UPDATE: See Greenpeace's apology concerning this action.
Lima, Peru, 8 December 2014 – Before dawn today, twenty Greenpeace activists from seven countries unfurled massive letters at the historic landmark of Nazca in Peru, delivering the message: "Time for Change: The Future is Renewable.”
The message is directed at world leaders and ministers at the ongoing UN climate talks, in Lima, who are failing to take real climate action, while countries like the Philippines, which is again being battered by a massive typhoon, are paying the price of their inaction.
Speaking from the Philippines, where he is bearing witness to Typhoon Hagupit, Greenpeace International Director, Kumi Naidoo said:
“While one of the largest evacuations in peacetime history was underway here in the Philippines to clear a path for Typhoon Hagupit, a week of talks in Lima has simply not shown enough progress. This is the third year in a row that the people of the Philippines have been hit by extreme weather while most negotiators sit in comfort and fail to deliver the desperately needed action on climate change. Over the next week ministers must examine their conscience and find the energy to put us on the path to end the fossil fuel age and move toward a 100% renewable energy future. The people of the Philippines deserve and expect nothing less.”
Greenpeace activists, nationals from Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Spain, Germany, Italy and Austria, displayed the message, which can be viewed from the sky, to honour the Nazca people, whose ancient geoglyphs are one of the historic landmarks of Peru. It is believed that one of the reasons for the Nazca’s disappearance can be linked to massive regional climate change . Today, manmade climate change caused by the burning of oil, coal and gas is threatening our future.
“Companies and individuals should no longer be allowed to profit from destroying the climate and placing communities like those in the Philippines in peril. In 2015, governments, as part of their climate commitments, should require that the profits from major carbon polluting companies are used to make the needed investments to fix this problem," said Naidoo.
Typhoon Hagupit, the strongest storm to hit the Philippines this year, made landfall on Saturday night local time. It has displaced close to 900,000 people. It is the third time in three years that the Philippines has been hit by a typhoon during the UN climate talks, following Pablo/Bopha in 2012 and Yolanda/Haiyan in 2013.
Greenpeace Philippines’ Jasper Inventor said:
“Our people are suffering every year from the dangerous impacts of climate change. For countries like the Philippines, this is now a question of survival. The inaction of world leaders is putting our future at risk. Now is the time to hold fossil fuel companies accountable for using our atmosphere as a toilet and ensure major emitting countries commit to ambitious targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Now is the time for the Philippines to quit coal.”
Some major greenhouse gas emitting countries like the EU, US and China earlier this year presented their plans to deal with rising emissions. However, these plans are not enough to keep temperature rise to what is considered a manageable level. Greenpeace continues to call for bold action to force a rapid transition to 100% renewable energy future by 2050 and start the phase out of coal, oil and gas.
This Press Release was updated on 14 December 2014.
Jasper Inventor, Greenpeace Philippines, +51 940 045 335,
Martin Kaiser, Head of International Climate Politics, Greenpeace Germany, +51 940 02 07 63,
Tina Loeffelbein, Political Communications Lead, Greenpeace Germany, +51 940 02 17 45,
Soledad Sede, Press Officer for spanish media, +51 940 21 619,
For briefing papers visit our COP20 page