The Lamborghini-Loving Culture Kills Life on Earth, but the Conference of Profits (COP) is fine with that.

Today I co-hosted a panel of women activists from the Global South, at COP27 in Egypt. We addressed a half-empty press conference room. I closed the session by condemning the charade that these conferences have become. As the live stream link wasn’t provided to us by the UN, I used my camera phone.

The video of my closing:

The transcript of my comments:

“It is important to remember that charity is not justice. If one side has no power, then there is no negotiation. Which can’t lead to justice. Which then can’t lead to healing.”

“This is the only Lamborghini I’ll ever want to own. I’ll tell you why in a moment. Here we are at the epicentre of blah blah blah and failure. We even hear that now from the main speeches. But we don’t hear why. As if it’s just a failure of people not knowing enough or not enough charismatic leadership. I believe something else is to blame.

Climate chaos is a disaster that global capitalism accelerated, distracted us from and then limited our response for life-critical decades. Today global capitalists are coaxing the experts and politicians to spend our public funds on yet further distractions. They pretend that technology and enterprise will fix the collapse of our biosphere, so they can keep their income and prestige. That is why this UN conference has turned into a career fest and trade fair at the end of the world. We see that these halls are full of people busily demonstrating their concern and capability to each other, to create a shared delusion that infinite green growth is both true and moral.

Is it any surprise that this charade has it’s latest act in a venue that, before we showed up, was branded as the Lamborghini conference centre? The desire for ostentatious consumption is a global one and is a sign of sickness in modern culture. It is that culture which helps destroy both people and planet. These conferences perpetuate it under the guise of caring about the carnage. Yes, the 30 years of COPs have been a great success in helping the elites pretend something is being done while not addressing the root causes of the problem. Leaders here have less of a credibility problem than a capitalism problem, and a consumer culture problem.

Instead, a serious response to climate and justice would redesign our economic and banking systems for a post-growth era.

Unfortunately, that won’t be done voluntarily. Which means climate justice will need to involve struggle not just request. So concerned people in the global North will be seeking more direct relationships with climate activists in the global South, helping them to build their own movements that can require change, not just request it. That will include them challenging the richer people, organisations and countries of the world. That’s why, after yesterday’s swearing of the Scholars’ Oath to the Future, I’m grateful to have been seated alongside two young women who are part of that agenda.

If you are watching at home, then please know that this conference room is half full. Rather than hear these activist women from the Global South, most of the delegates are off in the Innovation Pavilion where they can help people make more money. So, know it’s up to you, not the people here.”

For more information on the panelists, visit Xiye Bastida and Stella Nyambura Mbau. The video of the session will be at soon.

The photo is of the #JustStopLambo car looking right at home in COP27’s Lamborghini Congress Centre. I will auction it on ebay with proceeds going to my fellow panelist Stella’s agroforestry work in Kenya. To be made aware of the forthcoming auction, please subscribe to my blog.

Yesterday I talked about the need for complete climate honesty, which includes the implications of the near-term heat spike we will experience from progress towards netzero.

Tomorrow we will be presenting on how corporate capture of policies is leading to maladaptation – but I still have no live stream to link to. If it emerges, then it will be at this link

(Please note that all photos and videos and text are free for you to use. #JustStopLambo)

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