Nature Sees No Borders Among Countries
The international ecological online marathon titled WORLD PRESS CLUBS ALLIANCE FOR CLIMATE took place on October 23. The event was initiated by the Brussels Press Club, which brought together journalists from all over the world on one platform. The event was one of the most large-scale actions in the professional environment. The Global Women Media interviewed Ianina Cozari, Board Member of the Brussels Press Club. Caring for the planet is an integral part of her life and professional activity. Ms. Cozari told us about the event and the contribution of journalists to addressing environmental problems.
journalist, author of a website on Belgian culture (www.cozaripress.com), press attaché of the International Pushkin Foundation in the Kingdom of Belgium, Board Member of Brussels Press Club
Ianina Cozari was born and raised in Moldova. She started her journalistic career in that country. In the 1990-s, Ms. Cozari joined the UN Press Club established in Moldova. The United Nations has always paid much attention to environmental issues and actively involved journalists in this area. Members of the press service participated in conferences regularly and travelled around the country visiting problem areas in different cities. According to Ianina Cozari, then she became sincerely interested in environmental issues. She made a lot of reports while working at ORT Moldova channel. Ms. Cozari worked closely with the country’s leading environmentalists and often visited different sites together with them.
Ianina Cozari even took part in measuring the level of radioactivity at a metallurgical plant. That was a dangerous operation that not every journalist could take. However, as a representative of the media, Ms. Cozari felt her special responsibility for that.
Today, Ianina Cozari and her family live in Belgium. She is a Board Member of the Brussels Press Club. Environmental issues are still in the focus of her professional activities. The journalist continues to cooperate with Moldovan environmentalists.
Interestingly, Ms. Cozari met her husband during cooperation with the UN. At that time, many humanitarian projects were being implemented in Africa under his leadership. Some of them related to ecology. According to Ianina Cozari, that is a vivid example of how care for the planet unites and brings people together.
– Ms. Cozari, the Brussels Press Club held a large-scale international conference on ecology recently. What was the peculiarity of that event?
– We assumed the presidency of the International Association of Press Clubs in 2019-2020. That presupposes a great responsibility and commitment to hold various international events. For several months, our Press Club was preparing a large online marathon on ecology and climate issues.
The WORLD PRESS CLUBS ALLIANCE FOR CLIMATE online marathon took place on October 23 and lasted for 24 hours. More than 100 countries took part in the action. Each of them shared its experience in solving environmental problems.
It was very important for the organisers to make sure that the world hears the voices of all countries irrespective of their size, wealth, and progress. Each of them has its own unique experience and ideas for new projects. The marathon made it possible to show environmental situation in a ‘panoramic’ format by joining together puzzle elements into a single picture.
Russia’s participation in the marathon was a pleasant fact for me. This country is very close to me. I believe that its involvement in solving any global issues is essential. Specially for the marathon, the Institute for the Humanities and Information Technologies (IGUMO) prepared a video about eco-oriented education of youth and shared its experience in fulfilling students’ environmental initiatives. The video was highly estimated by experts from around the world. That shows that such an experience will definitely be replicated.
The Israeli Press Centre representing the most advanced country in terms of technological development told about innovative experience and discoveries in the field of ecology. Many for-profit companies of this state base their business on the creation of eco-products and various nature-saving technologies. That is a very useful experience related to directing business towards solving human problems.
Probably, somebody may consider it advertising but, as a journalist, I think that this is positive advertising that the world needs today.
Georgia talked about ecotourism that is well developed in the country. It is an excellent direction allowing to not only make profit but also take care of nature while developing the agricultural sector. A number of exotic countries showed their unique natural beauties during the marathon, which was very important as well.
Nature is incredibly inspiring. Seeing its splendour, we begin to understand that we have no right to waste such wealth. It is our duty to preserve that beauty.
In addition, the marathon contributed to expanding the views on many environmental problems. For example, the inhabitants of the continents could not even imagine how dangerous such phenomena as tsunamis are for the islands. On the continents, it is easier for people to hide from natural disasters, while on the isolated pieces of land in the sea space hundreds and even thousands of people die of the disaster. We hope that now, after hearing about that, many international environmental organisations will make more efforts to solve such problems.
– Probably, the online marathon has become one of the largest modern platforms for discussing environmental issues. What does such a large-scale intercultural communication give, from your point of view?
– From my point of view, international cooperation plays a fundamental role in environmental issues. I will not say abstract words but give a concrete example.
There is a large investment bank. Established on the basis of the European Union, it unites 28 countries that are members of this organisation. Every year, the representatives of the bank hold a press conference where they report to journalists from all over the world on how the budgets were used and what financial investments are planned in the near future.
About 7 years ago, the bank allocated several billions of dollars to solve the climate and air pollution problems in China. That huge amount of money was an impressive fact for journalists. And then the president of the bank said a very correct phrase, which was deeply rooted in my mind. According to him, nature sees no borders among countries. They were created by people. The air masses will not stop at the borders of states. If countries don’t address the problem jointly, the harmful substances will spread all over the planet.
Environmental problems cannot be the problems of one single country. Taking care of the planet is a common responsibility of each state and each individual.
If you remember, one day Yuri Gagarin was asked about the most striking thing when he flew into space. He answered that when he looked out of the window, the Earth was incredibly tiny. And it really is: our planet is very small and we all live very close. We are the only ones who can take care of our home.
– What can journalists do today to improve the environmental situation in the world?
– A lot depends on journalists because they can influence the formation of public opinion. We have a huge responsibility in this respect.
I think that we should, first of all, put our soul into our articles. It is important to not only write a lot about environmental problems and useful projects but also do it in an interesting way.
The journalistic publications will have necessary effect only if the articles echo in people’s hearts.
If every article related to the environment is made creatively, interestingly and qualitatively, we will manage to inspire thousands of people and launch a whole chain of environmental initiatives, an environmental flash mob.
However, speaking about the role of journalists in solving global problems, I would like to emphasize their great responsibility for every word they say. Today’s world already has many technologies aimed at solving environmental problems. It is important and necessary to disseminate information about them in the media. At the same time, I would advise journalists to always check facts and research results related to new technologies. Unfortunately, sometimes it happens that the innovations created with the best intentions can also harm a person or nature. I faced such cases in my journalistic practice.
– What your vision of a woman’s role in addressing environmental problems?
– First of all, women are mothers bearing the responsibility for the education of the younger generation. And the future of the world and the safety of the planet largely depend on what moral guidelines and principles are instilled in the minds of their children.
I am sure that it is extremely important to bring up an environmental culture in a person from his or her early childhood. I believe, many countries can adopt that experience from Belgium. In the country where I live now, children are brought up with respect to nature and natural resources from an early age. They talk about it in kindergartens, schools, and universities. Thus, people's eco-friendly thinking is formed.
There is another side to the coin. In the modern world, people talk about ecology so much that it has already become a kind of mainstream. I am strongly against the substitution of values and thoughtless ‘struggle for ecology’. When a person takes part in an action, he or she should understand what he or she stands for and what he or she can do to solve the problem.
If journalists create healthy information environment, the educational system includes upbringing of eco-friendly thinking into its schedules, and parents pay more attention to instilling sincere love for the planet in their children, we will manage to preserve the beauty and health of our world for thousands of years. Isn’t it our global goal?
Viktoria Yezhova, Global Women Media news agency
Translated by Nikolay Gavrilov