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We’re writing from Paris, where 20,000 people took to the streets to demand action on climate change, despite the atrocious attacks that rocked the city just over two weeks ago. Here, 22,000 empty shoes represented the hundreds of thousands of marchers that were meant to take to the streets of Paris today. Although the March in Paris was cancelled because of security concerns, hundreds of thousands of people around the world took part in 2,000 Climate Marches and other events across 175 countries.
In a beautiful day of action and solidarity, people in cities around the world carried signs, sang songs and created art, all in support of action on climate change and with hope for a positive outcome in Paris over the next two weeks. The Global Climate March was organized to bring the climate movement’s voices together in a collective rallying cry leading up to the UN Climate Conference in Paris, aka the COP21. The COP21 is where more than 190 nations are expected to agree to cut their emissions and prevent the planet from warming up 2 degrees Celsius, the upper limit before the impacts of climate change spin out of control.
But a successful deal in Paris isn’t a given. The Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC; how much a country will cut its emissions by, and when) that each country is committing to will only buy us another five years of wiggle room. And developing countries and poorer communities, which are at the highest risk of the worst impacts of climate change, don’t yet have the support they need to adapt and help finance the loss and damage that is already happening.
“This is about saving the world,” says Emma Ruby-Sachs, acting Executive Director of key Global Climate March organizer Avaaz. “We’re at a tipping point moment in our entire planet’s history, where we can choose to guide it to a sustainable future, or let it spin out of control.
That’s why today’s actions were even more important than ever. Ruby-Sachs points out that the climate movement’s goal for 100% renewable has not just been heard by world leaders; it’s been adopted into the vision of countries around the world.
Ben & Jerry’s was honored to be a part of such meaningful and momentous events around the world, as our teams participated in marches and events in Tokyo, Sydney, Brisbane, Stockholm, Berlin, London, Paris, Ottawa and Dublin.
With so many people around the world coming out in support of a meaningful agreement resulting from COP21, hopefully this pressure on negotiators will push world leaders to come together and finally commit to 100% clean energy by 2050. You can still voice your support, and join millions of others who want to put an end to climate change, by signing the Avaaz petition, and demand a better future.
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