Archive for the 'Poland Climate Talks' Category

The Spring edition of Rising Tide’s newsletter, Burning Issues, is out!

Burning Issues - Spring 2011

The Spring Edition of RTNA’s newsletter, Burning Issues, is out!  Click the image above, or HERE to download.  This season’s pieces include:

  • direct action halting of heavy-haulers carrying tar-sands equipment shipments through Montana
  • updates on Tim DeCristopher, his trial, and the next phase of resistance
  • the resistance’s Nuclear Reaction- false dichotomies of energy, false solutions of nuclear, and where to go from there
  • Kentuckians occupying their governor’s offices to demand the abolition of MTR4-20 Day of Action Against Extraction!
  • shutdowns of the National Coal Council’s meeting in St. Louis
  • Canadian resistance to the tar sands, including a takeover of trade ministerial office
  • Olympia RT’s kickass campaign to stop a biomass power at Evergreen State College
  • the March on Blair Mountain, and reports from the Coalfields
  • a one-year lookback at the Gulf, from disaster to resumption of drilling
  • and much more– take a look!

Top 10 Youth Climate Moments of the ’00s

This morning I spent some time reflecting on the most memorable moments of the past decade. My own roots as a climate activist began at age 20 when I had the privilege of attending a Student Climate Summit in the Hague in November 2000. Since that time the youth climate movement has grown from a small but dedicated group scattered across a few college campuses to a bona-fide movement of millions worldwide now shaping the agenda of global politics.
Here are ten moments that remind me most of how far we’ve come:
This list is admittedly skewed toward a U.S. perspective. While researching the list over the last several hours, I came across so many other inspiring stories. If you, like me, just can’t get enough of climate history, take a look at 17 more incredible moments from the past decade…

Project Survival Media: The Californian Front

Project Survival Media is alive and working globally to bring the survival tactics and sustainable practices of real people to the UN conference in Copenhagen. Right now all over the world, teams are filming different groups of people for their own documentaries.

Luke Estrella

Luke Estrella at the UN Plaza Farmers Market

Here in the Bay Area, California, after wwoofing for two months in Willits, I have been given the opportunity to lead the Northwestern project.

Today I went to the U.N. Plaza Farmers Market on my way around the city to see the prevalence of organic farm choices for the mainstream San Franciscan public. This market is not known for its sustainability, but for it’s prices and accessability.

There were a few organic farm choices, but I did have the opportunity to talk to one young organic farmer, Luke Estrella from Bounty of the Valley, Salinas Valley. Bounty of the Valley is a 50 acre human powered farm, full of young farmers who are learning how to grow their own food.

I asked him what he thought about the next generation of farmers, since in this area there seems to be a growing trend of young farmers. Farmers used to be an average of 60 years old, but people in their 20’s have, for the first time in years, started to pick up the old pitchfork.

“[young farmers] have a lot of new ideas to bring to the table, young farmers will bring about the change we need for sustainable action.”

He also warned against green washing on the organic front, and how current policy may encourage this.

“There are 500 acre certified organic plots that have organic soil and seeds, but they have a machine that does everything. These are also the farms that have the money to pay for being certified [organic]. These farms are unsustainable by design.”

He elaborated on a machine that many large scale farmers contract out to plant, till, and harvest. Many of these farmers do not touch soil and are not acquainted with their own land, although their products are touted as sustainable.

But, what may be organic isn’t necessarily sustainable. It is important that we not only push for policies that help organic farmers, but that we pay close attention to new policies, and make sure that they are also helping local and sustainable farmers, which organic is only one factor in.

We also need to make this clear to the UN delegation. We are young, ready for change, and unwilling to adapt to old standards.

Covering the UN Climate Talks, in Bonn: The ‘pre-sessionals’

COP15 in Copenhagen this December – the meeting where governments are set to decide whether they will come together to lead on solving climate change peacefully, or whether they force us to take things into our own hands – is not the only UN meeting on climate change this year. There are three important ‘intersessional’ meetings of the UNFCCC bodies and working groups – ‘Bonn 1′, in Germany for the first two weeks of April, ‘Bonn 2′, for the first two weeks in June, and ‘Bangkok’ in September. In addition, there is a meeting of heads of state in New York in September as well. This blog series covers updates on the negotiations as ‘Bonn 1′ and the youth activities there. There are between 20 and 30 youth in attendance, from Europe, Australia, Africa and North America.

The program of events at Bonn 1 is found here.

Friday 27 March, 2009

Welcome to Bonn! Would you like some acronym soup? It’s our signature dish, served fresh at the UNFCCC pre-sessionals today, before next week’s AWG-KP & AWG-LCA inter-sessionals where nations of the world will meet to discuss LULUCF, REDD and REDD+, and MRV-able commitments from Annex 1 nations, among various other things.  I hope that the G77, AOSIS, the LDCs and JUSCANZ will be able to reach agreement.

I am in a big room at the ‘Maritim’ hotel in Bonn, Germany, for the ‘Pre-Sessional events’ – before the proper negotiations start on Sunday. There is a long desk on a stage at the front of the room, where the Chair of the session sits, alongside a rapporteur and the UNFCCC Executive Secretary, Yvo de Boer – who looks positively bored. I sort of feel sorry for him. There are rows of desks for the 196 countries of the world, with two seats of each. Then maybe another 300 seats for NGO representatives at the back of the room, which quickly filled up. For people who arrived late (like myself and about 50 others) we can sit on the floor in the corridors. There are also far too many lights on – a large star-shaped arrangement of decorative lightbulbs, crystals and mirrors adorns the ceiling.

Continue reading ‘Covering the UN Climate Talks, in Bonn: The ‘pre-sessionals’’

Fired Up: Youth Report – First Poznan, Now Power Shift 09!

So I am very excited that the Fired Up: Youth Report segment on the International Youth Delegation at the Poznan climate talks, is live!

This was our test case to see if we could tackle TV to cover the incredible work that young people are doing all over the world to respond to global warming and to build a just and sustainable world. Guess what? It is airing March 2nd, the day the largest lobby on climate in US history will go down, along with the Capitol Climate Action.

First Poznan, next we are going to be covering Power Shift, which starts TODAY! Expect to see youth reporters filming all over the DC Convention Center, as this story is too hot for just words or to leave to the traditional media. Come say hello and tell us your Power Shift story!

EarthFocus 12

However, check out our segment on the incredible alliance between threatened island nations and the international youth delegations that emerged at the Poznan climate talks. Power Shift is happening in the US of A, but it is becoming the global story with Power Shifts happening in Australia, the UK, and who knows where next! Take a look!

The Maldives/Youth Segment starts at 12:39.

For a little more information about where this will be shown and who helped put this together, below the fold is some information about LinkTV’s EarthFocus.
Continue reading ‘Fired Up: Youth Report – First Poznan, Now Power Shift 09!’

COP 14 International Youth Delegation

So here it goes, the unveiling of the Global Youth Climate Movement’s work in Poznan, Poland, for COP 14 at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change:

To Download this video click here. It’s the video labeled COP14 (Say What You Want).

And the other video:

To download this video click here. (teardrop) It is labeled COP 14


Youth action frames the conversation at the UNFCCC in Poznan, Poland

Young people from around the world made their voice heard today at the UN Framework Convention on Climate change in Poznan, Poland. After an inspiring speech from Al Gore, over 200 young people from India to the U.S. to the Congo held a spontaneous action inside, with banners that read “SURVIVAL IS NON-NEGOTIABLE.”

The demonstration was the next step in our “project survival” – inspired by a speech earlier this week by a representative from the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS), stating that current emissions targets set by powerful countries condemn their nations to extinction. In the last two days youth have mobilized to get over 80 country delegations to sign a pledge to “safeguard the survival of all peoples and nations.” Youth organized actions, tracked down delegates in the halls, lined the entrance to the plenaries, and knocked on meeting room doors to push their countries to sign the Survival Pledge. This morning our text has been adopted in the official UN Ministerial declaration document emerging from COP14, the COP President’s text on long-term vision. Heads of state referenced our call in major speeches. “It’s been an amazing success,” said Amanda McKenzie, of the Australian Youth Climate Network. “Hearing Australia’s Climate Minister Penny Wong commit to ‘survival’ yesterday had me cheering in the halls. Now, it’s time to make sure she delivers.”

Actions like the one that happened 15 minutes ago aim to create the pressure to do just that. At the end of our action (after engaging with some angry UN people) several delegates and dignitaries came to thank the Youth for their action. A woman said “I am in a very high position in my government in Norway. Youth doing actions like this makes my work easier. Thank you.”

We’ve had an exciting victory, but we know we must continue to organize to make the implications of that statement meaningful – we know that any targets less than 350ppm will not insure the survival of all peoples and nations, and we know that any solution that is not equitable and just, is no solution at all.

Click below for many more photos and reflections.

NY Times Reports Failure of Cap & Trade

The New York Times ran a landmark article today, “Money and Lobbyists Hurt European Efforts to Curb Gases,” about the failure of cap and trade in Europe. It’s required reading for anyone concerned about climate change policy in the United States and abroad. It opens with this:

The European Union started with a high-minded ecological goal: encouraging companies to cut their greenhouse gases by making them pay for each ton of carbon dioxide they emitted into the atmosphere.

But that plan unleashed a lobbying free-for-all that led politicians to dole out favors to various industries, undermining the environmental goals. Four years later, it is becoming clear that system has so far produced little noticeable benefit to the climate — but generated a multibillion-dollar windfall for some of the Continent’s biggest polluters.

As President-elect Barack Obama considers how to curb the gases that contribute to global warming, Europe’s struggle with the problem illustrates the momentous task ahead for the United States.

The piece comes after the GAO just released a highly critical study of the use of offsets in Europe’s Emissions Trading Scheme and amidst the chaotic climate negotiations at Poznan, where several European nations are balking at strict emissions caps. It also comes only a few weeks after President-elect Barack Obama pledged his support for cap and trade at a major climate conference in California.

Continue reading ‘NY Times Reports Failure of Cap & Trade’

Which Path Will the Youth Climate Movement Take?

The world is halfway through the process to create a global climate treaty to respond to Global Warming. In the halls around me, government, NGO, and UN negotiators are painstakingly working through the process to create a draft text for this treaty. The last decade has been a period where climate campaigners and negotiators knew where they stood, with the Bush Administration blocking progress, the European Union leading on the UN process, and environmental organizations facing off against the Oil, Gas, and Coal industries. Suddenly everything has changed, with Obama’s election, the EU Climate Package failing, and the Canadians having a parliamentary crisis – a financial crisis dragging down the automobile companies – and newly emergent actors like the youth movement, trade unions, and justice advocates showing up onto the global scene.

Nevertheless, with a financial crisis diverting attention from the climate crisis and backsliding among traditional advocates for strong international climate action – there is a lot of frustration and fear on the behalf of many Non-Governmental Organizations. One of the bright spots of the Poznan climate talks has been the arrival of large and energized youth delegations, including representatives of countries such as India, that have inspired many people here. Yet, despite the ever-growing level of international cooperation there remains two paths that this movement could take – that will have major consequences on the outcome of the global negotiations.  Continue reading ‘Which Path Will the Youth Climate Movement Take?’

Introducing – Voices from the International Youth Climate Movement

Ok, so I have some exciting news for everybody. A wild horde of wonderful youth delegates have descended on the UN Climate Negotiations in Poznan, Poland to pressure governments to act, build an international network, raise some hell, and be lulled to sleep in side-events by policy lectures by established NGO leaders. So, with 500 youth delegates running around and reporting on the developments in Poznan there is a lot of online content flowing from a fleet of new and established youth climate blogs, websites, and youtube channels.

Well, all that creative energy needed an established outlet, which you can now find at – Voices from the International Youth Climate Movement. It might not look like too much yet, but it is aggregating content from 17 youth climate blogs writing on Poznan, 3 embedded photoshelter galleries by professional photographers affiliated with Fired Up Media, a press room with releases and advisories, reports on actions and events, a Twitter Feed of #poznan, and a Mogulus Video Stream aggregating youtube videos.(h/t to Jon Warnow of for putting it together in days)

That means…go there now! Check it out.

If you are curious about the various blogs and outlets aggregating to – They are listed here:, BUNDjugend Klimaretter, Climate Crisis, COOLA NER, CoolClimate – спасем климат вместе, Countdown to Poz ’n’ Hagen, Dealing with theGlobal Crisis, EcoLeague International Team/ NEAYEN, FairClimate Blog, FeedBulletin for: generationclimat, It’s Getting Hot In Here, Izzykb’s Weblog, Maayke Aimée Damen, Planet in Limbo, SustainUS, The DailyUN, TIGblogs – Group – Canadian Youth Delegation to Poznan, UK Youth Delegation » Blogs, Eco Singapore – United Nations Climate Change Conference 2008, IYCN – What’s With The Climate?

There are also photos from Robert VanWaarden (read his blog, too), and videos put together by Adam MacIsaac

Poland Climate Talks

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