Bonn, 3 November 2017: Ahead of the UN climate talks (6-17 November) – hosted by Fiji but opening next week in Bonn, Germany – Friends of the Earth International will join BUND/Friends of the Earth Germany and thousands of activists in a demonstration of ‘people power’ calling for an urgent coal phase out in Germany and globally.

 

Hubert Weiger, chair of Friends of the Earth Germany said:

“The new German government needs to follow the example of Canada, Italy, the Netherlands and the UK, which have announced a coal phase out before 2030. Chancellor Merkel needs to announce a coal phase out here in Bonn and implement it in Berlin. Climate policy starts at home.”

This year’s climate talks are taking place on the doorstep of one of the largest, most polluting coal mining regions in Europe. And worldwide, some 1,600 new coal plants are currently planned in 850 locations, undermining efforts to keep global temperature rise below the Paris Agreement’s stated goal of 1.5 degrees, or even 2 degrees. Global average temperature rise has already exceeded 1 degree and we are facing a planetary emergency: floods, storms, droughts and rising seas are causing devastation, and hitting the poorest and most vulnerable people hardest.

In Bonn, Friends of the Earth International will call for ending dirty energy, including coal, as a key solution to the climate crisis, and for a new energy system that is clean, fair, community-led and transformative of people’s lives.

The current Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) and finance from developed countries lack the ambition needed to drive urgent transformation in the global North and a people-centred energy revolution in the global South. According to Friends of the Earth International, this is an injustice, as those most affected by climate change are the ones who did not create the crisis in the first place.

Karin Nansen, Chair of Friends of the Earth International, said:

“Putting a stop to coal and other forms of dirty energy is crucial in addressing the global climate emergency. It is nonsensical to conduct abstract discussions about climate ambition inside a conference centre without addressing the continued pursuit of fossil fuels outside. We urge developed country governments to stop exploiting dirty energy now and to stop financing dirty energy projects at home and in developing countries. Not only are these projects harming the climate, they are harming communities through dangerous pollution and land grabs.”

Friends of the Earth groups around the world are calling for an end to coal and all forms of dirty energy as a solution to the climate crisis.

Nur Hidayati, Director of WALHI/ Friends of the Earth Indonesia, said:

“For many Indonesian communities, the forest is life. Coal destroys forests and people’s livelihoods, ignores clean energy alternatives and compromises Indonesia’s pledge to reduce carbon emissions under the Paris Agreement. We must mobilize to stop coal mining, in Indonesia and everywhere.”

Friends of the Earth International stands with communities resisting dirty energy and taking control of their own clean energy futures. Friends of the Earth International stands with those facing the devastating impacts of climate change now.

Nansen concluded:

“From Germany to Indonesia and across the world, people want a renewable, safe, sustainable, just energy future. The transition to this future must be just for workers and communities. The transition to the future cannot involve gas which is also a dirty energy. We need an energy transformation now. We need climate justice now.”

ENDS

Notes for editors

MEDIA CALENDAR

Saturday 4 November 2017 – From 12:00

Climate March: ‘Fight for climate justice! – End coal!’

Organizer: Friends of the Earth Germany

Venue: Münsterplatz, Bonn

Link: https://www.klima-kohle-demo.de/english

Monday 6 November 2017 – 12:00-12:30

COP23 opening press conference: Expectations for the talks, with a focus on climate impacted communities in Asia Pacific and beyond.

Organizer: Friends of the Earth International

Chair: Karin Nansen, Chair of Friends of the Earth International

Panel: Hemantha Withanage (Friends of the Earth Sri Lanka), Dipti Bhatnagar (Friends of the Earth International), Kwami Dodzi Kpondzo (Friends of the Earth Togo). Other speakers TBC

Venue: Press Conference Room 2, BULA Zone (a plan of the venue can be found at: http://unfccc.int/meetings/bonn_nov_2017/items/10068.php#gc_20

Thursday 9 November 2017 – 16:45-18:15

Friends of the Earth side event: Fossil Gas: pathway to a clean energy future or route to dangerous climate change? Friends of the Earth Europe will present their new report on focused on whether Gas is compatible with Europe’s carbon budget.

Speakers: Speakers from frontline communities affected by gas development in the Global South and North, including Prof. Kevin Anderson (Uppsala University, Sweden), Jagoda Munic (Friends of the Earth Europe), Corporate Europe Observatory and others.

Venue: Room 10, Bonn Zone

More press conferences to be announced.

KEY PUBLICATIONS

Decade Zero: Demanding rapid and bold action to address the root causes of climate change (2016)

https://www.foei.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/08-FoEI-decade-zero-ENG-lr.pdf

SPOKESPEOPLE

Friends of the Earth International spokespeople from Africa, the Asia Pacific, Europe and Latin America will be available to interview throughout COP23, including:

  • Karin Nansen (Uruguay) – Chair at Friends of the Earth International
  • Sara Shaw (UK) – International program coordinator for Climate Justice and Energy at Friends of the Earth International
  • Dipti Bhatnagar (Mozambique) – International program coordinator for Climate Justice and Energy at Friends of the Earth International

PHOTOS

https://www.flickr.com/photos/foei/albums

MEDIA CONTACT

For more information and to arrange interviews, please contact: julia@foei.org

SOCIAL MEDIA TAGS

Twitter: Follow @FoEint using the hashtags #COP23 and #ClimateJustice