Brazil Archives - Earth Charter

Sixteenth edition of the Course Earth Charter in Action of the City of Sao Paulo, Brazil

On 8 August 2019, the 16th training for urban socio-environmental agents in the Earth Charter Programme atUMAPAZ 07-09-19 (1) UMAPAZ – the Open University of the Environment and Culture of Peace in Sao Paulo, Brazil, began. There were more than 500 registrations from which almost 100 people from all regions of the city were selected. UMAPAZ is the Department of Environment Education and  Culture of Peace of the City of Sao Paulo.

At this critical moment on the planet, when the IPCC brings us new warnings about the consequences of climate change and the actions we must take to reduce the damage and make the necessary adaptations for the preservation of life, since 2006, UMAPAZ has used the Earth Charter as a guide, working systematically to raise awareness and consciousness of the citizens on the importance of respect for life, with the nexus on ecological integrity, social justice and economy, democracy, nonviolence and peace.

Sao Paulo, one of the megacities of the world, has a special responsibility to protect what is left of the Atlantic forest, the biome in which it is located, restore the vegetation cover and the waters, and change the habits regarding urban mobility, food , attention to the most vulnerable populations and people and respect for all forms of life. Sao Paulo also has a tradition regarding democratic freedoms and respect for the Constitution; and therefore, has a role in relation to Brazil and the world, from which it cannot be alienated.

UMAPAZ 07-09-19 (2)With the Earth Charter in Action Programme, which has already trained more than 800 people, UMAPAZ aims to contribute to processes of social change by engaging more and more citizens of Sao Paulo in the effort of making the vision of sustainability articulated in the Earth Charter a reality. They aim to inspire participants in the Earth Charter Network, to act in an exemplary way in their communities with respect for life.

UMAPAZ is directed by Meire Fonseca and those responsible for the Earth Charter in Action Programme are Débora Pontalti Marcondes ( and Lia Salomão Lopes, who can provide more details about the training.

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The Earth Charter Game at the Sustainability Fair in São Paulo, Brazil

EC Game SP 1On 25 August 2018, biologist and environmental educator Patricia Abuhab, held 8 workshops of the Earth Charter Game during the Sustainable Turnaround Fair in Ibirapuera Park in São Paulo.

People of diverse ages and backgrounds have had the opportunity to experience a cooperative game that strengthens and disseminates the principles of the Earth Charter in a playful and engaging way.

About 80 people participated in the experience sharing knowledge, experiences of sustainable practices and dialoguing about the Earth Charter.

The 1st edition of the Earth Charter Game was launched in 2011 in Portuguese and English. Following years of development and building on the Earth Charter education philosophy.

The 8th edition of Sustainable Turnaround Fair (Virada Sustentável) in São Paulo was held from 23 to 26 August, with hundreds of activities aligned with the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in several locations in the city of São Paulo.

For more information on this contact:

EC Game SP 2

EC Game SP 4

EC Game SP 3

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Gabriela Barbosa Batista’s Earth Charter Youth Story in Brazil!

Meet Gabriela Barbosa Batista, undersecretary of education and socio-environmental mobilization of the Secretary of Environment of the Federal District Brasília, Brazil. Gabriela was introduced to the Earth Charter in 2002 during the Second World Social Forum in Porto Alegre, Brazil in the presence of Marina Silva and Leonardo Boff. From this moment on, she has organized groups of young people from the NGO Alternativa Terrazul to work with sustainability projects based on the Earth Charter.

Gabriela also organized a national youth seminar with the Earth Charter at the People’s Summit at Rio + 20 that involved 3,000 young people with the presence of Mirian Vilela, Severn Susuki, Marina Silva, Vandana Shiva and Leonardo Boff.

Watch Gabriela’s story below and write us at if you have an interesting Earth Charter Youth story and would like to be featured.


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UNESCO GAP Youth Training on Education for Sustainable Development for Latin American and Caribbean

This past week I had the pleasure of co-facilitating UNESCO’s Leadership Training on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) in Brasilia, Brazil for youth all across Latin America and the Caribbean with Director of Planeta Océano, Kerstin Forsberg. This two-day training is designed to sensitize youth on ESD concepts and strengthen their capacity to become ESD multipliers in order to reach a more just and sustainable world. This effort aims in helping the implementation of UNESCO Global Action Programme on ESD Priority Area #4, which is focused on youth engagement.

The Earth Charter created the curriculum for this programme last year and UNESCO aims to train active youth across the world to replicate this ESD workshop in their communities through their own workshops upon the participants’ arrival home.

The energy and enthusiasm brought to this workshop from the participants was contagious. These youth brought so much experience from their home countries and each with very different and distinct backgrounds; some of them working with indigenous groups in Chile and Guatemala, solar energy in Mexico, public policies in the Caribbean and in Costa Rica, coral reef restoration in St. Lucia, and many already working in education for sustainable development in Mexico, Brazil, and Guatemala. We had 5 youth from Costa Rica representing the Earth Charter and two others working at the Universidad Quintana Roo implementing the Earth Charter in every major offered at the university.

After the two days of interactive activities and methods to educate on sustainability, systems thinking, leadership, conflict transformation, communication, visioning, and networking, the participants were very inspired and ready to start developing their workshops back home. At the end of the workshop UNESCO Brasilia had a local samba group ready to greet us for our hard work. On our last day together we had a wonderful hike at Chapada Imperial with a guided tour through Brasilia’s savanna biome, with waterfall stops and swimming holes. At the end of the day we enjoyed a quick visit around the federal district of the city before we headed back to the convention center.

Written by: Earth Charter Youth Projects Coordinator, Christine Lacayo


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UMAPAZ Earth Charter in Action Programme in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Foto 3 Formacion de Agentes SocioAmbientalesDuring the first half of 2017, around 19.880 people participated in courses, seminars, workshops and meetings at the Open University of Environment and Culture of Peace (UMAPAZ), and 160.000 participants attended sessions of the Ibirapuera and Carmo Planetariums, also managed by the University. When UMAPAZ was created, it was inspired by the Earth Charter and it served as one of the foundations of this institution.

The UMAPAZ is linked to the Municipal Secretariat of Green and Environment of the City of São Paulo (Brazil), and it is located in the Ibirapuera Park. All UMAPAZ activities, courses or events have been offered free of charge to the citizens of the city of Sao Paulo and to those interested from other cities as well.

Since 2009, UMAPAZ has been developing the Earth Charter in Action Programme with an articulated set of activities aimed at sensitizing, training, and supporting urban socio-environmental agents to carry out socio-environmental projects and contribute to a more just and sustainable city.

In 2017, the Earth Charter in Action Programme of UMAPAZ has carried out the following activities:

  • Earth Charter Encounter with alumi – On 25 January Foto 4 UMAPAZ, Sao Paulo y Carta de la Tierra2017, a meeting brought together the socio-environmental urban agents of the classes held from 2009 to 2016, with the objective of sharing achievements and strengthening alliances.
  • 14th Generation of the Training Course for Urban Socio-Environmental Agents, from April to July 2017, with this 100 hours course, 44 people were certified and 26 socio-environmental projects were carried out in the city.  Some quotes from participants are as follow:

-“I learned to take a fresh look at the city.”

“Putting ideas into practice and still feel safe to have a basis for that is very good! Meeting people (group and speakers) who already act in the area is stimulating, beautiful, hopeful and enriching.

 -“I see the Earth Charter – urban socio-environmental agents, as seeds of trees that are being planted and whose fruits are intended to be harvested in the future.

  • Course of Socio-environmental Agent’s Foto 2 UMAPAZ formacion Carta de la TierraTerritories, in association with SESC Itaquera, focusing the Aricanduva River basin, in the East of São Paulo, from April to July 2017, with 60 hours and 47 people certified. Participants expressed:

-“I came out of this experience with the willingness to put into action all that I have learned here, and recognizing the possibility of expansion of knowledge and relationships.

-” The experience of meeting groups and finding learning spaces in the city was wonderful.”

V Seminar on Environmental Education, sowing the Educating City, on Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals, This meeting took place on 25 August 2017, organized in partnership with the NGO Aprendiz and included the Programme Sustainable turn around of São Paulo. The Seminar involved Rose Marie Inojosa, Cristina Moreno, and Mariana Noronha, from the NGO Public Agenda.

Foto 2 Carta de la Tierra actividades en la UMAPAZSome activities that are still being carried out, from September to October 2017, are:

  • Experiences in Urban Permaculture Course, based on active learning, aims to provide urban socio-environmental agents with experiences in urban permaculture workshops in different peripheral areas of the city, sharing knowledge and demonstrating how much the city has to learn from its peripheries. Association with Sustainable Socio-environmental Culture Point; Community Association of Vila Nova Esperanza; Architecture in Permaculture and Eco-Friendly House. Bioconstruction Workshops, Herb Spiral, Agroforestry Biodynamic Plant, and Intervention in Prainha Urban Park, in the Grajaú region.

Activities in preparation for November 2017:

  • VI Environmental Education Seminar sowing the Educating City.

 Foto 1 Encuentro Carta de la Tierra UMAPAZ enero 2017For 2018, the Earth Charter programme at UMAPAZ plans to hold:

-The 15th Training Course of Urban Socio-environmental Agents – beginning March

– The 2nd Class of the Articulation Course of Socio-environmental Agent’s Territories – beginning: August

– The 2nd Class of the Experiences Course in Urban Permaculture – beginning: September

– The 7th and 8th edition of the Environmental Education Seminar sowing the Educating City – July and November
The Earth Charter in Action programme of UMAPAZ is coordinated by biologist Débora Pontalti Marcondes and geographer Lia Salomão Lopes.

For more information on UMAPAZ and the Earth Charter in Action program visit:

Contact: dmarcondes[@] or  liasalomaolopes[@]


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Reflections as the New Earth Charter Youth Projects Coordinator

By: Christine Lacayo

My first month of work ends and I’m excited to share some of my reflections!

As the Earth Charter Youth Projects ChristineECCoordinator, my main responsibility is to motivate, guide, and engage young people to create a more just, sustainable and peaceful world. What is the best way to do this? I think the beauty of this position is the flexibility and creativity the job requires. I have the ability to incorporate my passions and interests to expand and create new opportunities and stories. I’m excited to bring my passion for visual media and writing to collect all Earth Charter Youth actions and stories that are taking place around the world. As an ocean advocate, I would also like to continue sensitizing my community members on the importance of taking care of our ocean ecosystems!

Some of the main projects I’m focusing on now include promoting our app Mapting, used to take pictures of actions related the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We have our next photo competition to celebrate International Day for Biological Diversity starting from 12-22 May.Mapting_FB_AD

I’m also facilitating our next online training programme for youth, Leadership, Sustainability, and Ethics (LSE) starting 19 June. This 10-week course is designed to prepare and empower young people with the skills and knowledge to be effective ethical sustainability leaders and implement Earth Charter-inspired projects.

One of my favorite roles of my job is having a group of Earth Charter Young Leaders, those who have completed the LSE course, from all over the world. These leaders are from countries such as St. Lucia, Germany, Kenya, Nigeria, Japan, Netherlands, Mexico, Sri Lanka, Serbia, Rwanda, and Spain, just to name a few! My responsibility is to support them along their year commitment as an Earth Charter Young Leader implementing activities and workshops in their community.

I’m also diving into the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Leadership Training Programme created by esd-training-flierEarth Charter International for the UNESCO Global Action Program (GAP) on ESD focusing on priority area number 4: empowering and mobilizing youth. The training is designed for young people from 18-35 who are active leaders in sustainable development in their communities.  At the beginning of July, I will be co-facilitating the training programme in Brasilia, Brazil for selected young leaders from across Latin America!

I’m very excited to start this dynamic new job not to mention the stunning nature views and sounds from my office! I’m happy to be back in the country I grew up visiting as my second home while promoting a more peaceful and sustainable world using the skills and knowledge I’ve gained from my studies and experiences!IMG_0032




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Brazilian UMAPAZ Celebrates 10 Years of using the Earth Charter


UMAPAZ 3The Open University for Environment and Culture of Peace – UMAPAZ – founded in 2006 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, has been using the principles of the Earth Charter for 10 years.

In 2009 UMAPAZ created the Earth Charter in Action Programme – Training Urban Socio-Environment Agents with the goal of “ creating a network of citizens that are prepared to act in order to transform urban environments into a sustainable and educational city. These “agents” go through a process of continuous and integrated learning. UMAPAZ 2

The programme, which is updated periodically, consists of an Introductory Module, Bases for Action, the City of Sao Paulo, Action Tools, and Transformational Experiences. It is offered free of charge by the Municipality of Sao Paulo, and is held at the headquarters of UMAPAZ, in Ibirapuera Park.

UMAPAZ 4In 2016, the 13th generation of the programme is training 50 participants who were selected from 350 applications. UMAPAZ made a conscience decision during the selection process to create a diverse group of participants based on gender, age, occupation, and geographic location, with the firm understanding that this next generation of diverse trainers can have the greatest impact on the city.

Mónica Pliz Barbosa is the Director of UMAPAZ. The Earth Charter Programme is coordinated by Lia Salomão Lopes, geographer, and by Debora Pontalti Marcondes, biologist. Practical training is provided by specialist Estela Pereira Gomes. The programme is taught by UMAPAZ teachers and guest lecturers. UMAPAZ 1





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Theologian Leonardo Boff reflects on the linkages between the Earth Charter and the Pope’s Encyclical

Similarities between the Encyclical Laudato si’: “On Care for our Common Home” and the Earth Charter, “Earth, Our Home”

By Leonardo Boff

The encyclical, Laudato sí’: On Care for our Common Home and The Earth Charter are two documents of worldwide relevance that coincidentally have many commonalities. They deal with the degradation of the Earth and life in its many forms, departing from the conventional vision expressed through environmentalism. They subscribe to a new relational and holistic paradigm, the only one, perhaps, which is still capable of giving us hope.

The Earth Charter is echoed in the encyclical, which, in one of its most fundamental passages, proclaims, “I dare to propose again this precious challenge: as never before in history, the common destiny calls on us to seek a new beginning.” (p. 207). That new beginning is being undertaken by Pope Francis.

Let us enumerate, among others, some of the similarities between the two documents.

In the first place, one sees the same spirit running through the two texts: in their analytical form, gathering the best scientific data; in their critical form, denouncing the present system that puts the Earth out of balance; and in their hopeful form, offering solutions. They do not surrender to resignation, but rather trust in the human capacity to create a new lifestyle and in the renewing actions of the Creator, “Lord who lovest the living” (Wis. 11, 26).

They have the same starting point. The Earth Charter states, “The dominant patterns of production and consumption are causing environmental devastation, the depletion of resources, and a massive extinction of species.” (Preamble, 3). The encyclical repeats, “…we need only take a frank look at the facts to see that our common home is falling into serious disrepair…the present world system is certainly unsustainable from a number of points of view…” (p. 61).

They make the same proposals. The Earth Charter affirms, “Fundamental changes are needed in our values, institutions, and ways of living.” (Preamble, 4). The encyclical emphasizes, “Every effort to protect and improve our world entails profound changes in ‘lifestyles, models of production and consumption, and the established structures of power which today govern societies.’” (p. 5).

A great innovation, central to the new cosmologic and ecological paradigm, is the following affirmation in the Earth Charter, “Our environmental, economic, political, social, and spiritual challenges are interconnected, and together we can forge inclusive solutions.” (Preamble, 4). The encyclical echoes this assertion: there are some threads that run through the entire document, “…the intimate relationship between the poor and the fragility of the planet, the conviction that everything in the world is connected, the critique of new paradigms and forms of power derived from technology, the call to seek other ways of understanding the economy and progress, the value proper to each creature, the human meaning of ecology, the need for forthright and honest debate, the serious responsibility of international and local policy, the throwaway culture and the proposal of a new lifestyle.” (p. 16). This suggests solidarity among all, shared sobriety and replacing “…consumption with sacrifice, greed with generosity, wastefulness with a spirit of sharing…” (p. 9).

The Earth Charter mentions the “spirit of human solidarity and kinship with all life (Preamble 5). Similarly, the encyclical affirms, “Everything is related, and we human beings are united as brothers and sisters on a wonderful pilgrimage, woven together by the love God has for each of his creatures and which also unites us in fond affection with brother sun, sister moon, brother river and mother earth.» (p. 92). That is the universal Franciscan fraternity.

The Earth Charter emphasizes that it is our duty to “Respect and care for the community of life. Respect Earth and life in all its diversity.” (Pillar 1 and Principle 1). The entire encyclical, starting with its title, “On Care for Our Common Home”, makes a sort of refrain from this mandate. It proposes “a more passionate concern for the protection of our world.” (p. 216) and “‘a culture of care’ which permeates all of society.” (p.231). Here caring emerges not as mere perfunctory benevolence but as a new paradigm, a loving of life and of all that exists and lives.

Another important affinity is the value assigned to social justice. The Earth Charter maintains that there is a strong relationship between ecology and “social and economic justice” that works to “protect the vulnerable, serve those who suffer…” (9. c). The encyclical reaches one of its highest points when it affirms that “a true ecological approach always becomes a social approach; it must integrate questions of justice in debates on the environment, so as to hear both the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor.” (p.49).

Both The Earth Charter and the encyclical go against the current thinking in emphasizing that “…every form of life has value regardless of its worth to human beings.” (1. a). Pope Francis reaffirms that “…all creatures are connected, each must be cherished with love and respect, for all of us as living creatures are dependent on one another.” (p. 42). In the name of this understanding, the Pope strongly criticizes anthropocentrism (pps. 115-120), because it views humanity’s relationship with nature as using and devastating her, forgetting that human beings are a part of nature and that humanity’s mission is to be her guardian and protector.

The Earth Charter devised one of the best definitions of peace that has come from human reflection, “…the wholeness created by right relationships with oneself, other persons, other cultures, other life, Earth, and the larger whole of which all are a part.” (16. f). If peace, as Pope Paul VI was accustomed to say, is “the equilibrium of movement” then the encyclical says that it is “ecological equilibrium, establishing harmony within ourselves, with others, with nature and other living creatures, and with God.” (n.210). The result of that process is the perennial peace so desired by all peoples.

These two documents are beacons that guide us in these somber times, and that are capable of returning to us the much-needed hope that we still can save our Common Home and ourselves.

Leonardo Boff is an ecotheologian and author of the book Ecology: Cry of the Earth – Cry of the Poor, Orbis 2002.

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Global Citizen – Earth Charter project with AIESEC

In early 2014, Earth Charter International, Amana-Key, and AIESEC in Brazil began a new partnership with the aim of strengthening the promotion and dissemination of the Earth Charter principles in Brazil and the world. Amana-Key, one of Earth Charter International’s partners in Brazil, is a consulting firm for business and executive education specializing in radical innovations in management, strategy, and leadership of complex organizations. AIESEC, recognized by UNESCO as the largest organization of university students in the world, is a global network of young people who seek to develop their leadership potential, management experience, ability to foster social change, and international experience in practice.

As a result of this partnership the “Global Citizen – Earth Charter ” project was born. This is a social exchange project that empowers young people between 18-30 years old to multiply the principles of the Earth Charter in schools (public and private), thus contributing to building to a more ethical, just, and sustainable society. The activities to be carried out during the program were articulated in two phases: 1) training; and 2) experience exchange.

The first stage consisted of an online training course for young people as Earth Charter multipliers, administered through a virtual education platform. The second stage consisted of a social exchange, in which new multipliers were sent to schools and spent six weeks working in classes with children and adolescents and multiplying the principles of the Earth Charter.

In the first edition, held in 2014 in Brazil, the “Global Citizen – Earth Charter” project brought together 110 young people from 33 countries, working with about 7,000 students (10-14 years old) in 26 Brazilian cities. Based on these results and noting its great potential for expansion and transformation, the “Global Citizen – Earth Charter” project has entered its second phase, which will begin implementation in May 2015. In this new phase, AIESEC International will start to make the project global and expand it to other countries in Latin America and eventually around the world.

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Promoting sustainability through mobile art

El 25 de octubre del 2014 fue la apertura de la exhibición de Miguel Igreja llamada Pernambuco, Cultura, Historia y Mar, en la sede del Proyecto Tamar en el Archipiélago de Fernando de Noronha (Brasil). 
Esta es una exhibición itinerante, que muestra unas bellas imágenes marinas de Pernambuco usando bicicletas conducidas por artistas plásticos y músicos.

En la apertura, Cristina Moreno, Asesora de la Carta de la Tierra Internacional, inspiró a los participantes a considerar los principios de la Carta de la Tierra y la importancia de las artes para estimular el cuidado como práctica necesaria para toda acción humana, para una convivencia socioambiental pacífica y sostenible.
“Saber y no hacer es como no saber” – Con esta frase, Cristina motivó a los participantes a comprometerse en lo cotidiano a promover un respeto a la vida, a la integridad ecológica, a la justicia social y una cultura de paz como condiciones indispensables para el futuro que queremos.

En consonancia con el mensaje de la Carta de la Tierra, la productora de la exhibición  María Dias, destacó la importancia de la cultura para ampliar las conciencias, estimulando el diálogo como forma de promover la sostenibilidad planetaria.

Miguel Igreja, autor de la exposición, habló de la importancia de una Galería itinerante o móvil, como espacio para movilizar y compartir las artes, mostrando como a través de nuestras actividades podemos desarrollar caminos que contribuyen a hacer del planeta un lugar más justo y solidario.

Al final del día de la apertura, varios artistas ciclistas realizaron algunas presentaciones como de poesía o líricas, en conexión con el tema de la exhibición.

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