YEAR 2000: THE BRIGHTER SIDE OF THE PROBLEM
By Ziep Vuong (Vziep@aol.com)
Y2K - AN EVOLUTION TO IMPROVE
The Year 2000 has started an interesting evolution around the world. It offers many people, governments and communities the unique opportunity to plan and to use the Year 2000 as a time to set goals for the new millennium. Others are using this time to look back on the past century and reflect the events that have shaped the world. First there are large, expensive official government projects, like the Olympic Games in Sydney Australia, the Greenwich Experience in England, the World's Exhibition in Hanover Germany, the refurbishing of Grand Palais and the Louvres museums in France and many others. But now, a lot of 'grassroots' projects are coming to life. Many people have decided to take this opportunity, however arbitrary it may be, to improve their life, build common projects, plan for the future. In fact this change of calendar has released energy and good will, which could make it significant after all. The year 2000 has given many people a stimulus to decide to do things and to prepare for the year 2000 and beyond. People around the world are joining in this opportunity to be part of the celebration of the Year 2000. The Y2K has incidently united and inspired people and communities globally by creating a feeling of oneness and common ownership in helping shape the future together.
Peace activists are working to make the 21st century a time when the earth is free of war and violence. Some groups aim to abolish nuclear weapons, while others want to have one day when everyone on the planet sets a day aside for peace. Each group is passionate about its cause. Here some of the organizations that are focusing on Peace in the new millennium:
- World Peace 2000: A global network of 500 organizations promoting the Count up to 2000
- The United Nations' International Year for a Culture of Peace. Representatives from nearly 30 different countries attended this inspiring day of unity, inspiration and hope. This worldwide network of individuals, groups and organizations is dedicated to promoting a resolution before the United Nations to declare a 24-hour world cease-fire on January 1, 2000; a Declaration of Peace culminating on January 1, 2000 as WORLD PEACE DAY. (http://www.oneday.net/)
- The World Peace Club Program: includes such features as One Day of Peace, Volunteer for a Better World, Celebrate to Create Peace On Earth, Peace on Earth Fairs & Assemblies, Letters For Peace and Peace on the Internet. (http://www.worldpeace2000.com/)
- One Day in Peace : Jan 1, 2000 (http://www.pinn.net/~caspita/odpeace.html).
- Mileno: This group is planning an international peace conference and celebration to be held in Costa Rica over the New Year 2000. It hopes to enhance the visibility, development and effectiveness peace initiatives worldwide by gathering world leaders, Nobel laureates, musicians, artists, environmentalists, spiritual leaders, grass roots organizations, youth and local citizens dedicated to peace, justice and sustainable life. (E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- The Great Millennium Peace Ride: The peace ride is a global bicycle trek that will go around the world. Every country in the world is being asked to form a single team of two or three cyclists. Then, starting from Vancouver, British Columbia in August 1998, the approximately 500 bicyclists representing 197 countries will join together and circle the globe as a single group, completing in Sydney, Australia on January 1, 2000. (http://www.holistic.com.au/gmpr/)
- The World&ME Drug and Alchohol Free: The youth of the world invites you to join in creating peace, by choosing to keep a clear mind, heart and soul. (http://www.peaceinc.org/)
- The Planetary Peace Broadcatst: A 24-hour global media event designed to promote the well-being of all people of this planet. (http://www.globalvisions.org/cl/planpeace/)
There are movements to improve the global community in the next millennium.
- Global Volunteers Milleniun Service Project: solicits volunteers to join some 1,000 people nationwide working on community development projects from December 26, 1999 to January 1, 2000. (http://www.globalvolunteers.org/millmain.htm).
- World Action for the Millennium: Sponsored by Communications for Human Development, the goal of WAM is that "on January 1st of the year 2000 all inhabitants of the planet Earth who can be reached by communications systems will be linked together to receive and share for one minute a message - expressed in music - that can be universally understood as a way to empower the individual and express his or her belonging to the global community." (Contact: Communications for Human Development, C/ Luis Antunez no. 6, planta 3 08006 Barcelona SPAIN (343) 415-67-51 e-mail: email@example.com. http://www.cinet.fcr.es/CinetSpace/wam2000).
- Jubilee 2000 Project: is an attempt to provide the first bolt of energy to jump-start a new humane movement for social change. (http://www.jubilee2000.org/)
- Light 2000: Using the Millennium Countdown as a networking vehicle for setting and reaching positive goals and visions for our world by the year 2000. (http://www.light2000.com/)
- Humanity 3000: an international symposium of 100 of the world's most prominent scholars, scientists, philosophers, humanists, historians, technologists and futurists. It will be convened for five days in Seattle, Washington by the Foundation for the Future (http://www.futurefoundation.com/) during July in the year 2000. The purpose of the symposium is to assess the status of humanity in the Year 2000, to identify the most significant factors that may affect the quality of life of the peoples of the earth. (Contact: 425-451-1333 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Megacities 2000: This initiative originates from the awareness of the future role of cities as the dominant type of settlement for humanity. (http://valley.interact.nl/megacities)
- Village 2000 Project: Discussion group to build global communities on the Internet and World Wide Web. (http://www.village2000.com/)
- Pole to Pole 2000 Expedition: organized by expedition veteran Martyn Williams, is not just an expedition, but also aims at inspiring entire societies to courage and action towards global harmony. A team of 12 young adults, representing different countries on six continents, will begin a trek around the world on March 15, 1999. The journey will begin on the North Pole, cross six continents, and re-unite in Antarctica on January 1, 2000. Travelling southward to Canada for about two months in temperatures as cold as 80ºF below zero, the group will split into three teams of four during a period of five months. Team 1 will follow the Americas route, team 2 through Europe and Africa and team 3 will cover Asia and Oceania. All of the team members will come together once again in Punta Arenas, Chile and fly out to Patriot Hills, Antarctica. After having skied some 450 miles, the expedition culminates in their arrival at the South Pole on the eve of the year 2000 for a millennial celebration. Each team's activities on the six continents visited will include cycling, kayaking, mountain climbing, public events and presentations in 60 cities as well as community and environmental project assistance. The Americas team will climb Mount Rainier, clean up the Hudson River, help rebuild facilities in war torn Nicaragua, explore a remote river in the Amazon and help with reforestation. Team 2 will climb Mount Blanc, help with rebuilding in Bosnia and cross the Sahara on camels. Team 3 will cross Japan on bicycles and then kayak to Korea, visit an orphanage in Cambodia and climb Carstansz Pyramid in Indonesia. While sharing experiences with people in the many nations visited, "team members will invite their audiences to pledge to a shared vision of world harmony". The written vows collected will be placed at the South Pole for the dawn of the year 2000, to be recovered one year later.
SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT
Many environmental groups see the new millennium as the perfect opportunity to address some of the nation's biggest environmental problems. Here are some of the main groups:
- Millennium Portal Environmental: solutions for the 21st Century. (http://www.skywebs.com/earthportals/milenport.html)
- World Wildlife Federation Campaign 2000
-The Living Planet Campaign: Environmental action for the new millennium (http://www.panda.org/livingplanet/)
- Ocean Rescue 2000: Sustaining and conserving the marine environment of Australia. (http://www.ciesin.org/kiosk/ebs/Declarations/EBGCD-0002.txt)
- Plant Earth 2000: The theme of this gathering is the concept of growing world concern for the preservation of the environment and the desire for improvement in the lifestyles of all people. (http://www1.tpgi.com.au/users/ncrowe/PE2000A.HTM)
- Africa Environment 2000: This project supports the establishment and development of community-based wildlife sanctuaries. (http://www.ae2000.org/)
- Wildflowers Worldwide: Dedicated to promoting worldwide planting of wildflowers to celebrate the year 2000.
- Environmental Restoration Plan : U.S. Navy, Five-year plan 1996- 2000 (http://5yrplan.nfesc.navy.mil/)
- Millennium Institute: Provides news on the state of the world, tools for achieving environmentally sustainable development, and ideas for celebrating the new millennium in 2000 in constructive ways. (http://www.igc.apc.org/millennium/)
The biggest single focus of the coming millennium is the 2000th anniversary of Christ's birth, celebrated by Christians across the globe. Other religions, including Islam, Judaism and Buddhism are also hosting events and express visions for the future in the Year 2000.
- Holy Land 2000 (Palestine and Israel) January 1, 2000. Between 3-4 million people are expected to commemorate the birth of Christ by traveling to Palestine and Israel in the Year 2000. Special events are being hosted in Bethlehem, Nazareth and Jerusalem from 1999 to 2001. (Contact: Ministry of Tourism Palestinian Authority Bethlehem, via ISRAEL tel: 972-2-741-32)
- Holy Year 2000: Thirteen million people are expected to travel to Rome to celebrate the Great Jubilee of the Incarnation of Christ. December 24, 1999 - January 1, 2000. (contact Great Jubilee 2000, Vatican City 00120 EUROPE (http://www.roma2000.com/) - Jesus March 2000: To celebrate the 2000th anniversary of the birth of Christ, on June 10, 2000, organizers are planning a global "March for Jesus" celebration. More than 30 million people in 2000 cities are expected to participate in this procession of prayer and worship. Each year counting down to the millennium, annual marches are held on Pentecost weekend in anticipation of the Year 2000. (Contact: March for Jesus, P.O. Box 3216 Austin, TX 78764; Phone: (512) 416-0066; E-mail: email@example.com).
- Journey of the Magi (Middle East): This group is planning a 6 month pilgrimage of peace that will retrace the original journey of the Magi. Participants will ride on horses and camels, and will attend festivals in cities along the journey route. The event will culminate with a 12-day celebration in Bethlehem for approximately 10,000 participants. (Contact: Journey of the Magi 2000 P.O. Box 1037 Pinecrest, CA 95634 USA (209) 586-2000 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Great Jubilee Year 2000 Roman Catholic, 1 July 1999-30 June 2000 (http://www.nhf.org/jubilee2000). - AD2000 & Beyond Movement: is a global, informal network of Christian missionary agencies, denominations, churches and individuals committed to world evangelism. It is pursuing "A Church for Every People and the Gospel for Every Person by the year 2000" (http://www.ad2000.org/).
As the population of the world is increasing, resources are drying up, and the environment is polluted, some people are looking to space as an answer to the problem. Several groups are forming to seriously investigating how humans would colonize space during the next millennium. With the discovery of water on the moon-and potential life on Mars these movements are certain to grow in the future.
- First Millenium Foundation: An organization that is committed to colonizing space. "The one sure thing about the future is that in the year 3000, our descendants will be looking back at the Earth from a vantage point out among the stars," says Marshall Savage, author of the Millennial Project and Foundation member (http://www.millennial.org/)
- Meta-Nation 2000: This conference, slated for August 2-4, 2000 in Denver's Mile High Stadium, will allow people to discuss the possibilities of establishing a meta-nation in space "where human society can live and work in the new millennium. The meeting is sponsored by the United Societies in Space (Contact United Societies in Space 6841 S. Yosemite, #3-C Englewood, CO 80112 1 800-895-META).
WHERE TO CELEBRATE THE YEAR 2000 ?
Here are a few of the Mega Events that you can select for the year 2000 celebration.
South Island - The towns of South Island, New Zealand are located just minutes away from the International Date Line and are among the first to see the dawn of each new day. (http://www.southlandmillennium.com/)
Chatham Islands: A New Zealand-based Millennium Adventure Co. has already secured the rights to the world's "first light" on the slopes of Mount Hakepa on Pitt Island, just east of the international date line, about 745 miles southeast of Christchurch.
Sydney: On 31 December 1999, Sydney, the Millenium City, will host a 20 hour party of celebration for the people of Sydney and its visitors. As Sydney is the first major city to enter the New Millenium and will be seen by satellite around the world the city is aiming to pass on the joy of its celebration to the whole world.
New Castle: Australian Greens Conference 2001. A conference focusing on the Asia Pacific world to help plan a sustainable century. (Contact: Deborah Foskey, e-mail: Deborah.Foskey@anu.edu.au)
Times Square 2000: The celebration will begin at 7 a.m. EST, December 31, 1999, when the Millennium arrives in the South Pacific. Giant television screens strategically placed throughout Times Square will display images of people and their cultures from around the world as the dawn of the year 2000 travels across the globe. The celebration will continue until the New Year has been observed in all 24 time zones.
The Rainbow Room: The first reservation for the sold-out Rainbow Room was made in 1993, by a man who was so determined that he required his reservation to be included in his will. Another 95-year old man made a reservation because he's sure his waiting will keep him alive for the celebration. .
OpSail 2000: The Greatest Event in Maritime History will take place on July 3-9, 2000. President Clinton will be joined by more than 50 nations and an anticipated fleet of 30,000 spectator vessels, featuring tall ships, will be spread ten miles through New York Harbor. . QE2 Sailing: Sailing from New York to Alexandria, Egypt, Cunard's luxury liner is one of the most touted celebrations of the Year 2000. Everyone from Bob Hope to former U.S. President George Bush are reportedly going to be on board.
National Endowment of the Arts: Will host a display of photographers works attempting to capture America at the turn of the 21st century.
Folklife Festival 2000: Produced by the Smithsonian Institute, Folklife 2000 will involve 200 children from around the world.
Omni Shoreman Hotel: Omni Shoreman Hotel is planning a Centenarians Party for those folks who are lucky enough to have lived a life spanning two centuries.
World Millennium Charity Balls: The Millennium Society is sponsoring 23 simultaneous celebrations around the world, including the Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal, the Acropolis and the Eiffel Tower. Each of these "celebrations of civilization" will be linked via satellite to create a "round-the-globe," "round-the-clock" welcome to the year 2000. (Contact: The Millennium Society, 250 24th St., N.W. Washington, DC 20037 USA (202) 332-1999 )
Party 2000: is a three day event to be held in Southern California on December 30, 31, 1999 through January 1, 2000. This "End Of The Century" Celebration expects an attendance of 2.5 million people from around the world. (http://www.party2000.com/) .
Odyssey 2000: is a bicycle rally, beginning in Los Angeles and continuing around the world, Odyssey 2000, will cover 20,000 miles and cross 54 countries. For the 250 participants, the ride will be a test of wills and an incredible experience.
Concorde Flights. Fly through the time zones on the Concorde. One $70,000 tour, offered by API Travel Consultants, begins on Christmas Eve 1999 in New York City with stops in Dallas, Las Vegas and Los Angeles to collect passengers on the way to Christmas in Hawaii. Other stops include Sydney, Australia; Hong Kong, Delhi, India; Masai Mara, Kenya; and Cairo.
EXPO 2000: The bimillennial world's fair, in Hannover, Germany is expected to feature the state of the world through the theme "Mankind, Nature and Technology."
Greenwich Millennium Dome: Funded by the British Millennium Commission, the millennium dome is expected to be one of the most popular spots to celebrate the Year 2000 in England.
Tate Gallery of Modern Art: In the year 2000, the first museum for contemporary art of the 21st Century will open in London. Organized primarily around British art through the ages, the museum will also highlight international art of the 20th and 21st centuries.
Millennium Wheel: Measuring 500 feet (151 meters) in diameter, British Airways' Millennium Wheel will be the fourth tallest construction in London. It will be positioned above the Thames, parallel to the river side on the South Bank opposite the Houses of Parliament, giving passengers a 30-mile panoramic view.
LONDON & PARIS
The Millennium Experience: Six days and five nights in two of the coolest cities on the planet -London & Paris - with a fantastic party on the new high speed Eurostar that runs between them.
European Cultural Cities Program: Millennial organizers have selected nine cities to participate in the European Cultural Cities program, exploring themes such as "Thought, Spirituality and Creativity", "2000 years of Europe and the World", "European cultural cities of the year 2000", "Knowledge, technology and the future", "Art, Work and Pleasure.", "Nature and Culture", "Faces of the Earth,", "The Faces of the Gods".
Pompidou Center, The Grand Palais and The Louvre: These great French centers of culture are all undergoing major upgrades for the city's 2000 celebration. City organizers are planning a giant high-tech ferris wheel and a terrific party, which is already set for September 3, 1999.
Germany - German officials are planning a series of celebrations that center on the transfer of the German capitol from Bonn to Berlin, effective in the year 2000.
IRIS - The Irish have already begun to celebrate with a giant digital sunken clock is already ticking down the seconds to the third millennium beneath the murky waters of the River Liffey. The clock will erupt in fireworks at the stroke of midnight on the last day of 1999.
Jeanie 2000 Voyage: This is the recreation of the Irish Emigrant ship originally built in Quebec in 1847. It will make a historic voyage to North America in the year 2000.
Canada Calgary 2000: aims to establish "life legacies," like a millennium park, to celebrate the start of the 21st century. "People don't want monuments to mark the occasion, they are excited about green spaces, scholarships, and parks." Organizers say.
Nova Scotia: The Halifax Regional Council is planning to be a port for the millennium tour of tall ships. Between March and September in the year 2000, large sailing vessels will hold races between Europe and North America. Halifax will be one of the ports.
ONCE-IN-A-LIFETIME CHANCE The new millennium is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to share the best of your community with others around the world and to create a unique local and global legacy for future generations to enjoy. Have you started to think about this yet ?
Baltimore, MD. Mon, 23 Nov 1998
Copyright (c) - Ziep Vuong & VACETS