The Awards serve to empower winners and build the green economy.
See an interview with past winners below
4. The Energy Efficiency Award
5. The Recycling & Waste Management Award
7. The Water Conservation Award
9. The Municipalities Award
11. The Eco-Youth Award
12. The Eco-Angel Award
“We are part of the web of life and our well-being is dependent on a flourishing planet. We are becoming more aware of this as we face the consequences of climate change, diminishing natural resources and the pollution and destruction of our natural environment. It is crucial that we take responsibility to care for all life.”
South Africa’s ‘Green Bishop’, Geoff Davies of Cape Town, is the recipient of the 2017 Eco-Logic Lifetime Achievement Award. He is Founder of the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute (SAFCEI), a trustee of WWF-SA, and was awarded the SAB Environmentalist of the Year in 2009 by Ian Player. Last year, the Archbishop of Canterbury presented Bishop Geoff with the Langton award for his persistent “urging of the Church to embrace environmental care and justice” as part of the Church’s community service. It is named after Archbishop Stephen Langton, who was crucially involved in the signing of the Magna Carta 800 years ago. “That was a great step in establishing human rights and civil liberties. We now need to recognise the rights of all life, not just human life.”
For more than four decades, Bishop Geoff has tirelessly worked to convince his own church, and now all faith communities, that they have a major role to play in caring for the natural environment. “Faith communities are holders of values. They must actively promote eco-justice: ecological, economic and social. Justice and equity are essential requirements for peace. Faith communities must stand up and take action.”
“Bishop Geoff has been largely responsible for our Church’s awareness of environment issues. We owe him a huge debt of gratitude since he did this when it was not fashionable or popular,” said Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu.
SAFCEI, together with EarthLife Africa, recently won a David versus Goliath high court victory over the government’s plan for 9.6 GW of nuclear energy. The judge declared the steps taken by government “unlawful and unconstitutional”. “SAFCEI has held a vigil outside Parliament every Wednesday morning for two and a half years. This judgement is a significant step for open, transparent and consultative governance.”
Bishop Davies has had a lifetime of seeking justice, first against Apartheid when a student at UCT in the 1960s, reading History and Social Anthropology, and then studying Theology at Cambridge. Here he became increasingly aware of the threat of extinction of so many species and the need for justice for all of life. He was ordained an Anglican priest in ..... London, before being posted to Serowe in Botswana. In this arid environment he saw clearly how humans were upsetting the fragile balance of nature.
In 1976 he married Kate, a zoologist, and was appointed Rector of Holy Trinity Church, Kalk Bay. In 1981 he was appointed Director of the Department of Mission for the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. “These were tumultuous times.” With his office in Khotso House and Desmond Tutu General Secretary of the SACC, “It was a privilege to be involved,” he recalled. During that time he promoted a Call to Mission on “The Earth is The Lord’s”.
In 1987 he was elected Bishop, establishing the new Diocese of Umzimvubu, which was based in Kokstad. He helped found “Sustaining the Wild Coast”, an NGO that supports the community struggle against the N2 Wild Coast toll road and coastal titanium mining.
During this time, his was a lone voice calling for environmental justice to be put onto the agenda of the church. At the 1995 Anglican Church of Southern Africa Synod, he proposed resolutions for an environmental campaign based on his booklet, “Save Our Future”, and called for family planning and the use of contraceptives to be considered a Christian responsibility.
On retiring from the Diocese in 2004, Bishop Davies and Kate established SAFCEI, a multi-faith NGO working “to encourage, equip and inspire faith communities to care for God’s world – our only home.”
“For the future of life on this planet, it is now critically important that we act together to care for the natural world and all that is in it. Faith communities need to take a lead and set the example, seeking the well-being of people and planet, not profit.” Bishop Geoff affirms.