Friends of the Earth Europe 2021 Creating space for change
NOAH er den danske del af Friends of the Earth Europe. Sammen med 32 andre grupper i Europa kæmper vi for en bæredygtig og retfærdig verden. Her kan du læse om, hvad vi lavede i 2021.
By Jagoda Munic, Director Friends of the Earth Europe
Creating space for change
We had hoped that 2021 would allow us to put Covid-19 behind us. That was
not to be. Wave after wave of the pandemic has taught us many things –
about patience and adaptability, organising effectively remotely, the
strength and connectedness of Friends of the Earth’s grassroots network,
and the centrality of solidarity in response to global challenges.
The pandemic has shown how Friends of the Earth’s vision and narrative – of
interconnected environmental and social justice – is more vital than ever.
Indeed, the inequity of access to life-saving Covid-19 vaccines epitomises the
injustice at the root of the struggle for a fairer world.
We have seen that ‘building back better’ is not a given. After two years, the rich
have become richer and the poor poorer whilst little has been done to address
the climate emergency.
Minds are now, rightly, consumed by the horrific illegal war Putin has waged on
Ukraine. War is the worst thing that can happen to people and nature. We call
for 2022 to be a turning point, away from armed conflict, and away from the
fossil fuel era has fuelled conflicts worldwide.
Fierce public campaigning will be needed to gain support for the just solutions
– and the inevitable trade-offs – to the multiple interlocking crises we face and
to build back fairer, sustainable, peaceful societies.
One vehicle for such campaigning is the European Green Deal. We continued to
look at Green Deal proposals through a justice lens and to advocate for
progressive policies. A pre-requisite for this must be the removal of obstacles.
Our Fossil Free Politics campaign is exposing perhaps the biggest barrier; the
stranglehold of fossil fuel corporations.
At the same time, we have witnessed some previously overlooked issues, like
energy poverty and agroecology, start to get the public and political attention
they deserve. And Young Friends of the Earth Europe have been bringing the
voice of youth into the Green Deal debate and opening-up space for
transformational and just policy proposals.
Another important truth revealed by the pandemic, is that governments CAN
act fast and implement society-wide changes when there is political will. This
learning must be transferred to the climate crisis. The new IPCC reports makes
it devastatingly apparent that too much time has been wasted and the only
pathways that remain out of climate catastrophe are exceedingly difficult. We
need systemic changes to decrease inequality and increase sustainability. This
means abandoning the fallacy of market solutions and so-called ‘green’ or
‘sustainable’ growth, as we have advocated in our ‘7 sparks to light a new
Learning is a principle we seek to apply internally, as well as in what we
demand of others. Last year, we trained local organisers to implement
community renewables projects across Europe. And we hosted discussions on
intersectionality, focusing on gender and racial justice – and developed new
alliances in doing so.
Friends of the Earth Europe will continue to learn and to be at the forefront of
creating the space for change.