Nov 16, 2011

FoEI statement in support of the 99%

by PhilLee — last modified Nov 16, 2011 11:53 AM

Friends of the Earth International is inspired and energized by the current unfolding of world-historic, transformative events. From the popular uprisings in Northern Africa and the Arabian Peninsula to the indignados of Europe, from the encampments of the #occupy movement to the student movements in Latin America and the UK, people from all over the world are calling for economic and socio-political justice.

excom occupy edinburgh
Friends of the Earth International's Executive Committee show solidarity with the Occupy Edinburgh movement, October 2011.

Our history of campaigning against transnational corporations and environmentally destructive economic policies has clearly indicated that we must attain economic justice in order to save the planet.


We believe that the vast inequalities lived by the 99% today are the consequence of the globalized capitalist system which subsidizes dirty industry and invests in military expansion at the expense of securing healthy and just economies with strong social services.


This system has resulted in a legacy of ecological devastation that will be passed on to our children and to the many generations thereafter.


Friends of the Earth International’s key struggles for environmental justice take place at the local level.  Whether we are defending the rights and livelihoods of people in Ogoniland, Palestine, Ireland or Honduras, we stand together in the struggle against economic injustice and corporate greed. To save our communities and our environment, we stand united in calling for a profound transformation of the current globalized political economic system.


growing inequalities

In many parts of the world people are losing their livelihoods and social security as a result of an expanding economic crisis. In addition, many people are suffering the impacts of other ongoing related crises: in food and water, forests and biodiversity, energy and climate.  Each of these crises is the result of an economic system that promotes the endless commodification, privatization and over-consumption of our common natural resources.  We see how these crises only exacerbate global socio-economic inequalities.

We also believe that the growing economic inequalities within our societies are coupled with growing inequalities in political power. The great majority of us live within broken, unresponsive political systems. The influence of big business has expanded to such an extent that our national and global governance institutions have largely been captured by corporate lobbyists.  The world's democratic institutions should by definition serve the peoples' interest, and in so doing also protect our environment. But if our democratic institutions fail to represent the common good, if our national and global governance institutions are controlled by corporate interests instead, then we must mobilize to the streets to demand that the system changes.  Today, the transformation of our world begins with people mobilizing and demanding real, systemic change. 

an alternative system

We cannot expect the same global market model that has caused climate change, ecological destruction and poverty to solve the problems we are facing today . We must work together to strengthen our resistance to this system.  We must work to create new, transformative economic models that promote our collective prosperity, social equity and real environmental sustainability.  We strongly believe that an alternative system must be created, and it must include both environmental and economic justice at its core.  We must create economies not for profit, but for life.

The spirit of the times is one of urgency.  We at Friends of the Earth International, along with other allied social movement organizations, recognize our own struggles in the struggles of the 99%.  We offer our solidarity and our support, and we join this movement whole heartedly.

Mobilize, Resist and Transform!