California’s former Governator, Arnold Schwarzeneggger, teamed up with vegan ex-President, Bill Clinton, filmmaker James Cameron and Richard Branson, Virgin Group Founder, along with scores of other environmental activists, experts and supporters for the 2nd International Forum on Sustainability which took place March 24-26 in Manaus, Brazil.
The conference agenda was aimed at publicizing successes in sustainable development practices and mechanisms within the Amazon Rainforest, and designed to show the world how the viability of the forest impacts every corner of the planet. Topics debated included “Economic, Environmental and Social Sustainability of the Amazon and the Planet.” In attendance were some of the premiere sustainability specialists including Dan Epstein, Adam Werbach and Paul Hawken as well as 600 business, political and environmental leaders form Brazil and around the world.
Keynote addresses were given by Brazil’s Minister of the Environment Izabella Teixeira, Amazonas Governor Omar Aziz, Senator Eduardo Braga, Manaus Mayor Amazonino Mendes and Joao Doria Jr. Schwarzenegger presented the debates together with his friend, “Avatar” filmmaker, James Cameron under the rubric “Public Policies that Favor Sustainability.” Branson presented “Business Strategies for Decarbonizing the Economy.” And the final day featured former President, Bill Clinton discussing “Humanism and Sustainability.”
James Cameron has been a passionate supporter of the Amazon, specifically concerned with the Belo Monte dam, even producing a short documentary on the potential of what could be the world’s third largest dam’s displacement effect on tens of thousands of indigenous people. Christian Poirier, the Brazil programme coordinator for environmental group Amazon Watch told the UK Guardian that “The struggle to resist the Belo Monte Dam and protect the Xingu river is far from over.”
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