In 2009, indigenous peoples throughout the world called for a global mobilisation ‘in defence of mother earth’ on October 12, reclaiming the day that used to be imposed as ‘Columbus Day’. Responding to this call, and the demand for a day of action for ‘system change, not climate change’ issued by the global movements gathered in Copenhagen last year, Climate Justice Action is proposing a day of direct action for climate justice on October 12, 2010.
Today, we know…
For years, many had hoped that governments, international summits, even the very industries and corporations that caused the problem in the first place, would do something, anything to stop climate change. In December 2009, at the 15th global climate summit in Copenhagen (COP15), that hope was revealed as an illusion: a comfortable way to delude ourselves into believing that ‘someone else’ could solve the problem for us. That ‘someone’ would make the crisis go away. That there was someone ‘in charge’.
Today, after the disaster of COP15, we are wiser. Today we know:
– That we cannot expect UN-negotiations to solve the climate crisis for us. Governments and corporations are unable (even if they were willing) to deliver equitable and effective action on the root causes of climate change.
– That the climate crisis isn’t a natural process, nor is it accidental. Rather, it’s the inevitable outcome of an economic system that is bound to pursue infinite economic growth at all costs.
– That only powerful climate justice movements can achieve the structural changes that are necessary, whether it is through ending our addiction to fossil fuels, replacing industrial agriculture with local systems of food sovereignty, halting systems based on endless growth and consumption, or addressing the historical responsibility of the global elites’ massive ecological debt to the global exploited.
Today we know that is up to all of us to collectively reclaim power over our daily lives. It is we who must start shutting down and moving beyond the engines of capitalism, the burning of fossil fuels, the conversion of all life into commodities, and the toxic imaginaries of consumerism. It is we who must create different ways of living, other ways of organising our societies.
Today we know that climate justice means taking action ourselves.