Crying climate change activist Naderev Saño to walk 1,000 km
MANILA, Philippines–A Filipino environment activist who made headlines last year with an emotional call for global action on climate change on Thursday said he will walk 1,000 kilometers to Tacloban City that was devastated by last year’s super typhoon.
Naderev Saño, the Philippines’ lead negotiator at the United Nations climate talks who went on a hunger strike at last year’s meeting in Poland, hopes to start his walk in Manila on Oct. 2 and reach Tacloban, Leyte, on Nov. 8.
The planned end date for Saño’s journey would mark exactly a year since Super Typhoon “Yolanda” (international name: Haiyan) struck, causing the death of about 7,300 people.
“This climate walk is just one way of elevating my advocacy. I believe it has a big potential to open people’s eyes on the reality of climate change,” Saño said in an interview.
“[It] is borne out of a deep sense of duty to pay homage to communities that confront the realities of climate change, disaster risk, poverty and environmental abuse,” he is quoted as saying on the project’s official website.
To reach Tacloban, the home city of his father, on schedule, the 40-year-old scuba diver and former triathlete, said he would walk seven hours daily from 5 a.m. for 40 straight days.
He will undertake the journey beneath the tropical sun of the country’s traditional wet season, when the majority of at least 20 annual typhoons and large storms hit the country.
Local churches and schools along the route have agreed to provide him beds to sleep on at night, Saño added.
He said he will be joined by a small core of fellow walkers, while other like-minded individuals and groups would join him for stretches along his southeasterly trek.
Saño gained worldwide renown at the UN climate talks in Warsaw last year, days after Haiyan devastated the Philippines, with a desperate, tear-choked appeal for countries to strike a deal to avert mass tragedies of this kind.
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