Discovering what The Veins Of The Earth are…spoiler alert, they have something to do with World Rivers Day!
Discovering “The Veins Of The Earth”, and September 26th is World Rivers Day!
SEPTEMBER 26TH IS WORLD RIVERS DAY!
Happy World RIVERS DAY, PEOPLE. The ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus once said,
— ‘No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.’
Just as a human being is a living thing—dynamic and capable of change, so, too are the planet’s rivers. Perhaps that’s what inspired Canadian river conservationist, Mark Angelo established British Columbia Rivers Day in 1980. It was intended as both a celebration of western Canada’s waterways but also a call to action to preserve and protect them.
Twenty-five years later, in 2005, the United Nations launched the Water for Life Decade to help create a greater global awareness of the need to better care for our water resources. What better way to help create global awareness than a World Rivers Day celebration, proposed Mark Angelo to the UN. They liked it. They liked it a lot. And so was born World Rivers Day.
What started out in a few dozen countries is now hailed by millions of people in over 100 countries on the planet. World River Day is held every fourth Sunday of September. It’s a huge festival, one that cannot be contained in one story for The Climate Daily podcast. That’s why we’re going to devote an entire show to World Rivers Day.
So let’s end this intro with a quote from the internationally renowned river conservationist , Mark Angelo: “Rivers are the arteries of our planet; they are lifelines in the truest sense.”
DEEPER DIVE: World Rivers Day, American Rivers, UN “Water for Life Decade”
WORLD RIVERS DAY IN CANADA
You may not be aware of it, but clean fresh water has been so essential to the fight against COVID-19, so World Rivers Day is a timely opportunity for literally millions of people around the world to come together to celebrate the importance of healthy, vibrant waterways. This year’s theme is a repeat of 2020’s, “waterways in our community.”
And that’s why celebrating World Rivers Day matters to us. Doing so highlights the many values of rivers and strives to increase public awareness and encourages the improved stewardship of rivers around the world. This year, The events being organized around World Rivers Day are diverse, both either physical or virtual in nature, depending on local COVID-19 circumstances.
For example, in Nova Scotia, Canada, there will be a celebration of local river heritage at Bear River Millyard Recreation that will include kayak and canoe races, musical entertainment and various contests.
And in that country’s western-most province of British Columbia, as part of BC Rivers Day and World Rivers Day, there will be a number of projects and activities. Among these, on WRD evening, there will be the premiere screening of the award-winning film, Last Paddle? 1000 Rivers, 1 Life, in downtown Vancouver at the VIFF Centre Vancity Theatre in concert with the Outdoor Recreation Council of BC and Watershed Watch Salmon Society.
Last Paddle?… is a film chronicling a life-long commitment to river conservation and restoration by river conservationist extraordinaire, Mark Angelo. And if you don’t happen to live in Vancouver, BC you can check out the trailer to Last Paddle on their website. Surf on over to theclimate.org/episodes and click on the link for it, in the Deeper Dive section of this story.
In addition, for those that can’t attend a planned event, World Rivers Day is also encouraging many to organize their own small-scale, socially distanced cleanups with family and/or friends. These will take place around the globe, from Peru – to Mexico – to Kenya.
DEEPER DIVE: VIFF, LAST PADDLE?, Mark Angelo
WORLD RIVERS DAY IN SOUTH AMERICA AND AFRICA
World Rivers Day celebrations continue on other continents. Por ejemplo–In Brazil, Victor Kinjo, a singer, composer and researcher, is organizing a hybrid program with music, performance, live painting and important dialogues as part of the first Festival NAVEGA SP.
World Rivers Day 2021 will mark the formal inauguration of the River Ethiope Basin Institute (REBI) at Delta State University Abraka, Nigeria. There will be a secondary school essay/quiz/art competition, a fishing competition, cleanups, a signing of the River Ethiope Stakeholders’ Global Memorandum of Understanding, and a river symposium.
In Nigeria, the Federal Ministry of Water Resources will be organizing a maiden WRD event in the upper basin of the Benue River. And in Kenya, Green Oasis Lens is planning to celebrate this year’s WRD by engaging the Artists and Children in celebrating the Mathare River along its banks that have been cleaned up and literally transformed in recent years.
In Bangladesh, major events will be organized jointly by the Bangladesh River Foundation, including 20 organizations and the Ministry of Water Resources in Dhaka, including a major river symposium, along with art competitions for youth, a boat rally, river-based dramas and dance, and a seminar.
There are also several key river books that will be launched around WRD. One of these is the much anticipated illustrated children’s book by Mark Angelo entitled “The Little Stream that Could; the story of a stream that came back to life,” due in early October. – Still another important book due this fall is by Dr. Eric Taylor, titled “Rivers Run Through Us; a Natural and Human History of Great Rivers of North America.”
To find out more about the fantastic groups mentioned in this story, Surf on over to theclimate.org/episodes and click on the link for it, in the Deeper Dive section of this story.
DEEPER DIVE: A River Runs Through Us, Victor Kinjo, Green Oasis Lens, REBI, Bangladesh River Foundation, Nigerian FMWR
WORLD RIVERS DAY ACROSS THE USA, AND BEYOND!
Across the United States, there will be a range of activities. In Fort Wayne, Indiana, the Friends of the Rivers is organizing a WORLD RIVERS DAY celebration at Prominade Park that includes a “test your river smarts” event, and musical entertainment. –
Groups like the Inland Ocean Coalition and the Ocean Project epitomize these efforts. Just one example is the great work of SOLVE, Oregon, which will be undertaking major cleanups on WRD weekend in efforts to keep garbage and debris from reaching the sea. –
“Friends of Chicago River” in Illinois have organized a “canoe and clean” event starting at the Eleanor St. Boathouse to kick off the Rivers Day weekend.
In Atlanta, Georgia, the Ismaili Council for southeastern USA will be collaborating with the Episcopal community for an interfaith service event in recognition of WRD – Many other activities will be spearheaded by local Riverkeepers affiliated with the Waterkeepers Alliance. –
In the UK, in southeast London, there will be the much anticipated Art Hub Gallery Exhibition on “soothing streams” inspired by Deptford Creek, one of the most bio-diverse landscapes in London. – Also, the Richmond Canoe Club Race will take place on the lower Thames – while the Thames Festival Trust will organize a number of events, including Sea Re-Connection, an art and poetry exhibition delving into the relationship between the river, the sea, and humankind.
Also in the UK, the Rivers Saving Network will be holding an online symposium on this occasion about the Teesta River in Bangladesh. Across Europe, the River Collective, a network of students, researchers, and activists that shares a love of rivers, is organizing the Home River Bioblitz throughout World Rivers Day weekend.
In addition, we also want to acknowledge the great work of River-cleanup.org for their efforts across Europe and elsewhere. To find out more about the fantastic groups mentioned in THIS story, Surf on over to theclimate.org/episodes and click on the link for it, in the Deeper Dive section of this story.
DEEPER DIVE: WRD, Art Hub Gallery, Home River Bioblitz, RiverCleanUp, American Rivers