Dr Vandana Shiva, a world-renowned environmental activist and biodiversity campaigner, recently gave her first ever public talk in Qatar as part of ‘Earth Talks’ programme, organised by Arab Youth Climate Movement Qatar (AYCM-Q), in partnership with Qatar National Library.
On the invitation of AYCM-Q, Dr Vandana Shiva was back to Qatar after 18 years, and she showed no sign of fatigue and her commitment to protecting the biodiversity remained as strong as ever.
Having published more than 30 books and commissioned several reports on agriculture and biodiversity, Dr Shiva established Navdanya, an NGO promoting biodiversity based in India, in the early 1990s to prove that organic farming was the only way forward to sustainable future. Her work earned her 1993 Alternative Nobel Peace Prize (the Right Livelihood Award).
She enthralled the audience with her passion, strong presence and bold ideas that offered a glimmer of hope to protect the declining species. Dr. Shiva spent a good deal of the lecture talking about the toxic nature of mono-culture and how multi-national companies hijacked the food system and it impacts on public health.
She praised the HH Sheikha Moza for the initiative of Quranic Botanic Garden, and she considered it was one of the important projects that protected not only the genetic diversity but also cultural diversity.
Dr Shiva explained that today there were two kinds of crises on a planetary scale, climate change and species extinction. She added that the current modes of production and consumption of the food were contributing to worst ever issue of food security.
Dr Shiva further urged that in a period of climate change, the world needed a biodiverse system. The system of seeds based on mono-culture was wrong and inappropriate. The biodiverse system had produced more food, and biodiversity means that seeds must be in the hands of farmers.
The ‘Earth Talks’ series concluded with a question and answer session and a presentation of memento to Dr. Shiva by QNL. The ‘Earth Talks’ s’eries is part of AYCM-Q strategic initiative to stir the ecological consciousness of the public and different communities in Qatar. The series focus on information dissemination and grassroots awareness activities. This was explained by Neeshad Shafi, AYCM Qatar Executive Director. The event was moderated by Sayeed Mohammed, QNL Information Service Librarian.
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