The UN climate conference in Paris has entered its second week with delegates pushing for a final agreement that can be ratified by all. Developing countries and island nations in particular have the most at stake.
Outside the halls of the meeting, activists are gathering despite a ban on protests by the French government in the wake of the ISIS attacks. Listen here
Within the high-stress, low-waste frenzy of the 21st Conference of Parties, or COP21, there are around 100 organizers from the frontlines of the climate crisis and energy extraction in North America. Drawn from the Navajo Nation, the Appalachian Mountains, Harlem and elsewhere, the It Takes Roots delegation is a joint venture of the Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, Indigenous Environmental Network and the Climate Justice Alliance. Its members — some inside and some outside of official UN proceedings — are engaged in a range of efforts back home both against fossil fuel extraction and for the development of community-owned alternatives, as well as a wider-reaching “just transition” away from what they call an extractive economy.
Read the rest here: http://wagingnonviolence.org/2015/12/bringing-solutions-cop21-conversation-cooperation-jacksons-brandon-king/
The United Nations climate negotiations, known as COP 21, is underway in Paris. Its goal is to produce a binding global climate agreement that would limit the rise in global average temperature to 2 degrees Celsius. Activists have staged mass sit-ins all over the globe to protest the participation of corporate polluters in the climate talks, and to elevate the voice of civil society. But what exactly are various groups in civil society proposing as an alternative? Here to help answer this question are our two guests: Anjali Appadurai and Kali Akuno. Anjali is an activist currently at COP 21 talks in Paris, and Kali Akuno is the co-director of Cooperation Jackson.
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COP21 Agreement is a Crime Against Humanity and Nature
On Dec 10, International Human Rights Day, a broad coalition of impacted communities will gather for a street theater protest at the Peace Wall in Paris calling on the US delegation to reject false solutions that are the basis of the COP21 agreement.
Representatives from Indigenous, Black, Latino, Asian and Pacific Islander organizations have united under the banner, It Takes Roots to Weather the Storm, representing communities living alongside fracking wells, coal power plants, and oil refineries and already facing the worst impacts of the climate crisis. “The US delegation has been leading other member states in a strategy of pollution trading that allows big oil to continue to pollute our communities and also threatens the livelihood of indigenous communities across the Global South. On both fronts, COP21 will lead to massive violations of human rights and the rights of indigenous people,” said Cindy Wiesner of the Grassroots Global Justice Alliance.
The three-pronged action includes performances with powerful visual metaphors of roots, storm and seeds. This action-performance will illustrate the current, global spiral towards environmental and economic destruction, while shining a light on the resilience of climate change impacted communities that are resisting these devastations head on. The action will highlight how it is also these very marginalized communities who are coming up with the real, alternative solutions that can simultaneously rebuild economies through alternative models like just transition, cooperative systems, collective ownership, etc. while restoring essential ecological balance.
“We are deeply concerned at President Obama’s failure to model authentic leadership in the global arena, and appalled by the glaring contradictions between his moving speech and actual action. The US has been leading the model of voluntary emission cuts, carbon market loopholes, and false solutions. We refuse to accept that,” said Brandon King of the It Takes Roots Delegation.
The Protesters chose the peace wall to also call attention to rising US militarism, resource wars and global conflicts. Representatives from Iraq Veterans Against the War will lift a large “No War, No Warming” banner in protest of the escalating bombing of the Middle East.
When: Thursday December, 10, 2015 at 11am
Where: The Peace Wall, Paris, France
Visuals: Street theater, Song, Banners
Preeti Shekar, It Takes Roots delegation 510-219-4193, [email protected]
Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network +33 75 14 13 823
Indigenous, Migrant, and Black Communities from the US and Canada Unite with Refugees and Migrant Communities in Paris
When: Wednesday December 9, 2015 at 10am
Where: Hippodrome de Vincennes, 2 route de la Ferme, 75012 Paris
On Wednesday, December 9th grassroots organizations from the Americas will join with migrant rights groups and refugee organizations in Paris to speak out against xenophobia, racism, and the criminalization of migration. In a powerful display of international solidarity, grassroots groups will gather in front of a migrant detention center with songs, drums and messages they hope will travel beyond the walls to all those currently in custody.
“We are here to show that when the Northern countries do all they can to raise physical and mental border, we the people from all over the world, from Jackson, Mississippi to Fresnes in Ile-de-France, we stand for climate and social justice and against xenophobia, islamophobia and negrophobia” said Almamy Kanouté, french grassroot activist.
“While the US, Europe and the Global North have been the largest emitters of greenhouse gas emissions, the Global South had been bearing the brunt of the impact. Rising food scarcity, drought and floods are driving global conflicts, war, and climate migration from Africa, Asia and the Middle East. The global community has a human rights responsibility to refugees fleeing violence and fleeing for their lives,” said Cindy Wiesner of the Grassroots Global Justice Alliance.
“As frontline communities in the US, our delegation is made up of Indigenous, Black, Latino, Asian and migrant working class communities. We know state repression, vigilante violence, and xenophobia all too well. In many of our communities extrajudicial killings at the hands of the state is a daily occurrence. We reject Islamophobia and Afro or Negrophobia rising across Europe and North America, as well as the scapegoating of migrants and refugees, being spread by right wing demagogues and their liberal enablers” said Kali Akuno from Cooperation Jackson.
The detention center where grassroots communities are gathering is of particular significance, as it was the site of an historic uprising after the death of a Tunisian man while in custody in 2008. This uprising brought brought national attention to the inhumane treatment of Migrants and Refugees in detention in Paris.
On the evening of Tuesday, December 8th, members of the It Takes Roots delegation called out Governor Jerry Brown of California on his support of false solutions. The group attended a celebration of the Governor’s Climate and Forests Task Force (GCF) to protest REDD. REDD allows polluters to continue to pollute and encourages displacement of Indigenous Peoples.
Delegates interrupted the event after the governor’s speech to point out the negative environmental and social impacts of REDD. They demanded that Brown hold himself accountable to the people and reject false solutions like REDD at COP21 and beyond. Governor Brown left the event shortly after the delegates attempted to speak with him and present him with petitions.
An Analysis Of COP21 From Within Le Bourget By Pablo Solon, former ambassador Of Bolivia to the UN and an ally of the It Takes Roots Delegation.
A draft climate agreement and decision with 48 pages and 939 brackets has been presented to the ministers in Paris on Saturday 5th of December. Many things can be said about this text. For example, the words “fossil fuels” don’t appear once. There is no proposal [in brackets] to limit coal, oil or gas extraction in the coming years, and no proposal to halt deforestation. Also, as was expected, no text [in brackets] from any country addresses the issue that current INDCs (Intended Nationally Determine Contributions) will actually increased the greenhouse gas emissions gap from a surplus of 12 Gt CO2e in 2020 to around 25 Gt CO2e by 2030. Read the full analysis.
Indigenous people fighting for their lives and way of life brought a flotilla of canoes and kayaks to Paris. With a strong message to defeat the REDD+ deal and to keep 80 percent of fossil fuels in the ground, tribes from around the world took to the waterways.
“We’re very, very concerned about the fact that reference to indigenous rights and human rights have been moved into an annex in the Paris text,” Cree activist Clayton Thomas-Muller says. “It means that they’ve been put aside to be discussed after the weekend.”
And the world is listening. Check it out below:
Sunday was the second day full of activities for the It Takes Roots delegation. The big event of the day was Indigenous Environmental Network’s big canoe action! Check out out that and some more highlights on our storify here: