Reverse-graffiti by Greenpeace urges to Resist “Trumping” of human rights

Press release - November 12, 2017
Manila, Philippines — Hours before U.S. President Donald Trump’s arrival in the Philippines, Greenpeace activists “painted” reverse-graffiti (also called ‘clean graffiti’) in various spots around the ASEAN Summit venues. The clean graffiti read, “Climate Change is Real,” and “Stop Trumping the planet and the people,” hitting Trump on his climate denialism stance.

“Donald Trump has just set foot in a country where people have been seriously affected by extreme weather made worse by climate change. Every Filipino he’ll meet has felt its harsh impacts one way or another, and so all of us are a testament to the reality of climate change, which Trump continuously and willfully denies,” said Vince Cinches, Greenpeace Philippines campaigner.

© Noel Guevarra / Greenpeace

Greenpeace reiterated the global call to resist tyranny, violence, and indifference, and to demand justice from governments and companies that impinge on human rights, including the right to a safe and stable climate. The group stressed that whether or not Trump views climate change as undeniable, reality will not detract from the science pointing to it as a likely harbinger of future and potentially more catastrophic storms [1].

The activists tagged pavements in front of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP), Embassy of the United States of America, and Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (Central Bank of the Philippines) along Roxas Boulevard, and Welcome Rotonda.  The Greenpeace “Clean Squad” used high pressure washers to render their messages, the act itself symbolizing “the cleaning up of Trump’s dirty acts that favor the greedy, polluting industries,” as the group pointed out.

“It is an injustice that Mr. Trump chooses to side with the richest corporations and the elite who are powerful, retain control over vast resources and enjoy the disproportionate share of the world’s material wealth, yet to this day remain remorseless and unaccountable,” Cinches added.  “Ever since Donald Trump became president, he has rolled back progressive environmental policies, has threatened the pull-out of the US from the Paris Agreement, and attempted to introduce executive orders that are prejudicial to the rights of people, especially those coming from minorities and underprivileged and marginalized communities.”

Just last week, the Philippines marked the 4th anniversary of super typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan), which wreaked havoc, loss, and devastation to many parts of central Philippines. In commemoration, over 500 students and local community members in Leyte sent a strong visual message to the COP23 UN climate talks in Bonn, calling for climate justice in a world where those least responsible for climate change suffer the worst consequences [2].

© Noel Guevarra / Greenpeace

Groups and individuals from climate change-impacted communities are at the forefront of a groundbreaking petition asking the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines  to investigate 47 transnational oil, coal and gas companies, including Chevron, ExxonMobil, Shell, BHP Billiton and ConocoPhillips, for their responsibility in climate-related human rights harms [3].  The Commission has called on these carbon majors to show up at the first meeting with the petitioners on 11 December, as part of its inquiry.  The petition is part of a growing global movement [4] of people peacefully demanding action from big polluters and laggard governments to safeguard our human rights to a stable climate and healthy and safe environment. [5]

With the Philippines as the host country to the ASEAN Summit and a signatory to the Paris Agreement, Greenpeace is calling on President Rodrigo Duterte to table discussions on cooperation towards addressing the climate crisis during his upcoming meeting with Trump, considering that Chevron, Exxon and many big polluters are based in the US. Greenpeace is urging Duterte to champion the protection of human rights of all Filipinos from harms, including those resulting from climate change impacts, as well as from extrajudicial killings.

Greenpeace is a global campaigning organisation that acts to change attitudes and behaviour, to protect and conserve the environment and to promote peace. Together with our allies, we will continue to resist in order to advance the cause for a green and peaceful future.

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Notes to Editors:

[1] http://www.cnn.com/2017/09/15/us/climate-change-hurricanes-harvey-and-irma/index.html

[2] http://www.greenpeace.org/seasia/ph/press/releases/Filipino-typhoon-survivors-demand-climate-action-on-Haiyan-anniversary/

[3] http://www.greenpeace.org/seasia/ph/press/releases/Worlds-largest-carbon-producers-ordered-to-respond-to-allegations-of-human-rights--abuses-from-climate-change/The-Climate-Change-and-Human-Rights-Petition/

[4] http://www.peoplevsbigpolluters.org

[5] www.greenpeace.org.ph/climatejustice

More information:

Vince Cinches, Political Campaigner, Greenpeace Southeast Asia – Philippines

| +63 949 889 1336

For images and videos, please contact:

Grace Duran-Cabus, Multimedia Producer, Greenpeace Southeast Asia
| +63 949 889 1335