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Grammy Winner Visits Doomed Pacific Island to Bring World Focus to Climate Change

BENGALURU, India, May 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Following his 2014 Grammy win for the album Winds of Samsara, multi-award-winning composer and producer Ricky Kej has become an increasingly vocal spokesman for the imminent threat of Global Climate Change. A life-long advocate for social justice and animal rights, Kej cites his meeting with India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi as inspiration for his current climate activism. Prime Minister Modi also encouraged Kej to use his music to raise global awareness of environmental issues. The result was the music album, Shanti Samsara, described by Kej as "a celebration of environment and the fact that it can co-exist with man. Shanti Samsara is truly global effort with over 300 musicians from all cultures and ethnicities." The album was launched at the COP21 Climate Change Conference in Paris last November by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande in the presence of World Leaders.

Kej is taking his message on the road, visiting the front lines in the current climate change crisis, including the doomed Pacific island nation of Kirabati. Spread over 1,351,000 square miles, the Kiribati archipelago is home to around 100,000 people, who  will become the world's first climate refugees within 30 years. "This beautiful Island Nation will be completely submerged and underwater in our very lifetime", laments Kej.

Kej and his crew spent two weeks interviewing residents and documenting the current state of environmental degradation and filmed an hour-long interview with popular and beloved ex-president,

Anote Tong. Despite the recent progress made at the COP21 in Paris, Tong has accepted his nation's fate. In his interview with Kej, he said, "To plan for the day when you no longer have a country is indeed painful but I think we have to do that. I have always referred to our situation as a country on the frontline (of climate change). Why I say the frontline is because, if and when we fall, there will be another frontline and that frontline will keep moving back until those countries and those people who believe will not be affected will eventually be affected, and that is the reality! The sooner we begin to understand it, the better we can respond to this challenge"

On being asked how much of time Kiribati has, President Tong had this to say "For some communities in Kiribati the time is over, they have had to move! There are communities which I believe will have to move within 5 years. So, the frequency will increase... the severity of what is happening will increase! As you know we do not have any high ground to move to. So once it happens it's going to be total"

Kej says of his Kiribati visit: "It was frightening. Climate change poses a real and dire threat that will only worsen with time. I feel very responsible for my friends in Kiribati and for all those who will be eventually impacted by climate change. I hope that as a musician, I can use my art to inspire people to wake up and decide to make a difference!"

Website: www.shantisamsara.com/

For more information about Kiribati: http://www.climate.gov.ki/tag/kiribati-president-anote-tong/

Website: www.shantisamsara.com/

For more information about Kiribati: http://www.climate.gov.ki/tag/kiribati-president-anote-tong/

To view this video on YouTube, please visit: https://youtu.be/FXPZRpjepaA

Media Contact: Ricky Kej, Shanti Samsara: World Music for Environmental Consciousness, 2623494158, [email protected]

News distributed by PR Newswire iReach: https://ireach.prnewswire.com

SOURCE Ricky Kej

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