Friday November 17th, 2006 -- Medan, Sumatra -- The summit is opened by Dr, Gary Shapiro with a modified version of his speech that he used for the Conference opening. On this occasion he saves the Long Call for the end of his presentation where it is the sign that the Summit has begun. One of the goals of the Summit is to convey the results of the previous two days and to show commitment to ongoing education programs.

The goal of the education is to raise the awarenes and skills of not only the local people but also the palm oil workers, law enforcement and local governement employees.

Most people do not understand the Orangutans and therefore fear them. Education programs that have already taken place have shown that with knowledge the people react in a much more positive way when an Orangutan wanders into their area.

The education programs also have curricula that raises the awareness of the consequences of both legal and illegal logging.

Our belief is .....

That through education people feel empowered to make better choices. The rainforest that has already been cleared has gone. Now is the time to reduce and preferably stop any further destruction of the rainforest because research has shown that when a delicate ecosystem is disrupted all the dependant species suffer this includes mankind.

There is already real evidence that as the rainforest is destroyed that the climate is changing, there are more fires and more flooding. There will come a time when the critical mass has shifted from sustainable rainforest towards barely inhabitable desert.

No one knows how soon that that transistion will be reached, some say that it will happen within the next 20 years others say that it make take a hundred years.

 One thing that is certain is that if we take no steps to slow and even reverse the process that there will be time when even the people of Indonesia will have to leave their country or live in a very harsh environment.

Every step that we take today to shift the balance back to one of a sustainable rainforest, by preserving not only the Flora (trees and plants) but also the Fauna (the animals including the less charismatic such as the insects and leeches) the greater the probability that our children's children's children will be able to enjoy the beautiful scenary and see the inhabitants of the rainforest living "Free to be Wild"


Reading of the CWS Declaration and Commitment to adhere to its recommendations prior to the signing by the Summit attendees.

press conference

Press Conference held following the Summit