by Happy Pretty Ntsanwisi – Nthavela Newspaper*
DURBAN, Dec 3 – (TerraViva) Noluthando Banda comes from Newcastle, not far from where the U.N. climate conference is taking place in Durban, South Africa. She is attending the conference hoping to learn how to reduce the threat global warming poses to her community.Banda explained her hopes for the 17th Conference of Parties to TerraViva.
Q: Why are you at COP17?
A: I am here at COP17 because I see the need to interact with other people from different countries and to get to know how climate change affects them in their countries. I would want to know the results of these discussions about climate change so that I can apply it in my own society.
Q: What do you hope will be achieved at COP 17?
A: My main goal is to get as much information as I can about climate change and how to reduce the risks so that I am not affected where I come from. I am aiming to take these strategies and start to use them immediately. I also want to educate other people who did not have opportunity to come to this conference.
Q: What problem do you have with climate change?
A: It has affected most of our precious nature such as people chopping down our beautiful forest which protected us from soil erosion. We also don’t have rainfall and this affects our farmers when they produce food for our communities. In some areas, we don’t have water and people have to use dirty water from the streams for their households and then they become victims of cholera. Some even lose their lives.
Q: How does climate change affect you?
A: The way people are getting developed these days affects everything. People are occupying spaces for animals and using land which was supposed to be used by farmers to grow food for our communities.
* Community media coverage of COP 17 is being supported by the Media Development & Diversity Agency of South Africa, which is promoting the participation of local journalists through a programme of training and reporting on climate change.