A new chapter begins in Sri Lanka

Colombo, Sri Lanka – In an historic moment for environmental advocacy within the region, Greenpeace proudly announces the opening of its South Asia regional office, marked by the ceremonious arrival of its renowned vessel, the Rainbow Warrior. This significant event not only symbolizes a new frontier for Greenpeace in the South Asian context but also kicks off the eagerly awaited “People For Climate – Greenpeace Indian Ocean Ship Tour 2024.”

The launch, celebrated on 13th February aboard the Rainbow Warrior, was a testament to the spirit of unity and collective action, with a grand welcome ceremony that featured a rich tapestry of Sri Lankan cultural performances. Esteemed guests, including influencers, youth groups, authorities, celebrities, and environmental allies, came together to champion the cause against climate change alongside Greenpeace.

Voices for change

Jehan Canaga Retna, a board member of Greenpeace South Asia and a noted environmentalist, highlighted the urgent need for action in Sri Lanka, emphasizing the country’s environmental challenges and the disproportionate impact of climate change on the region despite its minimal contribution to the global crisis. The call for a dedicated climate change foundation in Sri Lanka underscores the gravity of the situation and the collective resolve needed to address it.

A call to action

The ceremony was not only a celebration but also a platform for raising awareness, featuring thought-provoking discussions and a mesmerizing performance that underscored the urgent message of environmental advocacy. A compelling photo exhibition offered a glimpse into the lives of coastal communities affected by climate change, further stressing the importance of preserving our environment.

A unified vision

Binu Jacob, Executive Director of Greenpeace South Asia/India, painted a vivid picture of the challenges faced by the over 1.5 billion inhabitants of the region. Highlighting the vulnerability of South Asia’s ecologically sensitive areas and its population, Jacob emphasized the critical need for concerted action in the face of climate instability.

Echoing this sentiment, Amruta SN, a campaigner with Greenpeace South Asia/India, called for a unified response to the climate crisis. Recognizing the global nature of the issue and the disproportionate burden shouldered by the Global South, Amruta stressed the importance of a collective voice from the South Asian region, advocating for a common platform to amplify this cause.

Moving forward together

Greenpeace South Asia’s journey has just begun, with a series of events planned to engage with communities, policymakers, influencers and the broader public. These initiatives aim to tackle climate change, pollution and marine biodiversity preservation from a regional perspective, fostering a unified effort towards a sustainable future.