Geoffrey Lipman, President of SUNx Malta, greets the start of Joe Biden’s Presidency with a challenge for us all to act now to take advantage of new US leadership to help redress the devastating impact of climate change.
“As a kid we had a silly joke saying ‘it's a great day for the race isn't it?’ when it got the expected reply ‘which race?’ the answer was ‘The Human Race’. Today is a great day for the race. We are on the brink of a massive change of direction in the fight against existential Climate Change, as the Biden – Harris team bring the US back to the Paris Agreement table.
“This puts not only the world’s biggest carbon economy back into the 2050 Paris 1.5 alignment, but equally importantly the US global leadership for positive change that we had traditionally come to expect before the gruesome negative intermission of the last four years.”
To mark this momentous occasion, students on SUNx Malta’s unique Climate Friendly Travel Diploma course are challenging people all around the world to take on the ‘Freeze or Fry Challenge’ to act now to save our planet.
“Our Climate Friendly Travel Diploma Students have launched the ‘Freeze or Fry Challenge’ to make a short crazy selfie to symbolically show that if we don't fix the eXistential Climate Crisis our grandkids will freeze or fry. That's what eXistential means. Take the challenge now,” says Lipman.
Angela Rodriguez, a student on the Climate Friendly Travel Diploma, has developed the Freeze or Fry Challenge.
“The challenge is important because at SEYS we believe we must change the narrative about climate change,” she says. “The Freeze or Fry message we want to send out is focused on hope but also on demanding action”.
“We believe the format we communicate is also very important, and this is why we want to make this video challenge viral. We want to engage with a wider audience on the importance of acting NOW, because climate change is existential and all countries – and tourism destinations – in the world are currently experiencing one way or the other the impacts of the changing climate.”
Taking the challenge is simple. All you need is a phone or camera, a social media account and a spirit of adventure. Just take a video of yourself doing something silly, say that you are taking the Freeze or Fry Challenge and why you believe it is important to act NOW, and then upload it to your social media with the tags #Freezeorfry #SEYS #ClimateFriendlyTravel #cft #climatefriendly.
This short video explains how to take up the Freeze or Fry Challenge.
As added incentive, SUNx Malta has secured 10 copies of the 17th issue of Sustainable Tourism, which will be awarded to the best 10 challengers.
The Challenge is part of the build up to the first ever climate friendly youth travel summit in April 2021. The Strong Earth Youth Summit (SEYS) will include lectures, workshops and other educational activities aimed at highlighting the need for a clean and green post-Covid future for the tourism sector, in accordance with the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and 2050 Paris Agreement.
The virtual event, held on 29 April, will be in partnership with Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association (TOTA), British Columbia, Canada; Institute of Tourism Studies, Malta (ITS); and the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO). Events will be held in three centres: the Mekong, Malta and British Columbia.
SEYS will honour the vision and contribution of the late Maurice Strong, a close friend of Lipman, after whom the summit is named. Strong was the architect of the UN Sustainable Development and Climate Framework for half a century, and inspiration for SUNx Malta and its Climate Friendly Travel (CFT)System.
“SEYS will be the first of an annual testimony to the legacy of Maurice Strong, Champion for the planet, who warned about the Climate Crisis 50 years ago and spent the rest of his life building the UN framework to respond to it,” says Lipman. “We are supporting that Framework by promoting Climate Friendly Travel – low carbon: SDG linked: Paris 1.5 alignment, with a UNFCCC linked Registry, to support company and community sustainability and climate plans. Last, but not least our CFT Diploma, with ITS Malta will help create 100,000 Strong Climate Champions across all UN States by 2030.”
For more information on SEYS or to register for it, visit www.thesunprogram.com/summit