Tag Archives: Youth

Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics Workshop.

Earlier this year, I received a scholarship from Inclusive Leadership to undergo Earth Charter’s “Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics” training for young leaders. The training had lots of impact on my leadership and advocacy path. It introduced me to Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), new ways of thinking, and a more robust approach towards achieving the SDGs and even beyond that towards a more peaceful and sustainable future.

As part of the training, participants organized individual workshops to expand the knowledge on the concepts of the programme. I organized my workshop in Kumasi – Ghana on the 22nd of March under the theme “Building Earth Leaders Today.”

I had a group of 25 people from 11 countries and from different backgrounds. The event started with introductions and we discussed ESD. Only 1 person out of the 25 had experienced Education for Sustainable Development. This emphasized on the need for ESD. We deliberated and shared several views on how to promote ESD. The discussion led us to Leadership (Earth Leaders) and Ethics. Participants named Osama Bin Laden as a successful leader (capable of driving people to follow his vision) but agreed that our planet don’t need such leaders but Earth Leaders – leaders who are ethical, concerned about the present and the future. I then led the team to dive into ethics and moved on to critical and system thinking.

We watched a video on system thinking – which illustrated how the earth is all merged together and that every single decision affects a much larger system. Following that, participants were grouped into five (5 groups of 5). Each group selected one local problem in their home country/community and tasked another group to use system thinking to provide a solution to the problem.  At the end, we had beautiful solution to global issues such as terrorism, water scarcity and food insecurity, inequalities, etc.

A presentation on the workshop “ESD, Earth Leadership, and System Thinking” can be found here: Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics Workshop – 2017 SLIDES.

The debrief section was another great moment for me to hear what participants had learned. About 70% of feedback response showed that participants had no knowledge about ESD, 50% mentioned that they have heard about system thinking but had no understanding to it, 90% of participants pledge to promote ESD and to adopt ethical leadership towards sustainable development.

To conclude this blogpost, I want to express my gratitude to the Earth Charter for providing such wonderful opportunity for young leaders across the world, and to Inclusive Leadership for the sponsorship. Also, my appreciation to Sarah Dobson and Phat Tan Nguyen for coordinating the event, and to all the wonderful participants who made it as success.

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WORLD CLIMATE EVENT BY GREEN AFRICA YOUTH ORGANIZATION AT KUMASI HIVE.

The World Climate simulation event gives people a taste of what it is like to be a negotiator at the UN climate change negotiations. World Climate was developed by Climate Interactive, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management, and the University of Massachusetts Lowell (UML) Climate change Initiative. In view of this, an event was organized by the Green Africa Youth Organization (GAYO) with support from Climate Interactive and the University of Mohammed VI Polytechnic in Morocco at the Kumasi Hive, Kentinkrono-Kumasi.
Over 60 people registered to attend the event while 40 people made it to the event excluding facilitators and organizers. The event was attended by environmental enthusiasts, civil society groups, public servants working in the field if environment, and mostly young environmental graduates. The event lasted for four hours and was coordinated by Joshua Amponsem (GAYO), and Benson Adjei (CSI).
Our event kick-started at around 10:30 GMT and Audra Tufuor simulated as IPCC scientist to give a brief presentation on climate change, after which co-facilitator, Benson Adjei, introduced World Climate to the participants. Joshua Amponsem introduced the formal section and divided the organizations into their 6 bloc groups – U.S.A, EU, China, India, Other Developed Countries, and Other Developing Countries. Additionally, people played the role of the press and also delegates to represent Climate Activist groups. Joshua launched the first round of negotiations and delegates commenced the 1st round of negotiations.

Prior to the commencement of the first round, Ms. Ivy Gyimah (Head of Research, GAYO) played the role of Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC and gave a wonderful opening speech which really formalized the opening of the simulation event. Following her speech, Joshua Amponsem also gave a short speech as the UN Secretary General.
After about 10 minutes, the first round came to an end. We launched C-ROADS to reflect delegate’s commitments but delegate’s commitment did not meet our 2degC target – however, we had a financial commitment of over $150b with much coming from U.S.
Following that, we opened the second round of negotiations. During the second round, participants felt much more involved with their role. EU proved to be very difficult in agreeing to funds rather than the US.

The representatives from the developing countries seemed too timid and out of the game – they had poor negotiation skills. China seemed to be more responsible and wanted to negotiate with the US in terms of fund and carbon reduction. The other developed countries had no trouble at all with negotiations – their commitments were just right. India had great ideas and spent so much time talking to EU for funding and collaborative investments towards green technology – which was okay.
At the end of the two sections, the nation’s decisions were fed into C-ROADS software to calculate if the goal of groups to limit global warming to “well below 2˚C” compared to preindustrial levels was met. The results from the computer showed the nations have only limited global warming to 2.3˚C which means more intensive actions have to take place to reach the 2˚C goal. China and the US made changes to enable us meet our 2deg C target.

After the World Climate simulation, room was made for contributions and comments. A number of contributions and comments were made by the participants;

  • Climate change is least talked about on the news.
  • We have to organize climate change awareness programs.
  • We have to bring out a lot of climate change innovations.
  • Many participants pledged to expand knowledge on climate change.
  • About 5 participants were interested to organize a World Climate Event

In conclusion, the program was successful and was impressed by the participation of the youth-led organizations with their presence, contributions and comments to the event. It was an opportunity for young people to play such active role as country leaders and also having given them the opportunity to learn more on climate change.
The next World Climate Simulation events will be organized by GAYO in Cape Coast, Sunyani, and Takoradi.

My Tweet Chat on Climate Change

On the 10th of August 2016, I was hosted by  Climate Change Initiative of Africa to discuss the causes and impact of climate change to a global audience on Twitter. With the hashtag #CHAINafrica, over 40 people were actively engaged with the discussion.

Please find below the tweets I shared with the audience.

  1. Thank you @ClimateChange54 and everyone who is here to learn more about #ClimateChange. I am very pleased to be sharing my story with you. 
  2. Thank you @@skosei001 @ for having me. @rasbugri @DorrenDorys @BalrajArpit I acknowledge your presence.
  3. @AmponsemJoshua is a climate advocate and an environmental scientist from the University of Cape Coast in Ghana. #CHAINafrica
  4. #ClimateChange refers to a long-term significant change in the Earth’s climate – mainly temperature, over several decades. #CHAINafrica
  5. Major changes that factors in #ClimateChange includes #Temperature, #Precipitation, #Wind Patterns, #Humidity. #CHAINafrica
  6. Importantly, #ClimateChange can occur Naturally ( eg. by volcanos) & also by artificial activities – man made. #CHAINafrica
  7. How & when did mankind cause #ClimateChange? Any ideas? Think?#CHAINafrica
  8. Beginning the 20th century, man decided to advance – urbanize & modernize. That’s when it begun. Eg. Burning #FossilFuel! #CHAINafrica

9.The results of Urbanization & #Modernization was & is an increase in atmospheric Greenhouse Gases #GHGs. #CHAINafrica

  1. Through urbanization we utilized more Earth resources and altered the planet’s Greenhouse Effect! #CHAINafrica Then #GlobalWarming begun.
  2. When the sun shines on earth, some is reflected & some becomes heat via #GHGs. #CHAINafrica
  3. The trapping of heat from sunlight by GHGs is naturally designed to keep the average surface temp of Earth🌏 around 14▫C.#CHAINafrica
  4. Without GHGs (CFC, CO2, Sulphur Oxides, HFC, methane, etc), the average surface temp of Earth would be -19▫C (very cold). #CHAINafrica
  5. Meaning that, we cannot survive without GHGs and we also cannot survive if they exceed too much background concentrations. #CHAINafrica
  6. Simply put, the higher #GHGs concentration, the #hotter the Earth will be. #CHAINafrica
  7. What is the data behind all these talk on #ClimateChange? Share with me if you have any data regarding #GlobalWarming #CHAINafrica
  8. June 2016 was the hottest June in modern history & the 14th consecutive month that heat records have been broken. #CHAINafrica
  9. World Bank analysis: Ignoring #ClimateChange can put 100million more pple into poverty by 2030 – 43million will be in Africa. #CHAINafrica
  10. Just as the risks of #ClimateChange are immense, so are the rewards of #ClimateAction if we invest in our people & our Earth. #CHAINafrica

 

 

 

MY 3rd TALK ON GLOBAL WARMING AT THE AMUDURASI COMMUNITY SCHOOL.

On Friday, 29th July 2016, I was at another community school to talk about Global Warming and how it relates to climate change. This is my last education program on Global Warming before I prepare my Global Warming report. For this community school, I focused more on climatic effects of Global Warming on the community while illustrating much larger/global impacts of Climate Change.
The headmistress of the school was very happy that I chose their school among the many schools within the Amudurasi communtiy. Upon starting my presentation, I asked so many questions regarding environment, global warming, and climate change. Their response was quiet good, I was surprised that some of the students even mentioned fossil fuels and renewables prior to my presentation.
Noting that the students had fore knowledge on GHG and fossil fuels, I went straight ahead to explain how GHG and fossil fuel burning contributes to global warming. It was very interesting and I got excited to award the most exceptional student and also announce him as an eco-leaner.
As I went ahead with the presentation, I explored with the students and we came to a conclusion that irregular rainfall pattern, acid rain, and excess warmth in the atmosphere are the major impacts of global warming in Amudurasi. Occupation in Amudurasi is dominated by farming, and cutting trees for firewood and thus, I highlighted that they are contributing massively to Global Warming if they do not replace the trees they cut.

More so, most of the students expressed that current temperatures are usually between 30 – 35 degrees celcius, a very warm temperature. I also shared in my experience how tiring it was to walk about 30 minutes under the sun while getting to the school premises – the weather was hot and I was full of sweat.
Later on, I mentioned hunger, poverty, migration, flooding, tsunamis, hurricane, sea level rise, and etc as other global impacts of Global Warming.
To conclude, I selected the most participating student to summarize all that I have taught them during my presentation. He was able to talk about Global Warming in his own words and I was very pleased. I have decided to award him a Samsung Branded 8 Gigabyte Pendrive. I will visit his school later this week and give him his award and announce the second Eco-Leaner in Ghana. I am hopeful to establish Tunza Club in Ghana through this initiative.

talk 2

talk

talk 3

 

Keep On Believing: #SolarImpulse – An Inspiration.

Nothing inspires me more than the story of the two pilots who flew the Solar Impulse 2 around the world. Not knowing whether it is possible or not, Andre Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard flew the first ever flying plane powered solely by solar having a weight of just 2.3 tonnes while an average plane weighs 300 tonnes. With a 17,000 solar cells in it wings, it successfully made a trip around the world.

design

After flying over 42,000km, two oceans, three seas and four continents, Andre and Bertrand arrived safely in Abu Dhabi where they were welcomed by the emiratis officials and a bunch of green tech enthusiasts.

Solar Impulse is not aiming at developing solar powered passenger flights – although than can be possible. The idea which was developed in Switzerland and made in France was supported by some of world’s favorite brands including Solvay, Omega, ABB, Google, Schindler, Masdar, Moet Hennessey, and Altran, was purposefully to inspire hope for the future. For us – the young generation and to motivate us to keep up the fight for a greener and cleaner world.

Upon arrival DW interviews the pilots of Solar Impulse – listen here: http://m.dw.com/en/living-planet-solar-impulse/av-19282980?utm_content=buffer8a4ac&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Below are some of the best shots of the pilots during their trip and also images of their arrival at Abu Dhabi.

arrival

message 1

message

Abu Dhabi

trip 2

trip 3 selfie

Ecological Footprint

Have you heard the word before, “Ecological Footprint”? Do you understand it? Do you know your footprint or that of your country or continent?

I will like to introduce you to Ecological Footprint:
Conceived in 1990 by Mathis Wackernagel and William Rees at the University of British Columbia, the Ecological Footprint launched the broader Footprint movement, including the carbon Footprint, and is now widely used by scientists, businesses, governments, individuals and institutions working to monitor ecological resource use and advance sustainable development.

Ecological footprint is the amount of biologically productive land (land that is sufficiently fertile to accommodate forests or agriculture or fishing grounds– they do not include deserts, glaciers and open oceans) and water needed to supply the people in a particular country or area with renewable resources and to absorb and recycle the wastes and pollution produced by resource use. It is measured in million/global hectares.

If a country’s or the world’s total ecological footprint is larger than its biological capacity to replenish its renewable resources and absorb the resulting waste products and pollution, it is said to have an ecological deficit.

The per capita ecological footprint is the average ecological footprint of an individual in a given country or area or how much of the earth?s renewable resources an individual consumes. In 2005 there were 13.4 billion hectares of biologically productive land and water available and 6.5 billion people on the planet. This is an average of 2.1 global hectares per person. Due to rapid population growth, this figure is decreasing.

Causes of global increase in ecological footprint:

Cultural changes have increased our ecological footprints. Culture is the whole of a society?s knowledge, beliefs, technology and practices. Man used to live by hunting and gathering but in recent times three major cultural changes have occurred:

  • Agricultural revolution (About 10,000-12,000 years ago)
  • Industrial-medical revolution (About 275 years ago) and
  • The information-globalization revolution (beginning about 50 years ago).

Each of these cultural changes gave man more energy and new technologies with which to alter and control more of the planet to meet our basic needs and increasing wants. Increase in food supply, longer life span, pollution, etc. have increased our footprints.

Current Situation:

Our current global situation: Since the 1970s, humanity has been in ecological overshoot with annual demand on resources exceeding what Earth can regenerate each year.

It now takes the Earth one year and six months to regenerate what we use in a year.

We maintain this overshoot by liquidating the Earth’s resources. Overshoot is a vastly underestimated threat to human well-being and the health of the planet, and one that is not adequately addressed.

By measuring the Footprint of a population—an individual, city, business, nation, or all of humanity—we can assess our pressure on the planet, which helps us manage our ecological assets more wisely and take personal and collective action in support of a world where humanity lives within the Earth’s bounds. (http://www.footprintnetwork.org/en/index.php/GFN/page/footprint_basics_overview/)

 

According to Global Footprint Network and World Wildlife Fund, if the current exponential growth in the use of renewable resources continues, it is estimated that by 2050, humanity will use twice as many renewable resources as the planet can supply. This means that by 34 years from now, all of us on Eco-generation will need another earth to survive. For example, USA has exceeded the earth’s biological capacity by 25% since 2006.

Global Footprint ecological footprints are grouped under the following thematic areas: Food, Building and living, Gardening, Mobility, Energy, Recreation / holidays, Personal care.

Which of these thematic areas do you fall victim to? Which of these thematic areas increases your daily footprint? I am guessing Energy (electrical gadgets, phone, laptop, etc.) and Personal Care (Soap, detergent, earring, clothing, make-up kits, pomade, etc) will be the answer to most youth. Do your best to recycle, reuse, recover, reduce, and refuse your items. That is a way to protect Earth.

Countries with biggest ecological footprint _ Graphics24

Drawing Contest on Environmental Sanitation

Environmental sanitation drawing competition was launched to evaluate the four workshop organized by IDEAS – UCC on environmental sanitation with support from Tunza Eco-Generation in the form of souvenirs.

The competition was launched on Tuesday 17th may 2016 by IDEAS – UCC team. The participating schools were Imam Khomeini Primary School and Samrose Complex Academy, both in Amamoma community within the University of Cape Coast (UCC) in the Central Region of Ghana.
The submission date was set for 23rd may, 2016 and a total of 468 pupils were expected to take part in the competition (253 from Imam Khomeini Primary School and 215 from Samrose Complex Acacdemy). Out of this 468 pupils, 213 (128 from Imam Khomeini, and 85 from Samrose Complex Academy) drawings were submitted.
Out of the submitted, 33 were shortlisted and then the final 3 were selected from the 33.
The criteria used for shortlisting included the following the drawing should send a clear message, the drawing should be creative, colored and neat.
The winners (Margaret Osman – 1st place, Abigail Andoh – 2nd place, Kwame Adonor – 3rd place) were awarded in the following way:
FIRST PRIZE = a certificate and a gift certificate for a school uniform.
SECOND PRIZE = a certificate, a milo branded football and cap, a recycled basket, a coloring book, and a rule.
THIRD PRIZE = a certificate, a sound instrument, a coloring book, and a rule.
The awards were presented to the winners on Friday the 3rd of June, 2016.
The certificates and prizes were provided by Environment 360. Tunza Eco-generation provided pens, sticky note, and leaflets which were used during the workshop.

winner3

winner

winners

uniform gift certificate

certificate