Thursday, 22 March 2012

Countdown to Dakar

A really good reason to start a blog has to be a visit to Dakar, Senegal. And not just any old transcontinental trip - but to represent the Green Party of England and Wales at the Global Greens Congress next week.   This is only the third event of its kind, and I have just looked at the video clip of the first that was held in Canberra in 2001, where the Global Greens Charter was agreed. Its  fantastic to be reminded that we are part of a huge international family spread all across this little planet all trying to work to the same ends. There will be Greens from Africa, Asia, and the Americas all in one place. That’s exciting enough but add all those Green elected representatives and political campaigners from widely differing cultures and historical perspectives committed to sharing  the same fundamental values – justice, equality , commitment to diversity and non- violence - while in the pursuit of stopping the economic madness and environmental destruction that has become the norm of government policies almost everywhere. See the Global Greens Charter and more here.

This Congress will focus on action plans on democracy in Africa and beyond, biodiversity, climate change and energy, green economics and the Green New Deal, as well as discussions on the future role, structure and resourcing of the Global Greens. I hope to meet some of our colleagues from Egypt, Tunisia and other Arab countries if they manage to get there.

Three days to go before I leave, but I'll have a couple of days there to acclimatise and network before Congress starts. So much to do. Given the agenda for the meeting it seems trivial in the extreme spend time on what clothes to take, but that won't stop me. More importantly I've got to get our latest local party newsletters 'GreenView' ready for distrubtion to tell the voters what the 8 elected Greens are doing locally to improve our lot- like saving our local Freeman's wood from development, to persuading the Council to invest in renewable energy on municipal buildings. Thinking globally, acting locally - to use a rather worn but still highly pertinent phrase.

But I'm off to network globally. And yes, I am flying there, but before you say  it all the jokes have been expressed already, and I am considering some sort of meaningful carbon offsetting - honestly. 

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