More Copenhagen News, keep being pro-active

23 12 2009

First, I just wanted to share this article, one of the most interesting I’ve seen about the Copenhagen Climate Summit. It’s called “How do I know China wrecked the Copenhagen deal? I was in the room.

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Then, yesterday I got this email from Avaaz, a wonderful social/environmental activist organization whose petitions I often sign– and their petitions often work.

Dear friends,

Leaders disappointed the entire world in Copenhagen last weekend. But one group was cracking open the champagne – the polluting industry lobbyists who pushed our politicians to failure. The polluters have only one worry now: us.

Recently a few youth climate activists (funded by Avaaz online donations!) dared to challenge the most powerful polluter lobbyist group, the US Chamber of Commerce, by helping to stage a humorous satirical press conference announcing the Chamber had decided to help fight climate change.

The polluter lobby’s response? A huge lawsuit suing these young activists for potentially enormous amounts of money. Experts say a response like this is extremely rare. It appears designed to send a chilling message to our movement and silence all who would speak out.

Let’s send a message back. The Chamber has raised $750,000 from US corporations to help launch this attack – If 20,000 of us give just a small amount each to our effort to stand up for climate activists and stop the polluter lobby, we’ll raise more than them – showing their intimidation backfired! Let’s show the polluter lobby that we can’t be silenced, and show politicians that the future belongs to people, not polluters:

https://secure.avaaz.org/en/people_vs_polluters

Copenhagen failed primarily because big polluters US and China wanted a weak agreement. President Obama was heavily constrained by a US Congress that has been captured by lobbyists. The Chamber is a front group for the largest corporations in the polluting lobby, including oil and coal companies like Exxon Mobil. They were major backers of President George W Bush, and have spent hundreds of millions of dollars blocking Obama’s attempts at change. The Chamber claims to represent US businesses, but even many large corporations (like Apple, Nike and Microsoft) have opposed its pro-polluter positions on climate change. 

While people were out in force in Copenhagen, polluter lobbyists worked in the shadows, their voices loud only in our politicians’ ears. To get the climate deal we need, we have to expose their influence, stand up to their intimidation tactics, and send a signal to others that the time has come, once and for all, to stand up to the villains holding our planet hostage:

https://secure.avaaz.org/en/people_vs_polluters

In our journey together as the Avaaz community, we’ve taken on dictators in Burma and Zimbabwe, promise-breaking politicians in Europe and North America, and the forces of extremism in the Middle East. But the Chamber is in some ways the most powerful and dangerous opponent we’ve faced. Some have advised Avaaz to stay quiet about this, to protect our own organization. But with danger comes opportunity, and if people power can defeat even the most powerful corporate lobby in the world, we’ll send a much broader message, that a new world, the one we all seek, is on its way.

The polluting industry lobby stopped a real deal at Copenhagen, and now they’re trying to silence the rising climate movement by suing youth activists. They’ve raised $750,000 for their intimidation effort — if 20,000 of us give just a small amount each, we’ll show them their tactics backfired, and show politicians that people-power can defeat polluters. Click below to chip in:

 

With hope, 

Ricken, Ben, Iain, Alice, Graziela, Luis, Paul, Taren, Sam, Pascal, Benjamin, Paula, Milena and the whole Avaaz team

More information:

New York Times — “Way behind the curve”:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/30/opinion/30wed3.html

Washington Post — “The U.S. chamber vs honesty”:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/26/AR2009102602714.html

Huffington Post — “PGE Quits US Chamber of Commerce”:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/brendan-demelle/pge-quits-us-chamber-of-c_b_295424.html

Politico — “CNBC and Reuters fall for climate hoax”:
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1009/28456.html

Moveon.org — “Chamber of Commerce don’t oppose clean energy jobs”:
http://pol.moveon.org/chamber/

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