It was only five months ago that Turkey ratified the Kyoto treaty, a first step in joining the international community in the effort to address climate change. They joined the treaty in large part thanks to the hard work of some remarkable grassroots groups there, like our friends at the Küresel Eylem Grubu (KEG), or Global Action Group in English. KEG is a remarkable team of activists — NGOs and individuals alike — based in Istanbul, Ankara, and Izmir. The photo to the right is at a KEG rally held in Istanbul this past April, calling for Turkey to take a more bold, active part in the international effort to combat climate change.
A few of leaders of the group, Omer Madra and Goksen Sahin helped to host Bill McKibben in Istanbul on Wednesday. In addition to meeting with activists and community groups there, he spoke on Acik Radio with Omer Madra, Yasam Radio, and NTV with Goksen (one of the most viewed news channels in Turkey). A HUGE thanks to Goksen, Omer Madra, and all in KEG who made yesterday’s Istanbul events happen and for carrying on the 350 movement in Turkey!
For anyone in Turkey new to 350, or if you’re elsewhere and want to introduce friends in Turkey to 350, you can share this blog post and the October 24 action invitation letter with them in both English and Turkish. Click here for the Turkish versions.
While Bill, Omer, Goksen, and the whole team in Istanbul were building the 350 momentum there, I had the great pleasure of meeting KEG leaders in Izmir, who are also formulating their October 24 action plans. It is tremendously inspiring to hear of the movement efforts being made there and across Turkey and to connect and unite our efforts around 350. And the reason why I was in Izmir at all, is that nearby, along the Agean coast, I am joining 80 youth from over 30 countries gathered together for a Climate Advocacy Institute. We are training, sharing skills, and planning campaigns and actions for 24th of October — and generally using this rare opportunity of coming together face to face from around the world to strengthen and unite the movement. Stay tuned for more updates from the Institute here in the coming weeks as well.