Day 5 Policy Updates: Taking Stock, Talking Lots

by Nathan Thanki

The informals continue. Today saw the ADP convene meetings on adaptation and technology which got fairly heated. The big sticking points are the issue of intellectual property rights (IPRs), which has been reintroduced by the G77 but is causing the developed countries much anguish. Yesterday developed countries began referring to IPRs as “the thing which must not be named” in reference to the Harry Potter series. This became so absurd that the chair eventually forced the issue to be named. TWN cover the ridiculousness in much more detail. Read more…

Day 4 Policy Updates: Loss and Damage text

by Nathan Thanki

In general negotiations continue in “contact groups” and informals which are by and large closed to observers (though try your luck!) and in informal-informals and bilaterals in the corridors.

In the contact group on loss and damage, chaired by ministers (rather than negotiators) from Sweden and St. Kitts, the G77 proposed a draft text yesterday (Tuesday) which was supported universally by developing country blocs (AOSIS, LDCs, Africa Group). Elements of the G77 text include Read more…

Once more into the breach: Reclaiming Power at the frack pads and in the UNFCCC

by nathan thanki

This past weekend, while a massive group of [Earth]ies made the insane 15 hour journey to Pittsburgh for Powershift 2013, those of us who remained gathered together for Global Frackdown 2. Having recently sent over a dozen volunteers to canvass for Protect South Portland in their effort to block Tar Sands via a waterfront protection ordinance, and with half our group in Pennsylvania, our contribution consisted of hosting a screening of Gasland 2 for the COA community.

Fighting Tar Sands with Protect South Portland as part of Reclaim Power! Month of Action on Energy

Fighting Tar Sands with Protect South Portland as part of Reclaim Power! Month of Action on Energy

Although our writing at Earth in Brackets has been mainly focused on issues of environmental governance at global level (i.e. UN processes), the perils of extreme and unconventional fossil fuel extraction–tar sands, mountaintop removal, fracking for oil and gas, the list goes on–are not unknown to us. But the extent of this assault on the earth and the life it supports is not fully appreciated, even among our own community. Given recent events a few hours north of here in Elsipogtog, where the Canadian police, protecting fracking companies, violently confronted Mi’kmaq protesters, there couldn’t have been a more timely occasion to spread the knowledge about the industry and its tactics. All across the world, that is exactly what was being done on October 19th as part of Global Frackdown and Reclaim Power! Month of Action against Dirty Energy. Read more…

Holding a tension: grassroots and global activism

by nathan thanki

In my previous post I alluded to some exchanges of ideas in Lofoten at the Young Friends of the Earth Europe camp. All of last week, including during both 25 hour train, bus, and boat journeys, we’ve been attempting to initiate and contribute to frank discussions on the perceived divide between “international” and “grassroots” activism.

Being better together does not mean having uniform ideas

Being better together does not mean having uniform ideas

 

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killing for oil?

Collaborating for Climate Justice: Lofoten camp

by nathan thanki

Hello from the top of the world.

This week the beautiful Lofoten islands have hosted not only our team of six from Earth in Brackets, but also the annual Young Friends of the Earth Europe camp of 100 inspiring and inspired young activists from Russia, Canada, Nigeria and all over Europe, as well as Natur og Ungdom‘s 300 strong summer camp for Norway activists.

We are here to send a loud and clear message to the world, especially to the Norwegian government of the present and the future. That message is that we will not allow more oil drilling in the Norwegian arctic. While Norway continues to enjoy an artificial green light in international media, at home the government and the state owned oil company, Statoil, are hell bent on opening up one of the most important biodiversity sites in Europe to oil drilling. This isn’t the first time. In 2002 our hosts and allies, Nature and Youth, managed to resist an attempt to drill (and spill) oil in Lofoten. In spite of the usual obfuscating tactics and arguments (in a word: JOBS), people in Norway–especially young people and fishermen–realize that an expansion of any fossil fuel industries is a step in the wrong direction and an injustice to the local community, those at the frontlines of climate impacts, and future generations alike. Instead of addressing the root causes of the climate crisis, Norway is attempting to justify it with the mumbo-jumbo of “clean oil” and the false promise of “jobs.”

There are many reasons to say “no” in Lofoten. But we didn’t come here just to say no, important though that is. Read more…