The UN Association (UNA) of Norway asked Jeni and I to make some brief remarks on stage at the city’s UN Day of Action / 350.org event.  Here’s a picture of us on the Bergen city stage with the mascot for Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, UNA staff, and University of Bergen law students. We were mighty impressed with the crowds gathered on a Saturday afternoon.

350.org International Day of Climate Action

UNA Norway works to:

• Promote a general interest and launch debate on key international issues

• Promote a keener understanding of the motivations and dynamics behind international politics

• Encourage positive attitudes toward solidarity and commitment to international cooperation

• Forge a societal consensus on the fact that solutions do exist

A publication of The United Nations Institute for Training and Research describes the UNA Norway as an “organization [that] is run independently without any political affiliations, and spans throughout the country with 65 nation-wide member organizations…. UNA Norway’s regional office in Bergen covers west-Norway and focuses in particular on north-south issues, the environment, development assistance, UN and international collaboration as well as human rights.”

UNITAR has proposed opening an office in Bergen that is expressly dedicated to examining the links between climate change, human rights, and humanitarian aid. Momentum for housing such an Institute in Bergen has been building, and the decision awaits financing from Norway’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

Finally, Seattle and Bergen are official “sister cities.” Here’s a picture of Jeni and I with some University of Bergen Law students. We’re standing in front of a Pacific Northwest totem, given as a gift to Bergen by the City of Seattle. (Unfortunately, the the plaque did not detail which Pacific Northwest tribe created this totem. If anyone knows who carved it, let us know. They should be recognized!)

DSC_0165