By Mudassir Raja
Watching the natural beauty of the the planet earth and discussing human role in destroying it prompted a select gathering to make a resolve to protect the splendor of the planet.
The recent watch party for documentary Our Planet at Qatar National Library (QNL) evoked strong feelings among the 150 participants who left with the commitment to do whatever they can to fight climate change.
The screening of Our Planet series was organised by Global Shapers Doha Hub, an initiative of World Economic Form. The event was hosted in collaboration with Arab Youth Climate Movement (AYCM) Qatar and QNL to highlight the current climate crisis.
The watch party was attended by Global Shapers Doha Hub and AYCM Qatar members with guest of honour Ajay Sharma, British Ambassador to Qatar; Carlos Hernandez, Ambassador of Argentina to Qatar; Noelia Paolo Romero, wife of the Argentine ambassador; Sheikha Alanoud bint Hamad al-Thani, Managing Director, Qatar Financial Centre; and Patrice Landry, QNL Deputy Executive Director.
Our Planet, Sir David Attenborough’s new nature series on Netflix, took four years to film; the series is collaboration among Netflix, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and Silverback Films, the team behind both Planet Earth and Blue Planet. The epic-scaled production, Our Planet was filmed across 50 different countries by over 600 crew members.
The documentary took the audience to an unprecedented journey through some of the world’s most precious natural habitats and never-before-seen footage of wildlife and their habitats, from exotic jungles to the deepest seas. It also took the audience on a spectacular journey of discovery, showcasing the beauty and impact of climate change on the fragility of our natural world.
Neeshad Shafi, who is the curator of Global Shapers Doha Hub, in the welcome address said: “Global Shapers understand that climate change is not a challenge that can wait. We believe a sustainable world is possible and want to hold everyone accountable, take tangible action and let the world know that our voices matter.”
He further said: “For four consecutive years, the Global Shapers Annual Survey, taken by 30,000 young people around the world, has identified climate change as the most pressing issue facing their generation . Young people have made it clear that they want to increase collective efforts towards climate action. In this response, Shapers in Doha are help build awareness and education to better understand climate science and drive environmental change back in our home cities to step up climate action.”
Ambassador Ajay Sharma in his keynote speech at the opening of the special screening said: “Sir David Attenborough is not just British, he deeply admired his commitment and which inspire everyone to commit to protect the environment.”
The ambassador added: “Then British prime minister Theresa May had committed to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050, making Britain the first major economy to do so.” He also lauded the British government which is set to host UN Climate Change summit COP26 in partnership with Italy in 2020.
The ambassador also spoke about the worst impact of plastic pollution. “We also need to address this issue on an urgent basis. UK is set to ban all sales of single-use plastics, including plastic straws and cotton swabs from the country starting 2020, noting that plastic waste is one of the greatest environmental challenges faced globally.”
At the end, Neeshad, also Executive Director of AYCM Qatar, urged the participants to make personnel commitment in the collective action against climate crisis. He called on to join the Shapers’ global activation campaign calling on governments, businesses and the global public to take immediate action to safeguard the planet.
He added: “The idea of Global Shapers to showcase this film to public was not just to make another landmark show, but also to showcase the reality of our current state of nature and not only to engage a large audience to take action but also actually get to the point of changing policy that would lead to global change.”
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