Climate change and the global energy crisis threaten the lives and livelihoods of billions of people worldwide, and hit the poorest hardest. Solutions to these crises must be equitable and follow a climate fair shares approach.

Tackling the climate crisis

97% of climate scientists agree that human activities produce greenhouse gases that are heating the planet. The primary sources of greenhouse gases are burning fossil fuels for energy, industry and transport, industrial agriculture, and deforestation.

Global warming is having a devastating effect on our planet, causing heatwaves, floods, droughts, rising seas and more intense storms. The results include crop failures, wildfires, loss of lives, homes and livelihoods – hitting the poorest and most vulnerable hardest.

There are solutions to the climate crisis but we must act now. Change must happen in an equitable and just manner, following a climate fair shares approach.

“Greenhouse gas emissions need to be reduced urgently and fairly. Climate change is already having devastating effects, with impacts disproportionately felt in the global South.”

Sara Shaw, Friends of the Earth International

Fighting dirty energy

The climate crisis combines with an energy crisis that leaves 1.1 billion people without access to electricity. It forces a corporate model of dirty energy on communities who need access to safe, clean, community-owned energy.  

What drives these crises? Unsustainable economic and development models based on fossil fuels and other destructive energy sources, and the concentration of power over energy goods and services in the hands of the wealthy few.

Friends of the Earth International is part of a growing, diverse and effective global movement to resist dirty energy. We champion alternative energy sources and call for climate justice. We are fighting to stop corporations like Shell from wrecking the climate, and pushing back against false solutions.

Read our People Power Now manifesto10 demands for an energy system based on people power and justice.

Opposing the status quo

Rich countries and corporations continue to extract and burn fossil fuels, and push dirty energy projects in the global South. In recent years, they have sought to greenwash their activities with concepts like ‘Net Zero’. With this strategy, big polluters pretend to balance out their emissions by paying to sequester carbon elsewhere, through offsetting or untested carbon removal technologies – or both combined!

But ‘Net Zero’ is not zero. It relies on dangerous and risky ideas like BECCS and other geoengineering techniques, as well as carbon markets, offsets and so-called ‘Nature Based Solutions’. Net Zero distracts from the urgent and drastic emissions cuts we need. It will cause land grabbing and huge harm to communities and Indigenous Peoples in the global South.

Even if the Paris Agreement commitments are implemented, we remain on track for a 3-4°c world. Yet, we need to keep the average global temperature rise below 1.5°c. We must do this in a way that is fair: rich countries must stop greenhouse gases emissions and pay their fair share to support the global transition to sustainable renewable energy for all.

All over the world, calls for climate justice and a just energy transformation are getting louder. Friends of the Earth groups are mobilising to fight for climate justice, at the UN level and locally.

Join us. Together we can fight the climate emergency.

Towards energy transformation

A transformation of the energy system is fundamental to system change and to tackling climate change. It entails democratic answers to the fundamental questions: for whom and what is energy produced? It means a total departure from fossil fuel reliance and corporate control. Energy sovereignty is one key solution, allowing communities to choose sustainable energy sources and develop healthy consumption patterns to create sustainable societies.

“This must be a just transition, founded on worker and community rights. It is not only about changing technologies and renewable energy, but about public and community ownership and control, addressing the root problems of a system that turns energy into a commodity and denies the right to energy for all. It requires equity and justice, especially for those already impacted by the changing climate in the global South.”

Karin Nansen, former Chair of Friends of the Earth International