Giant poem and an ocean of emotions

Luisa Massarani
Latin America regional coordinator, SciDev.Net

The ocean and the sea have always been a source of literary inspiration.

People add to the poem at Rio+20

Now, UNESCO is bringing people together to write about the ocean, in what they call “the longest poem ever written on a beach”. The poem is 150 meters long and anyone can contribute to it, in any language.

With the initiative, UNESCO aims to call attention to the fact that 40 per cent of the world’s oceans are already heavily affected by human activities, including pollution, depleted fisheries and loss of coastal habits.

“Careful management of this essential global resource is a key feature of a sustainable future”, says UNESCO’s promotional material.

We started the project five years ago in Mexico and, since then, we’ve been to 45 cities in 19 countries; Rio de Janeiro is the first city in Brazil”, Angel Arenas, coordinator of the project and international representant of UNESCO in Andalucia, Spain, tells SciDev.Net.

The poem is being held in Rio, and was available for participation on 21 June, at Copacabana beach.

Read more about it here:

This blog post is part of our coverage of Rio+20: United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. To read news and analysis on Science at Rio+20 please visit our website.

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