Hope in the land of coal

Stories from the grassroots movements in Poland.

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This December Poland is hosting the UN climate talks, COP24. The meeting takes place in the city of Katowice, in the heart of the Silesia coal mining region.

The Polish government is notorious for its regressive politics on climate and other burning social and environmental issues.

But there’s another side of the story. It’s being written right now by grassroots movements inside Poland, growing in number and power.

Watch and share the stories of the movements and growing people power.

The Voices

Agata Otrębska
Feminist Initiative

“I was so angry at what the government was doing that I went out and joined a protest.”

Kuba Rok
Camp for the Forest

“I’m not expecting any changes from the top. This change can only happen bottom-up.”

Monika Sadkowska
Climate Camp

“We’re facing a massive challenge comparable to women gaining the vote or the abolition of slavery. None of these things happened because someone asked nicely and the other side conceded.”

Józef Drzazgowski
Anti-lignite Movement

“We are completely insignificant, while those who decide about whether or not to build this mine have all the power and the money, and that’s just how it goes.”

Wojciech Kinasiewicz
Citizens of Poland

“People with a deeply ingrained sense of freedom, who feel this freedom is being taken away from them, get angry.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Context Note

Poland has a strong history of protest and solidarity under oppression. Most famously, the anti-communist Solidarity movement has shaped the country’s history and is regarded as a key contributor to the end of Soviet domination more widely.

In today’s increasingly repressive environment, grassroots activism in Poland has seen a revival. More and more people have started to organise to defend Poland’s democracy, the Białowieża forest, push back against fascism and tightening abortion laws, fight for clean air, tenants’ and workers’ rights. They are growing, building power and have already achieved some wins.

Poland’s young climate justice movement has been building connections to other movements in the country. They know that all of these struggles are strengthening each other. They are all fighting for rights, justice and a society based on hope, solidarity and care for each other and the natural world. All of these movements together are working to create the systemic change that is fundamentally necessary to address the climate crisis.

 

 

 

 

 

 

"Climate Camp Regaining Energy"
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Tell World Leaders:

Freeze All Fossil Fuel Development

We must act now to stop accelerating climate breakdown. To keep warming below 1.5°C we must keep the vast majority of remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground. We demand an immediate freeze on all new fossil fuel projects and a rapid & just transition to 100% renewable energy for all.

The world’s leading climate scientists have warned there are only 12 years left to keep global warming to a maximum of 1.5C, and just two years to stop fossil fuel expansion for good. Even half a degree more will significantly worsen the risks of drought, floods, extreme heat and poverty that hundreds of millions of people are already feeling.

There’s no other way to stop climate breakdown, we must keep fossil fuels in the ground and urgently transition towards 100% renewable energy for all. People power can get this done. We are willing to hold our governments accountable.

We need governments to immediately halt the expansion of the fossil fuel industry and put a freeze on all new projects - we cannot afford to plant any more carbon bombs.

We must act now to stop accelerating climate breakdown. To keep warming below 1.5°C we must keep the vast majority of remaining fossil fuel reserves in the ground. We demand an immediate freeze on all new fossil fuel projects and a rapid & just transition to 100% renewable energy for all.

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Updates from COP24

Tell Poland to stop silencing civil society

We’re calling the Polish government and the COP24 presidency to immediately stop policing to silence civil society voices and creating this atmosphere of intimidation.

Hope in the land of coal

Grassroots movements in Poland, the host of COP24, are growing in number and power.

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In the week that Adani announced it will self-finance its mega coal mine to get it built, Traditional Owners of the land, Pacific Islanders, Australians, striking school children and people around the world are calling on Australian government to #StopAdani once and for all.

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