Climate Train



In the most extensive country consultation yet in advance of any of a United Nations Framework on Climate Change Committee UNFCCC’s Conference of the Parties (COP) meetings, a Climate Train will depart on a month long journey across South Africa on Friday.

Under the banner – Mobilization, Dialogue & Climate Justice - the ambitious outreach programme is aimed at consulting communities in 16 towns and the surrounding countryside on their climate hopes, aspirations, experiences and solutions. Addressing climate change is a crisis of global proportions that affects life – in all its forms - now and for unborn generations. This crisis requires a cooperative faith, moral and spiritual approach beyond the scientific and political interventions if we are to deal effectively with mitigation and adaptation strategies to climate change, which we call climate justice.
Indalo Yethu, the South African Environmental Agency, in collaboration with the British Council and COPART, with the support of the Department of Environmental Affairs, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) and the Embassy of the Republic of Germany, have joined forces to make the Climate Train journey a reality. The climate train presents a multi-pronged vehicle to highlight the impact of climate change on communities, while documenting responses, expectations and solutions in the towns along the way. It is also a resource hub showcasing low-carbon technologies and presenting information and learning experiences regarding climate change mitigation, adaptation, and innovation.


The train is scheduled to arrive in Durban on the 27th of November, just in time for the events ahead of COP17, where it will be parked at the station for visits by delegates, learners, the public and activists. The specially retrofitted train departs from Cape Town station at 9pm on Friday and will be sent off by amongst others Environment Minister Edna Molewa and a representative group of inter-faith and indigenous leaders, given their crucial role in helping to change behavior and values to ensure South Africans meet the challenges posed by climate change individually and collectively. Friday’s launch will be filled with art, industrial theatre and music, centred on climate change and climate justice topics.
It will not be all about fear of the future. The specially decorated train has three special carriages for interactive events, learning and entertainment:
·       The Knowledge Carriage: A resource centre setup with learning materials and learning tools to create space to spend time applying and developing all of what is absorbed during the interaction with the Climate Train. The resource centre will showcase green technologies, biodiversity map and climate change resilience practices through interactive displays and learning tools
·       The Conference Carriage: A space to host roundtable dialogue sessions, conferences, seminars, film screenings and theatre performances.
·       Creative Carriage: This carriage will be a learning space where creative cultural practitioners, artists and others can work on projects along the journey and will perform poetry and threatre. It will offer a full range of materials and tools for creative engagement.
I am very excited to be joining the Train and to create artworks with found materials from JHB to Durban....


Schools, activists and members of the public are invited to come and share in the films, industrial theatre, and round table discussions on climate and environment topics. Off the platforms there will be tree planting to off-set the carbon footprint of the journey, guerilla gardening, social sculptures, music, poetry and art as well as lively town hall meetings and Earth Forum discussions on people’s relationship with the earth.
Among the initiatives along the train route would also be the introduction of a climate charter discussion, aimed at finding an African response and contribution – especially listening to the wisdom, values and indigenous communities’ language to make our values and rights audible in the climate discourse. While the time before COP17 is too limited to conclude a credible consultation, it is hoped that voices along the route would be able to feed into a longer term process to inform an African People’s Charter. Last month, the Economic Justice Network (a programme for the Fellowship of Christian Councils in Southern Africa), Indalo Yethu, the Council of Churches and the South African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI) launched a partnership after a two-day conference that deliberated on the urgent joint action needed to prepare our communities for climate change and the far-reaching decisions to be considered at COP17. Under the banner of “We have Faith – Act Now for Climate Justice”, a collection of South African faith and civil society leaders signaled their intention to have their collective voice loudly heard by being the first to sign what they hope will be a multi-million signature petition to be presented to COP17.
While there is an overall focus to ensure a united voice among South Africans, the train would specifically highlight the plight and struggles of vulnerable groups, such as the children, youth, women, the working poor and indigenous communities. . Our roundtable conferences at stations would also tackle burning topics for each region/town.

SPECIAL INVITATIONS TO THE MEDIA:
·       Indalo Yethu CEO June Josephs-Langa will give a special background briefing on the Climate Train on Friday, 28 October, on the train at Cape Town station’s Platform 24 – at 16h00 pm.  Programmes for the first few legs of the train would be released the54re. Please RSVP for the press conference (details below)

·       Journalists are welcome to attend the launch ceremony scheduled to take place between 18h00pm and 21h00pm.

·       The train has limited passenger capacity, but we are able to host a few journalists on a rotational basis on legs of the journey. Media houses could indicate their interest via the contact details below.

·       Please find below the train itinerary - which may be subject to minor changes in the latter part of the journey.

·       Attached are also the programmes for the first two stops of the train – Cape Town and Worcester.

Please contact Christelle Terreblanche for more information, to RSVP for the briefing or to indicate interest to hop on for a leg of the journey.
T:  +27 – 832266458

Itinerary:  28 October – 10 December 2011
Departure Station
Dep. Date
Dep. Time
Arrival Station
Arr. Time
Arr. Date
Remarks
Activities
Johannesburg
25/10

Cape Town

26/10


Cape Town
28/10
21.00
Worcester
00.00
29/10
3 hours journey time

Worcester

30/10
22.00
Beaufort West
04.00
31/11
6 hours journey time

Beaufort West
31/11
21:00
DE AAR
0:35
01/11


De AAR
01/11
21.00
Kimberley
05.00
02/11
8 hours ourney time

Kimberley
03/11
22.00
Klerksdorp
02.00
04/11
4 hours journey time

Klerksdorp
05/11
22.00
Krugersdorp
01.00
06/11
3 hours journey time

Krugersdorp
07/11
22.00
Johannesburg
(Nasrec)
23.00
07/11
1 hour journey time

Johannesburg
(Nasrec)
10/11
23.00
Pretoria
01.00
11/11
2 hours journey time

Pretoria
(Centurion or Pyramid or Pretoria North)
13/11
05.00
Naboomspruit
08.00
13/11
3 hours journey time

Naboomspruit
14/11
22.00
Polokwane
01.00
14/11
3 hours journey time

Polokwane
16/11
22.00
Louis Trichardt
02.00
17/11
4 hours journey time

Louis Trichardt
19/11
06.00
Johannesburg
07.00
20/11
13 hours journey time (Maintenance check in JNB)

Johannesburg
21/11
22.00
Standerton
01.00
22/11
3 hours journey time

Standerton
23/11
22.00
Ladysmith
02.00
24/11
4 hours journey time

Ladysmith
25/11
22.00
Pietermaritzburg
03.00
26/11
5 hours journey time

Pietermaritzburg
27/11
07.00
Durban
09.00
27/11
2 hours journey time

Durban
10/12
20.00
Johannesburg
09.00
11/12
13 hours journey time