I’m here at the global climate talks in Madrid, and what I’m seeing is disturbing: Just as they’ve always done, Big Polluters, and industry groups representing them, are attempting to co-opt the talks to push industry schemes that would protect their profits and preserve the status quo — continuing to fuel climate catastrophe.
One of the loudest voices doing Big Oil’s dirty work is the International Emissions Trading Association (IETA), which exists to advance the interests of Big Polluters like BP, Shell, and Chevron in climate policymaking.
And standing with IETA are a handful of governments that are advancing these dangerous corporate schemes, like the European Union (EU). In fact, just yesterday, we saw the EU attempting to rip out protections for human rights in a key portion of the text.
There’s a different path forward, and it’s one that people like you around the world have been demanding: Advance real solutions to address the climate crisis, and reject industry schemes. It’s time for the EU and other government delegates to choose: Preserve the status quo and industry profits, or at last join with people and address this crisis.
IETA and governments like the EU are pushing hard for market-based mechanisms like carbon trading schemes. These schemes are proven not to work. They exacerbate existing inequities and allow polluters to buy their way out of making real change. And they fail to do what scientists say is most urgent: Cut emissions and keep fossil fuels in the ground. But they do let corporations continue to pollute and rake in profits.
Over the last few days, our team here at the climate negotiations has been organizing with other climate justice campaigners to ensure that your voice is heard loud and clear. We’ve shown government delegates that IETA is doing little more than pushing dangerous schemes to benefit corporations. We’ve exposed the corporations funneling thousands of dollars into greenwashing opportunities at the conference. And we’ve delivered the signatures of hundreds of thousands of people like you from around the globe who are demanding that Big Polluters be made to pay for the damages caused by the crisis they’ve fueled — so we can advance real climate solutions.
But we’re still up against tremendous odds, and some of the most powerful corporations and governments are working hand-in-hand to undermine human rights, and any effort to advance real climate justice. They need to know the world is watching — and that we won’t let them get away with it.
Tell the EU to support people and human rights, not IETA and Big Polluters. Post on social media right now and be part of this conversation directly so the EU knows the eyes of the world are watching.