Prominent climate activists and weather channel on hopes and fears for COP21

Join September Green Drinks for a climate change panel discussion
JOHANNESBURG – 24 August 2015 – Continuing the successful climate orientated Green Drinks events to raise awareness for the Road to Paris and beyond campaign this year, the African Climate Reality Project (ACRP) and Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) will facilitate a panel discussion featuring prominent climate change leaders on Thursday 17 September.
This engaging debate aims to increase consciousness of the upcoming COP21 conference taking place at the end of November in Paris and hopes to motivate the audience to take climate action. The panel discussion will be facilitated by African Climate Reality Manager, Jeunesse Park, Africa’s first Climate Leader identified by Al Gore, former US Vice President and Climate Reality Founder, in 2011. The panelists are: Major General Bantu Holomisa, South African Member of Parliament, President of the United Democratic Movement and climate leader; Michael O’Brien-Onveka, Executive Director at Greenpeace Africa; and Maesela Kekana, Chief Directorate for International Climate Change Relations and Negotiations for South Africa. Each speaker will share their perspective on the climate crisis and their hopes for the outcome of COP21and engage in discussion with the audience.
ACRPs partner, People’s Weather on DStv Channel 415, will film the event and conduct interviews with guests. This September Road to Paris Green Drinks is thus also an opportunity to interact with the producers of People’s Weather and propose your climate action stories for possible future inclusion on the channel. “As the weather channel we have a responsibility towards our environment and sustaining it. What really fascinates us is the strong link between weather, climate and culture. As people, we develop different cultures based on our diverse climates. We can only imagine the impact climate change will have on our precious cultures,“ Stephan Le Roux, Head of Channel.
Ahead of COP21 in Paris at year end, the ACRP’s Road to Paris campaign is calling for 40% renewables by 2030. This aim is supported by Greenpeace Africa and over fifty other coalition partners.
Road to Paris Green Drinks events are held at the FTFA Khaya on the third Thursday of every month. This is a great opportunity to meet fascinating speakers and learn about new solutions to environmental and climate change challenges.

Date: Thursday 17 September 2015
Time: 17h30 for 18h00
Venue: 94 Bessemer Street, Wendywood, Johannesburg.
R20 donation and cash bar available. First 10 to arrive receive a Road to Paris t-shirt.
RSVP: info@trees.org.za

Issued by African Climate Reality Project, Phone Elin: 011 656 9802, Email: climate@trees.org.za

About ACRP:
The African Climate Reality Project (ACRP) is the African chapter of former Vice President Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project. In March 2014, Gore trained over 700 African Climate Leaders in South Africa, These leaders come from government, NGOs, youth, media and science across the continent. Their aim is to mobilise communities from Algeria to Zimbabwe to find solutions to climate change. The ACRP Road to Paris campaign is a global campaign that lobbies for leaders to take climate action and communicates the urgent need for a global commitment to come out of COP 21. ACRP is building support through media campaigns and various events, such as the monthly Green Drinks. For more about ACRP see www.climatereality.co.za

ABOUT FTFA:
Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) is South Africa’s first national social and environmental enterprise working towards a healthier more sustainable and low carbon future through developing, managing and promoting greening, climate change action, sustainable natural resource management, organic farming and food security programmes. Over 4.2 million trees have been distributed, thousands of natural food gardens, bamboo projects and organic farms for historically disadvantaged communities have been developed. FTFA has been a pioneer of climate change response, mitigation and adaptation, launching the first South African carbon calculator, the Carbon Protocol of South Africa and the Climate Hero Awards Africa.

About Bantu Holomisa:
Bantu Holomisa is a Member of Parliament and co-founded the United Democratic Movement in 1997. He is passionate environmental activist, climate leader and founder of the Champions of the Environment Foundation.

About Michael O’Brien-Onyeka:

Michael O’Brien-Onyeka is the Executive Director of Greenpeace Africa and an active proponent of citizen activism and reducing our dependence on non-renewable sources of energy. Greenpeace has a mission to work with others to foster environmental consciousness whereby Africa’s people seek social and economic prosperity in ways that protect the environment for the benefit of humans, the planet and the future. Greenpeace Africa’s vision for Africa is one of people living in harmony with nature in a peaceful state of environmental and social justice. See: http://www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/

About Maesela Kekana:
Maesela Kekana is a Member of Parliament and part of the South African Department of Environmental Affairs where he is the Chief Directorate for Climate Change Relations and Negotiations.