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Symposium on Climate Change in Darwin

August 12, 2016

Christ Church Cathedral in Darwin will be hosting a Symposium on Indigenous Perspectives on Climate Change from 16-18 September 2016.


Symposium on Indigenous Perspectives on Climate Change
Christ Church Cathedral Darwin – 16-18 September 2016

When considering changes in the climate over the last decade, a Solomon Islander said “Season hem no stap distaem”: the seasons that he was used to were no longer there. Rain came at the wrong time; fishing and food gardening were changing; plants were flowering early. Things are simply no longer the same: the seasons are gone.

The debate in Australia about climate change has almost entirely ignored the stories and experiences of indigenous peoples, both in Australia and in our Pacific neighbours. When Climate Change is mentioned, discussion tends to focus on economic or scientific perspectives. Most people turn off: in the last Federal Election campaign for example, there was almost no mention of Climate Change. Of particular concern is that the impact of climate change on those most vulnerable, such as indigenous people whose sustenance and culture depend on the cycles of nature, is largely ignored.

Therefore this symposium is a first step in giving voice to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders and their concerns on climate change. As their stories are known, it will help to shake up the current broader social apathy on climate change, and help motivate us towards a better future for our children and grandchildren.

Speakers include:

The Reverend Rronang Garrawurra
Uniting Church Minister, finalist for NT Senior Australian of the Year 2016, Yolngu man

Ms Rose Elu
Torres Strait Islander, Member of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Anglican Council (NATSIAC)

The Reverend Nigel Kelaepa
Anglican Priest from the Polynesian atoll of Ontong Java in the Solomon Islands and climate change activist

The Reverend Lenore Parker
Diocese of Grafton, Member of NATSIAC

The Reverend Dr Aram Oroi
Anglican Priest from the Melanesian island of Makira, whose PhD is on Oceanic narratives and the concept of mana (the powerful spirituality that flows through God’s creation)

Details for bookings and contact:

The Convenor is the Very Reverend Dr Keith Joseph, Dean of Christ Church Cathedral Darwin. The Seminar starts at the Cathedral at 4 pm on Friday 16th September and finishes on Sunday 18th September at 4 pm.

There is no charge for admission, but for purposes of planning and catering for tea & coffee, please RSVP to the Cathedral Office on (08) 8981 9099 (Monday to Friday 9 am to 12 noon) or to the Dean, Fr Keith Joseph, by e-mail to or on 0409 783 452 by 9th September.

> You can also rsvp on Christ Church Cathedral’s Facebook Event page

> Download a copy of the Event Flyer here