Tonight I listened to a great panel discussion called “Speaking Truth to Power” on CBC radio’s program “Ideas” . It was from a summit about the crucial importance of fresh water to the future of our planet.
The 2010 Fresh Water Summit resulted in a petition proposing a Canadian Charter of Water Rights and Responsibilities. From the opening letter:
“We the undersigned recognize that water is fundamental to life. Without it all living things perish, some within a few minutes, most within a few days. We understand the essential role of water to life, to the ecosystem around us, and ultimately to our own well-being. We have a reverence for life, and a reverence for water.”
I understood from the program that the communique from the summit is being delivered to leaders at the G20 but I couldn’t find any info online about that.
Little bits from the panel are swimming around in my brain right now. Things like:
- Pollution and other issues with bottled water. Barlow said something like if you take all the small bottles from water we drink, globally, annually, and lined them up, they would go to the moon and back 65 times. The vast majority are not recycled.
- The environment cannot be separated from health. When a child has to go to emergency with asthma, or people need treatment for cancers that can be caused by pollutants, people will talk about health care being a priority for them because that’s the urgent need at that time for that person. But at the root of it is an unhealthy ecosystem causing such health concerns.
- Incredibly wise words from so many of the speakers there. Henry Lickers in particular said some things that really resonated for me. And of course Maude Barlow was brilliant and inspiring as usual.
It doesn’t seem like the CBC makes this program very accessible online (from what I could find anyway) but if you do find it it’s well worth a listen.