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Fourth International statement

Let’s win back our future: change the system not the climate

Thursday 26 September 2019, by Fourth International Bureau

The week of mobilization that began on Friday, 20 September is of an historic scale: already more than five thousand events in 156 countries, four million demonstrators. Hundreds of thousands of young people have been coming out of their schools and universities on climate strike for months and are massively present this week, largely responding to the call by Greta Thunberg. There is a new generation rising on all continents to avert the ongoing climate catastrophe.

July 2019 was the hottest July ever recorded. Hundreds of thousands of hectares of irreplaceable forest have gone up in smoke in the Amazon, and unprecedented forest fires have ravaged Greenland, Siberia and Alaska. Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas, typhoon Faxaï in Japan, torrential rains in southern Spain... the list is long, showing the dramatic effect of a 1.1°C increase in the Earth’s average temperature over the past century and a half.

The 2°C is far from being a safe limit, it is imperative to stay below the 1.5°C indicated in extremis in the Paris agreement, thanks to the pressure of climate mobilizations and the first countries concerned by rising sea levels. But since 2015, greenhouse gas emissions have continued to increase, leading directly to the disaster with forecasts of up to 7°C.

The UN Climate Action Summit is being held this week in New York. Although countries are not meeting their already very inadequate commitments made four years ago, the UN Secretary-General is asking them for “plans to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050”, “ways to fight fossil fuel subsidies”, “carbon taxation” and “stopping the commissioning of new coal-fired power plants after 2020”. We already know that nothing will come out of this umpteenth summit, capitalism will continue its climate crimes.

In order not to change the climate, we must change the system. Our hope is in what has changed, the global mobilization, led by young people. We urge all the forces of the workers’ movement, the women’s movements, the LGBTQI movements, the indigenous peoples all over the world directly massacred by predatory capitalism, the global anti-racist and anti-xenophobic movements, to wage together this fundamental struggle for a planet that is liveable for all.

Strikes and climate marches will again take place at the end of the week, on 27 and 28 September. Let us strengthen them, let us build together an international, massive and radical movement for social justice and climate justice.

Executive Bureau of the Fourth International

26 September 2019

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