1.5°C = no new fossil fuels. The science is clear. To keep temperature rise below 1,5C, fossil fuels need to stay in the ground where they belong. So we’re going after banks.
The European financial sector plays a key role in funding new gas and coal projects around the world. Every year public and private banks fuel the climate crisis with 100’s of billions of euros.
Whether you are just starting out, or are already part of a campaign group, you can take action. The idea is simple: make the banks listen to climate science.
In the days directly after the release of the special report, between 8 and 17 October, we’ll be delivering 1.5°C messages to targets who are supporting the fossil fuel industry, or directly to the fossil fuel corportions.
1. Pick a target and prepare
If you’re short on time but keen to take action, below is a step by step guide with templates and materials to help you build an impactful action quickly.
By focusing on a common tactic, the human microphone, we can make our collective voices loud and clear.
Step 1. Get together some friends.
While you can absolutely organise a delivery by yourself, it’s going to be more fun and impactful to get together with others. If you’re lots of people that’s great, but a group of 4-5 people is a good start.
Step 2. Pick a target.
Give some thought to the fossil fuel projects highlighted and banks that are financing them. You can use this resource to work out which bank you’d like to focus on.
Find a location near you and then register your action here
If you’re still unsure where to focus there are 3 fossil fuel struggles in Europe that are currently at critical moments for the communities resisting them. They are:
- RWE’s coal expansion in the German Rhineland and the efforts to protect the last piece of forest standing between RWE and its expansion plans (#HambiBleibt)
- The Trans Adriatic Pipeline company’s gas mega pipeline that passes through Albania, Greece and terminates in Italy (#NoTAP)
- Fracking in the UK
Step 3. Make your banner
Avoiding warming of more than 1.5°C means that no new fossil fuel projects can go ahead. No existing projects can be expanded, and the implementation of a rapid transition away from those currently in use must happen. In most simplest terms:
1.5°C = No New Fossil Fuels
1.5°C = No TAP #NoTAP
1.5°C = Hambi Bleibt #HambiBleibt
1.5°C = No Fracking
You can download a sign here, make your own if you have a better idea and use this online tool to make a poster that you can print out at home and use as a banner on your action. If you have more time you can paint a banner on material, using a projector and poster paints.
Step 4. Make a plan
Decide on the format of the action and assign roles. The main roles include:
- Speaker – that will lead the human microphone call out
- Banner holders – two people to hold up your print at home banners. This person/people might also need to repeat the call out after the speaker depending on how many you are.
- Staff liaison – to talk with staff at the branch and let them know why you are there, what your intentions are and how long you plan to stay
- Photographer/videographer/sound recorder – to document your action and share with others what you did
If you’re planning to go into the space, make sure you inform yourself about legal repercussions.
- As a general rule most open, private spaces such as bank branches are fine to go into, but once you are asked to leave, if you don’t, you could be committing a crime.
- In private spaces, such as bank branches, it is generally not allowed to film or take photos without permission. You might consider having someone inside that acts as a customer and takes photos discretely.
We recommend you check with local legal counsel to understand whether this type of action is legally permissible in your area.
How people react to you will very much depend on how you present yourself. If you are calm and clear in the way you communicate, and explain what you are doing and why in a reasonable way, it’s likely that you will be able to simply say what you’ve got to say, hand the letter to the manager/staff and leave calmly and quietly.
Be sure to check out the opening times of your target and ideally pay them a visit beforehand to get a sense for the space, if there are security guards for example.
Think through how long you want to be in the space and agree beforehand on a plan to leave.
Step 5. Promote
If you’ve got all of the core roles covered but you want to get more people involved in the action itself. Get calling and texting your family, friends, and neighbours. Use whatever social media your community uses – if it’s Facebook, create an event and post updates, or reach out through WhatsApp groups.
Keep in mind that if you openly talk about your action and the target/location on open online spaces, you might well be met by the police when you get there.
If that happens you might want to think about trying again at another time and being more considered with your outreach. Or head to another location in another part of the town.
You can also check the Social Media Share Pack we have put together for inspiration and sample posts and images.
If you already have a target/plan in mind take a look at some tips below.
While you can definitely organise a delivery by yourself, it’s going to be far more fun to get together with others to plan and do it. Here are some key considerations / questions to help guide your planning:
- What is the tone of your delivery? Match your tone to the need for accountability and action – that might be showing your frustration with inaction, or fierce love that shows anger but in a way that people can relate to, or it might be with a sombre tone.
- Can you draw on your cultural and social heritage? It might be that your identity is being someone who lives along the sea shore, and you are concerned about how rising seas will your community’s homes. You might be a grandparent – a classic example is the Knitting Nannas who take their knitting to protests. Or perhaps you have an existing relationship with an unusual or interesting ally (a climate scientist?) that you could ask to join for your event? Remember to always be respectful and don’t claim culture that isn’t yours to claim.
- How will you deliver your message? What are the logistics involved? What are the risks that you need to plan for? How many people will you need to make the delivery work?
- What are the visuals you want to use to get across the key message? Remember to design your delivery so you will get a media-worthy photo of the delivery.
- What message do you want to send to the media?
- For people who can’t join you in person, will you collect their support in some other way? For example: signatures on an open letter, or a petition?
Check out the toolkit for some sample texts you can tailor for recruitment, media and support.
2. Do the action and document it
Arrange a time to meet and a location a short walking distance away from your target. Run over the key parts of your plan once more, then off you go.
Try not to overthink things, keep it simple and take your time. Adrenaline can make you want to do things 10 times faster than normal, so remain grounded in your body and… breathe 🙂
How to take great action photos
1) Check the camera/mobile phone camera. Make sure it works, someone knows how to use it, and that the batteries are fully charged.
2) Gather your people. It’s crucial that you gather everyone together at your action for your photo – this is how we can show world leaders just how big this movement is. Ask them to look lively – 350 is fun, and we’re here to build a better world!
3) Show your message. Whether it’s with signs or a banner, your action photo will be strengthened if it’s clear what your message or demand is.
4) Show the world where you are. If possible, include local landmarks or typical surroundings of your area in your picture. If you live in a city, have some buildings in the shot, or if you live by the sea, let’s see some water.
5) Take more than one picture! It’s easy to take a few shots of groups, also from different angles or closer and further away. This will allow you a choice from which you can select your best images. Be creative with some of your shots!
6) Check the picture. Most digital cameras allow you to instantly review your pictures. Make sure your pictures look OK before everyone goes home.
Quick action video guide with your mobile phone
1) Make sure your phone lens is clean.
2) Orientation.Keep your phone horizontal when recording.
3) Avoid having a source of light behind your subject.
4) Keep the phone stable with both hands.
5) Record as long as you can. If you’re planning to use the footage later it’s always better to have more to choose from then only a few seconds.
3. Report back and debrief
As soon as your action is over share photos and videos on social media using #1o5C #gasdown #frackdown and send them to us so we can distribute and amplify them further.
Now celebrate and debrief with your team! A debrief can be super simple: ask everyone who was involved to share one thing they liked about how it was organised, and one thing they think could be improved for next time a similar action takes place. Then get planning for your next steps.
If you have registered your action you will receive a debrief survey afterwards.
If you’re still not sure watch our How-to Video below