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Climate Justice Now! From the World Social Forum 2009

In the midst of the global financial crisis, the ninth World Social Forum (WSF) hosted, from January 27 to February 1 in the Brazilian Amazonian port city, Belém, 133,000 representatives of various organizations, social movements, left-wing parties, nongovernmental organizations, as well as other alterglobalists from 142 countries. Among them was President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of Brazil, ostensibly absent from the Global Economic Forum in Davos. Amazonia was chosen as the WSF venue because it "concentrates the essential contradictions of our era: . . . rampant deforestation, predatory mining, and chaotic urbanization." [1]. Of the declarations resulting from this year’s WSF, we have chosen to publish here the Climate Justice Assembly Declaration, which, please note, calls for several days of action throughout the rest of 2009.

Climate Justice Now! No to Neoliberal Illusions, Yes to People’s Solutions!

For centuries, productivism and industrial capitalism have been destroying our cultures, exploiting our labour and poisoning our environment.

Now, with the climate crisis, the Earth is saying “enough”, “ya basta”!

Once again, the people who created the problem are telling us that they also have the solutions: carbon trading, so-called “clean coal,” more nuclear power, agrofuels, even a “green new deal.” But these are not real solutions, they are neoliberal illusions. It is time to move beyond these illusions.

Real solutions to the climate crisis are being built by those who have always protected the Earth and by those who fight every day to defend their environment and living conditions. We need to globalize these solutions.

For us, the struggles for climate justice and social justice are one and the same. It is the struggle for territories, land, forests and water, for agrarian and urban reform, food and energy sovereignty, for women’s and worker’s rights. It is the fight for equality and justice for indigenous peoples, for peoples of the global South, for the redistribution of wealth and for the recognition of the historical ecological debt owed by the North.

Against the disembodied, market-driven interests of the global elite and the dominant development model based on never-ending growth and consumption, the climate justice movement will reclaim the commons, and put social and economic realities at the heart of our struggle against climate change.

We call on everyone – workers, farmers, fisherfolk, students, youth, women, indigenous peoples, and all concerned humans from the South and the North – to join in this common struggle to build the real solutions to the climate crisis for the future of our planet, our societies, and our cultures. All together, we are building a movement for climate justice.

We support the mobilizations against the G20 summit and on the global crisis from 28 march to 4 April, and the 17 April 2009 mobilization of La Via Campesina.

We support the call for an International Day of Action in Defense of Mother Earth and Indigenous Rights on 12 October 2009.

We call for mobilizations and diverse forms of actions everywhere, in the lead up to, during and beyond the UN climate talks in Copenhagen, especially on the Global Day of Action on 12 December 2009.

In all of our work, we will expose the false solutions, raise the voices of the South, defend human rights, and strengthen our solidarity in the fight for climate justice. If we make the right choices, we can build a better world for everyone.

All photos by Nate Cull, under Creative Commons license

[1Forum for a new World Governance, What Amazonia Does the World Need?

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