Since October 24, when you helped lead thousands of events around the world calling for climate action, we've seen new political momentum behind the climate solutions that science demands. After meeting with dozens of delegates during the last round of UN climate negotations in Barcelona, I can tell you first-hand that your local climate leadership is making a real difference--and helping clear the political space for national leaders to take ever-bolder stances on the climate crisis.
Earlier this week, President Nasheed--the leader of a low-lying nation faced with the very real threat of imminent extinction due to rising seas--delivered a powerful speech at the opening of the "Climate Vulnerable Forum." In his speech, he calls for a survival pact in a plea so eloquent that you need to read it for yourself and sign the survival pact today.
The "Climate Vulnerable Forum" included many of the nations on the very front lines of the climate crisis, nations that are grappling with the impacts of the climate crisis here and now.
The focus of President Nasheed's speech was to bring attention to the dire consequences of ending the Copenhagen Climate Talks this December with a weak or non-binding agreement.
I'll let President Nasheed's words speak for themselves:
We are gathered here because we are the most vulnerable group of nations to climate change.Nasheed called on all nations to push for carbon neutrality in order to ensure the survival of his country and all the most vulnerable people around the world:
Some might prefer us to suffer in silence but today we have decided to speak...we will not die quietly.
Members of the G8 rich countries have pledged to halt temperature rises to two degrees Celsius. Yet they have refused to commit to the carbon targets, which would deliver even this modest goal.
At two degrees we would lose the coral reefs. At two degrees we would melt Greenland. At two degrees my country would not survive.
As a president I cannot accept this. As a person I cannot accept this.
I refuse to believe that it is too late, and that we cannot do any about it. Copenhagen is our date with destiny. Let us go there with a better plan.
After all, it is not carbon we want, but development. It is not coal we want, but electricity. It is not oil we want, but transport. Low-carbon technologies now exist, to deliver all the goods and services we need. Let us make the goal of using them.Finally, he made the distinction between what might be considered a good deal in Copenhagen, and one that would ensure the end of his people:
At the moment every country arrives at the negotiations seeking to keep their own emissions as high as possible. They never make commitments, unless someone else does first.These are bold words, bolder than most people understand.
This is the logic of the madhouse, a recipe for collective suicide.
We don't want a global suicide pact. And we will not sign a global suicide pact, in Copenhagen or anywhere. So today, I invite some of the most vulnerable nations in the world, to join a global survival pact instead.
Here's the backstory: President Nasheed and other leaders of some of the world's most vulnerable countries are already being pressured to back down from their commitments to strong action. For example, when African countries stood up at the UN Climate Talks in Barcelona last week and demanded rich countries commit to strong climate targets, European capitol's placed immense pressure on them to back off, so much so that the chair of the African negotiating bloc was forced to leave the negotiations.
Leaders like Nasheed need our support. Your actions on October 24th opened the door for bolder leadership. And the deliveries of photos from Oct 24 events to over 110 countries in Barcelona (and cities all over the world) are helping turn grassroots action into political momentum.
Now, with just a month to go before Copenhagen, we must stand together. All of us, from presidents and politicians to scientists and citizens, must seize this moment and take this movement for survival to the next level.
Please join us.
Teresa Niño and the 350.org Team
P.S. Please help increase the volume of this important call to action -- share it with your friends on Facebook with literally two clicks. Sharing the call on twitter is even easier--please take mere seconds out of your day to grow this movement.
P.P.S. We're still committed to offline, grassroots organizing, and we're gearing up for some historic events on the weekend of December 12th. Plans are still evolving, but for now clear out that weekend--it's the midway point of the Copenhagen climate conference, and at that critical time we'll need all hands on deck to make this movement soar.