COP15 Climate Summit 2009
Reports, protests and announcements about the COP15 Climate Summit 2009 in Copenhagen, Denmark.
As the politicians and protesters disperse from Copenhagen , the COP15 climate talks were judged to have ended in a failure to produce any binding commitment to tackle climate change. On Saturday 12th, an estimated 100 000 joined a demo, to be met with repressive policing and mass arrests. The same style of policing continued for the duration of the summit, with hundreds of protestors detained for hours in degrading and inhumane conditions. Whilst the police demonstrated the limits of freedom and democracy on the streets, inside the convention centre western powers and corporations dominated the proceedings, imposing unfair conditions and watering down the already inadequate proposals that were on the table.
In London, the Climate Camp which was set up after the 'wave' demo on December 5th, remained in situ in Trafalgar Square throughout the summit, mounting a number of actions, including an action against Tar Sands at Canada House on Monday 14th, and a protest against the Danish police on Thursday 17th.
Going to COP15? Wondering which pair of socks to bring? A space-hopper and a peace flag or a gas-mask and a bag of transit wheel nuts? Ask no longer as SchNEWS brings you our prepare-for-action guide to the week long climate protest in Denmark, a country which professes itself to be a 'key developer of climate solutions'. Let's hope they're right. Read on for yer essential what's-what: border checks, police tactics, and probably most importantly, what will the weather be like?
Following the Wave events and demonstration the London Climate Camp invited people to the COP Out Camp Out action - which took over Trafalgar Square, setting up a camp for an intended 48hrs to highlight the issues around the Cop15 mobilisation, summed up in the phrase "System Change not Climate Change. See Climate Camp Feature reports.
Help report what's happening by sending your reports from the streets.
As the world watches Copenhagen, thousands of people will participate in protest marches, direct action and alternative forums. In Denmark new repressive laws have been proposed [update: now passed] to discourage protests including extending preventitative detention from 6hrs to 12hrs, significantly increasing fines for public order offences under Danish law, and increasing the penalty for not dispersing when ordered to do so by police [see 1 | 2]. Meanwhile in a clear display of political policing, four uk activists on their way to an organising meeting in Copenhagen were detained and questioned under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000 [2 | 3].
Despite this hundreds of people from the uk will head to Copenhagen to participate in the protests, actions and the Klimaforum. The uk Climate Camp is organising coach transport and has joined the Climate Justice Action network which is co-ordinating some of the protests, in particular the Reclaim Power! action on 16th December, which aims to push into the conference area and hold a "People’s Summit for Climate Justice". They are supported by a wide range of groups, including members of Climate Justice Now, a network formed in Bali during Cop13 and including many groups and networks from the global south, such as Via Campesina. Other planned actions focus on food sovereignty, migration, corporations and 'business as usual'.
In the countdown toward Cop15, there has been an upswing in direct action around climate change. On September 12th hundreds of people protested and took direct action at Hazelwood coal power station in Victoria, Australia [utube video]. On 26th September, hundreds of protestors in Denmark took direct action, breaching the fences at Amagerværket coal-fired power station (owned by Vattenfall) in an action called "Shut It Down" [reports 1 | 2 | video]. In the uk on 17th October around one thousand people protested at Eon's Ratcliffe-on-Soar coal power station, repeatedly breaching fences [pics]. On 26th October, activists in the uk occupied parts of Npower’s Didcot power station, blockaded an access road at Mainshill Wood where Scottish Coal plans a new coal mine, and climbed onto machinery at Shipley opencast coal mine stopping work [collected reports]. On October 28th activists from the action group Climate Alarm! blockaded the entrance to the Business Europe Copenhagen conference in Brussels [video 1 | 2 | 3 | pics]. At the start of November in Barcelona at the last preparatory session before Copenhagen, protestors marched, blocked roads and blockaded entrances to the meeting, whilst inside delegates from the African bloc staged a walk-out of the discussions [reports 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 ]. Whilst on 23rd November in Australia around two hundred protestors blockaded Parliament House in Canberra.
Ahead of Cop15, demonstrations are scheduled in Geneva alongside the WTO, and on November 30th the Mobilization for Climate Justice has called for a global day of action coinciding with the 10 year anniversary of the famous Seattle WTO protests. Linking the WTO to the Cop15 mobilisation is the Social & Climate Justice Caravan, with 60 representatives from global movements from the South travelling two routes from Geneva to Copenhagen, arriving 9th December. In London, a large pre-Cop15 protest march called "The Wave" is planned by a coalition of NGOs on December 5th, meeting at the US Embassy before marching off at 1pm to encircle Parliament. Earlier there is a Climate Bike Ride meeting at 10am at Lincoln's Inn Fields, and a Climate Emergency Rally at Speakers Corner, Hyde Park at midday. Update: An action has also been announced by Climate Camp in London: COP OUT Camp Out, to take place after the Wave demonstration.
Listings of Events + Protests: 1|2|3
Latest Logistics (accomodation etc) | Legal Advice / pdf | Medics and Trauma Support | Google Map
Climate Camp UK Coaches (11th-19th Dec) - (Booking deadline 25th Nov) | Other Coaches from European Countries
See coverage at: Indymedia DK | Climate IMC | Imcuk Cop15 Section
Recent: Bolivian COP-15 Delegate's Call Video | 300-350 Show: Civil disobedience for climate justice + legal issues
See also:Why Climate Change is Not an Environmental Issue (pdf) | Deal or No Deal Newspaper (pdf) | 350 Reasons Why Carbon Trading Won't Work (pdf) | Carbon Supermarket Comic by Kate Evans | More Background
The summer of 2009 is seeing an upsurge in campaigning on climate change, with Climate Camp protests taking place throughout Europe and the world [see list] ahead of the COP15 UN Climate talks in Copenhagen in December this year. Climate Camps have recently taken place in Scotland, Wales and Ireland with hundreds of people occupying land, learning about climate change, exchanging skills and taking direct action, as well as supporting local residents already engaged in resisting fossil fuel schemes that damage their health and the environment. Camps have also taken place in France [see imc.nantes] and near Antwerp by the Belgian/Dutch border [see imc.nl|imc.be]. Next up is the UK Camp for Climate Action in London on 26th August, ahead of an autumn of mass action  before COP15 [1|2]. Climate Radio Climate Camp 2009 Special. For more details see the Full Article.
The UN Climate Conference of Parties number 15 is set to take place in Copenhagen on the 30th of November 2009, and it will be the biggest climate summit ever to have taken place. More than 12.000 delegates business leaders, politicians, diplomats and lobbyists are going to be discussing an international treaty to replace the failed Kyoto Protocol. Set to end in 2012 this treaty was supposed to reduce anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions by 6%. However according to UN itself the global carbon emmisions have so far risen by 4% instead. There is no indication that the COP15 summit will come up with anything real to fight climate change.
However tens of thousands activists and protesters will be making their way to Copenhagen for this major event. In September 2008 people from more than 23 countries met in Copenhagen and agreed on a Call to Action, calling for people to start mobilizing and to carry out actions locally as well as coming to Copenhagen for mass actions. Planning for this event has already begun.
Another international planning meeting will take place in March 2009 where the concepts and strategy for action will be discussed. A Climate Camp will take place on the 11-19th of July. Additionally a mass action will attempt to shut down a Danish power plant in the months before the Summit takes place. The world leaders may converge upon Copenhagen but they won't leave without having heard the demands of the people who will be hurt by climate change