“Climate, Culture and Quality of Life” seminar at Saeima

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A seminar titled “Climate, Culture and Quality of Life” will be held in Rīga on February 15, gathering Latvian and foreign experts specialising in culture and nature sciences, policy planners and cultural heritage professionals to discuss the challenges raised by climate change and the role of culture in solving these challenges.

The seminar will be held in the Saeima Building from 10.00 to 15.30. It will be livestreamed on www.saeima.lv and it will also be possible to submit questions on Sli.do using the code #klimats. The working languages of the seminar will be Latvian and English.

You will find the English-language stream here: http://live.tiesraides.lv/saeima.lv/live2/3 

You can find the full agenda here: https://www.unesco.lv/lv/media/1167/download?attachment.

“The modern rush, consumers’ lifestyle choices, the tendency to deconstruct and construct more and more without saving energy, to produce for short-term use — all of this creates unprecedented environmental pollution and increasing amount of waste thus endangering the human existence in the future. Until now, there has been a lack of the cultural dimension in our attitude towards the climate. In its broader meaning, culture is a discussion about the quality of life. Preserving the cultural heritage allows us to keep in mind our experience analysis of which is necessary for sustainable thinking and future development quality,” said head of the National Heritage board, Dr. arch. Juris Dambis ahead of the event.

Experts and specialists will present their opinions about culture and especially cultural heritage as a solution to climate-related challenges during the four sections of the seminar: “Climate and cultural policy” will address the role of culture in solving climate change challenges, “Climate and the cultural and historical environment” will focus on the potential of the tangible cultural heritage in the context of climate change and on the engagement of local communities in sustainable environment development, “Climate, culture and environment” will look at the dialogue between culture and ecology, and the cultural and natural heritage in the context of climate change, its impact on natural processes, ecosystems and urban environment, and “Climate and intangible cultural heritage” will examine how the climate and environment change affects traditions. Each thematic section will present both the international and theoretical context, analysis of the situation in Latvia, case stories and discussion.

The European-wide network of cultural heritage experts Europa Nostra will be represented by the Secretary General Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, who will introduce the audience to an important guideline document that presents the principles of the European Green Deal in the field of culture and cultural heritage. Ugis Zanders from The Council of the Baltic Sea States will highlight the climate challenges in the Baltic Sea region and how culture can contribute to the response to them. Joan Pronnier, Project Manager at the Association of the Contemporary Art, Ecology and Research Professionals COAL, will show how to build a successful dialogue between art and ecology, while an insight into the living cultural heritage project LIVIND will be offered by the Finnish cultural heritage experts Elisa Kraatari and Leena Marsio.

In addition to the seminar, there will also be a student workshop organised in cooperation with the Faculty of Geography and Earth Sciences of the University of Latvia.

The seminar is organised by the Latvian National Commission for UNESCO, the State Inspectorate for Heritage Protection and ICOMOS Latvia together with the Education, Culture and Science Committee of the Saeima, the Social and Employment Matters Committee of the Saeima, the National Library of Latvia, the French Institute in Latvia, and the Faculty of Geography and Earth Sciences of the University of Latvia. The financial support is provided by the State Cultural Capital Foundation.

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