Where did she find true meaning at COP26?
World leaders gathered in Glasgow, Scotland this month to discuss the climate crisis at COP26. When they arrived, they were greeted by tens of thousands of activists demanding action to save the planet.
Among them was our friend Kasha Sequoia Slavner, the Toronto-based Gen-Z filmmaker that we have featured on PeaceQuest. She wrote a daily blog while filming on location at COP26, but it was her last entry that really caught our attention.
COP – a 26 year marathon
Cop26 is over. Emotionally, it’s been a difficult week. Including having drafted a pretty long update to make up for my absence, only to lose it after my computer shut down unexpectedly. Frustration has been a keyword on so many levels during COP26 which was a circus for corporate and country level greenwashing. The fossil fuel delegates which were amongst the largest of delegations to attend, larger than any single country. Get where this is going?
Also, there was virtually NO MENTION of the military impacts on the environment throughout the whole week. Nothing in the meetings, high level plenaries or even amongst environmental organizations. That part was surprising. Just a sprinkling of banners in the marches but nothing inside the great halls of power where the discussions and decisions were being made. Yet, a reduction of even 10% of the trillions of dollars spent annually would contribute greatly to the annual climate fund needed to tackle the climate crisis.
What part of ‘there’s no money on a dead planet’ do these powerful leaders not understand? Such disregard for all life on the planet, especially the ones suffering the most as a result of a problem they did not cause in the first place. I heard many heartbreaking stories.
The only true and meaningful leadership was taken up by civil society organizations, indigenous groups, youth, women, BIPOC and LGBTQ, who for the most part were shut out from the negotiations. I have to say that in response, the boisterous and loud demonstrations which erupted in some of the sessions was exhilarating. Especially the People’s Plenary with speakers from UN constituencies representing movements and organisations from across the globe.
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