25 Oct 2009

Tens of thousands at climate change events

9:14 am on 25 October 2009

Tens of thousands of people around New Zealand have taken part in an international campaign to fight global climate change.

More than 170 festivals, group photos and other events have been held as part of 350.org, an internet-based environmental movement.

The biggest event was held in Dunedin where an estimated 12,000 people attended a spring food festival.

The campaign's name comes from a call from some climate scientists to bring the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere back down to 350 parts per million.

They say this should keep global warming to within 2°C.

One of the New Zealand organisers, Aaron Packard, says the campaign is expanding in the lead-up to a global summit on climate change in Copenhagen in December.

Churches ring bells in support of climate change

At least a dozen churches rang their bells in support of the campaign.

In response to a call by the three Anglican archbishops, bells were rung at Auckland's Holy Trinity cathedral, Christchurch Cathedral, seven churches around Dunedin and at least three in Wellington's Hutt Valley.

A priest at St James Anglican church in Lower Hutt, Jean Malcolm, says the bells were rung to herald a climate emergency.