Global warming creates more extreme weather. Rising ocean levels, more prolonged drought and frequent flooding can make it difficult to live off the land, as many people in developing countries do. Climate research shows that we must reduce total global greenhouse gases by more than 80% in the course of the next few decades if we are to avoid the worst consequences.
At the same time, it is not right to prevent the poorest people from taking part in the development they need. We must balance the fight against climate change with the right to development. When approximately one-third of the world’s population lacks electricity, we cannot impose a ceiling of emission levels on developing countries that is equal to current levels. It is emissions from the richest parts of the world that must be lowered dramatically. Moreover, we must put into use good, renewable alternatives to fossil energy.
Our global programmes
Norwegian Church Aid works in cooperation with local partners in many countries to contribute to climate justice. We have two global programmes within this field:
Our advocacy work
In order to achieve sufficiently large cuts in greenhouse emissions, a binding international agreement must be established. However, Norway cannot simply wait for this to happen without also doing something at home. Therefore, Norwegian Church Aid is working to ensure that Norwegian authorities take good decisions, both at international summits and at home.
The United Nations summit on climate change
Prior to the 2009 climate summit, Norwegian Church Aid mobilised 35,000 people who had signed a petition stating that they wanted a fair climate deal. Many also joined a climate change regatta to participate in a major mobilisation in Copenhagen. Norwegian Church Aid was also present in Mexico in 2010, where we put pressure on rich countries to make them contribute to sufficient climate financing. One of the outcomes from 2010 was the establishment of the Green Climate Fund.
Prioer to the climate summit in Durban, South Africa in 2011, NCA and partners started an inter-religious mobilisation which covered great parts of Africa, called We Have Faith - Act Now for Climate Justice. A climate caravan with 160 youths travelled by bus from Nairobi, Kenya to Durban, South Africa. On the road they collected signatures which were handed over to the leaders of the negotiations the day before the negotiations started. Read more about We Have Faith - Act Now for Climate Justice (pdf).
‘Message in a bottle’ campaign
In 2010, Norwegian Church Aid and Changemaker collected more than 10,000 bottles containing messages to Norwegian politicians. This ‘message in a bottle’ campaign signaled a cry for help from poor people who are already feeling the effects of climate change today. More funds must be allocated for climate adaptation in poor countries in addition to a focus on renewable energy.
Norwegian Church Aid has arranged regional seminars in which people in Norway can meet politicians and challenge them on climate issues. There were 330 participants in 2010, with more than 30 members of Parliament and five bishops present.