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World-famous environmentalists to ‘edutain’ public at Eye on Earth Exhibition

United Arab Emirates: Sunday, December 11 - 2011 @ 16:15

Dr. Jane Goodall, who has done more than anyone to help us understand humanity’s closest living relatives, the great apes, will entertain and educate the public on Generation eYe day, Monday 12 December, at 11:00 am, in the publicly accessible Exhibition Hall.

Jane Goodall, as she was then, was an exceptional young woman, happily leaving her London home in 1960 to go live in a remote nature reserve in Tanganyika (today, Tanzania) to study chimpanzees in the wild.

Starting without the benefit of a college education, she noticed things about the animals that had escaped others: “It isn’t only human beings who have personality, who are capable of rational thought and emotions like joy and sorrow”. Her closeness to the animals she studied led her to become, to this day, the only human ever accepted into chimpanzee society.

Today, Dr. Jane Goodall devotes all her time to advocacy, helping to defend the world’s dwindling number of wild chimpanzees. She has become a true pop icon, appearing in media as diverse as “the Simpsons” or Apple Computer’s “think different” campaign.

On Thursday, 15 December, at 11:00 am, Philippe Cousteau, Jr, the Chief Ocean Correspondent for Animal Planet and Planet Green, the co-Founder of EarthEcho International and Azure Worldwide, and grandson of legendary scuba diving pioneer Jacques-Yves Cousteau, will present his work at the Eye on Earth Exhibition which showcases the very best from around the world in the field of data access and analysis.

Philippe is an explorer, social entrepreneur and environmental advocate. His work, which has taken him from war-torn Sarajevo to the highlands of Papua New Guinea, has taught him an important lesson: that exploring the connections between humans and the environment are as important as exploring nature itself.

One thing that Dr. Jane Goodall and Philippe Cousteau have in common is that they combine exceptional talent at doing something with a brilliant ability to talk about it. This makes them exceptional teachers.

National Geographic’s Daniel Edelson, who will speak on Wednesday 14 December at 11:00 am, wants everyone to enjoy exceptional teachers – in person, online, on TV or through any other medium, existing or to be invented.

Daniel Edelson got his first degree in artificial intelligence, an ideal testing ground for those who want to understand how humans learn. After fourteen years teaching education at Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois, he joined the National Geographic Society in 2007 to oversee its outreach to educators and its efforts to improve geographic and geoscience education around the world.

A key goal of the Summit is the adoption of the Eye on Earth Summit Declaration, which will provide input to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in June 2012. Through this Declaration, attending Ministers, representatives of government and other participants will commit to facilitate the work required to make quality data and information available to those who need it, especially in emerging economies. Individual members of the public will have the chance to add their signatures to the Declaration at the Eye on Earth Abu Dhabi 2011 Exhibition.

The Exhibition will be fun for all the family, including films, videos, photos from National Geographic, International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP) and ARKive, the world’s biggest open-access repository of wildlife and nature photography. There will be interactive elements at the Eye on Earth Theatre; examples of new technologies and projects from around the world at the Innovation Forum; the latest in emerging environmental information technologies at the Technology Showcase; a UN Pavilion bringing together various UN agencies; and leading exhibitors displaying information, products and services that enable global information sharing crucial for decision-making.

A stunning feature of the Exhibition will be the 23-metre long detailed scale model of the capital city’s future development at the Abu Dhabi Pavilion. You won’t believe the huge size, the level of detail, the breathtaking vision, and the extraordinary range of data the model includes. It is truly unique.

Developed by the Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC), the model is the perfect showcase for Abu Dhabi’s pioneering 2030 strategic vision. “UPC is proud to help raise the city’s level of self-awareness in order to improve sustainability in our region,” said H.E Falah Al Ahbabi, UPC’s General Manager. “Thanks to our unique Estidama sustainability programme, the example of Abu Dhabi is ideal to catalyse global reflections about what being a meticulously planned 21st century capital means.”

With Generation eYe, the Eye on Earth community is bringing teens and young adults into the fold. Monday, 12th December is devoted to students. Youthful speakers will address ministers, delegates and others. Online study resources for the Emirates’ teachers and students will be unveiled. The Eye on Earth theatre will feature a selection of films showing schools participating in Environment Abu Dhabi’s Sustainable Schools Initiative in action. And Ali Al Saloom, the renowned presenter of the “Ask Ali” television show, will engage participants with his take on life and the environment in the United Arab Emirates. If you’re an Ali fan who cannot make it on Monday, fear not: he will present an encore at the Exhibition on Wednesday 14th, too!

The Eye on Earth Technology showcase will present the work of the winning entries from the Environment Abu Dhabi Sustainable School Initiative.

The Generation eYe day will also allow our youth to share their hopes and dreams with the Summit, in both written and presentation form. They will be invited to complete “Eye understand…” quotes and to record a 1-minute speech. The best of both will be selected and brought to the Summit. The Eye on Earth exhibition itself will be a major draw for visiting youngsters.

For some, perhaps this will be the spark that starts a future career in environmental data and information fields.

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Sunday, December 11- 2011 @ 16:15 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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