Facing the New Year (or new normal) without fear

This year let us remember that hope is greater than fear, our communities can overcome the crises we face and that people power is a renewable resource we can harness by standing together and acting together to build a better normal.

We Rise. We Resist. For Climate Justice

As we face this year let us renew our commitment to the work of building a just, prosperous, and equitable world built with the power of ordinary people.

Chuck Baclagon

2020 was the year when business-as-usual failed us.

It has unveiled the brokenness of the system that profits at the expense of our communities, our ecosystems, and our climate.

Beyond the impact of the pandemic to our health systems and the economy is the widespread anxiety of isolation that came as an immediate aftermath of the military response to the medical emergency.

The lockdowns while needed to control the spread of the COVID-19 virus, came at the expense of our well-being as social and communal creatures, at the same time the state forces who enforced it were also shown to be incompetent and have the propensity to abuse it with gratuitous use of repression and violence.

Environmental advocates and climate justice activists join the mass protests on Duterte’s State of the Nation Address by bringing together umbrellas to form the sky, the land, and the sea, with the call “WE RESIST AS ONE PLANET” written on them, a reminder to the government to heed the call of the people to protect our environment. Photo: Dino Dimar

However, the year also taught us to be resilient in our resistance.

The new configurations in how society is currently organized challenged us to redefine what it means to communicate and care for one another, how we coordinate as a community, and how to raise our voices louder for people and the planet.

The pandemic, the lockdown, the typhoons, political upheavals and state repression caused us to regroup and creatively redefine the reclaiming of our volition to struggle for a just recovery and a fossil-free world.

Technology opened up new forms to demonstrate solidarity, learn together and build consensus as a movement.

Activists from 350 Pilipinas held a light painting protest in Quezon City on the eve of Global Pride Day, to stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community and their continuing struggle against prejudice and persecution. Photo: Aurora Malaya

Last year also showed us that a deep vein of human goodwill still abounds: selfless acts of our healthcare workers, the service sector who never ceased to stop working, the spontaneous mobilizations for mutual aid, the epic acts of courage and citizenship –all showing us that we can rely on each other amidst the overwhelming counsel of despair that this year has spewed upon us.

2020 may have ended yet we still need to be decisive in saving lives and be bold in charting a path to a genuinely healthier and more equitable future.

The multiple waves of crises that we faced pushed us to our limits.

But now as we stand on the edge of oblivion we have no other choice than to push back —harder against the system that continues to drive us to the brink of extinction.

Climate activists commemorate the 5th year of the Paris Agreement with a call to to keep global warming below 1.5°C. Photo: AC Dimatatac

This year let us remember that hope is greater than fear, our communities can overcome the crises we face and that people power is a renewable resource we can harness by standing together and acting together to build a better normal.

Our obligation to endure as a species puts an immense responsibility ahead of us.

But what we have been able to accomplish thus far shows us that together we can shift financial flows away from fossil-fuels and fasttrack the renewable energy revolution, hold governments and corporations accountable, paving the way for us to eventually take back democracy, topple tyrants, and defeat empires.

Onwards.

The recent attacks on environmental defenders shows that the climate crisis is more than an environmental concern: it is the result of the unsustainable, wasteful and profit-oriented global economy that treats the planet and people as disposable commodity. Photo: AC Dimatatac

Join us!

Help us build an intersectional and vibrant climate movement in the Philippines by signing up!