The third of December will mark the crucial mid-point of the COP17 climate negotiations. It will also be the day that people across the world come out onto the streets of Durban to demand action from world leaders inside the ICC. It's a march organised by the C17, a coalition of civil society organisations.
Politicians are discussing the fate of our planet behind the barricades enclosing the ICC. It is crucial they listen to the people, not the polluting corporations who are influencing the negotiations and delaying action because of their vested interests.
The science is clear: urgent action is needed to avoid catastrophic climate change. It is also clear that a shift to renewable energy will have major benefits for job creation, energy access and the climate. It’s literally a no-brainer, but it’s clearly up to us to make sure that governments listen to the logic and put it into action.
The march on Saturday is one big opportunity to do exactly that. (Map and other logistics below)
Earthlife Africa has a slogan: “renewable energy is people’s power”. What the people of this country and in countries around the world want is clear: a sustainable future. These negotiations are key for delivering that future through renewable energy, and reducing dependencies on dirty and dangerous energy like coal and nuclear. And because of that, it’s up to us to work even harder to make sure that our voices are heard.
I am really hoping to see you in the streets of Durban on 3 December. Future generations will judge us by the action that we take, and that we push governments to take. Let us not have to tell them that we did not have the courage to act when it was needed most.
Not in Durban? Click here for our live photo and twitter stream of the action.
Participants are invited to gather from 8:30am at Botha’s Garden/King Dinuzulu Garden (near the corner of Julius Myerere Street and Dr Pixley Kaseme Street) for the pre-march rally to begin at 9:00am. Speakers will include South African and international community representatives, Durban Archdiocese Cardinal Napier and C17’s Desmond D’sa.
The march will follow a route past the ICC, site of the United Nations climate change negotiations, gathering faith community members (who will rally at Diakonia Centre, 20 Andrew’s Street, Durban), special needs groups and youth groups en route.
Pausing at the entrance to the ICC at about 13:00, speakers will present short speeches, before statements gathered from participating groups and organisations are collectively handed over to UNFCCC Executive Secretary Christiana Figueres. Speakers will include Zwelinzima Vavi (representing labour), Ninmmo Bassy (representing Africa), Bishop Davies representing faith communities, Aluwani Nemukula representing youth and Constance Mogale representing women.
The GDA march will end at about 14:00 at the Old Pavilion site (corner of OR Tambo parade and KE Masinga).
PLEASE NOTE: After negotiations with the City of Durban, the starting point of the march has changed. It was previously advertised that the march would start at Curries Fountain, however it will now begin at Botha’s Gardens.
Top Photo Credit: © Stephen Carrera / Greenpeace