The 5th Monaco Women Forum, under the High Patronage of HSH Prince Albert II, was held on Tuesday 3 May 2022, within the National Council, on the theme "Science and Technology for a modern and fairer society". Diane Harper, Nada Raddoui, Giovanna Tinetti Michele Mitchell, winners of the Monte-Carlo Woman of the Year Prize, shared their experiences.
After the opening speech by Mr.Stephane Valeri, and Mrs. Ornella Barra, we had the honor of receiving a special intervention for the Forum from Mrs. Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Important recognition on the part of Madame Bachelet for this Forum of the Principality. The Sovereign was represented by Mrs Isabelle Costa of the Prince's Cabinet; the Minister of the Environment was represented by Mrs. Valerie Davenet; Chief of Staff to Minister of State Laurence Garino; also present the vice-president of the FPA2 of Monaco Olivier Wenden; the Intergovernmental Delegate for the Protection of Women's Rights, Céline Cottalorda
The Monaco Women Forum opens with a speech by Mr. Valeri, who expresses his pride in receiving in his hemicycle these women rewarded the day before at the Monte Carlo Woman of the Year Prize for the value of their respective discoveries.
It is recalled in the introduction that this is not a feminist forum but a "Forum committed to women alongside men" on the initiative of Cinzia Sgambati Colman and with the unfailing support of Ornella Barra.
Opening of Ornella Barra, thanks to the participants and guests, if we want a fairer world it will be done through health, the green deal and gas reduction projects by 2050, although necessary, are very ambitious, especially given of the new context with the war in Ukraine. We must transform environmental challenges, and this is becoming an essential challenge.
During the video speech by Michelle Bachelet, High Commissioner for Human Rights, who could not be present to support the Forum, she recalled her commitment to the rights of men and women, her fight for the rights people who fills her with passion, the fight against discrimination, among others.
-1st discussion: decarbonization and scientific research
The environment is a major determinant for human health through various factors (air, water, etc.) and all human activities have an impact on health and the environment, which are therefore inseparable. The health sector has a key role in climate change and can become a leader in this area
- Diane Harper, a professor in the department at the University of Michigan, says that in her area of expertise, the HPV vaccine and the ability to self-test makes it easier to detect the disease in larger populations of women regardless of their financial means. The majority of cancers are often linked to environmental pollution, so detection and prevention are key to reducing mortality.
- Doctor Nada Raddaoui, specialist in blood cancer, recommends moving towards a "modern society". The research is not consistent with the growth of society eg the waste of plastic. We must develop an economy in accordance with research for practical application in everyday life.
The example of RNA messenger showed that time and investment are necessary and that it can sometimes be very long (sometimes 20 years). The economy cannot be dependent on research, so emphasis must be placed on research, the only way to develop a modern society.
- 2nd discussion technology and the environment:
Nathalie Hilmi, Research Officer - Environmental Economics at the Scientific Center of Monaco, recalls the latest IPCC report which told us that we were already in code red, the increase in temperature of 1.9°C while the limit is 1.5°C.
The intensification of weather phenomena, the loss of ecosystems, 3.6 million people made aware of climate change, the lack of water, climate migrations in the world, etc.
We need to be net zero in 2050 and 2070.
Reduce carbon quotas either with forests or in the ocean with blue carbon.
There are solutions, mangrove ecosystems and new energies.
Is technology at the service of the environment?
-Engineer Marco Casiraghi answers, we already have effective technologies but not applied enough, such as solar panels.
We are approaching lower costs. To speed up the process, we must help researchers, young researchers (ref solar energy boat) to also educate children with activities using innovative and non-polluting technologies, electric helicopters...
-How can space research contribute to the green transition?
Professor Giovanna Tinetti, researcher in galactic planetary sciences at UCL and ESA collaborator, replies that satellite data gives us the nature of the changes with precision. Monitoring to understand climatology and interpreting satellites and putting the earth in a broader context also gives very interesting parameters for comparison over time.
Applications by 2050, climate monitoring, the "space economy" is an opportunity for economic growth. It is therefore crucial to have initiatives from the private sector and the GVT.
- Dr. Stefano Besseghini, President of the Regulatory Authority for Energy and the Environment, indicated that it is difficult to satisfy all parties, consumers and authorities. A balance must be established between energy and needs to avoid waste.
Water is one of the issues. We cannot have a single approach to all energies, we need an opportunistic sector-dependent economy and not miss opportunities.
We introduce a taxonomy to regulate environmental economics and try to achieve all the same goals, we try to open the field of possibilities to apply a certain innovation.
-Valentino Iakimov, engineer and founder of the start-up Sea Further, intervenes by recalling that it is necessary to make environmental drivers green. It works with graphene in large volumes, which is an economic advantage. Ecologically, it has no chemical approach but works with organic processes of mineral salts which transform it. Powdered graphene could lead to the removal of rare metals.
Financiers are moving towards a greener economy and an exit from fossil fuels
- The interventions conclude with that of Michelle Mitchell, filmmaker and journalist, who revised her opinion, as many thought that the improvement of the female condition passed through education but who now realizes that first it passes through health! Without it, nothing is possible, for a better and fairer life you need full access to care. Shocked, she evokes the news of what is happening in the USA on abortion and which she considers an unimaginable regression for women. To help women, they must be given access to decision-making positions on security and peace, their involvement at the decision-making level on these issues is crucial.
Cinzia Sgambati Colman, organizer of the forum, concluded the meeting with a question: what can women born in the most favored regions of our planet do? And a wish: that this forum could be a Manifesto for the transition to a green economy and that it could start from the Principality of Monaco.