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CAP making a statement about a global reduction in carbon emissions!

Over 350 people formed a human 350 on Saturday morning join over 5200 events in 181 countries around to world, calling global decision makers to commit to reducing carbon emissions.

The number 350 represents the safe level of carbon emissions parts per million (ppm) needed to ensure that temperature increases remain within two degrees over next century. Currently, globally we are averaging over 375ppm and if we remain on the present carbon pathway, emissions will increase to 450ppm. This will have a devastating impact on our communities and ecosystems - with increased food insecurity, water scarcity, loss of genetic biodiversity, extreme weather conditions and infrastructure loss.

We are also calling for developed countries to commit to financing developing countries in both adaptation and mitigation measures, as the bulk of carbon emissions come from industrialized countries, while people in developing countries are most vulnerable and have minimal buffer systems to the impacts of changing climates. As global citizens this campaign offers us the opportunity to make a clear and strong statement that leaders at the Conference of Parties in Copenhagen in December must commit to a fair and ambitious deal.

A long line of red, orange and yellow stretched the path from Table Mountain to Signal Hill, walking through a national park which holds over 170 endemic species and is identifies as one of the global biodiversity hotspots. The colours we wore symbolized rising temperatures and the impact that this would have on biodiversity.

Once we had made our way through the exquisite fynbos, boulders and mountain peaks over looking Table Bay, we arrived at Signal Hill and formed the 350. Enthusiasts shouted '3' '5' '0', and we then split into groups and spoke about how climate change is relevant to our lives, what is being done in our communities, and whether we feel that South African is doing enough in terms of land use practices, household practices, energy usage, as well as education and awareness, etc. This also allowed us to network with other people involved in climate change.

Waiting for the cloud cover to subside, at the final hour the helicopter was able to negotiate around the cloud cover, filming the human 350 against the iconic backdrop of Table Mountain.

Images were screened by the local broadcasters such as ETV, SABC and Media 24 and were globally distributed via 350.org in Timesquare New York, and through international broadcasters CNN and BBC. This footage will be screened in Copenhagen.

Thank you to the Bateleurs for the helicopter and pilot, Aerial Perspective for the still photography, Threadmedia for the running footage, Table Mountain National Park, Nature Conservation Corporation and Permitz for the Environmental Control Officers, City of Cape Town Traffic Department, the Table Mountain Cable Way, A-Unit and 350.org organizers Samantha Bailey and Adam Welz. We would like to thank Kfm, Cape Argus, Media 24, David le Page, Dirk Visser, as well as other unnamed media representatives present. Finally, CAP would like to thank the participants Pride of Table Mountain, Working on Fire, Free Life on Earth, Global Carbon Exchange, as well as many other unnamed organizations and individuals who offered their support, engaging ideas and persistence to make this a success.

Please see photos of the event attached (aerial photos courtesy of Aerial Perspective www.aerialphoto.co.za). Visit www.350.org for images from other campaigns happening around South Africa and the globe.




PRESS RELEASE

24 October 2009 – For Immediate Release

Africa Contact 1: Adam Welz, 350.org Africa English-language Media Liason, +1 631 882 2306, +1 646 823 2416 (New York, USA), adam@350.org

Africa Contact 2: Landry Ninteretse, 350.org Africa French-language Media Liason, +257 79 563 855 (Burundi), landry@350.org

Africa Contact 3: Samantha Bailey, 350.org Africa Field Co-ordinator, +27 79 744 0525, +27 21 788 6988 (South Africa), samantha@350.org

Africa Contact 4: Phil Aroneanu, 350.org Africa & Middle East Director.+1 551 486 5833 +1 646 823 2416 (New York, USA), phil@350.org

AFRICANS STAND UP TO BE COUNTED IN UNPRECEDENTED GLOBAL DEMONSTRATION FOR THE CLIMATE

350.org’s Day of Climate Action Inspires Over 5 000 Events in 181 Countries, is Most Widespread Environmental Demonstration in History

Thousands of people across Africa have mounted a range of creative demonstrations to raise awareness of the dangers of climate change. Inspired by 350.org, an innovative internet-based environmental group, gatherings of small handfuls of people to mass rallies of thousands have called on global leaders to take the threat of climate change seriously.

350.org’s Global Day of Climate Action is the most widespread environmental awareness event in history. Over 5 000 events in 181 countries have been registered on 350.org’s website.

350.org’s name is inspired by what many leading scientists now believe is the highest safe level of the global warming gas carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, 350 parts per million. This level has already been exceeded – the current concentration is 389 parts per million.

On October 24 rappers in Benin, mountain climbers in South Africa, cyclists in Tanzania, solar cooking activists in Somalia and tree planters in Ghana – and many more -- were all on the same mission: To make sure everyone knows the number 350, and exactly what it stands for.

In an early action yesterday, thousands of schoolchildren rallied in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, inspired by three young organisers who spent weeks in local schools educating them about the climate. Togo saw another large event, with thousands of young people turning out on the streets of Lomé to express their concern about the lack of progress in climate negotiations. Cape Town saw daring climbers scale cliffs near the top of that city’s iconic Table Mountain in darkness to place large protest banners in the path of tourists ascending a cableway, while volunteer firefighters formed a large human 350 to be photographed from the air, below.

A key element of the 350.org campaign was the production of at least one photograph from each event showing the number 350, “the most important number in the world”. Participants were encouraged to do this in a number of creative ways – from painting small 350s on their cheeks to forming up in hundreds to make giant human 350s that were photographed from the air. These photographs are being freely distributed on the 350.org website, and packages of prints from all the actions in the world will be delivered to the UN on Monday October 26.

“We’ve always wondered what the global climate movement would like, and now we know,” said Bill McKibben, an American environmental writer and 350.org’s founder “it’s diverse, it’s creative, it’s determined – and very beautiful.”

The event has captured the imagination of the world’s media, with high-profile newspapers like New York Times and Le Monde giving it prime coverage. Large broadcasters like CNN, the BBC and Radio France International have also been reporting the 350.org-inspired actions.

89 countries have already backed the 350 target, as well as the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Rajendra Pachauri. Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa has given the campaign his support. 350.org is partnered by hundreds of organisations ranging from large international NGOS to local community groups.

Images of the events from around the world, including those from African rallies, flashed on giant video screens in Times Square in New York as part of a 350 countdown, and are accessible at www.350.org as part of a growing online photo gallery. The pictures will be delivered to the United Nations in New York on Monday 26 October, and 350.org activists will carry the campaign on to the global climate negotiations in Copenhagen in December.

ABOUT 350.ORG

350.org is the first large-scale grassroots global campaign against climate change. It is an innovative, ‘open-source’ campaign that encourages creativity and makes heavy use of the internet. Its supporters include leading scientists, the governments of 89 countries, and a huge variety of environmental, health, development and religious NGOs. All agree that current atmospheric levels of CO2 — 389 parts per million — are causing damage to the planet and to its most vulnerable people, and that government action at the Copenhagen climate conference in December is required to bring the earth’s atmospheric carbon level swiftly down.

350.org is member of TckTckTck – a global alliance of faith groups, non-governmental organizations, trade unions and over a million individuals calling for a fair, ambitious, and binding international climate change treaty. (www.tcktcktck.org)

More information is available on www.350.org, and information on the science behind the 350ppm target is here: http://www.350.org/about/science.

High resolution photographs for free media use are at www.350.org/media-photos and downloadable broadcast video clips are at www.350.org/featuredvideos and www.350.org/oct24video


Click the image to enlarge: 350 formation in the mist
350 formation in the mist
Click the image to enlarge: Working on Fire Participants
Working on Fire Participants
Click the image to enlarge: Walking from Table Mountain to Signal Hill
Walking from Table Mountain to Signal Hill
Click the image to enlarge: Pride of Table Mountain Participants
Pride of Table Mountain Participants
Click the image to enlarge: Practising the 350 formation
Practising the 350 formation
Click the image to enlarge: In formation above the foreshore calling out the sun
In formation above the foreshore calling out the sun
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Posted: 10/26/2009 (7:15:38 AM)

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