Sunday, November 22, 2009

Copenhagen : One more time ...


As the world's biggest companies and their friends in
government continue to fight a transition to more just
and sustainable ways of living, climate change
threatens to turn our world upside down with water
shortages, crop failures, sea level rise and ecosystem
collapse. A million species face extinction by the end
of the century, and the people who have contributed
least to the problem will continue to be the hardest
hit. What can be done at this critical juncture, with
our future at stake?

Throughout history, social change has come about when
regular people get fed up with business as usual, get
organized, and take to the streets. If we leave
climate solutions up to politicians and corporations,
then we will lose - not just a political battle, but
the life-support systems of the planet. Time is
running out to avert the worst impacts of climate
change: the time to act is now.

A broad coalition of organizations working for social,
ecological, racial and economic justice has come
together under the banner of the Mobilization for
Climate Justice. Join us as we organize mass action on
climate change on November 30, 2009! November 30 (N30)
is significant both because it immediately precedes the
upcoming UN Climate Conference in Copenhagen and is the
ten-year anniversary of the protests that shut down of
the World Trade Organization meetings in Seattle,
demonstrating the incredible power of collective
action.

Every indication is that any agreement that emerges
from Copenhagen will be nothing more than business as
usual-sacrificing real emissions reductions in favor of
market-based approaches that enhance corporate profits
while delaying a transition away from fossil fuels. The
current approach to climate change in the UN, and in
the US Congress, is based on the creation of a new
market in carbon emissions. Carbon trading (aka "cap
and trade") and carbon offsets do not address the root
causes of global warming, nor do they reduce emissions.
They are designed by and for corporations, and are a
dangerous distraction that should be abandoned.

We urgently need to implement real solutions like
ending excessive consumption, keeping fossil fuels in
the ground, re-localizing production and consumption,
and drastically reducing greenhouse emissions. We must
also protect the rights of workers, displaced peoples,
and others affected by the transition.

In recent months, people of the world have taken
valiant action for climate solutions. On Oct. 24th,
people in 181 countries staged over 5,200 actions
calling for global action on climate change. And on
November 4, African delegates walked out of pre-
Copenhagen negotiations in Barcelona - demanding that
rich countries commit to deeper and faster emissions
cuts - while European activists used civil disobedience
to disrupt the talks.

And now, we're asking you to join us in taking the next
step - a global day of action for climate justice on
Monday, November 30, 2009. Take the day off, get
together with friends, and take a stand for real, just
and effective solutions to the climate crisis!

WHAT YOU CAN DO ON N30:

Several actions are already being planned for November
30 - and many more will be coming soon - so if there's
an action happening in your city or region, we urge you
to join it! See the MCJ site for a map of N30 actions
across the country and across the world.

If there isn't an action being organized in your town,
organize one! If you're already involved in a campaign
against a company that's contributing to climate
injustice, organize an action on against them November
30. You can submit actions by clicking HERE.

If you're organizing an action from scratch, we'd
suggest you go after one of the following companies:
Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Morgan Stanley,
Chevron, BP, or American Electric Power. We picked
these six companies because they're all, through their
investments, lobbying, and day to day business, going
out of their way to obstruct real solutions to the
climate crisis.

Wind Energy:
Wind energy is very promising, so is thermal energy, PV, wave ... The only thing that is wrong is that we are not investing enough in any of them. Did you know that if all the declared wind turbines in the world for next year were to be built in China then that would meet only 40% of the expected increase in the demand for electricity on mainland China. This means that China would still need to build in one year the equivalent of 50 coal powered plants each delivering 1000 MW. That is exactly responsible ie it?

Christianity:
Some are blaming Christianity for the recent economic meltdown. The argument is as follows: An increasing number of the "prosperity gospel" school are advancing the argument that success in this life is also to be taken as a sign that God loves us. This leads people to borrow, overconsume and to take risks. Overleveraging and too much risk did not contribute only to the economic meltdown but have played a major role is ecological degradation. So maybe Lynn White was right after all?

5 comments:

Caroline Craig said...

Just because it took me a while to find the information about events in NY, I thought I would post the link for anyone else interested, though no details for new york are up yet but check back: http://www.actforclimatejustice.org/n30-day-of-action/n30-actions-new-england/

When it comes to this article, I'm going to say I disagree with "targeting" Christianity, at least in the negative sense. While a "prosperity gospel" school might be advancing, that does not mean that Christianity as a whole can be summed up so simply. As this school is growing, so is an anticapitalism movement, especially within the Catholic church. In Michael Moore's movie Capitalism: A Love Story, he films priest Dick Preston saying, "Capitalism is evil, immoral and contrary to the teachings of Jesus." Christianity had and has the power to either aid or crush movements. For example, though racism was spewed from many pulpits, priests were not a rare sight in civil rights protests. I am a proponent of actually harnessing Christianity's core messages (peace, love, compassion...) in promoting a different world, instead of attacking it. It's true that many who support a paradigm shift picture a society free of religion but I want to step out there and agree with the other half of White's argument, that is, that answers can be found in retelling the real messages of Christianity. I think we stand a better chance in bringing down capitalist systems by harnessing those who believe in Christian values, "positively targeting" the church, more so than trying to destroy it.
I would be interested in hearing what others have to say about this, especially because I want to write my paper on it.

ghassan karam said...

Caroline,
The Jesuits have always been major critics of capitalism. There is a big difference between the core teachings of Christanity and the church as an institution. Jesuits of Latin America have often been the biggest attackers of capitalism.
Liberation Theology of Nicaragua and central America was primarily produced by Jesuits.

Caroline Craig said...

Exactly. Liberation Theology is an excellent example. I believe ignorance hurts people on all sides of the argument and really hurts what could be a greater effort to bring change.

Jose Arredondo said...

This article is interesting because I think it targets the key points that need to be brought up in Copenhagen. Recently,I read that President Obama will be attending the summit but it seems that neither the US or China are on the same page. Although they both plan on cutting emissions I don't think either are going to fully commit to what the world decides is necessary. If Copenhagen comes up with something like Kyoto I don't think its going to be enough. We will just end up with business as usual if the bigger nations don't step up to the plate. The less developed countries are the ones that are going to suffer from the outcomes if the advanced nations don't do anything beneficial.

Suppresst said...

"climate change
threatens to turn our world upside down with...crop failures"

But environmentalists have no problem promoting the conversion of crops into fuels for machines.



"Throughout history, social change has come about when
regular people get fed up with business as usual, get
organized, and take to the streets."

Really? I seem to notice that Jesus of Nazareth has had perhaps more impact on social change in world history than any other single personage. Don't recall any stories about him organizing marchers or throwing bottles at police?

"Every indication is that any agreement that emerges
from Copenhagen will be nothing more than business as
usual"

Yes, despite the fact that Congress has been in hands of progressives since 2006 congressional elections and liberals now control White House, and many nations at Copenhagen were deeply socialist or communist. Amazing how much progress "progressives" bring.


"Some are blaming Christianity for the recent economic meltdown."

Gee, I thought the Left was fond of hyping that America is not only now a Post-Chrisitan nation, but that our Founders were actually deists anyway. So why do leftists still blame "Christianity" for everything? Furthermore, godless Soviet Union abided in constanct economic meltdown and still polluted like crazy.