Thursday, September 01, 2005
Climate coalition launch
Around 500 people came together for this morning's launch of the stop climate chaos campaign, forming a giant human swirl on the Jubilee Gardens lawn just between Shell's giant tombstone-like building and the London Eye.
The first goal of coalition behind the campaign is that the UK honour its pledge to reduce our emissions by 20% by 2010. (Holding the UK government to its own promises as radical politics! Does each member of the campaign make a pledge to do the same or more in their own lives?).
Bringing together development and environment NGOs is a good move, although there's a still long way to go beyond the much too scanty action points in the second edition of Up in Smoke.
A report by Richard Black for BBC online highlights the religious element to the coalition. Yes, this could be quite politically interesting, including in the UK (albeit that largely secular development NGOs, which define the issue in terms of justice without reference to supernatural agents, appear to play at least as large a role in the coalition). Religious constituencies are large, and can bring voice and power to the party. Imagine if, say, Samaritan's Purse joined with the NEA in the States on this issue (see also faith and climate change).
Oh, and the lawn. I complained to Charlie Kronick of Greenpeace that lawns were a typical product of late high patriarchal eco-dumb capitalism (have you ever realised that the letter L appears both in the word 'lawn' and in 'Carlyle Group'? Aha! See?). Next time, a grassy meadow of native wildflowers, please Charlie. I'm sure the folks inside the Shell building would appreciate it. The music was just right, though.
(The pictures are mine except for the aerial shot, which comes from Greenpeace).