”We shall have forests to plant; (..) we shall plant them everywhere. (…) That splendid task, to plant trees for a pure new future. Make future generations grow.” – Pierre Ceresole, founder of SCI (1920)
Every chapter of history presents it’s own challenges. SCI was created to respond to such challenges: war, destructions, injustice and violence. In the last 100 years of commitment to building peace and promoting the culture of peace, SCI has reacted to post-war situations, natural disasters, ecological and social challenges.
Today climate change is for us what World War I was to Pierre Ceresole in the early 20th century: it presents a growing threat to peace, nonviolence and human rights. The climate is changing rapidly around the planet and this change is without question caused by humans. Our fossil-fuel based economy and culture of consumerism is contributing significantly to this process.
Already today communities are suffering from violence due to climate change related events. Syria and Somalia are at the front-line as droughts and famine driven by the changing natural conditions contribute to civil unrests. We are expecting 150 million climate refugees to leave their homes by 2050. Climate change related events contribute to destabilisation of governments and social cohesion in countries already struggling with variety of other challenges. Moreover, the consequences of our actions today will be borne by the future generations and are impacting mostly women and poor communities.
The role of SCI
All this means that if we are serious about living the SCI mission and values in a meaningful way, we have to answer the call for climate justice! Especially that it is often coming from the impacted communities in the countries where SCI and its partners are active.
There are three main areas of SCI’s possible impacts:
- Mitigation & Sustainable Living – lowering our impact on the planet (footprint), e.g. through supporting frontline communities opposing fossil project, improving cycling opportunities, introducing composting in your community, educating for resource saving;
- Adaptation & Social Justice – disaster relief in case of natural disasters, which occur more often or with bigger intensity due to the changing climate, e.g. through organizing workcamps in disaster areas in cooperation with local organizations;
- Adaptation – building resilience to impacts of climate change (e.g. projects related to small-scale agriculture, permaculture, restoring natural habitats) and of post-fossil-fuel era (e.g. urban farming, establishing local food distribution, introducing sharing economy projects).
Many of the solutions to climate change also contribute to the creation of more peaceful, solidar and inclusive society – attributes that thousands of SCI activists are striving for since its very creation. This is our chance for solidarity action, which will be meaningful and grassroots based!
The SCI solutions
SCI branches and activists are working towards the new fossil fuel free, climate resilient future already. Examples of support to the impacted and frontline communities, educational activities and bringing real change to our local communities can be seen in Romania, India, Switzerland, Bangladesh, Kosovo, Sweden, Sri Lanka, Germany and others. We want to recognize them and also multiply them until they become an absolute standard! Through this the campaign intends to make the climate justice dimension mainstream in SCI activities and through this make SCI a meaningful and active part of the solution to the multidimensional climate crisis!