The Blue Planet Project (and the Council of Canadians) has been present at World Social Forum gatherings over the past twelve years.
Blue Planet Project co-founder and Council of Canadians chairperson Maude Barlow spoke at the first World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil. The keynote speech she presented can be read at http://www.docstoc.com/docs/42911653/Maude-Barlow-at-World-Social-Forum-Panel-on-Future.
At the third WSF, which took place in Porto Alegre, Barlow gave a keynote address before 5,000 people on the crisis of international financial institutions. After her speech, she launched the Portuguese translation of Blue Gold: The Battle Against Corporate Theft of the World’s Water (titled Ouro Azul). More on this at http://canadians.org/media/other/2003/28-Jan-03.html.
Barlow was also at the fourth WSF in Mumbai, India, along with campaigns coordinator Bill Moore-Kilgannon and organizer Anil Naidoo. To read her ‘Passage to India’ report, go to http://www.blueplanetproject.net/Movement/India_2.html.
At the fifth WSF in Porto Alegre, we noted, “The Council of Canadians is attending the WSF to build an international network to fight for recognition of water as a human right. The issue of water justice is high on the agenda of the Forum. Issues around the right to water are some of the most pressing facing the international community today.” Organizer Eduardo Sousa attended this Forum with Barlow. For more, see http://www.blueplanetproject.net/resources/news/2005/24_Jan_05.html.
For the seventh WSF in Nairobi, Kenya, we sent a team including Barlow, Naidoo, Board members Garry John and Leo Broderick, as well as Council activist Shirley Lord. In her report Nairobi Reflections, Barlow wrote, “We put on several workshops and strategy sessions on the right to water and I was a keynote speaker on a panel chaired by Nobel Prize winner Wangari Maathai.” Her report can be read at http://www.blueplanetproject.net/documents/MBarlowNairobiReflectionsJanuary07.pdf. To read about the launching of the African Water Network at this WSF, go to http://canadians.org/media/water/2007/24-Jan-07.html.
The tenth World Social Forum was decentralized, with about 35 national, regional and local forums taking place around the world. One of the notable regional forums was the US Social Forum held in Detroit, Michigan and attended by about 18,000 people. Both Naidoo and water campaigner Meera Karunananthan were in Detroit for this.
This WSF took place in Dakar, Senegal. Broderick was present for this meeting that brought together water justice advocates from five continents. To read the Water Justice Movement statement from this meeting, please go to http://www.canadians.org/campaignblog/?p=6345.
IPS has reported, “Following in the wake of the wave of revolutions dubbed the ‘Arab Spring’, which originated here nearly two years ago, North Africa is gearing up to host the World Social Forum for the first time. …(Tunisia) will welcome visitors from all over the world in March of 2013, in a gathering organisers estimate will number upwards of ten thousand participants.” The Blue Planet Project will be once again present at the WSF alongside the global water justice movement.
For more on the Blue Planet Project, please see our (new) website at http://www.blueplanetproject.net.