The prevailing theme for both this year’s World Environment Day and Rio+20 – the short name for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development – is a green economy, which the United Nations Environmental Programme defines as ‘one that results in improved human well-being and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities. In its simplest expression, a green economy can be thought of as one which is low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive.‘
There are plenty projects connected to and supporting these events, but one that particularly caught our eye is Rhythms of the Earth.
Rhythms of the Earth is a global collaboration organised by the Earth Love Fund (ELF). ELF was founded by music producer Vic Coppersmith-Heaven, musician Nick Glennie-Smith and composer/producer Kenny Young. In 1992, the three recorded the album Earthrise which sold over 400,000 copies and helped support over 400 community-based conservation projects worldwide.
ELF is now focusing its support on the World Environment Day and Rio+20 summit.
Initiated by Coppersmith-Heaven and his son Josh, the project will collaborate with musicians from around the world to create a single. Musicians already involved in the programme include Congolese guitarist Fiston Lusambo, Senegalese percussionist Seckou Keita, the Brazilian/UK group Saravah Soul, Brazilian percussionist Adriano Adewale, Indian percussionist Sirish Kumar and taiko percussionist Joji Hirota.
Most excitingly, the project also includes the creation of an interactive website that will allow people to listen to drums and rhythms from around the world. It will also offer the opportunity for visitors to mix together their own cross-cultural selection of rhythmic ensembles. The website will provide a educational platform to learn about musical traditions and concerns of global environmental situations.