November 5, 2017

“Pacific Climate Warriors” stand in solidarity as thousands shut down German coal mine

BONN, GERMANY — Today, Pacific Islanders and thousands of people from across the world took action in the Rhineland coalfields, to demand an immediate end of fossil fuels. As thousands of people blocked the open-pit lignite mine Hambach, the “Pacific Climate Warriors” stood in solidarity with people impacted by and resisting the coal industry in Germany.

“Germany’s lignite mines are among the biggest coal mines in the world. If we don’t shut them down, we have no chance as Pacific Islanders. We’re here to protect our land, our culture and our identities as Pacific people,” said Zane Sikulu, Climate Warrior from Tonga.

Representing various grassroots, frontline and indigenous communities from across the Pacific, the Pacific Climate Warriors held a traditional ceremony in the deserted village of Manheim near the mine.

“Today, people from the Pacific, Germany and all over the world have come together as an internationally united climate justice movement to demand the end of fossil fuels now. In the Pacific we feel the impacts of climate change already and eventually it’s going to affect everyone on this planet. We’re all different people but it’s one struggle,” said Brianna Fruean, Climate Warrior from Samoa.

The Pacific Climate Warriors demand an end to the age of fossil fuels overall and an immediate transition to renewable energy that is just and fair. The Rhineland coalfields are Europe’s biggest source of CO2 and a mere 50 km from Bonn, where the UN Climate Talks presided over by Fiji are set to begin tomorrow. The Pacific Climate Warriors will be in Bonn throughout the Climate Talks. On Wednesday, they will put forward their demands set out in the Pacific Climate Warriors Declaration on Climate Change.

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Photos of the Pacific Climate Warriors’ ceremony and them witnessing the Hambach mine are available on the 350.org Flickr account. Images of the mass action are available on the Ende Gelände Flickr account.

Video material is available here upon request. Please contact melanie@350.org or presse@ende-gelaende.org.

Contact: Melanie Mattauch, 350.org Europe Communications Coordinator, melanie@350.org, +49 151 5812 0184

 

Note to editors

[1] For more information about the mass action Ende Gelände, see www.ende-gelaende.org/en/press

[2] The Pacific Climate Warriors will present their Have Your Sei Declaration signed by thousands of Pacific Islanders calling for an end to fossil fuels and a just transition to 100% renewable energy on Wednesday, 8th November at the “We the Pacific” event from 14:30 – 15:30 and at the Talanoa on Keeping Fossil Fuels in the Ground from 17:00 – 18:00. Both events take place in the Talanoa Space for Uniting for Climate Action (Bonn zone).

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