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Wellington freezes for World Environment Day


Subject: Wellington freezes for World Environment Day

5 June 2008, 1:30pm

Why did hundreds of people freeze in their footsteps in Wellington today? It wasn’t the wind that chilled them. It was a call to support World Environment Day.

The Freeze happened on Lambton Quay during the lunch-time rush. Bemused onlookers watched as over 200 people suddenly materialised, froze like statues and stayed still for five minutes. At the sound of a saxophone, the freezers found their legs again and the crowd rapidly dispersed.

Intersect, a leadership and networking organisation for young people with a passion for sustainability, helped to organise the event. Nick Potter, a trustee of Intersect, commented that many people were behind it though: “It started with one idea, generated by 5 people, spread by 10 people over email and was then self-organised by over 200 people in front of an audience of thousands. If that's not a good model for change, I don't know what is.” The Freeze was inspired by similar ‘flash mob’ events that have happened around the world. However this was the first time a Freeze was used to promote environmental issues.

The Freeze was organised to celebrate and support World Environment Day. Megan Hosking, also a trustee of Intersect, commented: “We want to encourage everyone to stop for a moment and think seriously about environmental issues. By thinking and acting together, we can also freeze climate change in its tracks.”

Nick and Megan added that “There are many young people who are fearful and even angry about what's happening to our environment and the future we're inheriting. We want to turn that around. It was great to see such a wide variety of people at the Freeze who are showing their support for change.”

A video of the freeze can be seen at www.intersect.org.nz/network (from 6pm on June 5 onwards).


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