Is Sustainable Tourism an oxymoron?

The United Nations has declared 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.
The UN states that tourism, as one of the largest and fastest-growing socio-economic sectors of our times, can stimulate economic growth, creating jobs and business opportunities that can help people escape poverty and improve their livelihoods.

But is Sustainable Tourism an oxymoron?



Firstly, consider some ecological impacts from tourism: carbon emissions from transport especially by air; pristine wilderness that is no longer so pristine once it is on the tourist map. Secondly, let's think about the impact on culture: do many tourists actually gain a real understanding of a new country and its people. Finally, think about the actual economic benefit for many local people: does a resort buy local food and employ local people? Was a local person coerced into selling their land to a developer for a lot less than it is really worth? 

Read more

Laudato Si Online Conference

During Laudato Si’ Week (June 13-17, 2016), prominent speakers from different faiths and backgrounds dialogued about the crisis affecting our common home and reflected on the Pope’s Laudato Si’ message on occasion of its first anniversary.  



Read more

Meditation and the Environment

The Environment Meditatio held in Sydney 22-24 April was a ‘transformative’ experience for the 350 people who attended. Bringing together significant speakers from the various disciplines of theology, philosophy, science and spirituality, it was both a sobering reminder of the ecological crisis we currently face and an inspiring call to action. Two FEN members, Mona Javam and James O'Brien, share their thoughts


Read more

Two paths, one goal: Sufism and the climate justice movement


By Daniel Mostovac – presenter at PathWays Coalition for Diversity Education

“Humanity is endangered.”

So says Shaykh Taner, a Teacher of the Ansari Order of Sufis based in New South Wales. Originally from Turkey, Shaykh Taner and his wife Shaykha Muzeyyen have lived in the United States for the past 30 years and have recently toured Melbourne and Sydney, offering talks, meditations and healings. Sufism is a movement that originated in Islam some thousand years ago, often called the mystical interpretation of Islam. However, Sufism today can be practiced in a secular way. The Ansari Order makes no discrimination based on sex, gender, religion or politics, but welcomes anyone in search of peace and truth.

Read more

Interfaith Statement on Climate Change

On 18th April 2016, an interfaith statement calling for urgent action on climate change will be presented to the President of the UN General Assembly in New York. FEN welcomes this call for action, and we encourage members of the public to sign the statement here.

Read more

Reflections on the Impacts of Food on the Earth


"Food needs to be included in the strategy to alleviate global climate change
and biodiversity decline". Read more in the slide presentation by Dana Murty on the International Year of Pulses here.


Poems by a Scientist

Old One   


Old one

Living sculpture,
Hail melts at your base
And your curling bough-hand
Caresses the sky.

The wisdom of ages
Is engraved as scripture,
Each calligraphy stroke
An insect’s life history.

I keep thinking
‘You have lived so much …’
And we must seem
So ephemeral,
Such frantic mayflies
Here, then gone.

Read more

Food and Faith

FEN members and staff from the Columban Mission Institute attended the launch of the FoodFaith Interfaith Community Garden on Wednesday 9 March.


International Year of Pulses

Image Credit


2016 has been declared by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) as the International Year of Pulses.


Pulses are a type of dried legume which include split peas, lentils and chickpeas. They have been praised for their array of benefits not only for human health, but for hunger alleviation, food security, agricultural productivity and environmental sustainability - hence the decision to dedicate 2016 to these small but impressive crops (


Read more

Ethics, Faith & Consumption

What have Ethics and Faith to say on Population and Consumption?
- A blog by Anne Lanyon

On Saturday 21st November, 2016, the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales hosted a Seminar on Population and Consumption – the Sustainability Dialogue.

Read more