Are you seeing this? We're at the Paris #COP21 climate talks, interviewing environmental justice leaders, speaking alongside climate activists from around the world, and making a ruckus to kick big polluters OUT of the climate talks. But we can't do it without your help - can you donate to help us keep reporting (and acting) right at the front-lines?
Sunday Anthony was pepper-sprayed on his way home from a climate rally.1 Monday, President Barack Obama spoke on the urgency of climate action here in Paris.2 Tuesday, Congress tried to derail our work, but the climate talks ignored them (for now).3 Wednesday, the world gathered in solidarity to call for action.4 Thursday, we rallied to kick polluters out of the climate talks, and sat down with the front line, climate justice leaders we need to get inside (and get more access).5
Every. Single. Day. There's a breaking news story or major opportunity to change the global climate change debate here in Paris. And we're right in the thick of it - protesting on the streets, reporting to you live from the front-lines and fighting to get the right voices heard (and the wrong voices excluded) from the Paris climate talks.
But here's the thing: We receive virtually no funding from corporations or foundations. We rely on members like you to support our work. And right now, we urgently need to raise another $5,000 before the end of the climate talks here in Paris.
My records show that you haven't made an online donation this year, would you be willing to pitch in $15 to help us hit our goal? If you donate now, we'll exempt you from the rest of our fundraisers this month, and only send you the highlights, updates and urgent action opportunities instead. Sound fair?
If there's one thing I've learned in this first week of climate negotiations, it's that solving climate change will not be easy. It's not about technology or engineering - we've got plenty of solar and wind power to run our whole economy without burning fossil fuels. It's about people. And if you're willing to be one of the people who support our activism, we'll make it as simple as possible - starting by not bugging you for money for the next few weeks.
All over this city right now, there are thousands of activists from every corner of the planet. Many of them come from communities already feeling the devastating effects of climate change -- like the delegation of students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities we've helped bring to the talks. Others are moved to take action on behalf of those who cannot -- like the team of students organizing alongside us to help kick the big polluters out of the climate talks. All of us are united in purpose: to leave 80 percent of fossil fuels in the ground and finance a just transition to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050.
But the negotiators inside can barely hear our voices or see the solutions so many of these activists embody. They're walled off (Literally) in a section of the talks dominated by corporate interests and political infighting between the global north and south. But for all the challenges of this first week - I'm optimistic. On Tuesday, I sat on a press conference where we announced the Divestment of trillions of dollars in assets from fossil fuels, and the investment of those same trillions in clean energy and sustainability. The next day, I met an woman from Afghanistan who was engaged at 16, but today works as a doctor and has delivered over 300 babies. She said, "Having started from zero I'm now on the top." She wasn't despairing about the talks - she was energized. And the feeling is infectious.
I hope you stop by the blog and check out all the reports from the week so far. But as you do, I hope you'll also think about what it takes to mobilize these huge delegations of activists to come and speak on behalf of the planet. I hope you'll consider, as you read and watch and hear their stories, what these folks have risked and sacrificed to be here - many of them for more than two weeks, to make sure the voices of people and the planet are heard at the climate talks. And if that's worth it to you, I hope you'll join me in making a year-end donation of $15, $35 or whatever you can afford to support it.
Drew and the team, live from Paris and anywhere we can fight global warming
PS - Earlier today, we went to another protest aimed at pressuring the corporate polluters 'sponsoring' the climate summit to get out of the way and let frontline communities lead. Once again there was an over-reaction from the police. Dozens may have been arrested and the plan for a peaceful protest of corporate control of our climate was shut down. We're posting raw photos and video on our Facebook page and Twitter accounts, and you should check there for breaking updates over the next few days.
1 - Anthony Rogers-Wright, From Paris, COP21 Eve: Hold The Line, Environmental Action Blog, November 30, 2015
2 - Drew Hudson, Will Cop21 be a triumph, a disaster, or just a lot of hot air?, Environmental Action Blog, December 1, 2015
3 - Anthony Rogers-Wright and Drew Hudson, Slow Walking the COP21 talks, December 2, 2015
4 - Drew Hudson, Making some noise at the #COP21 talks, December 3, 2015
5 - Anthony Rogers-Wright and Drew Hudson, Double time at the #COP21 talks, December 4, 2015