Hi, I'm Stephanie Tunmore and I am a Climate Campaigner for Greenpeace International. I've been with Greenpeace for almost 18 years in various roles - receptionist, campaign assistant, press officer, corporate campaigner, project team leader – but for the last few years I have been focused on Climate Change Policy. I am still motivated by the same anger at injustice and inequity that led me to join Greenpeace all those years ago but these days I find myself much closer to the source of the problem – the politicians and policy makers. It’s a sometimes frustrating, sometimes deeply satisfying role.
Political wheels grind really slowly and sometimes, sitting in interminable plenary sessions at international negotiations, listening to the petty bickering and watching ministers and their advisors trying to weasel out of making commitments to fight climate change, I wonder if they really do grasp the urgency of the situation. Then there are the breakthrough moments like Russia ratifying Kyoto so it could finally become a legal reality and the presentation of the latest scientific findings from the IPCC, when it seemed the ‘uncertainty’ was removed and the world woke up.
Climate change is the biggest environmental challenge faced by the planet and we all have a role to play in reducing emissions and striving to avoid the most catastrophic impacts. For governments that role is magnified a hundred fold. They are in a position to make decisions that could result in the phase out of fossil fuels, the switch to a clean energy future and provide the support that developing countries need to develop in a low carbon way and adapt to those impacts that are now unavoidable. I see my role and that of my colleagues as bringing public scrutiny to the deliberations of the worlds’ politicians, and shining a spotlight into all the dark murky corners of international negotiations. After all, these people represent us and if they fail to address public concern about climate change and commit to action then they are not doing their jobs. And you’d want to know about that – right?