How to challenge climate change with little actions

Senior Forester, PhD in Forest Ecology

Saint Francis, faithful to Scripture, invites us to see nature as a magnificent book in which God speaks to us and grants us a glimpse of his infinite beauty and goodness. “Through the greatness and the beauty of creatures one comes to know by analogy their maker” (Wis 13:5)

(Laudato Si’, 12)


Humanity is called to challenge climate change and needs urgently to act as it has been appealed by Pope Francis in his encyclic Laudato sì in 2015 and agreed by the COP 21 in Paris. There is the urgency to change human habits with big but also little actions because, beside all efforts, the effects of climate change can only be smoothed, not halted. Today, the only possibility that we have, is to reduce CO2 emissions, revert wildfires and increase the surfaces populated by plants, the only organisms that are capable of absorbing CO2.

The Living Chapel encompasses concepts of humanity in harmony between music, art, architecture, science and technology. It is a composition of living walls or panels, built by waste materials recycled and regenerated, covered with greenery including small saplings and young trees. Its panels are vertical gardens that purify and cool the air through the young plants that contribute also to the absorption of CO2 with a rate that is higher than for mature plants. The people visiting the Chapel will be inspired by the environment while the greenery will contribute to increasing their feeling of wellbeing and meditation.

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John Cameron

The zones identified to be planted with little gardens, will also comprise areas in the hilly and mountainous regions of Abruzzo, Lazio, Umbria and Marche, recently hit by the dramatic earthquakes as well as areas of regions affected by the Vaia storm so that, especially in these zones, there will be a sign of hope for a better future.

Schools, NGOs, parishes and municipalities will be involved in this last, but most relevant initiative, because spreads the message that small actions contribute to mending the environment of our mother Earth and demonstrates how waste material can be recycled to become house for saplings and seedlings that will be planted in little gardens to green and recover portions of degraded lands, both inside and outside urban areas. Thus, contributing to increase green areas and show how little behaviours can transform challenges and hopes in concrete actions.

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