experiences, activities, and initiatives that are taking place at the community level on climate change action. Please also share information about upcoming conferences, like-minded organizations, recommended websites, book reviews, etc. Please send information to be included in upcoming newsletters to firstname.lastname@example.org.
IEF member Dr. Laurent Mesbah of Bosnia and Herzegovina has become Associate Professor at the American University in Bosnia and Herzegovina, teaching environmental sciences. He has also been named by FAO as International Indicator Development Consultant, to review existing national environmental indicators in Bosnia and Herzegovina and produce a comprehensive new indicator framework including data sources. He will take part in drafting the State of the Environment Report for BiH co-sponsored by UNEP, with a special focus on Climate Change-related issues.
Member Registration and User Profiles on the IEF Web Site
Now that the IEF web site migration is completed (https://iefworld.org), we shall be creating user profiles for all IEF members for whom we have a current email address. When your profile is created, you will receive an automatic message from the server with a temporary password, inviting you to log into the web site and select a permanent password of your own choosing. You can at the same time update your information (address, education, experience, etc.). Once you are a registered member on the site, you can set up your own blog, create or contribute to forums, post documents, and otherwise make active use of the site. We hope that it will facilitate interaction among our members.
Planet Under Pressure 2012
New Knowledge Towards Solutions
26-29 March 2012 London, UK
CALL FOR ABSTRACTS
Please note in the conference call below, particularly Day 3 with the theme challenges to progress, subtheme B, Bridging the knowledge-action gap: The role of values for transforming lifestyles. The direct weblink is: http://www.planetunderpressure2012.net/session_karlsson-vinkhuyzen.asp. This session is co-organized by IEF member Sylvia Karlsson-Vinkhuzen and abstracts are very welcome.
Abstract submission is now open for this major international science conference focusing on solutions to the global sustainability challenge.
This is an open call for participants and for abstracts for presentations and posters to be
submitted against the session topics described on the conference website under the following outline:
Day 1: State of the planet: the latest knowledge about the pressures on the planet
Day 2: Options and opportunities: exchanging knowledge about ways of reducing the pressures on the planet, promoting transformative changes for a sustainable future and adapting to changes in the global system
Day 3: Challenges to progress: clarifying what is preventing or slowing humanity from implementing potential solutions
Day 4: Ways ahead: a vision for 2050 and beyond, and exploring new partnerships and pathways towards global sustainability
Each day will include relevant aspects of the conference themes:
A. Meeting global needs: food, energy, water and other ecosystem services
B. Transforming our way of living: development pathways under global environmental change
C. Governing across scales: innovative stewardship of the Earth system
The closing date for abstract submission is 19 August 2011. Please note, additional sessions will be advertised over the next few weeks.
Developing World Involvement
A mentoring scheme is available for those who would like guidance in preparing abstracts and developing presentations for the conference. The conference organisers are also aiming to offer financial assistance to participants from the developing world.
Why you should attend
1. The conference will provide a comprehensive update of the pressure planet Earth is now under.
2. The conference will discuss solutions at all scales to move societies on to a sustainable pathway and will provide scientific leadership towards the 2012 UN Conference on Sustainable Development - Rio+20.
3. The programme is designed to attract senior policymakers, industry leaders, NGOs, young scientists, the media, health specialists, and academics from many disciplines.
Find out who you will meet and what you will gain from this event...
For further information on submitting an abstract, conference themes and sessions, mentoring and funding visit: http://www.planetunderpressure2012.net
Wilmette Institute Course
Sustainable Development and the Prosperity of Humankind
Lead Faculty: Arthur Lyon Dahl, Faculty: Karryn Olson-Ramanujan, Melinda Salazar, Carole Flood
Duration of course: Three months, Thursday, September 15, 2011 - Thursday, December 15, 2011
Co-sponsored by the International Environment Forum
In this course we will examine the wide agreement about the need to achieve sustainable development and seek to understand its profound implications for a prosperous human society — implications that are poorly understood. From a Baha’i perspective, we will start with a general introduction to sustainable development and its goal, the prosperity of humankind. Our objectives include teaching ourselves how to think about sustainability by integrating both the material and spiritual dimensions of life into a long-term systems perspective and how to apply that thinking to questions of everyday life and lifestyle.
After studying (in Unit 2) the origins and definition of sustainable development endorsed by world leaders, we will review (in Units 3, 4, and 5) the economic, social, and environmental issues that humanity faces in achieving sustainability and discuss the spiritual principles that can help us to find solutions. We will then examine (in Unit 6) perspectives for the future, both those that show the unsustainability of the present system, including the constraints that have limited women's contribution, and those that show the need for fundamental change—all contrasted with the Baha'i vision of a new world order leading to the prosperity of humankind. In the final unit (Unit 7) we will look at the importance of education reinforced with spiritual values for sustainable development, as the basis for helping each of us detach ourselves from Western materialistic civilization, re-examine our present lifestyles, and begin to live more sustainably in accordance with the Baha'i teachings. This course is offered in observance of the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development (2005-14)
You may join our online learning community either as an individual or as part of a study group (3 to 6 people). In either case, you can do all your work at home at any time of the day or night. We assign mentors to individuals and to groups to advise, encourage, assist, and answer questions. Groups are expected to meet every week or two for group discussions. Web-based forums connect all learners--individuals and members of a group--to the insights and perspectives of fellow students from all over the world.
Compilation on the Environment and Sustainable Development updated
The compilation from Baha'i texts on Environment and Sustainable Development on the IEF web site has been updated with new material from recent Baha'i International Community statements on poverty, climate change and rethinking prosperity.
This compilation brings together many references in the Bahá'í Writings and statements of the Bahá'í International Community that are relevant to the environment and sustainability. More selective compilations on different topics are also available on the IEF site. The headings serve to organize the quotations, but many apply to more than one aspect of environment and sustainability.
BAHA'I QUOTATIONS ON ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
|SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLES||DISTRIBUTION OF WEALTH|
|The Environment||CAPITAL AND LABOUR|
|ORIGINS OF THE UNIVERSE||EMPLOYMENT|
|NATURE||TRANSFORMATION - A NEW WORLD ORDER|
|THE BAHÁ'Í ATTITUDE TOWARDS NATURE||NATURE AND PURPOSE OF HUMAN LIFE|
|ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY||HUMANITY'S PLACE IN THE NATURAL WORLD|
|Economic Sustainability||MATERIAL CIVILIZATION|
|UNSUSTAINABILITY OF THE OLD WORLD ECONOMIC ORDER||GOVERNANCE|
|PRINCIPLES FOR A NEW ECONOMIC ORDER||GENDER|
|JUSTICE||KNOWLEDGE, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY|
|POVERTY AND WEALTH||RELIGION|
|CONTENTMENT||CULTURAL TRANSFORMATION - THE BAHA'I APPROACH|
Websites offering a wealth of information of a variety of environment issues and world religions
Alliance of Religions and Conservation
Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale
Updated 15 July 2011