Global Dialogues: Worsening Water Crisis - “A New Parable for the Planet in Dublin”

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The Notre Dame-Newman Centre for Faith and Reason is pleased to contribute to the Global Dialogues series with ThinkND on the very important topic of water and our ecologically fragile environment. The challenges wrought by climate change will continue to confront peoples and nations for the foreseeable future as we face the impact of rising temperatures, rising seas levels, extreme storm activity, and changing ecological conditions around the world. These realities will be particularly impactful on coastal areas and on the poorest populations in the world, populations that already struggle to obtain food and potable water. Every person, agency, organization, and public and private enterprise must assess its role in offsetting and reversing our current climate trajectory before it’s too late.

On May 3rd, agriculturalist and business leader Dr. Mark Lyons will present the 2022 Newman Lecture, “A New Parable for the Planet,” in Dublin’s historic Newman University Church. Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech who holds a Ph.D. in solid-state fermentation from Heriot-Watt University, has a deep understanding of the needs and challenges facing diverse populations around the world, and of the possibility and potential of big business to help create a more positive future for us all. Rooted in the premise that agriculture has the greatest potential to shape our world’s future, Lyons launched the Planet of Plenty vision in 2019, calling for collaboration to improve nutrition, human and animal well-being, and the preservation of natural resources.

We are excited to welcome a man who roots his response to this moment in history in the evidence offered by serious research while situating it in a narrative of hope that can help us take charge of our collective future. “As we reflect on our responsibility to pass on a better planet to the next generation, it can be difficult to see the possibilities, especially when we are surrounded by negative stories of climate change and its implications," said Lyons. "However, when we take a fact-based approach to the challenges before us, we can embrace something much stronger than optimism. We can have hope, a bold and confident expectation as we face the future. The stories we share shape the solutions we can envision, so let’s turn the page on a new parable for our planet.”

Instituted by the Notre Dame-Newman Centre in 2017, the Newman Lecture is presented annually across a diverse range of topics bringing the lens of faith to matters of concern to society as a whole. St. John Henry Newman believed that the well-educated person must be able to bring a well-formed and incisive intellect to bear on the complex issues facing the modern world.

The Notre Dame-Newman Centre for Faith and Reason was founded in 2017 by the University of Notre Dame at the invitation of Diarmuid Martin, the Archbishop of Dublin. Inspired by Newman, who built the Church that is our home, the Notre Dame-Newman Centre is a place where the lively and intellectually rigorous engagement of faith and culture informs and deepens our understanding of the modern world. Beautiful liturgy, inspiring preaching, thoughtful lectures and engaging concerts bring light to faith which remains a vital lens through which the human experience can be viewed with clarity. We strive to be a community of informed believers who seek the truth with confidence, speak the gospel in love, and witness to faith into our every action. You can read more about the Newman Centre on our website.


Click here for more information and to register. This program is free and open to the general public.

About the Series

Global Dialogues: The Worsening Water Crisis highlights the University’s global reach through research, activism, and local impact around the globe as a further exploration of what connects us in our Care for Our Common Home. From Mumbai to Santiago, participants will travel virtually each week to a different location around the world to learn about the global water crisis, including its accessibility, its impact on cities, and its importance to equity and food production. Participants will learn about research that is occurring with local partners, organizations, and governments that demonstrate the global impact of local interventions and collaborative projects, ultimately bringing people together to build a more sustainable and healthy future. This series also offers an opportunity to engage with international communities and learn about the impact of climate change from faculty experts at Notre Dame.

Sessions include:

  • Environmental Policy and governance in Nairobi, Kenya
  • Coastal Boulder Displacement on the West Coast of Ireland
  • Impact of Rise in Sea Level in Mumbai
  • The Water Crisis in Mexico City
  • Rivers and Tides: A Biography of the River Thames and The Sustainability of Rivers in London
  • Water Sustainability in Santiago, Chile
  • A New Parable for the Planet in Dublin
  • Offshore Energy and Climate Change, Jerusalem
  • Water, Soil, and Air, Rome

ThinkND is Notre Dame’s open, online learning community.