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A report by Menu De Silva, Sri Lanka
It’s my pleasure to thank you for all the staff giving support for me to travel to Germany. This was a very good opportunity for me to join with you as a woman from Asia, in order to have a very good gathering and the discussion related to the women’s political participation.
1. Regarding my idea and my impression
As we all know, all over the world women have become involved in different forms of struggle, as they carry their fight in their farms, picket lines, street demonstrations, parliaments and urban centers. Women are holding up banners and are in the frontline - from protesting against the incursion of transnational corporations right up to human rights struggles and the fight for freedom and justice in their own environments and workplaces. This is what we heard all over the world. On this meeting they chose a very good topic: “Women of the world climbing the highest mountains”. Yes, this topic shows us how women struggle for their rights. And also how they implement these rights.
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580 participants met in Gelsenkirchen/Germany for the 2nd international Environmental Counsel on 8 and 9 October 2011. Among them were international participants from Brazil, Chile, Japan, the Netherlands, Peru, Switzerland, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Turkey, Ukraine and the USA. In two plenary discussions, 10 forums and 14 workshops we discussed:
Humanity is standing at a crossroad: The foundations of life and the future of the present and future generations are directly called into question. The serious possibility is developing that humankind cannot survive on this planet. This dramatic situation is confronting the international environmental movement with the challenge to develop a new quality of worldwide, enduring and reliable cooperation.
Essential factors, in close interaction, for the development to a global environmental catastrophe are:
- the transition into a global climate catastrophe through the emission of greenhouse gases,
- this year’s development of the biggest ozone hole up to now in the northern hemisphere,
- the radioactive contamination of the earth, which was intensified enormously by the nuclear catastrophe in Fukushima,
- the destruction the oceans’ biosphere, the rain forests, the diversity of flora and fauna undermine the foundations of food production,
- the pollution of the environment by electric smog,
- the merciless overexploitation of the resources, for instance fracking and biofuel,
- new risky technologies like CCS and genetic engineering, which are developed as a part of strategies for greenwashing and have devastating consequences,
- senseless large-scale projects like Stuttgart 21 or the extension of big airports.