The Skywriter

A fractured movement for action in Cancun (VIDEO)


A fractured movement for action in Cancun (VIDEO)


As many non-profit folks have commented on at the talks, everything here comes in twos. Two official conference centers each with two buildings apiece, two unofficial civil society venues, and for better or for worse, today - two grassroots rallies for climate justice.

The two rallies today were designed to advocate for climate justice, but at the end of the day, could not fully come together and unite under one banner. The first mobilization was led by Kimaforum and Espacio Mexicano (Es Mex), which brought together over 60 organizations, including Mexican partners, as well as international groups like Global Campaign for Climate Action (GCCA) and 350. Es Mex led a march from the outskirts of Cancun into the downtown area and featured cultural performances and speeches by Mexican labor unions and international partners. The event was a powerful show of support for climate justice. Below is a video of Julia Sanchez, the Regional and National Campaigns Director for GCCA, at the Es Mex rally, commenting on the event:

La Via Campesina, an international peasant movement with over 148 members from 69 countries, led a separate protest on the highway leading from the hotel strip to Moon Palace, desiring to have more of a direct impact on the talks. Though peaceful, their protest inspired a police blockade worthy of a small-scale civil war. The protest seriously impacted the logistical flow of the talks, delaying negotiators and attendees from getting to and from the center throughout the afternoon.

And at the end of the day, what did it all mean? Well, though we could do better to demonstrate the unity of purpose that we desire in our negotiators, any and all shows of civil society support for progress on climate are useful and essential right now. With just three days left to the talks, there are serious concerns about backtracking but still possibilities for advancement, particularly on climate finance.

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