December Newsletter

Our newsletter is out! Come on, take a break and scroll down.
This time, we bring you updates from the UN climate talk, the European Commission’s corridors and the streets of Switzerland, Canada, France and many more.

UN climate talks

Gastivists, academics, frontline communities and NGOs attended COP23 (the 23rd UN climate negotiations) and did a pretty good job at getting gas on the agenda.

Network: It was heartening to hear the anti-coal movement fully aware the threat of gas. From Bolivia to the Philippines, groups have kept a sharp eye on gas and are keen to start working on it more actively.
With a shared interest in methane, we made plans with agriculture groups to do advocacy work at the UN and organise webinars on the science of gas.

Actions & side event: We made some noise on gas in the corridors of the UN! With banners and an inflatable gas pipeline, but mainly through the voices of the people affected by gas extraction and a packed side event on fossil gas (see picture).

NoTAP solidarity: Half-way through the UN climate talks, the military declared a "red zone" around the area where TAP will be built (details below). A disruptive action held alongside the UN talks demanded that the European Investment Bank does not approve a $2 billion loan for TAP.

Russia : The Russian pavilion hosted a panel discussion with 8 men (yes, 8 men) titled “Gas : a bridge or a destination fuel?”. Their key arguments? renewable energy wont be available fast nor cheap enough & gas is a clean-er fuel that people want in CEE countries.

VIDEOS ! Watch a fun vlog explaining energy issues with a section on gas & Democracy Now!'s interview on the action against the EIB and gas lobbies.
The Italian government is forcing a gas project on the community with EU support and public money.

Repression has reached an unprecedented level in Melendugno, where the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) is about to be built. No journalists, no citizens, no activists, no local government officials can enter the zone around the TAP construction area any longer. 
The situation has been described as "war-like", "the interruption of democracy". Some people resisting the pipeline have been banned from the region for 3 years.
The Movimento NO TAP keep courageously resisting. A general strike has been called for the 6th December and a march along the TAP territories up to Milano will begin on the 8th December.
Watch how Greek farmers are also resisting the construction of TAP on their land.

Want to support? read about it, watch and hear the people resisting the pipeline, share the stories, sign the open letter and fill in the survey if you're interested in doing NoTAP actions.  

European-wide NoTAP actions
On the 14th November, the EIB met to discuss potential funding for TAP. This triggered a wave of NoTAP solidarity actions, demanding for public and private institutions not to fund the pipeline.
In Switzerland, Belgium, Ireland, England, Canada, Germany and Sweden, people have took the streets in 9 cities to do creative actions in solidarity with NoTAP!
Concrete and exciting steps have followed: a petition was launched in Switzerland and the UK group is meeting with the EBRD’s head of Environment & Sustainability and discussion!

More to come?
On the 12th December, the EIB will potentially vote on its funding of the TAP and TANAP pipelines. We hope to see actions and messages demanding the public banks not to finance these pipelines. Keep an eye out for the result!

MidCat resistance
In the context of TIGF's public "consultation" on the proposed French routes for the MidCat/STEP gas pipeline, December 1st marked the first strategic gathering of organisations from both sides of the French/Spanish border. The meeting - attended by Plataforma Resposta al Midcat, Alternatiba, Attac-France, Amies de la terre and local activists - discussed a combined strategy and supported the launch of a french platform to counter the project. Fossil resistance goes beyond national boundaries!
POLICY – Projects of Common Interest 
The Project of Common Interest list (PCI) is a list of energy projects receiving political and financial support from the EU. It is updated every two years. 

The 2017 list has just been published... with over 90 new gas projects! They will be given the highest national priority and benefit from accelerated permits, streamlined environmental impact assessments and access to public financing over the next two years.
A failure? Not yet! NGOs clearly got a counter-gas message across during the lengthy PCI process; local groups are lobbying their MEPs to reject the list; we can still stop the public financing of the projects; and we can definitely strike hard in 2019 to get all the gas projects removed form the next PCI list!
You can check out the full list of projects on this interactive map, read our common press release and the reaction by grassroots groups in Ireland.
What’s next ?

Macron Summit & EIB vote :
On the 12th December, Macron will host a summit to discuss climate finance and the EIB will vote on the funding of the TAP pipeline. Expect mobilisations in France and strong reactions around the EIB decision. Follow #pasuneurodeplus online, hop on a bus to Paris to attend a People’s Tribunal and mass action, and have fun re-appropriating the official #makeinvestmentsgreatagain hashtag.
Bi-monthly calls:  
A network of people working on gas is meeting every two months for a call to discuss coordinated work and share updates. Our next call is Wednesday the 6th Dec at 2pm (CET time zone). Email if you would like to join!
2018 plans:
We have many exciting plans for the year to come, from organising a speakers tour, hosting a gas summer camp in Catalonia, coordinating a day/week of action on gas, preparing a grassroots meeting in Northern Africa… stay posted through our newsletter and get in touch if you would like to be more involved!

The newsletter wasn't enough? Here are great resources to skill up on gas!
  • Good news first: the Renewable Energy boom.
  • Updates from Argentina Vaca Muerte.
  • Siemens will cut 2 percent of its global workforce, mainly at its power and gas division, which has been hit by the rapid growth of renewables.
  • Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund divests from oil and gas. 
  • Methane emissions - a desperate attempt to still be considered an option for the future.

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