2009 events

Most recent events are nearest the top.

Copenhagen Climate March, 12th December

GLOBAL DAY OF  ACTION CLIMATE MARCH IN COPENHAGEN, 12th DECEMBER

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The Campaign against Climate Change was out 'on tour' wth our hallmark 'globe-in-a-greenhouse' and assorted flags and banners at the magnificent climate march in Copenhagen on 12th December, the Global Day of Action on climate on the Saturday midway through the climate talks.

The CCC co-organised the 'Euro-train'  that took 800 activists from Belgium, France and the UK to Copenhagen for the weekend of the 12th-13th. This was in collaboration with 'Climate et Justice Sociale'  from Belgium and 'Amis de la Terre'  from France. 133 activists from the UK went on the train, while CCC also organised a coach that took another 50 activists.

The Global Day of Action march in Copenhagen was a great success, with maybe around 100,000 taking part including sizeable contingents from many European countries and a broad diversity of people from all over the world. CCC enthusiasts joined the Friends of Earth 'Flood for Climate Justice' outside the venue of the 'Klima Forum' at 10.00 am and proceeded with the 'greenhouse'  to Christiansborg which rapidly filled up with demonstrators to hear speeches before the march left around 2.00 pm for the 6km march to the Bella centre (where the conference was being held), where there were more speeches and entertainment into the early evening.

Everyone was agreed it was a fantastic day - not to be missed - and a milestone in the building of  a global campaign against climate change.

See our photo gallery from the day here. We've also greated a Flickr group for others to share their photos from the march.

Climate Emergency Rally

Crowd at Speakers Corner

Thousands came togther for the Climate Emergency Rally at the start of  the UK's biggest day of climate protest, yet, on 5th December, the Saturday before the opening of the Copenhagen Climate Talks.  They came to demand immediate and radical action on climate from the UK government.

The rally's key demands were:

  • Declaration of a Climate Emergency
  • 10% cuts by end 2010
  • A million green jobs by end 2010
  • Ban domestic flights
  • 55 mph speed limit – scrap the roads program
  • End Agrofuel use

These demands were clearly visible on Saturday as hundreds of demonstrators held aloft the Climate Emergency placards.

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The packed rally line-up saw speeches from:

John McDonnell MP (Lab), Simon Hughes MP (Lib Dem), John Stewart (Hacan Clearskies), Michael Meacher MP (Lab), Ellie Hopkins (UK Youth Climate Coalition), Tess Riley (Climate Camp), Caroline Lucas MEP (Leader of the Green Party), Lynne Jones MP (Lab), Maria Souviron (Bolivian Ambassador), Chris Baugh (Public and Commercial Services Union), Phil Thornhill (National Coordinator, Campaign against Climate Change).

Videos of the speeches can be seen here, and photos from the day are here.

John McDonnell MP, who has signed our EDM 189 outlining our climate emergency demands, championed the active opposition in his constituency to the proposed expansion at Heathrow, while Simon Hughes MP spoke of the link between the climate and economic crises. Bolivian Ambassador Maria Souviron gave a voice to the global south and declared the UKs responsibility and moral obligation to lead the way in climate action. Chris Baugh represented the links between the environmental and labour movement in our call for green jobs, while Ellie Hopkins celebrated the growing youth climate movement. Seize the Day opened up the rally with a fantastic set of their inspiring songs getting everyone in the mood for a day of action.

 The rally was joined by 250 cyclists fresh from the Climate Emergency Bike Ride  who had started the day bright and early at Lincolns Inn Fields hearing speeches from Cllr Alexis Rowell (Lib Dem, Camden Council) and a fired up NIck Hutton (Treasurer Campaign against Climate Change). The ride then headed to BP's headquarters to demand an end to the company’s investment in the Canadian Tar Sands and the agrofuel industry with speeches from Jess Worth of the UK Tar Sands Network and Maryla Hart of Biofuelwatch. Finally the cyclists visited E.ON's office on the Mall to call for an end to dirty coal before joining the rally throng at Hyde Park.

The rally crowd went on to join the Stop Climate Chaos organised Wave event which saw 50,000 people encircling Parliament to call for tough action at Copenhagen. With a blue theme to the event the streets of London literally were awash with people in what was the biggest mobilisation the UK has ever seen on climate change.

To round off the day supporters visited Downing Street to deliver a Climate Emergency Letter to Gordon Brown on behalf of the Campaign against Climate Change. Mandee, Dexter, Chris, Rebecca and Pat went to the door of No.10 and handed in the letter that put to the Prime Minister our Climate Emergency demands.

Climate Emergency bike ride

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On the day of the climate demonstrations 250 cyclists started the action early and took the streets on a loud and colourful bike ride to demand emergency action on climate change from the government.

Starting off at Lincoln’s Inn Field, Alexis Rowell, Green Camden Councillor and founder of Cutting The Carbon, gave her support. There was then a stop-off at the BP headquarters where Maryla Hart of Food Not Fuel spoke about the corporation’s investment in agrofuels, before Jess Worth of the New Internationalist demanded an end to their funding of the destructive Canadian Tar Sands industry. Later, there was a short rally at the headquarters of climate criminal E.ON against new coal-fired power stations.

Cyclists then made a grand arrival at the Climate Emergency Rally at Speakers’ Corner to hear more rousing speeches from Caroline Lucas MEP, John McDonnell MP, John Stewart [HACAN] as well as others including Simon Hughes MP who himself came on the ride.

But the pedal-power hasn’t stopped there. Two CCC supporters carried on after the rally and are cycling 280 miles from London to Copenhagen to join the demonstrations there. Keep up support on their Facebook group page here.

 

Climate Emergency Meetings

Climate Emergency Copenhagen PUBLIC MEETING PROGRAM

Campaign against Climate Change organised a program of Public Meetings on the theme of Climate Emergency Copenhagen

Meetings included

London
Climate Emergency Copenhagen London Public Forum
Saturday 7th November at the South Camden Community School, NW1, 12 -6 pm

See more here.
Or contact  info@campaigncc.org,  020778339311 for more details

Cumbria : Kendal
Climate Emergency Public Meeting organised by South Lakes Action on  Climate Change on Thursday 17th September at the Castle Street Centre in Kendal, 7:30pm. Contact slaccslacc.org.uk for more details.

Sheffield
A Climate Emergency Parliament is being held as part of of the SCACC AGM on Tues 22nd Sept, at Quaker Meeting House, St James St, Sheffield. The AGM starts at 7pm and the Parliament at 7.45-9.15pm
Contact
Jenny Patient for more details: jenny.patientblueyonder.co.uk Tel: 07760174335

Reading
Public Meeting :  "Copenhagen Trick or Treat ?"  12th November.
More details  at www.gren.org.uk
- or contact John Hoggett, climatejusticepostmaster.co.uk , Tel: 0118 941 5144

York
Public Meeting: Climate Emergency Copenhagen: What World Leaders are getting wrong and what we can do about it
Wednesday 28th October, 7.30pm' Priory Street Centre, Priory Street (off Mickelgate)
Speakers: Phil Thornhill, National Coordinator, Campaign Against Climate Change and Neil Kingsnorth, Head of Activism, Friends of the Earth UK

Manchester
Climate Change, the economy and Copenhagen

Tuesday 27th Oct at 7.15pm
Friends Meeting House
Mount St (behind Central Library
Manchester

Speakers:
Phil Thornhill, National Coordinator, CCC
Martin Empson, Trades Union group of CCC
Worker from Vestas wind turbine factory (where they occupied to fight closure)
Speaker from Climate Action on recent direct action protest at Radcliffe Power Station, near Nottingham

Norwich
Wednesday 11 November  2009 - CLIMATE EMERGENCY COPENHAGEN PUBLIC MEETING,
7.30pm Venue: United Reform Church, Princes St, Norwich (near Cinema City).

"Climate scientists and campaigners will outline urgent action needed to prevent climate disaster, how we must change oureconomy, what we can all do, how to press our politicians to do more locally and nationally and at Copenhagen"

Leeds
Public Meeting: 7.30 p.m. – 9.00 p.m., Thursday 12th November 2009
Venue: The Common Place , 23-25 Wharf Street, LS2 7EQ
Organisers: Kirklees Campaign against Climate Change (kirkleesccc
hotmail.co.uk)
Agenda:
The science behind the Climate Emergency (Dr Simon Lewis, Royal Society Research Fellow, Earth and Biosphere Institute, School of Geography, University of Leeds)
Radical measure 1 - 10% cut in emissions by the end of 2010 (Simon Bowens, Friends of the Earth [Regional Campaigns Co-ordinator, Yorkshire and the Humber])
Radical measure 2 - A million Green jobs by the end of 2010 through massive investment in – among other projects - renewable energy, insulation programs and improved public transport (Martin Hemingway, Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for the Green Party, Leeds NW)
Radical measure 3 - Ending domestic and short-haul flights and building a better train and coach network (Representative of a group campaigning against airport expansion: tbc)


Watch this space for more meetings and further details.

Meanwhile if you are interested in organising a Climate Emergency Copenhagen meeting you can download our support pack here. Or email us for more information at  info@campaigncc.org.

London Public Forum


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London Public Forum

Saturday 7th November

12.00 noon – 6.00 pm,
at South Camden Community School, Charrington St.

The event saw a great afternoon of speeches by a range of diverse and passionate speakers.

The four round table plenaries were:

  • 10% cuts by end 2010: the case for emergency action
  • Green Jobs Now – a million climate jobs by end 2010?
  • Decarbonising our transport fast – the way ahead
  • Copenhagen, the deal we need and the deal we’re likely to get

Plus there were assorted workshops including ones from Biofuelwatch/Food not Fuel and the CCC trade union group.

For a full programme of events click here.

The speakers Aubrey Meyer (Global Commons Institute), Oliver Tickell (author Kyoto 2), John Stewart (HACAN), Johann Hari (journalist), Jean Lambert MEP (Green Party),  Damian Carrington (Head of Environment, the Guardian), Alexis Rowell (Camden Council), Daniel Scharf (Greenspeed), Chris Baugh (Public and Commercial Services Union), Dr Stuart Parkinson (Scientists for Global Responsibility).

Programme


12:15-13:15

 

Session 1:

10% Cuts by end 2010: the case for emergency action

Phil Thornhill, National Coordinator, Campaign against Climate Change

Damian Carrington, Head of Environment, The Guardian

Jean Lambert MEP, Green Party

 

MAIN HALL

13:15-13:45

 

Workshop:      

Carbon Supermarket - a comic take on carbon trading

With cartoonist Kate Evans and Kevin Smith, Carbontradewatch

 

MAIN HALL

 

Workshop:      

Introduction to campaigning against Agrofuels          

Biofuelwatch and Food Not Fuel

 

LIBRARY

Break: Stalls open & Brixton Tea Party serving hot drinks / snacks

FOYER & DINING ROOM

13:45-14:45

 

Session 2:

Green Jobs Now - a million climate jobs by end 2010

Dr Stuart Parkinson, Executive Director, Scientists for Global Responsibility

Andrew Simms, Policy Director and Head of the Climate Change Programme, new economics foundation

Chris Baugh, Assistant General Secretary, Public and Commercial Services Union

 

MAIN HALL

14:45-15:15

 

Workshop:

The role of Trade Unionists in building the Climate

movement before and after Copenhagen

Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union Group

 

LIBRARY

 

Workshop:

Achieving 10:10 - how to cut your emissions by 10% in a year without breaking a sweat

Prashant Vaze, author Economical Environmentalist

 

ROOM 112

 

Break: Stalls open & Brixton Tea Party serving hot drinks / snacks

 

FOYER & DINING ROOM

 

Live Music

 

MAIN HALL

15:15-16:15

 

Session 3:

Decarbonising our transport fast - the way ahead

Cllr Alexis Rowell, Lib Dem, Camden Council

John Stewart, HACAN ClearSkies

Daniel Scharf, Greenspeed

 

MAIN HALL

16:15-16:30

Live music from the Eco MC formely known as MC Ni

MAIN HALL

Break: Stalls open & Brixton Tea Party serving hot drinks / snacks

FOYER & DINING ROOM

16:30-17:30

 

Session 4:

Copenhagen - the deal we need and the deal we're likely to get

Helen Wolfson, International Co-ordinator, Friends of the Earth

Johann Hari, Journalist, The Independent

Oliver Tickell, author Kyoto 2

                        Aubrey Meyer, Global Commons Institute

 

MAIN HALL

17:30-17:45

 

Climate Emergency CALL TO ACTION

Campaign against Climate Change

 

MAIN HALL

 

Big ‘5’ for “350”

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The Big “5” for “350

Aerial Photograph at the London Eye 2pm, Saturday 24th October


The "Big 5" photograph went fantastically well, over 600 people gathered on London's South Bank to form the shape of a 5, to be put next to a 3 that was taken in Sydney, Australia and a 0 that was taken in Copenhagen, Denmark on the same day. The event was part of the 350 global day of action which saw over 4,000 events in over 180 countries all highlighting the number 350 - the safe level of CO2 in the atmoshphere in parts per million that we need to achieve to avoid catastrophic climate change (the current level 390 ppm).

The event was part of the nef's Bigger Picture festival that was taking place in The Bargehouse nearby.

Clicking the image above gets you to the full size version, but be warned, it's nearly 7 megabytes!

Here is a great time-lapse YouTube video of the event.

while Leap Anywhere did a video of the day with interviews.

You can see all the other events from the 350 day of action on their website. The 350 day of action, founded by author Bill McKibben, is the major international action leading up to the UN Climate Talks in Copenhagen, these actions peak with the Global Day of Action on Climate Change midway through the talks on December 12th – see here.

Great Climate Swoop

The Great Climate Swoop, 17th-18th October

ImageThe climate swoop was a well-attended event, with approximately 1,000 people present on Saturday, many of which stayed the night in the woods.


Our bloc, called Footsteps to the Future was loud and lively (helped no end by the bike sound system) and we marched from East Midlands Parkway station to the gate of the station where we stayed for a bit, snacking and listening to speeches.

Then the march resumed, down the road (with the humongous coal pile on our left) onto the bridge where we could peacefully observe the fence which other blocs were trying desperately to pull down! There we stayed for a while, eating flapjacks, playing a giant version of paper-rock-scissors and dancing to the sound system (rather appreciated by a police officer who joined in from the pavement!) until it started getting dark and cold, at which point most people went back to the station to get transport home.

A camp complete with warming fire was set up in the woods nearby, where the majority of those that stayed slept for the night. Sunday was less eventful than Saturday, with a few people launching a half-baked and unsuccessful attempt at getting a fence down before everyone got escorted back to the station where minibuses and trains took demonstrators back home.

We've uploaded some photos here.

Agrofuels don't ROC(k) !

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  Maryla Hart speaking for 'Food not Fuel'


Demonstration against renewable energy subsidies for Agrofuels

 Monday 12th October, 6.30 pm
At DECC (Dept of Energy and Climate Change), 3 Whitehall Place, London

Photo-op at 12.30 – 1.30 pm

Called by Campaign against Climate Change, Biofuelwatch and Food not Fuel

This was a lively demonstration with a great atmosphere! Good speeches from  Kenneth Richter from Friends of the Earth, Rupert Read from the Green Party, Maryla Hart from ‘Food not Fuel’, Phil Thornhill from the ‘Campaign against Climate Change’, Amancay Colque from Coordinadora Latinoamericana. and also John Stewart from HACAN who chipped in with a few words about agrofuels as the 'long game' of the aviation industry. Also great music from, Pete, Mark et al!

Half way through there was a great moment when the Latin American contingent arrived on the last stop of their long day of actions in solidarity with indigenous people on this 'Day of Protecting Mother Earth'.

Photos from the evening are here. Earlier in the day there was a photo-op at the same place, the photos from the shoot are here. Videos are on a playlist on our YouTube channel.

So what was the demo about ? Well........

The government is using renewable energy subsidies (Renewable Obligations Certificates – or ROCs) to fund power stations that use agrofuels. 

While the UK’s only significant wind turbine factory has just been closed up to twice as much subsidy is going to producing power from agrofuels than from onshore wind.
 
Agrofuels - biofuels procuced using intensive agriculture - are a a major driver of deforestation, in turn, a major cause of climate change. Agrofuels from palm oil in particular are accelerating the burning of Indonesian forests and underlying peat bogs with truly astronomical emissions as a result.
 
In Italy and Germany there are already large numbers of agrofuel power plants and almost all of them use palm oil because it is by far the cheapest feedstock. It is pretty certain that agrofuel power plants in the UK will follow the same economic logic.
 
Burning palm oil is probably the most environmentally damaging and climate negative way to produce power and yet this seems to be what the government wants to subsidise! 
 
See more on the Biofuels page here.

 

Vestas National Day of Action

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John McDonnell MP

September 17th 2009 saw the second Vestas National Day of Action. The highlight of the day was a lively rally at Ed Miliband's Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) which demonstrated that the fight to save the Vestas wind turbine factory and for green jobs goes on. The rally was organised by the Campaign aginst Climate Change, working with Wandsworth and Battersea Trades Council, with a variety of groups attending including the RMT Union and Workers' Climate Action. A hundred or so activists ensured that this rally was bigger than that on the previous National Day of Action.

Speakers included John McDonnell MP (Labour, Hayes and Harlington),  Darren Johnson (Green Party and chair of the GLA), Jess Edwards (National Union of Teachers), Mark Flowers (Vestas worker), Tracy Edwards (Young Members Organiser for the Public and Commercial Services Union) and Lynda Taffe (Shop Stewards Network).

See the photo gallery here.

Videos of the speeches are in a YouTube playlist.

 

At the same place there was a lobby/photo-op earlier in the day, some photos are here.

Meanwhile other events took place around the UK:

Isle of Wight
March to County Hall. Assemble 12.30pm, Church Litten Park, Newport. 
In the evening, workers and supporters met for a drink in the Chicago Rock Cafe, Newport from 7.30pm. More info here.

Manchester
5pm Rally at Piccadilly Gardens. Wear Green, bring banners, mass leafleting.
Call Martin 079 585 35231 for more info.
Called by Campaign against Climate Change and Manchester Trades Council
8pm Social for Vestas workers, Chorlton Irish Centre.
Called By Chorlton Green Party.

Tyneside
Assemble 4.30pm, Newcastle Civic Centre for march through the
city centre and rally outside the regional government offices, Gallowgate.
More info: http://tynesidecacc.wordpress.com/

Cardiff
17:00 - 18:30
Nye Bevan Statue, End of Queen St, Cardiff
Supported By Cardiff RMT Branch, PCS Wales, Campaign against Climate Change, Leanne Wood AM, Climate Camp Cymru, World Development Movement Cardiff, People and Planet, Cardiff Young Greens
Call Adam 07940108146 or cardiffccc@hotmail.co.uk for more info

Southampton
Demonstration at 5 o'clock on the 17th September at the Vestas Southampton factory. Followed by an open meeting at 7pm in the Dockers Club in Southampton.
Supported by RMT

Rotherham
Solidarity With The Vestas Workers public meeting
7pm at the Unity Centre, St Leonard's Road, Rotherham
Speaker from Vestas, plus Corus worker and striker from Tower Hamlets College UCU.
All welcome. Called by the Right to Work Campaign and Vestas support group.

London (Holborn)
A public meeting on the theme of Jobs, Education, Peace and Climate will be held at 7.30pm in the London Welsh Centre, 157 Gray’s Inn Road, London, WC1X 8UE.
Speakers include Mark Flower from Vestas, NUJ General Secretary Jeremy Dear and representatives from the UCU, NUT. Organised by the NUJ but backed by other unions.

Birmingham
Rally outside the Government Office of the West Midlands
5pm - 6pm at 5 St Philips Place, Colmore Row, Birmingham, B3 2PW
Plus leafletting of local stations.
Called by Campaign Against Climate Change and Birmingham Trades Union Council, for more information call 07846 490 408.

Brighton
Street Meeting
5pm Churchill Square

Newcastle
March from the Newcastle Civic Centre through the city centre and rally outside the regional government offices, Gallowgate.
Assemble 4.30pm
Tel. Ed 07740 099479

Warrington
Protest at Vestas Warrington HQ, 302 Bridgewater Place, Birchwood Park, Warrington, WA3 6WU. 7:30am-9:00am.

Sheffield
Mass leafleting and holding a collection at Sheffield railway station from 4:30pm. Contact Rebecca on 07870 565 011 for more details.

For more info visit the Save Vestas blog.

"Green Jobs and the Green Energy Revolution: is the government doing enough?"

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A Public Meeting on Monday 7th September, in Conway Hall at 7.00pm. Speakers will include:

John McDonnell MP  (Labour, Hayes and Harlington)
Bob Crow (General Secretary of the RMT - National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers)
Tony Juniper (ex Director, Friends of the Earth, Green Party candidate)
Ann Pettifor (advisor Operation Noah, fellow New Economics Foundation )
Ian Terry (worker from the Vestas wind turbine factory)
Phil Thornhill (Campaign against Climate Change)

Don't miss this important meeting on the UK's future direction in the era of Climate Emergency - are we moving full steam ahead towards Green Jobs and the Green Energy Revolution at a speed that we can and should?

This meeting also comes as part of the build up to the next  "Save Vestas" National Day of Action on Thursday 17th September. Jonathan Neale from the CCC Trade Union group explains further and gives some advice on how to build for the day here.

VESTAS: Day of Action, 12th August

More photos from our demo here.
On Friday the 7th August the bailiffs went in and the occupation of the Vestas wind turbine plant on the Isle of Wight ended. In response to this a National Day of Action in support of the Vestas workers and to keep the factory open, for Green Jobs and a Green Energy Revolution,  was declared.  There were actions all around the country organised by a diverse range of groups. See here or here (right hand column, scroll down to "Upcoming Solidarity Actions and Meetings"). In London there was a rally outside the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), No. 3 Whitehall Place at 6.30pm (see picture).

The campaign continues with another, bigger,  Day of Action to Save Vestas on 17th September (note change of date from 9th)

Plus - you can sign the UNITE/FOE petition to Save Vestas here. You can download our Vestas flier from our Leaflets page. Please print it and distribute it!

The campaign to Save Vestas has not finished, it has just started and with it comes a campaign for a step change in the creation of Green Jobs and the Green Energy Revolution!

London Vestas Rally

Thursday 6th August at 6.30pm

Outside the Dept. of Energy and Climate Change, 3 Whitehall Place.

Michael Meacher MP (see left) spoke at a rally in support of the beleaguered workers occupying the Vestas factory - and demanding the government match its words - on Green Jobs and the Green Energy Revolution - with action. Other speakers included trade unionists Billy Hayes, General Secretary of the CWU and Alex Gordon from the RMT,  Jenny Jones, GLA member from the Green party, Michael from the Isle of Wight Vestas factory and Phil Thornhill from the Campaign against Climate Change.

Photos from the event here.

Demonstrators braved the rain to hear a great line up of speakers. Luckily we just about managed to finish before the real downpour started!

Just when we need a huge expansion in renewable energy they are closing down one of the two wind turbine factories in the UK. The government has spent billions bailing out the banks, and £2.3 billion in loan guarantees to support the UK car industry – they can and should step in to save the infrastructure we are really going to need to save us from climate catastrophe.

Save Vestas Rally

Tuesday 28th July at 6:30pm

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A second lively rally was held outside Ed Miliband's Department of Energy and Climate Change on the eve of the case to take out an injunction to evict the occupiers going to court in Newport on the Isle of Wight.  There was also a big demonstration of several hundreds outside Newport County Court itself at 10.00 am on the following Wednesday morning. See video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AdC3SOttYCw

The London Rally was called jointly by the Campaign against Climate Change and the RMT (National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers). Speakers at the Rally included Jean Lambert MEP (Green Party), Oliver New from the RMT,  Phil Thornhill from the Campaign agianst Climate Change, Drew Scanlon from the Vestas workers and  Dave Timms from Friends of the Earth.

On Friday 24th July there was a public meeting in London. Speakers included Chris Baugh (PCS assistant general secretary), Seamus Milne (Guardian journalist), Jonathan Neale (Campaign against Climate Change), and Matt (Vestas worker).

Read and sign our open letter to Ed Miliband

Help the Vestas factory occupation

Just when we need a huge expansion in renewable energy they are closing down the only wind turbine factory in the UK. The government has spent billions bailing out the banks, and £2.3 billion in loan guarantees to support the UK car industry – they can and should step in to save the infrastructure we are really going to need to save us from climate catastrophe.

Save Vestas wind turbine factory!

[img_assist|nid=227|title=Simon Hughes MP addresses demo|align=top|width=600|height=1000|]

Around 200 people gathered outside DECC (Ed Miliband's Department of Energy and Climate Change) to protest against the government's failure to save the Vestas wind turbine factory on the isle of Wight. See photo gallery.

Speakers included Simon Hughes MP - Lib Dem shadow spokesperson for Energy and Climate Change - Darren Johnson Chair of the GLA (Green Party), and also representatives from Unison, PCS and other unions . In a lively 'old style' poltical rally many views were expressed but all called on the government to save Vestas and promote wind energy projects in the UK.

Just when we need a huge expansion in renewable energy they are closing down one of the two wind turbine factories in the UK. The government has spent billions bailing out the banks, and £2.3 billion in loan guarantees to support the UK car industry – they can and should step in to save the infrastructure we are really going to need to save us from climate catastrophe.

The Campaign against Climate Change was on the site in Newport from the night the occupation started. Cameraphone photos here.

Save Vestas blog. New petition.

Media coverage


Indymedia report of the demo
Report on EDIE website
Channel 4 News with footage from factory at Newport and demo outside DECC in London

Climate Emergency Parliament


A lively and inspiring Climate Emergency Parliament convened at Old Palace Yard in the shadow of the House of Commons, in spite of the intermittent downpours of rain.

Lucy Will as ‘Queen of Green’ and a bewigged Nick Hutton as "speaker" provided a wacky spectacle, at the start, to grab everyone’s attention. But the speeches and discussion thereafter were at the cutting edge in defining the way forward in the fight to prevent catastrophic climate change. All this despite the rain and the slightly surreal ambience.

See our photo gallery of the event.

There were 4 “Bills”. Each one was introduced by our “government spokesperson” so that the starting point for discussion was what the government is actually doing – there was then a main proposing speaker for each bill followed by points from the ‘floor’.

 

10% reductions in UK Greenhouse gases by the end of 2010

Proposing speaker Tim Helweg Larsen from the Public Interest Research Centre

 

Banning all domestic flights by the end of 2010

Proposing speaker John Stewart, chair of Airport Watch

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A million and a half Green Jobs

Proposing speaker Chris Baugh, assistant General Secretary Public and Commercial Services Union.

 

A 55 mph national speed limit and terminating the roads program

Proposing speaker Daniel Scharf from GreenSpeed

 

There were also speeches from Colin Challen MP, Darren Johnson, chair of the GLA (Green Party), Deepak Rughani from BiofuelWatch, Tamsin Omond who gave a resounding advert for the ‘Climate Rush’ and an ex-worker (brother of current worker) from the threatened Vesta's wind turbine factory.

100 + people endured the rain for more than 2 hours to listen and participate - there was the sense that this makeshift gathering was much further ahead of the curve - in terms of how we can realistically face up to threat from climate change, and what the future will really look like - than those in the imposing gothic edifice close by.

Earlier in the day, we staged a photo-op at which we delivered a “Climate Emergency” letter to Ed Miliband at his Department of Energy and Climate Change, just off Whitehall

You can still join the Online Emergency Parliament here. Give us your views on what the government should be doing to cut carbon fast.

Mili-Band

1,000 people surrounded Kingsnorth Power station demanding "No New Coal".

The "Mili-band" on Saturday July 4th was a great success! See more here.

 

Full solutions not half solutions

NO NEW COAL without 100% CCS

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Jean Lambert MEP (Green Party, London) addressed demonstrators (see photo left) as well as Joss Garman from Greenpeace.

The government's decision to ban new unabated coal-fired power stations represents a big move for the government in a green direction, and we congratulate them for that. But building new coal-fired power stations without 100% CCS (or close) is a recipe for disaster. Does anyone think the government will close down these new power plants if full scale CCS is found to be unworkable or hopelessly uneconomic?

And even in the - arguably rosy case scenario - that the four power stations with 20-25% CCS are successfully upgraded to 100% after 15 years they will still emit up to 275m tonnes of CO2 -around 50% of the UK's annual emissions. The latest science makes it clear that we cannot afford those kinds of levels of emissions if we are to have any half decent chance of preventing catastrophic climate change (see for example www.climatesafety.org). We cannot afford to get it just half right in the fight against climate change. The government must be told there should be no new coal-fired power stations unless they can be guaranteed to have 100% CCS from the start.

This is also about the kind of lead we're giving to other nations in the run-up to Copenhagen. We should be using CCS to reduce emissions from existing coal-fired power stations, not as an excuse to build more. This could just encourage a rash of new coal build around the world on the basis of some vague promise about CCS in the future.

The demonstration featured 2 messages for the government - one on a green poster to congratulate them on banning unabated coal, the other on a carbon-black one - to demand that they go the whole way and ban new coal without 100% CCS.

Iceberg Demo at the G20

ImageOn Wednesday April 1st ("Fossil Fool's Day") Campaign against Climate Change staged a "Climate Emergency" Ice-berg Demo outside the ExCeL Centre where the G20 were to meet the following day.

The action featured a giant ice block sculpted like an iceberg and demonstrators dressed in white with some even wearing strings of ice cubes around their necks. The backdrop to this was provided by 'Climate Emergency' placards and panels showing maps and graphs of arctic ocean ice loss.

The message was simple: polar ice is melting much faster then scientists thought and is the most visible symptom of the frightening speed with which the climate is changing. We will lose the race against climate catastrophe unless action is taken soon. This presents a far greater threat than the recession, however bad that might seem, and should be the absolute priority for the G20. If we need to inject more money into the economy then that should be done by spending it on all the many things we need to do to achieve a low carbon economy and fight climate change.

The iceberg was displayed outside the ExCeL Centre from 12 noon to seven in the evening with a photo-op at lunchtime and a small rally in the evening. The action was designed to give a clear focused message about the urgency of the climate threat, to complement the message conveyed by 'climate campers' and other climate campaigners in the City at the same time.

See the photo gallery of the event here.

Demonstration against Heathrow expansion

Heathorw_Demo_19feb09

Hundreds crammed into the police pen opposite Downing Street for a lively demonstration against the government decision in January to expand Heathrow with a third runway.

 

Speakers on the evening included Jean Lambert (Green MEP for London), Susan Kramer (Lib-Dem MP for Richmond) and John Mcdonnel (Labour MP for Hayes and Harlington where the 3rd runway would be built). There was no mistaking the energy of the protest and the strength of the movement against the expansion of Heathrow. This event was one of a number of protests against the government decision carried on by a swelling coalition of groups and individuals. Additional speakers on the evening were John Stewart from HACAN, Anna Jones from Greenpeace, Phil Thornhill for the CCC and Linda McCutcheon from NOTRAG and a resident of Sipson village (which will be obliterated by a third runway).

Some more photos here.

There had been an earlier lunch-time photo-call at the Department of Transport - on the theme of "the Brown Past" and the "Green Future" with Lucy Wills representing the latter and Chris Kitchen as a 'caveman' Gordon Brown representing the former. The message was for an end to 'carbon-intensive-growth-as-usual' and for the government to be taking the kind of investment decisions that will plot the path towards a low carbon economy as fast as possible - a crash program for deep emission cuts in the short term that will provide thousands of 'green jobs' and help lift us out of the recession.

?"COUNTER-DEMONSTRATION"
At the same time as the anti-Heathrow demo there was a "counter-demonstration" in Parliament Square. This numbered a score or so of people - but apparently quite a few of these were 'Plane Stupid' infiltrators! Who actually was behind this "counter-demonstration"? Well first of all note that it was supported by the climate-sceptic networks - see here. And apparently it was organised by something calling itself the "Modern Movement" - see here . However on scratching the surface the "modern movement" turns out to be yet another manifestation of the networks associated with "Living Marxism" and with their origin in the RCP (Revolutionary Communist Party). See here. This bunch have effected a bizarre transformation from extreme left to extreme libertarian right ..they include Martin Durkin, producer of "The Great Global Warming Swindle" - see here. Disinformation and misleading the public (latterly by trying to pretend there is a grass-roots movement in favour of Heathrow expansion) is their stock-in-trade.

 We've let Gordon Brown know what a burke he is if he thinks he's going to overcome the tidal wave of opposition he will have to face if he tries to push ahead with this fantastically stupid decision. He's still stuck in the last century world of carbon-intensive-growth-as-usual - lets wake him up to the 21st century, to the low carbon economy of the future! Something that Brown's New Labour clearly fails to understand as it now shows itself to be the most crassly environmentally retrograde and destructive of all the parties.

The so called 'environmental safeguards' that this government has concocted for its Heathrow expansion plans are nothing more than window dressing and a smokescreen. If there is another runway there will be (a lot) more flights and if there are more flights there will be (a lot) more emissions. There is no method remotely on the scientific/engineering horizon to substantially reduce aircraft emissions. And residents around Heathrow have heard these kind of promises before: they know what they are worth - absolutely nothing.

The argument about jobs is misplaced. If the government was doing what really needs to be done to convert Britain to a low carbon economy as soon as possible then it would be creating tens of thousands of new green jobs. Only those jobs would be helping to win the fight against catastrophic climate change - not to lose it !

We are going to fight this plan - and we are going to win ! But there are other reasons why we need to challenge this decision as loudly and energetically as we can.

Over the past few years there has been an avalanche of scientific evidence that the threat from catastrophic climate change is more grave and more imminent than we had ever thought. See here. scientists now tell us that we have less than ten years in which to stop and reverse the the global growth in greenhouse gas emissions. The UN Talks this December in Copenhagen are widely seen as the last chance to secure an international deal that will make that possible ( to join our protest there see here.) . At this critical juncture it is the height of irresponsibility to send a signal to the world that we in the UK are not going to make the fight against climate change our number one priority but are happy to carry on with 'carbon-intensive-growth as-usual' - no matter that it is the poorest and most vulnerable around the world who will suffer from our soaring emissions the most. If our government cannot send a positive signal to the world then we, the people of the UK have to show that we do take climate change and the huge threat it poses to the global community seriously - by challenging the crass retrogressive decisions that our government makes - as loudly and energetically as we can!

Resources:
Photos
Videos
Press Releases
News Articles

List of speakers:
Jean Lambert (Green MEP for London)
Susan Kramer (Lib-Dem MP for Richmond)
John Mcdonnel (Labour MP for Hayes and Harlington where the 3rd runway would be built)
John Stewart (HACAN)
Anna Jones (Greenpeace)
Phil Thornhill (Campaign against Climate Change)
Linda McCutcheon (NOTRAG)