Declaration on Women in Media and Environment Conference,
held at the Impilo Conference Centre, Department of Health: Pretoria, adopted on 4 September 2011 at 12h10
4 Sep 2011
We, the delegates of women drawn from the media and environment, also joined by women in the public sector, academia and non-governmental organisations, attending the first “Women in Media and Environment” conference in Pretoria on 3 and 4 September 2011.
Supportive of South Africa’s hosting of the 17th Conference of Parties (COP17) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to be held in Durban from 28 November to 9 December 2011.
Recognising that climate change is a reality that will have devastating impacts on the environment and people of the world if no concrete action is taken urgently.
Determined to play a role in educating ourselves and broader society on matters relating to environmental health and climate change.
Concerned about the lack of public awareness on the subject of climate change.
Concerned that women will bear the brunt of environmental degradation as a result of climate change, and consequently subjecting poor households threats to food security and price volatility in the market.
Imploring world governments and all delegates to the COP17/CMP7 to act decisively and with requisite urgency to restore the integrity of international climate change negotiations.
Recognising that our continent, Africa, is already experiencing dire consequences of climate change and that the continent is likely to suffer the most from these consequences.
Calling on women and society at large to take greater interest in matters relating to environmental health and climate change.
Therefore resolve as follows:
A. Public awareness and capacity building
1. To utilise every available opportunity and every relevant platform at our disposal to raise awareness on climate change.
2. Call on the South African media fraternity – including print, broadcast and electronic – to inform and educate society on climate change.
3. Call on government to invest more in educating and training women in the areas of environmental health as well as science and technology in order to create a substantial skills and knowledge base.
4. Call on the private sector to take advantage of opportunities in the green economy to protect and create sustainable green jobs.
5. Call on all sectors of society to sustain information flow on climate change towards COP17 and, more importantly, well beyond the conference.
6. Further call on all sectors of society to work together and implement campaigns, like nationwide tree-planting, in order to raise public awareness on environmental health and climate change.
7. Commit to sustain partnerships forged at this conference on climate change awareness and activism.
B. Implementation of previous treaties
8. Call on the South African government to move urgently and decisively towards formulations and implementation of necessary policies in order for South Africa to adapt adequately to, and mitigate the impacts of, climate change.
9. Call on delegates at the COP17/CMP7 to build on the foundation laid by the Kyoto Protocol and move a step further towards an all-inclusive mechanism to deal with the negative impacts of climate change.
10. Call for implementation, without further delays, of all previous international treaties on climate change.
C. African position
11. Call on African delegates to the COP17 to speak with one voice and represent the best interests of African people at the conference as Africa stands to suffer the most from climate change.
12. Further call on African delegates to the COP17 to take advantage of the conference and create partnerships with both the developing and developed world towards a future climate change treaty that protects and benefits the livelihoods of all in the African continent.
Issued by: The Presidency
4 Sep 2011
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