Civil Society Organizations warn Governments on climate change: Stand with us, or step aside

Organizations from every continent – including trade unions, social movements, environmental groups, gender and youth groups, indigenous groups and NGOs – are demanding action by the more than 198 member governments of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

A Declaration was handed over to the Minister for the Environment for Peru Manual Pulgar-Vidal; Laurence Tubiana, recently nominated special envoy for the French Foreign Affairs Minister, and Venezuela Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Claudia Salerno Caldera, listing demands.

International civil society organizations demonstrated their rising dissatisfaction with the direction of the UN climate negotiations in Warsaw last November, staging an unprecedented mass walkout.

The demonstration in Bonn is intended to show the growing public support for climate action and a just energy transformation. The groups held a banner: “We Choose: Renewable Energy. People’s Power now!

Anabella Rosemberg, International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) climate advisor said, “In Warsaw, we left because governments were not taking their responsibilities to tackle climate change seriously. We came together again here in Bonn, across very diverse groups to tell them we’ll not surrender until we build the strong climate movement we need, one that pushes for a just world, for the jobs of the future, and for a planet that is preserved for future generations.”

The Declaration continues that, “the walk out was an act of protest and indignation over governments’ continued failure to take decisive and swift action against the biggest threat to both people and the planet, and an act of condemnation of continued domination and sabotage of the international climate talks by powerful corporate interests.”

A matter of life and death

Lidy Nacpil, Director of Jubilee South – Asia Pacific Movement on Debt and Development, from the Philippines said, “These negotiations are a matter of life and death for many who live in vulnerable countries – where worse typhoons and droughts mean much more suffering. We will continue to take action against those who claim to be leaders, calling on them to take up our solutions and beat back the vested interests that want business as usual and dress it up as progress.”

“We have come together to reiterate to all 'leaders' in the UN climate negotiations that they are dangerously off track in addressing the climate emergency. We are calling on them to listen to the demands and solutions of people,” the Declaration says. “We are back, far more strengthened in giving voice to those who are already acting with the urgency needed to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. People are mobilizing everywhere and taking to the streets in bigger numbers and increasing intensity to stand up to vested interests and fight for their future and those of the next generations.”

The Declaration lists seven specific demands of the groups, and then concludes, “the global climate movement is building its strength and power in every country of the world. We call on those who claim to represent us to either act in our interests or step aside."

Notes to editors

The list of 77 organizations who have signed the Declaration are:

  • ActionAid
  • Aksi! for gender, social and environmental justice
  • Aksyon Klima Pilipinas
  • Alianza Hondureña ante el Cambio Climático (AHCC)
  • Alyansa Tigil Mina Philippines
  • ANWA
  • Aniban ng Manggagawa sa Agrikultura
  • Bangladesh Krishok Federation (BKF)
  • Beyond Copenhagen (India)
  • BUNDjugend
  • Campaña Mesoamericana por la Justicia Climática
  • CAN France
  • CAN Southeast Asia
  • Carbon Market Watch
  • CARITAS Intl Org
  • CCN Nigeria
  • Center for Environmental Justice / Friends of the Earth Sri Lanka
  • CEO
  • CIEL
  • Clean Energy Nepal
  • Climate Friendly Bradford on Avon
  • Climate Justice Programme
  • Coastal Livelihood and Environmental Action Network (CLEAN)
  • Construyendo puentes – Redes Latinoamericanas frente al Cambio Climático.
  • Earth in Brackets
  • Ecological Society of the Philipines
  • EcoWaste Coalition Philippines
  • Ekoloji Kolektifi
  • ENGAJAMUNDO
  • EquityBD –
  • ESI
  • Federation of young European Greens
  • Foro Buen Ayre
  • Friends of the Earth Europe (network of 31 organisations across Europe)
  • Friends of the Earth Curacao
  • Friends of the Earth US
  • Freedom from Debt Coalition Philippines
  • Fundacion Solon
  • Germanwatch
  • Greenpeace
  • Global 100% RE campaign
  • IBON International
  • Indian Social Action Forum (INSAF)
  • Institute for Policy Studies (IPS)
  • International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)
  • Kirklees Campaign Against Climate Change (KCCC)
  • Jubilee South Asia Pacific Movement on Debt and Development (JSAPMDD)
  • LDC Watch
  • Migrant Forum Asia (MFA)
  • MOCICC
  • NECU
  • Oxfam
  • PACJA
  • Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum
  • Peru COP20
  • Philippine Movement for Climate Justice
  • Philippine Rural Reconstruction Movement (PRRM)
  • Plataforma Boliviana frente al Cambio ClimáticoPractical action
  • Pro Vida
  • Public Advocacy Initiatives for Rights and Values in India (PAIRVI)
  • PushEurope
  • Reacción Climática
  • Red SUSWATCH-Latinoamérica
  • Rural Reconstruction Nepal
  • Solidaritas Perempuan
  • South Asia Alliance for Poverty Eradication (SAAPE)
  • Sudanese Environment Conservation Society
  • Sustainlabour
  • Third World Network
  • UK Youth Climate Coalition
  • Vasudha Foundation
  • Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF)
  • What’s Next Forum
  • Woman Health Philippines
  • WWF
  • Young Friends of the Earth Europe
  • 350.org
  • 11.11.11
  • WeDo

Contact information

For interviews with Tim Gore, Oxfam's climate policy lead, and further information on the stunt or media statement, please contact:

Sue Rooks  +1 917 224 0834 or sue.rooks@oxfaminternational.org, or @suerooks.