23 Mar 2022, 12:35
Paul Gordon

Climate movement demands fossil fuel embargo, will strike on Friday

Clean Energy Wire

Climate activist group Fridays for Future (FfF) will stage its next global climate strike on Friday (25 March), calling not only for more action to prevent global warming but also for peace in Ukraine. The German branch of the movement criticises that Germany has become “politically blackmailable” due to its dependence on Russian oil and gas. It is demanding an embargo of coal, oil and gas from Russia. Ilyess El Kortbi, a climate activist from FfF Ukraine, said at a press conference: “You leaders say that you are standing with my country while you are financing a war full of fossil fuels in my country. I want you to make an embargo for peace and switch to renewable energy.”

The global climate strike this week will be the first such event of 2022 as the regular climate gatherings were postponed due to the pandemic. Fridays for Future has been vocal about its solidarity with Ukraine since the beginning of the war, and earlier this month held a demonstration in front of the Reichstag. The FfF movement has become an indispensable part of the public debate on climate change in Germany ever since it mobilised masses of young people in 2018, at one point getting as much as 1.4 million to the streets. Climate activists are pushing political parties across the spectrum to back the 1.5°C global warming limit outlined in the Paris Climate Agreement.

A broad civil society alliance of over 150 organisations and associations supports the global climate strike and calls for people to participate in the demonstrations and actions on Friday. "A return to coal or nuclear power would immensely exacerbate the climate crisis and torpedo the energy transition,” says the alliance in a statement. “The commitment to climate protection cannot wait for peaceful times. On the contrary, the increasingly dramatic acceleration of global warming threatens to exacerbate conflicts worldwide."

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