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Draft Program on Climate Change, for your comments (updated March 5, 2019) (short version now available)

 

Climate Change Draft Program for the RC Communities

(short version[1]) (illustrated PDF for download)

A vast accumulation of data clearly indicates that, to avoid catastrophic consequences, we must act quickly to stop global temperatures from rising more than 1.5°C by 2030. A temperature rise greater than that would damage and destabilize the world’s natural systems and have devastating effects on the environment, agriculture, all humans, and all of life. To prevent it we must swiftly and dramatically reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increase carbon capture and storage.

Our economic systems, with their embedded drives for profit regardless of the damage done, have shown themselves to be incompatible with an ecologically sustainable society. To save the environment, we must fundamentally change these systems and end the oppression and exploitation they are built on.

To do this, we will need a coordinated global effort to reduce inequities and create a rational economy—one that allows everyone to have a good life while living lightly on the Earth. This will require an inclusive mass movement with leadership that includes frontline populations[2] and youth.

The populations most vulnerable to climate extremes are the ones that have been targeted with genocide, oppression, exploitation, and war. Therefore, solutions to climate change must include the thinking and perspectives of these people.

What we do in the next decade will have big effects on all future generations and all species. We can play a significant role.

Below are the actions we need to take.

Energy

We need to

  • rapidly reduce the exploration for fossil fuel and the production (including fracking), transportation, and consumption of it and remove the subsidies that encourage its use;
  • reduce energy consumption to the level of rational need and make all energy use more efficient;
  • support the transition to renewable energy, prioritizing projects that are community based and led;
  • decommission nuclear reactors where they can be replaced with renewable energy, not fossil fuels, and not allow any new nuclear reactors to be built.

Resilient, Sustainable Communities

We need to

  • protect the Earth’s water and use it for sustaining all life;
  • make communities climate resilient—by providing everyone, especially frontline and vulnerable populations,[3] the resources they need to adapt to and reduce the impacts of climate change (these resources would include housing that’s affordable, health care, education, job training, food, and clean water);
  • encourage and support lifestyle changes and zero-waste strategies that reduce consumption—primarily in the wealthy countries, where consumption is the highest;
  • end war and support universal demilitarization; use military budgets to fund the transition to a sustainable, renewable, clean energy future.

Agriculture, Other Land Use, and Food

We need to

  • adopt climate-friendly farming and livestock-raising techniques, and agroecological methods[4] that store carbon in soil and perennial plants, like trees;
  • in the wealthy countries, reduce the consumption of livestock to healthy levels and put strong limits on biofuels;
  • protect and restore natural carbon sinks (such as oceans, forests, peatlands, and wetlands) with the engagement and leadership of the people who inhabit these places;
  • reduce and compost food waste.

Transportation

We need to

  • provide access to widespread, affordable public transportation that is powered by renewable energy;
  • reorganize our societies so that people live and work in their local communities and thus rely less on travel and shipping.

Organizing Widely

We need to

  • support the leadership of frontline populations and youth;
  • support the sovereignty of Indigenous nations and tribal peoples;
  • build a global movement to end climate change and rid society of exploitation and oppression, creating a sustainable, equitable future for all humans that sustains all life and the planet;
  • ensure that the wealthy countries provide resources for global solutions to climate change and that they give to the other countries the technological and financial assistance they need for locally appropriate initiatives to address it;
  • develop programs for people to reduce their personal emissions—especially in the wealthy countries, where individual GHG emissions have been the highest.

Taking Action as Co-Counselors

As Co-Counselors we can

  • identify and discharge the distresses that keep us from facing the present situation and working together with everyone to implement solutions—ones that always address the connections between climate change, oppression, and genocide;
  • communicate to people everywhere about climate change—the causes (including human distress recordings), results, disparate[5] impact on frontline communities, and solutions—in a way that will move them to join us in taking individual and collective actions;
  • apply and share RC tools and insights widely;
  • discharge any worries and fears that could interfere with our thinking and acting rationally, with integrity and courage, in the widespread social upheavals that are likely as climate change progresses.                                                                           


[1]See full version at https://www.rc.org/page/climatechangedraft

[2] Indigenous and tribal peoples, People of the Global Majority, poor and working-class people, and women

[3] People with disabilities, children, older people, homeless and displaced people, and people in institutions

[4] Agricultural practices, such as growing different types of crops together, that don’t hurt people or sacrifice ecosystems

[5] Markedly distinct


Last modified: 2019-03-07 14:56:01+00