International Environment Forum was held at EXPO 2016

EXPO 2016 held International Environment Forum in Antalya with the cooperation of Liberatum, a London-based non-profit which is known to organize this kind of environment-related meetings.

Forum began in EXPO Congress Centre with an opening speech from Pablo Ganguli, founder of Liberatum. Ganguli pointed out that the worst crisis humanity faced today was mainly an environmental one and it was nature’s vengeance against us, breaking out like a nightmare. He said EXPO was instrumental to educate young people living in this country and this part of the world about the importance of environment and how to protect it. He underlined how important it was to organize the forum with the cooperation of EXPO 2016.

Secretary General of EXPO 2016 Antalya Agency Fırat Işık said they were happy to host Liberatum Summit International Environment Forum. He pointed out that there was a global disaster waiting for humanity today besides wars, terror, earthquakes and floods. He said:

“There’s one more global disaster waiting on our door that we don’t dare to accept and talk about because some fear that their economic interests will hurt. That is global warming and climate changed. Unfortunately we have already started to see the effects of this disaster. Thousands of years ago, a 5-centigrade change in heat levels started the ice age. There are now predictions that we could reach a 5-centigrade change by the year 2100. ‘If a 5-grade change caused an ice age in the past, what it can effect in the future?’ appears as a legitimate question. It is obvious that climate change carries a more destructive potential for humanity than any conflict on earth.”   


Işık gave some striking examples about the negative effects of climate change and environmental pollution. He said that 7 million people had lost their lives in a single year during 2012 according to World Health Organization reports. He also noted that there was a prediction that by the year 2050, 700 million people would have migrated from their homes because of drought and famine caused by climate change. Işık continued:

“In EXPO 2016 Antalya, we chose “Children and Flowers” as our theme which we select flowers to represent the purity and children to represent the future. We formulated our motto “A greener world for future generations” around this theme. We aimed to raise awareness about global warming and climate change, inform individuals about risk-carrying aspects of it and educate our children to make them more sensitive about nature and all living beings. We want this to be the legacy of this organization.”

Leon McCarron, a traveller and explorer who toured the world on his bike was there as one of the forum’s speakers. He made a presentation called “The Importance of Wild Life” in which he shared his observations from different parts of the world during his travels. He pointed out that there were still a lot to do to protect natural world. He said: “We have treated our world very bad. But we can still change it. We can be protectors and servants of this planet. We should be responsible. Take initiative. We can start on individual level. We have to think local and act global.”

Photographer and environmental activist Michel Comte made a presentation titled “Global Impact” moderated by Ceren Çerçiler. In 2004, Comte founded Water Foundation to make drinking water accessible in 3rd world countries. He pointed out that water resources were getting polluted in an increasing speed. He said people were consuming more because of greed and that in turn caused more pollution. He emphasized the importance of recycling, especially recycling waste of plastic packaging.

“Many cities like Aleppo and Baghdad were destroyed in wars and conflicts happening in different parts of the world. They should be rebuilt and rebuilt as green cities”, said Comte.

In the afternoon part of the forum, the documentary “In This Climate” made its premiere.

Speeches that were made during the forum will be presented to the United Nations Climate Change Conference that will be held in Marrakesh on November.