The past week leading up to last week was a rush. It has been quite a while since we have seen ourselves as part of something bigger, but then again it’s easy to be anaesthetized if much time is spent working within the framework of your organization only. However, the Global Work Party comes as a wake-up call, not only to world leaders but for people like me, as I’ve often worked within the confines of the office.
I remember yesterday as I was speaking at the last of the various Global Work Party activities that we went to and I was wearing a TckTckTck t-shirt and I said: “I’m wearing this t-shirt to demonstrate the irony of the climate problem as TckTckTck is an unprecedented global alliance, One of over 10,000 events in nearly every country on earth organized by TckTckTck partners and supporters in 2009 representing hundreds of millions of people from all walks of life, who are united by a desire to see a strong global deal on climate change. It was made up of leading environment, development, and faith-based NGO’s, youth groups, trade unions and individuals, and we are calling for a fair, ambitious and binding climate change agreement.
It formed because the 2009 Copenhagen Summit of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was dubbed as the last ditch effort for a fair, ambitious and legally binding agreement on a new climate treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol, but to no avail. What came out instead was a document that delegates at the 15th session of the Conference of Parties (COP 15) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change agreed to “take note of” at the final plenary on 18 December 2009.
Meanwhile, the Philippines which was dubbed as ‘the most vulnerable and least prepared country to deal with the impacts of climate change has experienced first-hand the worst that could come if global C02 emissions are kept unchecked.
10/10/10 marks the celebration of the Global Work Party, with emphasis on both ‘work’ and ‘party’ –a global day of action from the grassroots, to celebrate climate solutions but more importantly to sound the alarm and to send the a message to politicians that they’re work is cut out for them. 10/10/10 aims to show that we the people can do this–but we need bold energy policies from our political leaders to do it on a scale that truly matters.
For our part here in the Philippines we spent most of the week, sending emails, SMS and Tweets and Facebook messages to numerous folks who share our vision and what happened was we got ourselves immersed with religious folks who’ve committed to include climate change and the need for action in their Sunday liturgy; to activists swapping plastic bags for hand-woven native bags; we have punk rockers snarling at world leaders to get to work on climate change; vegan dinners; monuments of Filipino national heroes calling for an energy [r]evolution; schools, communities and autonomous movements studying, holding symposiums and even forming human banners and mock wind turbines all aimed at sending a clear political message: if we can get to work, you can get to work too–on the legislation and the treaties that will make all our work easier in the long run.
On a personal level 10/10/10 is one of those moments when all seems lost in a struggle we are once again given second wind and again roused to carry on in the struggle, although no longer as a single formation but as a part of a diverse movement that encompasses all for the climate crisis is big enough to threaten everybody and everything we hold dear, which brings into mind again Steingraber’s call to “play the Save the World Symphony”. It is a vast orchestral piece, and each one of us is but a musician. Yet we are not required to play a solo, but we are required to figure out what our instrument is and play it as well as we can.
Because the climate problem is deeply connected to all things we care for– our children, our health, our future and our very existence.
Let’s get back to work….