Climate activists rally in Scottish cities as Cop26 begins – The Guardian

Cop26

Hundreds in Halloween outfits march in Edinburgh and Cop26 Coalition holds rally in Glasgow

Sun 31 Oct 2021 17.32 GMT

Climate justice campaigners held events in Scotland’s two biggest cities on Sunday as world leaders arrived in Glasgow for the start of the Cop26 summit.

Hundreds of activists in Halloween costumes marched through Edinburgh and held a rally outside the Scottish parliament.

Meanwhile the Cop26 Coalition, which includes civil society groups, indigenous communities, anti-racist groups and frontline activists from the global south, launched its campaign just a few hundred metres from the official conference venue in Glasgow.

Community leaders from the Minga Indígena collective, which represents indigenous communities in North and South America, were presented with a ceremonial stone, and Asad Rehman of War on Want told the audience the world was “standing on the edge of catastrophe”.

He said: “We are peering over the edge and if we want to stop that spiralling out of control we have to act right now, in this decade.”

Rehman said the climate crisis was already wreaking havoc in every country and was a result of a system that exploited people and resources for the benefit of a few.

“Even today in the corridors of power in the negotiations our governments are making decisions which basically say the lives of black, brown and indigenous people, of the poor and of women, are not worth saving … and the priority is the extraction of profit.”

Rehman said the challenge facing campaigners was to build solidarity between climate justice movements in the global south and north and to highlight the connections between various interlinked crises, from inequality to racism, climate breakdown to sexism.

“We must tell a story of the world we want to create … that is not just about a just transition but a justice transition, not just about cutting carbon but cutting injustice,” he said.

The Greenpeace ship the Rainbow Warrior, carrying activists from some of the countries hit hardest by the climate crisis, will attempt to sail up the River Clyde on Monday, despite the autorities refusing it access.

If it is successful, it is will dock outside the summit venue, where the young activists intend to deliver a message to world leaders.

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