Climate & Capitalism is a proud endorser of System Change Not Climate Change: The Ecosocialist Coalition, a coalition dedicated to fighting against ecological destruction and the capitalist system that causes it. In just a few months, nearly 30 organizations and publications from the U.S. and Canada have joined.
As I’ve said on many occasions, the word “ecosocialism” isn’t copyrighted, and ecosocialists do not agree on everything – but what unites us is far more important than our differences.
The Coalition’s Points of Unity, published below, provides an appropriate and principled basis for uniting all varieties of ecosocialists in action today. It isn’t perfect — in particular, it does not address the need for ecosocialists in the global north to fully support anti-imperialist struggles in the so-called third world. I hope that and other issues will be addressed as we move forward.
Nevertheless, socialist, ecosocialist, and green-left groups and individuals can use this statement as a framework for working together in our common fight against capitalist ecocide and for a just world.
POINTS OF UNITY
● The current ecological crisis results from the capitalist system, which values profits for a global ruling elite over people and the planet. It must therefore be confronted through an international mass movement of working people around the world.
● We are for building a multi-racial, multi-ethnic left united against the ecological destruction spawned by capitalism. Movements for sustainability and against ecological denigration must be led, to the fullest extent possible, by those who are most directly affected and who therefore have the highest stake in the outcome of the struggles we engage in.
● We recognize that the exploitation and destruction of the planet is intricately linked to the exploitation and oppression of human beings. We oppose all forms of oppression including racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia. We support efforts, in communities and workplaces, to overcome these barriers to collective empowerment.
● We are for workers’ power and sustainability; for a society that is free, just, and equitable; that fosters human creativity and productivity while healing the rifts generated by capitalism among people and between human society and the earth’s ecology.
● We fight for reforms to mitigate the effects of climate change and other ecological calamities, but recognize that social transformation is our only hope to solve the worsening crisis. As we build movements that address immediate ecological concerns it is with this revolutionary objective in mind.
● We support grassroots movements and political formations that operate independently of the capitalist-controlled two-party system and oppose corporate, market-driven solutions to the climate crisis.
● We are a nonsectarian coalition, maintaining a flexible and open approach to organizing in order to build as strong an environmental movement as possible. While asserting that a change to the current social and economic system is the only way out of our planet’s ecological crisis, we work with groups and individuals who have not reached the same conclusions but who nonetheless are fighting for the vital reforms necessary to mitigate the effects of capitalism’s assault on our biosphere.
1. Banning of fracking and tar sands extraction and an immediate transition away from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.
2. Public ownership and democratic control of production, starting with the energy and financial industries
3. The economy democratically planned according to social need and ecological sustainability.
4. Full development of clean and renewable energy sources.
5. Ecologically sustainable agriculture and fishing, and the production of healthy foods.
6. Source reduction of waste and toxic products.
7. Full development of public transportation, a national rail system and bicycle-friendly infrastructure.
8. Indigenous sovereignty.
9. Full employment, transitioning millions from military and fossil-fuel related jobs to union jobs creating a renewable energy infrastructure
10. Protection of biodiversity, including species and genetic diversity.
11. Environmental justice
- removal of waste sites, incinerators, polluting industries, generators, transportation hubs and highways from oppressed communities.
- access to clean drinking water, adequate sanitation facilities, green spaces and fresh, nutritionally dense foods at low cost.
- protection and empowerment of communities most vulnerable to climate catastrophes.
12. High taxation of the 1% and the corporations most responsible for the economic and environmental crises.
13. Defund the Pentagon.
Good start! However I think the demands should be ‘re-classified as ‘aims’since demands are what are placed on others whilst these aims require large-scale social and community implementation. Also taxing the 1% presumes the continuation of capitalism which will prevent the aims. Regards, Roy
This is a good start, as a broad basis for tactical unity among socialists, social democrats, and left liberals. It’s not an ecosocialist manifesto.