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Hungary: giant climate mosaic colours climate debate

On a rainy November day in 2007, one hundred local activists from all corners of Hungary gathered in front of the Hungarian Parliament in Budapest, and placed 1,500 painted wooden tiles on the ground, forming a large, colourful mosaic in the form of a map of Hungary.
hungary: giant climate mosaic colours climate debateThe mosaic map of Hungary in front of parliament with 100 FoE activists urging a radical national climate strategy. This was the final action of Friends of the Earth Hungary/MTVSZ’s ‘Climate Protection Now’ campaign, marking the successful culmination of a two-year struggle for a radical national climate change strategy.

 

Participating regional member groups organised a total of 75 public actions in 27 Hungarian cities. Friends of the Earth Hungary met 12,000 people who supported the campaign by painting climate messages and signing petition postcards. At the closing event a climate petition was handed to the Speaker of the House, the Minister for the Environment and representatives of all the parties in parliament. The petition, signed by 63 NGOs, and the postcards demanded the same thing: Hungarian citizens want more commitment and concrete steps that really address the structural causes of climate change. They want national decision-makers to agree a radical national climate change strategy.

 

“These 100 dedicated activists represented ten thousand people demanding radical action on climate change. The strength of this movement is its co-operation and it proved to be successful, we are glad that our group could be part of it.”

 

Zsuzsanna Sara, leader of Beretzk Peter Environment Protection Association, a local group in Roszke, SE Hungary (and a member group of Friends of the Earth Hungary

The struggle was successful: in February 2008 Hungary’s National Climate Change Strategy was adopted, the first step towards radical climate change legislation.

 

“We met many thousands of people during our campaign and the majority clearly expected a radical national climate change strategy from decision makers. It was so rewarding to see that decision-makers invited to the action were really impressed by the public pressure we had mustered.”

 

Alexa Botar, climate campaigner with Friends of the Earth Hungary


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