We did, in fact, make some headway at COP26–here are examples:

Dear Kevin,

I just got back from a whirlwind couple of weeks at COP26, the UN Global Climate Summit.Since my first COP, I have been struggling to understand how we can negotiate emissions and targets without talking about how we keep producing more and more fossil fuels.

But this year, for the first time, negotiators from 179 countries finally agreed to put the words “fossil fuel subsidies” and “coal” directly in the text of the agreement. Our work is far from over – the mentions are still nowhere near the level of ambition we need to tackle the global climate crisis. But I see this moment as a tipping point when the world finally starts to talk about how to constrain the production of fossil fuels.

There is a collective sense that what we’re bringing to the table is the right thing at the right time – and that’s truly exciting. Our work to protect old growth forests, transform massive industries like fashion to shipping and create a Global Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty struck a chord with people gathered at COP.

There were several big announcements that our work directly contributed to, and while I could also talk for hours about how none of them go far enough – I won’t do that now. Because we all know that most of the work happens outside those conference walls, all year round. And looking back at what the Stand.earth community achieved in 2021 (and what we’re planning for 2022!), I’m feeling incredibly proud and hopeful.

You made a massive difference this year. And if you ask me, it’s pretty darn inspiring.

Click here to scroll through our interactive timeline of some huge wins we achieved together.CHECK OUT YOUR IMPACT

While still reeling from a global pandemic, this community came together in unprecedented numbers to help catalyze some major progress on our campaigns.On forest protection:We forced six major European banks representing billions of dollars to commit to publicly end their financing of the oil trade from the Amazon’s Sacred Headwaters.In solidarity with Indigenous partners, we launched a massive new vision calling for 80% protection of the Amazon by 2025 – which has now led to a historic agreement endorsed by 30 countries (and counting!) and 822 organizations have endorsed the 80×2025 declaration.

In British Columbia, we helped to mobilize an emergency effort to protect the last remaining old growth forests, which has so far led to a $50 million dollar commitment of conservation funding from the Canadian government, and an announcement from the province that they intend to protect old growth and publicly released maps identifying the 2.6 million hectares of at-risk old growth forests.

On shipping:Just three months after the launch of our new Ship It Zero Campaign, we helped push global retail giants Amazon (the company) and IKEA, to announce landmark commitments to move their products off of fossil-fueled maritime cargo ships by 2040.

On a local level:Our SAFE Cities campaign saw its efforts bear fruit with Whatcom County in Washington State approving the world’s first ban on expanding fossil fuel infrastructure.

On a global level:The Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty, where I get to spend most of my time, has gained incredible global momentum, receiving endorsements from His Holiness the Dalai Lama, 100 other Novel Laureates, 17 cities and sub-national governments, 2500 scientists and a growing list of elected officials and more.

What else?Together we pushed the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurer to cut ties with the Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline, and sent 18 MPs to the Canadian Parliament who made an election pledge to fight to cancel the pipeline.We helped catalyze the movement of trillions of institutional dollars away from fossil fuels.And as a direct result of our campaign, 130 of the largest fashion brands in the world committed to phase out thermal coal use by 2030.None of these are small feats, and none of them would have happened without people like you.

In 2021, you helped us take major steps forward in our work to create a safe and healthy planet for all.

Click here to find out what else you helped accomplish this past year.

Something I hear a lot in my work at Stand is criticism that our campaigns are too big, too bold and that we don’t have time to negotiate the big, transformational changes we’re calling for. But to that I say, we simply don’t have time for more of the same. That’s why our mission has always been to make the impossible, possible.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not always as optimistic about our achievements as I’ve sounded so far in this email. Many days, I’m plain angry that companies and our governments are pushing for piecemeal approaches and failing to use their power to act with the speed and at the scale that is necessary for a climate-safe future, especially while here in British Columbia we are living the effects of climate change with devastating floods, landslides and evacuations.

But I’ve also spent 30 years running environmental campaigns and advising government policy. I have been arrested on blockades and negotiated in the boardrooms of the largest banks and corporations in the world. I know that hope is not something you have, it’s something we create through our actions. As a member of the mighty Stand community, I have a feeling you understand how our actions create hope – and change.

We’re in this for the long haul, and with people like you on board – I can’t wait to see the incredible impact we can have in 2022 and for many years to come.

With hope,

Tzeporah Berman
International Program Director
Stand.earth challenges corporations, industries, and governments to prioritize the well-being of people, our environment, and our climate by creating long-term, effective solutions. None of this work is possible without your support. DONATE $5 San Francisco office: 548 Market Street, Suite 74196, San Francisco, CA 94104-5401On traditional Chochenyo and Karkin Ohlone Lands  Bellingham office: 1329 N State St., Suite 302 Bellingham, WA 98225On traditional Lummi and Nooksack LandsVancouver office: 5307 Victoria Drive, Suite 347, Vancouver, BC V5P 3V6On Unceded Territories of the səl̓ílwətaʔɬ, xʷməθkwəy̓əm, and Skwxwú7mesh Nations 
What Is COP26? - The New York Times

About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
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