Grassroots Frontline Community Leaders Call Out Militarism as a Culprit of Climate Change at COP26 Climate Conference in Glasgow, Scotland

Protests took place inside and outside of the COP26 United Nations Climate Talks on Monday, November 8, the Day When Former Us President Barack Obama Speaks

GLASGOW, Scotland – The It Takes Roots (ITR) delegation representing more than 60 frontline communities leaders and organizers took action inside and outside the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) meetings in Glasgow today. Former President Barack Obama held a roundtable and meetings with key leaders, and ITR highlighted the ‘Monster of Militarism’ and the contradictions of Obama’s legacy of militarism, including greater military expansion into the Pacific, the expansion of drone warfare and the use of military interventions on water protectors fighting against the Dakota Action Pipeline.

Communities across the world have been devastated by war and occupation. The action during COP26 pointed to the fact that the US military is the single largest consumer of fossil fuels in the world, and has served as the enforcer of occupation of Indigenous and sovereign lands while upholding violent resource extraction across the world. It Takes Roots believes that addressing climate change requires ending the military industrial complex.


Among the speakers during the action were Alejandría M. Lyons of the SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP). Alejandría states, “I am attending COP26 to represent New Mexico and to tell our world leaders that we are not a sacrifice zone. Our land and water must be protected as well as the rights of future nuevomexicanx generations. We need to hold the US military accountable in this climate conversation no matter how much power they hold in our state.”


Ramón Mejía, the Anti-Militarism National Organizer of Grassroots Global Justice Alliance is another speaker at the protest. Ramon says, “Over 790 military bases across 81 countries, colonies, and territories. The world’s largest consumer of fossil fuels, and the worst emitter of greenhouse gases. We can not meaningfully address the devastation caused by climate change without addressing the top contributors—including the US military. The United States must come to terms with both the human and ecological costs of maintaining the current course.”



It Takes Roots is centering the voices and leadership of frontline communities and workers on the global stage. ITR’s frontline delegation demands that world leaders commit to real solutions to advance climate justice and environmental justice at COP26. Allowing for neoliberal constructs such as Net Zero emissions, which equate carbon emission offsets and technology investments with real emissions reductions at source, would exacerbate existing pollution burdens on frontline communities. ITR is calling for a Just Transition off of fossil fuels at the international climate negotiations.