Plans are a foot
Delegates from 182 countries are in Bonn discussing key negotiating texts which can serve as the basis for critical climate talks in Copenhagen this December. Sam fleet from Friends of the Earth Europe and also a member of the Young Friends of the Earth Europe movement (Young FoEE) is there.
Arriving Tuesday afternoon in glorious weather, weighed down by sacks of wellington boots, flyers and other materials, not to mention our tents, we were greeted by fellow Young FoEE-ers in the garden outside our hostel.
We would not be entering the Maritim Hotel, the centre of the talks, until Thursday, and looked forward to two full days of training and action preparation.
We had no first-hand idea of how the talks were going yet, but the general feeling was one of optimism, although, this would soon be challenged.
The Young FoEE activities got off to a great start. The first afternoon was spent with introductions and to each other and the whole UN climate talks process known as UNFCCC.
After a brief overview of the week’s activities, the evening brought an unexpected surprise when members of the Friends of the Earth International (FoEI) delegation arrived for an evening workshop. What was meant to be an informal chat about the FoEI stance on the talks turned into very intense and motivating discussions.
Initially the FoEI delegation looked incredibly exhausted and frustrated by the UNFCCC processes, and said as much, giving all the Young foe-ers a bit of a reality check . But, the pessimism was soon swept aside by a motivating and passionate talk from Asad Rehman, Senior Campaigner for Friends of the Earth England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The core message of the talk was that the frustrating UNFCCC process should not be demotivating, but in fact the complete opposite: it should be motivation for action action action. This got us all very excited. Talks continued until around midnight, and it became clear that there was a huge gap waiting to be filled by the Young FoEE activists in Bonn: an action-sized gap right outside the Maritim hotel. Plans are indeed afoot...
- More pictures of Young Friends of the Earth Europe in Bonn can be viewed here
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