June 15, 2012
‘Twitterstorm’ gathers speed before Monday’s Global Cyberaction to #EndFossilFuelSubsidies at Rio+20
RIO, 15 June 2012 -- Momentum is building for this Monday’s 24-hour “Twitterstorm,” a massive international online action to increase pressure on world leaders to cut nearly $1 trillion in fossil fuel subsidies at the upcoming Rio+20 Earth Summit.
For 24 hours between June 18th and 19th, as world leaders gather at the G20 summit and prepare for Rio+20, hundreds of thousands of people around the world will tweet with the same hashtag -- #EndFossilFuelSubsidies -- at celebrities and politicians, flooding the popular social network with their demand. Over 1 million people have already signed a petition calling on leaders to act.
Recent developments on the Twitterstorm include:
• Confirmation of tweet projections in Sydney, London, New Dehli, and Rio (see Notes section for times and locations) (1)
• A new website with fact sheets, a tool to tweet at celebrities and Heads of State, and more resources for activists: www.endfossilfuelsubsidies.org
• A new Facebook event that has registered over two thousand “Tweet Team” members to recruit participants for the day of action. (2)
• Support from over a dozen civil society groups, including 350.org, Greenpeace International, Oil Change International and WWF. (3)
WHAT: A 24-hour Twitterstorm to #EndFossilFuelSubsidies at Rio+20
WHEN: The 24-hour clock will begin at 8:00 UTC (6 PM local time in Sydney) when activists will flock to Twitter with messages that will be projected in iconic locations in Sydney, New Delhi, London, and Rio. In recent weeks campaigning groups have collected over 1 million signatures demanding that leaders act now.
WHY: According to figures compiled by Oil Change International, countries are spending as much as $1 trillion USD combined annually on fossil fuel subsidies. (4) The International Energy Agency estimates that by cutting these subsidies, the world can cut global warming causing emissions in half and significantly contribute to preventing a 2 degree temperature rise, the limit most scientists say we need to stay under to prevent runaway climate change. (5)
In May, leaders of the G20 again pledged to eliminate fossil fuel subsidies. They first made the commitment in 2009 but have yet to implement the policy change at the country level.
While global warming emissions rise and gas prices spike, fossil fuel companies continue to make massive profits, which brings into doubt the need for subsidies. ExxonMobil, for example, made $41.1 billion USD in profit in 2011.
CONTACT: In the US, Daniel Kessler, 350.org, email@example.com, +1 510-501-1779; In Rio, Jamie Henn, firstname.lastname@example.org, +55(0)2181061948
NOTE TO EDITORS:
1. June 18 projection events
◦ Summary: Sydney will launch the Twitter Storm from the Sydney Opera House. Local supporters are invited to send a photo or video message to world leaders with the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge as a backdrop. Projection of the Twitter feed will continue late at night around Sydney’s CBD.
◦ 6 PM (UTC+10) Sydney Opera House Boardwalks
◦ 9 PM (UTC+10) Sydney CBD
◦ CONTACT: Abi Jamines email@example.com, +61 403278621
• New Delhi
◦ Summary: There will be two projections in New Delhi.
◦ Projection 1: 6 PM - 9 PM, Moonlighting, An indoor projection while the Twitter feed is projected to an invited audience along with a speaker to discuss the issue of fossil fuel subsidies in the Indian context. (Will share speaker details soon, yet to be confirmed).
◦ Projection 2: 6PM - 11 PM An outdoor projection at a local mall called DLF Saket.
◦ CONTACT: Chaitanya Kumar, firstname.lastname@example.org, +91-9849016371
◦ Summary: There will be 3 events in London--a petition delivery at 10 Downing Street in the morning, followed by two projections.
◦ Petition delivery: 10:30am GMT+1, Number 10 Downing Street, London.
◦ Projection 1: 1:30pm GMT+1, Houses of Parliament, London
◦ Projection 2: Approximately midnight GMT+1 (Tuesday 19th June), Nelson's Column, Trafalgar Square, London
◦ CONTACT: Emma Biermann, email@example.com, +44 (0) 78 3500 4720,
◦ Summary: Tweets will be displayed in the Rio Centro conference center all day.
◦ CONTACT: Jamie Henn, firstname.lastname@example.org, +55(0)2181061948
3. Supporting organizations include: 350.org, Avaaz, Climate Reality Project, Earth Day Network, Friends of the Earth International, Global Exchange, Green For All, Greenpeace International, Greenpeace Australia, and Greenpeace New Zealand, League of Conservation Voters, Natural Resource Defense Council, Oil Change International, Oxfam, Quercus, SumOfUs, Wild Aid, World Wildlife Fund