World leaders jet off as negotiations and protests continue
Climate Squid Game
On Tuesday (2 November), as more than 100 world leaders negotiated their plans to stave off climate change, prominent climate activists held a Squid Game-themed protest calling on World Leaders to "stop playing games" on climate change and make strong commitments to climate justice.
Wearing costumes from the television pop phenomenon Squid Game and masks of world leaders, activists staged the protest in view of the World Leaders Summit. The World Leaders Summit, a key aspect of the United Nations climate negotiations. At the conclusion of this summit, world leaders are expected to release a framework that could guide the rest of COP26 and is key to the success of the negotiations.
“The climate crisis is the defining issue of our lifetime, and the solutions that come out of COP26 have the imperative to change history,” said Fatima Ibrahim, co-founder of Green New Deal Rising. “This is no joke and our leaders need to take it seriously. We want to see them make a strong commitment to climate justice -- today.”
As activists wearing Squid Game costumes and world leader masks played tug of war and climate hopscotch, world leaders were putting the final touches on the framework that is expected to increase climate commitments to match the scale of the crisis.
Alternative job opportunities 'must be created'
Campaigners visited Grangemouth this week to stress the importance of alternative jobs being created.
On Tuesday 2 November, the Ocean Rebellion crew paid a visit to Grangemouth oil refinery. Protesters projected slogans onto the fossil fuel behemoth describing the multiple ways the industry is destroying the Ocean, including: greenwashing, lobbying, tax evasion, shipping pollution, profiteering, frankenstein fuels and many more.
The slogans projected included: NO CAMBO OIL FIELD, BORIS IS A TOOL OF THE FOSSIL FOOLS, IneosDIOTS, BPeeing ON HUMANITY, TAX SHIPPING FUEL NOW among others.
Oil head Performers also vomited plant based water-soluble ‘oil’ and dressed in black theatrical costumes to represent an oil slick.
Ocean Rebellion said the action represents the sad fact that many Scottish jobs are reliant on the fossil fuel industry, making Scottish communities vulnerable to any change in global fossil fuel policies.
Sophie Miller, from Ocean Rebellion, said: “The Cambo Oil Field is a continuation of bowing to fossil fuel industry pressure, we need to wean humanity off oil not dig more wells. We know that Boris Johnson won’t do anything, he’s a weak-willed greedy fool, but the Scottish Parliament can show leadership and deliver a blow to Westminster by showing what a true environmental policy looks like.”
Council urged to ditch fossil fuel investments
Local authorities must do far more to champion the fight against climate change by divesting from fossil fuels, say campaign groups Friends of the Earth Scotland, Platform and Divest Lothian today (Wednesday 3 November).
As world leaders gather in Glasgow to negotiate solutions to the climate emergency and its impacts, local councils are estimated to have invested around £10 billion of local workers’ pensions into some of the very companies that are fuelling the crisis. Scottish local council pensions alone have £1.2 billion invested in fossil fuels.
A number of local divestment groups around the UK are protesting outside town, city, and county halls to tell local decision-makers that climate justice is not just the responsibility of global leaders - it’s theirs too. The Day of Action coincides with the UN COP26 talks’ finance day.
Divest Lothian held a James Bond themed protest outside Edinburgh City Chambers, with the slogan Time to Divest. [Link to images in notes]
Susan Hamilton, Divest Lothian, said: “It’s a step in the right direction that Edinburgh Council discussed the possibility of divestment from coal, oil, and gas by 2025 at last week's council meeting, but behind the technical language of the motion that the councillors passed is a failure to address the urgency of the Climate Emergency that they declared. The current motion does not provide a guarantee that fossil fuel investments will be sold - and certainly not in the timeframe demanded by science.
“Last week, the UN warned that the world is currently on track for a catastrophic 2.7 degree rise in global temperatures unless we drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions, so it’s vital this happens quickly.
“If the Lothian Pension Fund does not remove money from fossil fuel companies, it and the council are failing. There is evidence that funds which have divested perform as well, if not better, than ones still invested in fossil fuels. As Scotland hosts COP26, it's time for Edinburgh and Lothian councillors to stop funding fossil fuels."
New sustainable financial system launched
A new platform showcasing innovative financial products that are directly aligned to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) has been launched at COP26.
The platform is the result of a collaboration between the Scotland-based Global Ethical Finance Initiative (GEFI) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with Aegon already committing an investment of £100m to the new venture.
The SDG Financial Products Platform will make an important contribution from the private sector to the additional c.US$2.4 trillion of investment per annum needed by 2030 to deliver the SDGs.
The SDGs are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals which are a ‘blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all people and the world by 2030’.
Run from Edinburgh, the platform puts Scotland is at the centre of a green and sustainable financial system, with a global reach into markets far beyond the UK.