Resist G7

Tony Staunton is a member of the Campaign against Climate Change steering group and one of the founding members of the Resist G7 coalition, initiated by grassroots activists in Cornwall and the South West. Here he sets out how climate justice is not on the table at the G7 and the need to resist.
The G7 is a meeting of the world's most powerful political leaders, scheduled for 11th-13th June 2021 in the UK. These leaders govern the richest countries in the world in their own interests, and the G7 exists to keep it that way.  
These government ministers will sit behind military security to meet at a luxury hotel complex in one the most picturesque but poorest regions of Europe - Cornwall. Resetting the global economy after the Pandemic will be the key discussion throughout, with the Climate Emergency centre-fold and used to dominate the media with messages of new economic growth through questionable "Green Technologies", promoted by billionaire Bill Gates and his ilk.
Global capitalism - the neoliberal free-market domination of the transnational corporations for agrochemicals, industrial agriculture, biofuels, together with the so-called Negative Emissions Technology (NET) of Carbon-Capture-and-Storage, mini-nuclear power plants and carbon trading - is the default setting.
The G7 wealthiest nations, hosted by UK Prime Minister Johnson, has invited India's Prime Minister Modi, currently assaulting millions of small farmers to enforce corporate dominance of food markets, and Australia's Morrison, the coal and uranium enthusiast.
The headlines from the G7 will be a prelude to what can be expected from the COP26 deliberations in November, once again led by the UK. 
The Campaign against Climate Change is supporting the Resist G7 Coalition established soon after the venue was announced. Based in Cornwall, England, the Coalition has issued the call for action in every community, town and city with a day of action for Climate on Friday 11th June and an international manifestation of opposition to G7 neoliberalism on Saturday12th.
Local protests will take place in Cornwall, with convergence centres and counter-conferences in Penzance and Falmouth. The continuing risk from COVID variants makes the long journey to Cornwall by coach unsafe, and any physical protests called by the Coalition will seek to ensure ensure social distancing and personal protection. 

Stop funding for fossil fuels abroad NOW


It's not a good look for a country claiming to be a climate leader to be providing massive financial support for fossil fuel projects abroad. Last summer it was revealed that the UK government’s foreign credit agency, UK Export Finance (UKEF) with a history of backing fossil fuel projects will underwrite oil company Total's exploitation of Mozambique's gas reserves with loans and guarantees worth over one billion dollars. As well as climate pollution, this fossil fuel megaproject has also caused forcible evictions of thousands already and threatens local ecosystems.

Hit by accusations of hypocrisy, Boris Johnson finally announced in December that the UK would stop funding fossil fuel projects overseas.

But it appears that UK Export Finance, the UK's biggest funder of overseas fossil fuels, is still considering applications from at least 17 projects, including the gigantic East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline, which it could try to fund before the ban comes into place.

Our friends at Global Justice Now have set up a simple online action to allow you to respond to the government consultation and call for the ban to be:

- Immediate

- Comprehensive, disallowing technical assistance for fossil fuel projects and indirect investments

- Not allowing exemptions for gas, carbon capture and storage (CCS) or for any hydrogen produced using fossil fuels. 

And that UK institutions and institutions in receipt of UK ODA should divest from their fossil fuel investments on the earliest possible time frame. 

The deadline for responding to the consultation is Monday 8th February

Click here to take action

HS2 Euston evictions

Campaign against Climate Change stands in solidarity with the HS2 protesters at Euston. On 27th January, the National Eviction Team began their eviction of protesters from Euston Square Gardens.

Since August 2020, protesters have occupied the space in order to disrupt HS2’s work to build a taxi rank where 53 trees and a public green space used to be. Protesters have spent the past few months building treehouses and a 30-metre tunnel to make their eviction more difficult.

Reports from the site say that protestors have been denied food and water, and the NET are using torture tactics like depriving the activists of sleep. In the tunnel, there is a shortage of oxygen, five internal tunnel collapses and an influx of liquid mud. There have been reports that the NET are preventing the tunnellers from clearing soil and water from the tunnel. HS2 have also been breaching regulations that state that no machinery can be operated within 100 metres of the tunnel – they have been continuing construction and riding cherry pickers over the tunnel. These actions are completely inhumane.

HS2 is the most expensive infrastructure project in the UK, costing the taxpayer more than £100 billion. And yet its carbon benefits are highly questionable. Its construction will cause an estimated 8 to 14 million tonnes of CO2, with the first phase expected to be completed around 2030 and the full network by 2040. To set against this, over the first 60 years of operation HS2 Ltd estimated that it would save only 11-12 million tonnes of CO2. Therefore there is no strong evidence that the project will be carbon neutral even by the end of this century. 

Considering the carbon reductions and job creation which could have been achieved with £100 billion invested in cutting car dependency through spending on buses, improving local rail services, cycling and walking, HS2 is a massive waste of money.

HS2 will destroy or irreparably damage 108 ancient woodlands, 693 wildlife sites (five of which are of international importance and protected by UK law) and 33 Sites of Special Scientific Interest as well as 1740 houses and businesses. HS2 has been made even more illegitimate by continuing work during the current pandemic, regardless of the dangers of the virus to the construction workers employed on the site and the communities they are part of. 

All eviction efforts should be halted.  We support HS2 protesters at Euston and every HS2 protester to date for their courage and bravery in the face of this destructive vanity project.