Welcome to a special edition of the Rising Clyde, the COP26 Coalition’s newsletter! Tune in to this edition’s soundtrack (which we will teach everyone in the Coalition to sing for next year), and get ready for the Global Gathering starting this Thursday!

We’re now less than a week away from From the Ground Up: Global Gathering for Climate Justice, with over 3000 people now signed up! Continue to spread the word, prepare for some amazing programme announcements, and SIGN UP!

To make the festival a success, we need YOUR help to get the word out as far as possible. Please give us a follow, and help us out by liking, commenting and (most importantly!) sharing our events. 

Here’s a preview of some of our best sessions, from Trade Union organisers discussing just transition to indigenous campaigners teaching us about indigenous territorial rights for climate action.

Same Storm, Different Boats: Second Political Statement

We, the COP26 Coalition, have come together under the common cause of climate justice.  In our last political statement, we drew attention to the deeply entwined nature of the multiple crises we face. Of course, these still persist – we still face a devastating pandemic that is devastating the most vulnerable in society, as well as an unprecedented recession destroying people’s livelihoods, and all the while the climate crisis continues. 

But one important thing has changed since then: everywhere around the world, grassroots movements are collectively speaking truth to power, holding those responsible for the many crises we face. 

To reflect this, and to further unite activists across the world to challenge the greenwashing coming from governments and corporations around the world, we have released a second political statement.  

Any civil society organisation can sign in support, but please make sure you do this by Wednesday 11 November. Please circulate the statement in your circles.

And now, as a treat, one last peak at an amazing session from our gathering next week…

News and Resources 

  • The inevitable, unavoidable, seemingly all-consuming news this week is that the United States has chosen a new emperor, and fiinally managed to get rid of the orange shitebag. Both Biden and Harris have climate plans which, though far from perfect, would present something for the climate movement to build on. Trump’s climate plan amounted to ecocide and genocide. So, let’s take a breather, and then continue to organise for the change we need.
  • While the votes were still being counted, however, the U.S. exited the Paris Agreement. While this might seem like bad news, given the role the U.S. has historically played in undermining international climate diplomacy, perhaps it’s not the worst thing to happen. 
  • In much better news, movements in the Philippines have won a massive victory as their years of campaigning have forced the government to announce a moratorium on new coal power plants. The U.K. could learn a thing or two. As Ed Miliband wrote this week, there’s no more time for bluster and rhetoric: the best way for the U.K. to give COP26 a chance of being a useful meeting is by the power of its domestic action. Walk the walk. 
And to close this week full of exciting developments for our movement, have a look at this video:  “Looking back, it’s hard to believe we rebuilt our communities, from the ground up, with our own hands”. ✊🏾

Welcome to the Rising Clyde #7, the COP26 Coalition’s newsletter! Take a minute to sign up to our shared calendar before tuning into this edition’s soundtrack

…and get ready for our Global Gathering!

We’re so excited to finally be able to share our promo video for the Global Gathering.

To make the festival a success, we will need YOUR help to get the word out as far as possible. Please give us a follow, and help us out by liking, commenting and (most importantly!) sharing our upcoming announcements. 

Here’s an exclusive preview of some of our confirmed sessions, with many more to follow:

  • FEMINISM DURING THE CLIMATE EMERGENCY – with Silvia Federici (feminist theorist and activist), Sabrina Fernandes (Brazillian Activist, Sociologist, Professor, and Youtuber), Veronica Gago (Ni Una Menos, Argentia), Dilar Dirik (Kurdish Women’s Movement), Judith Flores (Assembly of Popular and Diverse Women, Ecuador) 

  • INDIGENOUS SOLUTIONS TO THE CLIMATE CRISIS – with Tuntiak Katan (Global Alliance of Territorial Communities) Levi Sucre, (Mesoamerican Alliance of Peoples and Forests) Sonia Guajajara (Articulation of Indigenous Peoples of Brazil)

  • RED, BLACK AND GREEN NEW DEAL – convened by the Movement for Black Lives, this session seeks to deepen connections between the struggles for Black liberation and for Global Climate Justice. Bringing together Black leaders in North America, Africa and across the African diaspora, we’ll be convening a strategic discussion on how we can leverage this political moment of international uprisings in defence of Black life to unify calls for reparations for colonialism, enslavement and exploitation, ecological and climate debts, as well as what forms of transnational Black solidarity are needed to build towards them.

Get involved!

We are urgently looking for volunteers to support our online gathering with:

  • Technical Support (Zoom)

  • Online Facilitation (Zoom)

  • Social Media Moderation (Slack, Facebook)

Please sign up on this spreadsheet with your availability, and share it with your networks and organisations!

We will host a tech & facilitation training session for all crew members on:

  • Monday 2 November at 4:30pm. 
  • Saturday 7 November at 2pm 

Our Trade Union Group is meeting again on November 4th – if you’re a Trade Union member or labour organiser, please join us for a comradely discussion on the climate justice and labour movements, and how we can organise to win. Sign up here for the trade union mailing list, or join a Trade Union today if you’re not already a member! 

We are in the process of forming a group for people of colour in the coalition, as well as a group for our young members. If you’re interested in getting involved with either of these, please get in touch!

Our Mobilisations Working Group is meeting again in the first week of November. Join us to discuss how we can take action on the weekend of the G20 meeting, and against the UK government’s Paris Agreement celebration event on December 12th.

Week of Action for a Just and Green Recovery! From 4th-11th November, groups across Scotland will be taking action for a recovery plan that works for the people and the planet. Hundreds of you have already signed up to meet your MSPs as part of the Virtual Lobby for Real Change, and workers will be taking their demands directly to politicians on Wednesday November 4th.. The Just and Green Recovery campaign is backed by nearly 100 organisations from across Scotland, including trade unions, community groups and NGO – find out more on their new website.

News and Resources 

And as you all know, the US Election is happening very soon. Obviously we don’t know what’s going to happen, but this week we got a glimpse into the timeline where Donald Trump loses and concedes: he’ll come back to Scotland to build a second golf course in Aberdeenshire

…and we’ll be there to show him exactly what we think of that.

Welcome to the Rising Clyde number six, the COP26 Coalition’s newsletter! We have some big announcements to make in this one, so make sure to get comfortable, sign up to our shared calendar and listen to this to remind yourself that land belongs to the people and not to rich landowners. Also, remember to submit any news and resources you have from the climate movement here

From the Ground Up: Global Gathering for Climate Justice

Over the two weeks, we have worked hard on the global gathering and are excited to announce that we are open for registration. We had over 160 amazing submissions from across the climate movement, and have asked organisations to cooperate wherever possible to include as many perspectives and contributions as possible in our programme. You can register here.

To make this gathering a success, we will need a lot of hands on deck. We will need teams to

(1) help coordinate the facilitation of sessions, 

(2) help with the technical aspects of the gathering, and

(3) help organise translation and captioning of key sessions.

If you’re able to help with either of these, please message us, and join one of these teams at the next project team meeting on Wednesday 14 October, 1pm-2:30pm

Now, please share our event widely across our networks, and bring your family and friends (and enemies) to the gathering. 

Boiling Point

We are going towards the 5th session of our speaker series, “Boiling Point: Everything you ever wanted to know about international climate change negotiations but were too afraid to ask.” where we explore the basics of international climate change politics and the infamous COP. Experts with years of experience working behind the scenes of major summits will share their knowledge of the history and process of the talks as well as the major issues and main players. Boiling Point runs weekly on Thursdays until 22nd October.

 

Get involved!

In some really exciting news, we had a first call with our newly established Trade Union group last week, creating a space in the Coalition for rank and file union members and organisers to meet, chat and openly discuss ideas and topics around climate change and just transition. If you are a union member, join our mailing list, and join our trade union slack channel. If you’re not a trade union member, you should change this. 

As we are a broad and diverse Coalition with a lot of perspectives and viewpoints on how to best fight for climate justice, we’re going to host a discussion on nature-based solution on 20 October, 1pm-2:30pm, to chat about what they are, and what chances and risks come with them.  Come along!

As the UK still presides over the worst immigration system in Europe and continues to explore options to make it worse, we need to start thinking about how to best support our international allies coming to Scotland for COP. Join the logistics group’s meeting on Visa support to help with this crucial task.

As always: our Comms group needs support. Whether you’re interested in Social Media, Press, or anything else, please join us next Wednesday, 14 October at 10am in our Comms working group. The zoom link will be in here.

Also, here’s a few other events happening across Scotland:

News and Resources 

  • It might be rainy in the UK but in Paraguay a state of emergency has been declared as over 5000 wildfires rage across the country. Fires in the Brazilian Amazon rightly made headlines last year but have not been widely reported this year despite a 61% rise in hotspots
  • You’re probably aware that Exxon is one of the worst companies on Earth. However, this week, it has been revealed that the company has been secretlyplanning for even more carbon emissions. And if you need an illustration on how bad this will be for communities across the world, Exxon’s Mossmorran plant in Scotland has been flaring again this week, looking like a gigantic fireball visible from Edinburgh and beyond.

  • Amazingly, that wasn’t the most evil news these past few weeks, as the British Government’s head villain Priti Patel took the opportunity of a pandemic to propose using decommissioned oil rigs as detention centres for migrants. 

  • Our pals at Friends of the Earth Scotland, Platform and Greenpeace have published an amazing report on offshore oil and gas workers in the Scottish north sea, surveying 1383 workers about their views on the industry.  Highlighting how insecure and unsafe work in the sector has become, 81.7% of  respondents would consider leaving the oil and gas industry for a job in another sector. At the same time, 91% of respondents never heard about just transition, highlighting how much more work the climate movement has to do. Read the full report here, and have a read about a personal struggle from a worker here
  • While Nature-Based Solutions sound nice and represent chances for how to tackle climate change, there is also an increasing risk that nature-based solution is used in greenwashing strategies by corporations like Shell, warns the Global Forest Coalition, which can lead to “land grabbing and displacement of communities, human rights violations, freshwater scarcity, biodiversity loss, and many other negative impacts, which are felt disproportionately by women and the most marginalized communities.” 
  • What should instead be looked at as a solution are stories like this one from Austria, where a couple of people decided that they themselves can be the solution, and created Austria’s first energy cooperative.   
  • In some other amazing news, Ineos Must Fall has occupied a site in Antwerp port, disrupting Ineos’s plan for a new petrochemical plant. 
  • If you’re looking for additional heroes in these trying times, we are pleased to present you comrade Attenbro.
And for the end, if you’re feeling disheartened at UK government corruption and incompetence and the resulting prospect of another lockdown, here’s a wee motivation video from some of our European allies showing how to best meet our climate targets.

Welcome to the fifth edition of The Rising Clyde, a newsletter from the COP26 Coalition! Just a reminder to send us any resources, articles and random things from the climate movement here! Also, remember to join our shared calendar to make it easier to find the dates and details for upcoming meetings and events. For now, click here for the Soundtrack for #5 and enjoy your pre-2nd-lockdown read! 

 

From the Ground Up: Global Gathering for Climate Justice

As announced in the last newsletter, the Coalition is organising From The Ground Up: An Online Global Gathering for Climate Justice from 12 to 16 November 2020. The Gathering will not only mark the moment COP26 was supposed to take place, but will be an opportunity for us to connect with allies across the world to learn from each other, to educate ourselves on climate justice, and to strategise together about where our movement should go in the coming months.

After this, we will coordinate days of action around the weekend of the G20, 21-22 November, to hold world leaders accountable for their failing to address the multiple crises we face. Join the Mobilisations group to help develop our plans.

Thank you for the overwhelming interest, we already received over 100 submissions for sessions, and are still waiting for contributions from our international allies. In the next few weeks, we will arrange a programme that reflects the depth and diversity of our movement and enables us to develop a joint strategy for the coming year. If you would like to help with this, join us at the project team meeting on Wednesday, 30 September at 1pm

If you have any questions, contact our coordinators Quan and Camille at any time. In the meantime, spread the word! 

Boiling Point

We are currently running our online speaker series, “Boiling Point: Everything you ever wanted to know about international climate change negotiations but were too afraid to ask.” In it we explore the basics of international climate change politics and the infamous COP. Experts with years of experience working behind the scenes of major summits will share their knowledge of the history and process of the talks as well as the major issues and main players. Boiling Point runs weekly on Thursdays from 17th September through 22nd October. 

The next and third session, “A Potted History of Climate Change Negotiations – Part 2” will take place on 1 October at 2pm (BST). Our third session will explore developments since the Paris Agreement with the Third World Network’s Meena Raman, a Malaysian public interest lawyer who has actively participated in the UNFCCC negotiations since 2007. Register here!

Get involved!

The COP26 Coalition is launching our Trade Union Working Group on Wednesday 30th September at 6pm. This meeting is open to all rank and file activists, officials, and trade union staff. Please help us reach out to beyond the usual suspects – and forward this invite to trade union members who you think would be interested! You can join the meeting here.

As one of the ways to mark this November, the Glasgow Local Working Group will hold live readings of key passages of the IPCC reportthat focus on frontline communities, indigenous groups, and the necessity of societal transformation. If you’re based in Glasgow, or live close to fossil fuel infrastructure in Scotland, and are interested in reading parts of the report, please get in touch with Patrick and Katie! 

There’s some exciting actions coming up: Our pals at Extinction Rebellion Scotland plan a series of actions to make the connectionsbetween fossil fuels, finance, and the government. If you’re free between 19-25 October and want to disrupt those most responsible for the climate crisis, join them!

In further Scottish news: Tripod and Young Friends of the Earth Scotland are offering an organising training for Scottish climate, environmental and social activists. If you’re a Scottish activist, apply here for Building Power.

And lastly: Climate Camp Scotland is fundraising on behalf of Migrants Organising for Rights and Empowerment (MORE), who are in urgent need of funding. If you have anything to spare, please support their fundraiser, and if you’re broke, share it with your rich friends!

News and Resources 

  • This month wildfires yet again ripped through California, displacing thousands of people and causing untold damage. In the blazes, over a million 1000-year old Joshua trees perished. Will what follows be, as Mike Davis writes, a new apocalyptic “second nature?”

  • If not fire, flood: ¾ of a million people have been affected and many displaced across Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Niger, Mali, Nigeria, Congo Republic and Senegal. This is worrying for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) who point out that these populations are now increasingly vulnerable to epidemics.

  • Worryingly, displacement is only going to increase as climate change intensifies. The Ecological Threat Register this month predicted that 1.2 billion people could be displaced in the next 30 years. 

  • The U.N. is not only worried about humans but also for many other species. A recent landmark report warns that the rate of species extinctions is accelerating.

  • Such unprecedented destruction is not, however, everyone’s fault. Oxfam’s recent “Confronting Carbon Inequality” report points out that, between 1990-2015, the richest 1% alone were responsible for double the carbon emissions of the poorest half of the world’s population. This builds on their earlier findings that the richest 10% of the global population are responsible for the same emissions as the poorest 3.1 billion people.

  • Another way of attributing responsibility shows that the global supply chains of multinational companies such as BP, Coca-Cola and Walmart are responsible for 20% of carbon emissions.

  • Of course blame must be laid at the door of the likes of CDC, the UK’s development finance agency, who continue to invest in fossil fuels overseas.

  • Why let inconvenient facts get in the way of a good story, though, when you could do as the EU does and simply use the “creative accounting” of net-zero to pretend you have ceased polluting when in fact you have done no such thing!

  • After huge pressure from the EU, this week Xi Jinping pledged his country would peak carbon emissions by 2030 and reach “carbon neutrality” by 2060. While these are encouraging sounds we have to ask if China is going to copy the EU by saying one thing and doing another.

  • We may be able to answer such questions thanks to new initiatives such as Climate Trace, which aims to to track human-caused emissions to specific sources in real time—independently and publicly.

  • Tracking emissions, however, won’t be enough. Stopping emissions, in the words of Ende Gelände, needs to happen with our own hands. Follow them here to keep up to date for their ongoing direct action against German coal and gas infrastructure – and very importantly for us, explore their COVID-19 hygiene concept here, which is arguably more sophisticated than the one from the UK government. 

And lastly, check out this fantastic poem by Glasgow councillor Graham Campbell on Glasgow’s role in the slave trade, how Scotland’s colonial history was buried through organised forgetting, and how we can together move towards an organised remembering.

Welcome to the fourth edition of The Rising Clyde, a newsletter from the COP26 Coalition! Just a reminder: if you’ve read good articles on climate justice, watched an amazing video on climate struggles, or simply discovered some really good tunes for the revolution, send them to us here

We have a lot of exciting news for you in the coming weeks. With so many Coalition meetings taking place, things can quickly get confusing – which is why we have created a shared calendar to make it easier to find the dates and details for upcoming meetings and events. For now, click here for the soundtrack for #4 to remind yourselves how essential the trade union movement is for any progress in society.

From the Ground Up: Call for Contributions

From 12-16th November, the COP26 Coalition is hosting From the Ground Up – a global online gathering that will be a space to educate, activate and strategise. We will discuss the need for a global green new deal and work towards a global plan of action to create the change we need from the ground up.

We need your help to bring together thousands of activists and participants from across the world  to develop the strategies and tactics necessary to achieve climate justice and build for a year of climate action towards the COP26 meeting in Glasgow next year.

From the Ground Up: Global Gathering for Climate Justice will be an opportunity to

  • address the seriousness of the crises we face
  • develop common strategies and demands
  • understand what is and isn’t being done by governments
  • what should and shouldn’t be done regarding false solutions vs people’s solutions
  • what we should be doing together in the next five years.

We would like to invite contributions from climate justice activists, community leaders, campaigners, scientists, researchers, & trade unionists – you might want to suggest a speaker, a workshop, cultural event, or a topic for debate. We will be organising the following sessions:

  • panels with high-profile activists and community leaders
  • action workshops
  • movement strategy debates and workshops
  • 101 introduction sessions on key topics
  • arts, cultural events and storytelling
  • linking struggles and strategies sessions

Please fill in this Submission Form by 22nd September. The COP26 project team will be curating and coordinating the programme and will be in contact about your submission to ensure that as many voices from our movement as possible are represented in the gathering.

In the meantime, spread the word about the gathering, and share the call for contributions!

Get involved!

Speaking of upcoming events… we are very pleased to finally announce that registration is open for our online speaker series, “Boiling Point: Everything you ever wanted to know about international climate change negotiations but were too afraid to ask.”

In this series of six one hour-long webinars we will explore the basics of international climate change politics and the infamous COP, or “Conference of the Parties.” Activists, policy analysts and journalists with years of experience working behind the scenes of major summits will share their knowledge of the history and process of the talks as well as the major issues and main players. The Boiling Point series will run weekly on Thursdays from 17th September through 22nd October. 

The first session “Climate Negotiations for Beginners” starts on September 17th, with Dorothy Guerrero from Global Justice Now and Doreen Stabinsky from the College of the Atlantic walking us through the basics of the process, terms and concepts of the UN climate negotiations.

Mark your calendars for the next All-Coalition Assembly which will take place on 23rd September from 6.30 – 8.30pm BST. Call-in details will be shared via email and on the Coalition’s Slack workspace.

Shortly after this, our amazing Global Solidarity Working Group is hosting the 3rd International Assembly on the 24th September, 9am-11am BST, where we’re starting to organise and strategise together with our international allies. If you are in contact with international groups, send them an invitation!

Also have a look at the Climate Fringe website, a home for events of all kinds in the run-up and during COP26, in Scotland and beyond! Curated by our friends at Stop Climate Chaos Scotland, the Climate Fringe hosts webinars, discussions, and events ranging from how to end racism and classism in environmentalism to the campaign launch of Free Our City, a new coalition campaigning for free public transport for everyone in Greater Glasgow.

How will we live in a world that is 3 degrees warmer? The Journal “The World +3 Degrees” is collecting perspectives and stories on what will be important in the coming years. Whether it’s about how people will travel, how housing and energy will be organised, or how we can build communities adapted to a world at +3 degrees, submit a contribution on what you think will or should happen! Submission deadline is the 15th October 2020. Find more information here: plus3degrees.carrd.co

News and Resources

Also, because it’s this time of the year again: here’s a video for those of you who are tired of politicians, newspapers and talk show hosts yet again blaming immigrants, young people and neighbouring countries for everything that’s wrong.

Welcome to the third edition of The Rising Clyde, a newsletter from the COP26 Coalition! Thanks for all the positive feedback we received on our first two newsletters. Remember that this is made by Coalition members, so feel free to submit articles, resources, videos,  and other spirit-lifting links here! For now though, enjoy this edition. We recommend reading it accompanied by Scottish folk legend Dick Guaghan singing for Maya Angelou.

News from across the Coalition

August is traditionally a slow month in the UK as people look to take a break. But as Bob Marley once noted, “the people who were trying to make this world worse are not taking the day off.” So the collective work of the Coalition has carried on.

All working groups are now orienting themselves towards this November, when COP26 was originally scheduled. To mark the moment and build momentum for the coming year, the Coalition is organising something akin to a virtual people’s summit from 12 to 16 November. The project team is now discussing everything from a name for the event, to which platforms to use, to the format, themes, and programme. 

With so many Coalition meetings taking place, things can quickly get confusing. Which is why we have created a shared calendar to make it easier to find the dates and details for upcoming meetings and events. Be sure to join the #onlinesummit channel on Slack!

Get involved!

Speaking of upcoming events… we are very pleased to finally announce that registration is now open for our online speaker series, “Boiling Point: Everything you ever wanted to know about international climate change negotiations but were too afraid to ask.”

In this series of six one hour-long webinars we will explore the basics of international climate change politics and the infamous COP, or “Conference of the Parties.” Activists, policy analysts and journalists with years of experience working behind the scenes of major summits will share their knowledge of the history and process of the talks as well as the major issues and main players. The Boiling Point series will run weekly on Thursdays from 17th September through 22nd October. Get your free tickets to be sure you receive more details about the event, and invite your friends and colleagues!

Mark your calendars (we have already marked our collective calendar!) for the next All-Coalition Assembly which will take place on 23rd September from 6.30 – 8.30pm. Call-in details will be shared via email and on the Coalition’s Slack workspace.

Keep your calendars open because there are 2 other really cool events we wanted to share with you. Although not organised by the Coalition both events promise to be really interesting for all Coalition members. The first event, “Disruption, Decarbonisation, Reparations,” will take place on the 2nd and 3rd September and is organised by the Research in Global Governance Network at the University of Warwick. The second event, “Framing Climate Justice: what have we learnt?” organised by PIRC, NEON, and 350.org will take place at 4pm BST on the 16th September. 

Finally, we appeal to all of you who are addicted to social media to put your time online to good use by helping to manage the Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook accounts of the Coalition!

News and Resources

  • One-third of Bangladesh is underwater following the worst flooding seen in a decade. Yet again, countries in the Global South suffer the consequences of climate breakdown despite being the least responsible for causing it. According to the World Bank, more than 13.3 million Bangladeshis could be displaced by the climate crisis by 2050.
  • A state of emergency has been declared in Mauritius after an estimated 1,000 tonnes of oil have leaked from a grounded Japanese bulk carrier. This is the ugly reality of the oil industry the world over. In Venezuela 26,700 barrels of oil leaked from a refinery, with experts predicting the coast could take 50 years to recover.
  • Environmental groups have called for an environmental court to be established after the UK government spent over £50,000 investigating BP following the Clair platform oil leak in 2016. Last month, BP plead guilty to contravening rules on the regulation of offshore petroleum activities at Aberdeen Sheriff Court and were fined £7,000. You read that right – we haven’t missed some zeros off the end. They fined a multi-billion dollar company seven thousand pounds.
  • Glasgow-based student science magazine, theGIST, looks at how the coronavirus pandemic is affecting global carbon emissions. Laura Gordon, an MRes student in Ecology and Environmental Biology at the University of Glasgow, shows why the sudden drop is no cause for celebration.
  • With countries in the Global South estimated to need at least $2.5 trillion to recover from COVID-19, the need has never been greater for new and additional international finance to support a transformation of their energy sectors, otherwise they may be compelled to turn to sources of cheap and easy cash through fossil fuel extraction.
  • In some relatively good news, fossil fuel companies will not be allowed to sponsor COP26. This is the first year that sponsors are required to have a plan to cut emissions to “net-zero” by 2050. This long-overdue decision comes after campaigners urged the government to kick big polluters out of COP for good. Related: Creative Carbon Scotland have put this great resource together, documenting a history of arts and culture at previous COPs.
  • Thirty Percy’s amazing “Interdependence Festival” from last November is now available to view on demand. Featuring talks on the interconnecting issues of the hostile environment, energy democracy, and housing, through a decolonial climate justice lens, the on-demand videos provide an invaluable resource for anyone wanting to learn more about climate justice.
  • Another fantastic, and free, resource to challenge your assumptions about the climate crisis is the excellent book “A billion black anthropocenes or none.” If you need any further convincing to read the whole book online, here’s a great review!
  • Finally, Erin Roberts has written a fantastic and provocative essay “If black lives mattered would loss and damage exist?” which charts her personal journey to understanding how the climate breakdown we are now unleashing, which has been described as a new apartheid, is the direct result of a global system of racism.

Welcome to the second edition of The Rising Clyde, a newsletter from the COP26 Coalition!

Before you go on, click here to have the best possible soundtrack for your reading experience. Thanks for all the positive feedback we received on our first newsletter, please keep in mind that this is made by Coalition members, so feel free to submit articles, resources, videos,  and other spirit-lifting links here!

News from across the Coalition

We’re currently working to make it easier to get involved with the Coalition. To make it easier to find all the dates and meetings, we have a shared calendar now! Also, we’re currently working on a welcome pack for new members on how to get involved in the coalition, if you have ideas for that, let us know!

Our Working groups

  • Political Strategy: We will be launching a speaker series in September: “Boiling point: Everything you wanted to know about COP but were too afraid to ask”, introducing you to people with specific knowledge about and experience of the UN climate change negotiations, its history, processes and potential. Registration details will be available in our next newsletter! 
  • Global Solidarity: We have held our 2nd International Assembly, where we discussed and developed exciting plans for this November with our international allies – an online People’s Summit and possible decentralised mobilisations. Check out this short video of Alex Etchard’s amazing music contribution. 
  • Logistics: After a long pause, we are finally coming back! Come to our first meeting in September to figure out how we get things moving on the ground!
  • Communications: We’re in the process of finalising our long-awaited new website, and are outlining first steps for the Coalition’s communication strategy, spokespeople list, media database and social media presence. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube
  • Glasgow Local: We’re working on a prototype database on civil society organisations, by the Glasgow COP Collective, as well as on our proposal on how we want to contribute to the online summit. 
  • Mobilisations: At our last meeting, we discussed how we can reach out to wider networks in Scotland and the UK, to activate organisations not yet in the coalition for our online summit, and for climate justice generally. We also want to provide training and skill-shares for decentralised protests and actions this November. 
  • Culture: It’s been a while, but we will reconvene on 25 August, 6pm. Message Kat if you would like to join!

Meet the Coordinating Committee

Since June, we have had an operational Coordinating Committee in place, with  representatives nominated from working groups and civil society constituencies. Reflecting the breadth and diversity of the UK and Scottish climate movement, the Committee will steer the Coalition going forward towards COP. Here’s the current composition of the full Committee:

 

  • Global Solidarity: Anca Giurgiu (London Mining Network), Dorothy Guerrero (Global Justice Now)
  • Political Strategy: Ashish Ghadiali  (Wretched of the Earth), Olivia Hanks (Quakers)
  • Logistics: Minnie Rahman (Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants), Nick Cullen (Stop Climate Chaos Scotland)
  • Fundraising: Asad Rehman (War on Want), Mary Church (Friends of the Earth Scotland)
  • Mobilisations: Yvonne Blake (MORE – Migrants Organising for Rights and Empowerment), Dylan Hamilton/Anna Brown (Scottish Youth Climate Strikers)
  • Glasgow Local: Roz Corbett (Landworkers’ Alliance)
  • Culture: Kat Jones (Stop Climate Chaos Scotland)
  • Communications: Nathan Thanki (Global Campaign to Demand Climate Justice)
  • Interim Coordination Group: Shan Stephens (350), Nish Doshi
  • Unions: Sam Mason (Public and Commercial Services Union), Stephen Smellie (UNISON Scotland)
  • Youth Strikers: Macsen Brown/Aoife Mercedes (UK Student Climate Network)
  • Extinction Rebellion: George (Extinction Rebellion UK)
  • Direct Action Groups: Lise Masson (Reclaim the Power)

We’re aware that this is not perfectly representative of our movement yet, and are working to involve more constituencies we would like to see in our coalition, such as Scottish direct action groups, Faith Groups, and representatives for people with disabilities.

 

Get involved!

We are holding an online people’s summit 12 to 16 November 2020, and we formed a project team to hammer out the details so that our working groups can fill it with amazing content. Would you like to join? Our next online summit meeting is on Tuesday, 18th of August, at 12pm! If you can’t join, but would like to contribute your ideas, leave your comments on our slack channel!

We’re not the first ones to organise around a COP, and it’s important for us to understand the strategies, tactics, and challenges organisers at previous COPs have faced. If you have been involved in civil society organising around COPs in the past, please fill in this survey on past COPs for us – and forward it to anyone you know who was involved. Here’s the English, the Spanish, and the French version!

Would you be interested in being a spokesperson for the coalition, or to work on media and messaging going forward? Neon’s Press Officer Network is organising a training this September, with spaces for a few coalition members to attend – contact us if you’d be up for it!

Our next international assembly will take place mid-September. If your organisation is based outside of the UK and you would like to get involved, or if you have contacts to groups and networks in the Global South, message Anca and Dottie!

News and Resources

  • How do we make the most of COP26? In this open letter to the UK climate movement, Dario Kenner argues that we must wrestle with fossil fuel corporations’ influence over the UK government. Related to this, here’s a good article on four major opportunities that COP26 presents for the UK climate justice movement, by Nathan Thanki and Asad Rehman.
  • At the last summit, EU leaders managed to forge a compromise on the COVID-19 Recovery package by cutting their just transition fund and their Horizon research programme to appease northern Europe. But, as Corporate Europe Observatory notes, even if they hadn’t, the EU’s green new deal is anything but green:  The EU’s plan neither challenges fossil fuels, nor does it rethink the european economy to tackle the financial, social and ecological crisis. The EU continues to promote false, market-based solutions and technological fixes, and promotes climate targets that Greta Thunberg called a “surrender”.
  • Speaking of Greta, here is an hour-long reading in which she reflects on her trip to North America and back, the false language used by those in power to cloud climate science, and the role of the media in (mis)communicating the crisis.
  • Dorothy Guerrero has written a great article on how the G20 continue to ignore calls to cancel the illegitimate debts of the world’s poorest countries and stop funding fossil fuels.
  • The Scottish Government pretends that Scotland is much more of a climate leader than the UK is. But Scotland has a long history of both aiding British colonialism as well as contributing to the climate crisis with Scottish oil and gas. Steve Rushton argues that Scotland needs to face up to its colonial legacy to be a truly progressive country, and that the independence movement needs to include Scotland’s history of slavery and climate crimes in their conversations.
  • Here is a recording of a great webinar by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation “In Search of a Decolonial, Feminist Green New Deal”, with great speakers from the global feminist movement.
  • To follow up on last-edition’s story about Australian geoengineering, a small team of Australian engineers have recently defied an international moratorium on geoengineering to test cloud brightening, even though it could lead to droughts and other climate disruptions in vulnerable regions.
  • The UK government, despite their climate pledges, is using $1 billion UK tax payers money to finance the “biggest ever” gas projects with Mozambique LNG, which Friends of the Earth calls “Gross Hypocrisy”, given the UK’s climate commitments.

And finally, we all know that all of society needs to step up on climate change. So, here’s Police Scotland doing their best. (On a more serious note, this is them at their worst)

Welcome to our first COP26 Coalition Newsletter! With a busy 18 months ahead, our aim is to update you every so often on what is happening across the Coalition, what big things are coming up next, and what else is happening around COP26. 

We want this newsletter to be primarily for the Coalition by Coalition members, so if you have interesting things to share, use this form to submit news, but also links, videos and articles important to the Coalition, and we will include a selection in the next newsletter. Keep in mind that we are still using Slack for event announcements etc. and that this newsletter will be available for the public!

News from across the Coalition

After organising assemblies in Glasgow, Edinburgh and London since September 2019, we have moved to fully online meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with full Coalition Assemblies every 5-6 weeks and most working groups meeting every 2-3 weeks via conference call.

Since June, we have our two coordinators in place, Camille (London) and Quan (Glasgow), who will support the Coalition going forward. They are working under guidance from the Coalition’s Coordinating Committee which has now been set up.

The Political Strategy Working Group has been doing some homework! They’ve been researching historical climate justice demands and have compiled a list here which we are using as a reference in determining our own strategy and demands around COP26.

They have also written a Coalition statement on COVID-19, explaining how the COVID crisis has highlighted existing social and ecological injustices, and that any response going forward needs to put those most vulnerable first to be truly transformative, and are planning a COP26 speaker series, where we will share knowledge about the history, process, and flaws of the UNFCCC negotiations in interactive webinars. You can find the first session here, which will be on the basics of UN Climate negotiations – sign up!

Our communications work has advanced and we now have a lovely logo and visual branding for the Coalition as well as some social media profiles – be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook – TikTok and Instagram coming soon! We are also developing a brand new website where, amongst many other incredible resources, visitors will be able to find and sign up for this newsletter!

Lastly, all the working groups are coming together to plan an online People’s Summit this November, when the COP would have been.

Get involved!

Are you an influencer and have way too many followers? Do you want to be involved in building a website (no technical expertise required)? The comms working group is looking for people to help out with all of these things and more – contact Nathan if you’d like to get involved!

Do you like money? Do you know how to write grant applications, or know somebody who does? The fundraising working group needs your help! We need to raise heaps more money for mobilisations and to support allies from the frontlines of the climate struggle to have their voices heard. Contact Camille and Quan!

If you’re more into figuring out things on the ground in Glasgow, give Nick from the Logistics working group a shout – we need people to get involved in securing venues, organising transport, food and accommodation. Without logistics, nothing will happen, so get involved!

 

News, Links, and Resources

  • What story should we tell when we approach COP26? There is a lot to be learned from past mobilisations around Copenhagen, where a now-or-never narrative, emphasising the urgency and moral duty to act now, led to burnout and depression within the climate movement, after the negotiations ended in disaster. Here is an interesting article on how we can learn lessons from past mobilisations, and how emphasizing urgency may be critical, but ‘now or never’ narratives undermine sustained action.
  • With so many of us now working from home, many have been asking why COP26 and other international summits don’t simply move online. After all, it would save tens of thousands of flights each year. While we all share the desire to dramatically reduce emissions from aviation, digital technologies are not a silver bullet solution. This brilliant Third World Network explainer is a must-read for anyone who is asking “why can’t they just do COP over Zoom?”.
  • Normally, whoever causes a mess should also clean up the mess. The UK, with other European countries, have spent two centuries growing rich driven by fossil fuels, while countries in the global south that contributed least to climate change will suffer the most from it. This great infographic by War on Want and Friends of the Earth shows what the UK must do for their fair share to reach the critical 1.5° guardrail.
  • This is a great article by Dr Jale Samuwai, Oxfam Pacific, on what pandemics, cyclones and climate change have in common: all these expose inequality as the root problem and lay bare the fatal flaws of our economic systems.
  • What does Climate Justice really mean, and where does it come from? Here is an interesting article by the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation that looks at how the debate within environmental movements has developed, and that Climate Justice is not only an objective to be achieved (e.g. emission reduction or redistribution of wealth), but a process of transforming the social structures that caused climate injustice.
  • In a recent study by the Stockholm environment Institute and Oil Change International, researchers show how wealthy countries must begin the phasing out of fossil fuels, as they can best afford it and will see the least social cost. The study proposes five principles to guide this necessary phase-out in  a way that ensures a just transition. Here is a summary, and here is the full paper.
  • On 8 June, a coalition of 195 organisations marked World Ocean day by warning governments and corporations about the dangers of geo-engineering. Recently, it was revealed that Australia is breaking the international moratorium on geoengineering, setting a precedent not only for technical solutions that damage ecosystems, but delays climate action that address the root causes of climate change.

And last, but not least: If you’ve not been to Glasgow before, and want to get to know the city and the venue of the UNFCCC negotiations, watch this excellent video that really captures the city’s spirit.

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