We call for tough action to
tackle climate change and express our solidarity with people all around the
world who have been affected by global warming and climate injustice
by Thing Siew Shuen
The Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change (IPCC), which was recently awarded the Nobel peace prize,
reported of “unequivocal” climate change already occurring and warned
that man-made global warming could lead to abrupt or irreversible
impacts. In this respect, the United Nations Climate Change Conference
(UNFCC), which held in Bali from 3-14 December, has become an extremely
vital event, because decisions taken in Bali can determine the fate of
the planet, particularly the poor and the vulnerable.
In order to have better understanding on how international financial
institutions (IFIs) such as the World Bank addresses climate change, and
the impacts of different mitigation and adaptation measures to the
planet and the people, we have participated in an International
Conference on “Linking Global Finance, International Financial
Institutions, and Debt to Energy and Climate Change” in Bali(5-7 Dec).
We have also taken part in the Global Day of Action on Climate Change on
8 Dec to express our solidarity with people all around the world who
have been affected by global warming and climate injustice.
The conference was organized by the Jubilee South - Asia/Pacific
Movement on Debt & Development (JS-APMDD), in cooperation with : Friends
of the Earth International, Greenpeace International, Oil Change
International, Institute for Essential Services Reform (IESR), WALHI –
Indonesia, Koalisi Anti-Utang (KAU),International Forum for Indonesian
Development (INFID), GARPU, KRUHA, GCAP SENCA.
We have signed the Bali Declaration on International Financial
Institutions, Debt and Climate Change on December 8, 2007 in Sanur,
Bali. The full contents of the declaration are as below:
“We, debt and development
activists from different social movements and non-government
organizations from Asia-Pacific join the growing calls of the
international community to decisively address the paramount issue of
The climate crisis is the most blatantly repulsive result of a flawed
development paradigm imposed on us by global institutions, northern
governments and transnational corporations with the acquiescence and
collaboration of our local elites and neo-liberal economic apologists.
We assert that debt has been used not only as an instrument to dominate
government and peoples of the South but also to finance projects and
promote policies that have greatly contributed to the exacerbation and
escalation of climate change.
We call on international financial institutions like the IMF, the World
Bank, the Asian Development Bank and other regional development banks,
northern governments and their export credit agencies - TO STOP ALL
FUNDING AND ALL PROGRAMS THAT HARM PEOPLES and the ENVIRONMENT.
We reject all IFI loans and “aid” supposedly for adaptation measures and
renewable energies as hypocritical measures - when these same
institutions continue to promote a development framework and pour
several times more of their funds towards projects and policies that
aggravate climate change.
We oppose carbon trading as a false solution that allows transnational
corporations and rich countries to buy the right to pollute at the
expense of impoverished peoples and countries. Worse, carbon trading has
spawned new and despicable instruments to extract profits from
We demand the following:
• Redirection of existing dirty energy financing to adaptation
and mitigation measures and energy efficiency projects as a form of
reparation to the decades of ecological debt owed by the north to the
• Financing of renewable energies as one form of restitution for
countless years of debt domination that hampered Southern countries
capacity to develop alternative technologies and development strategies;
• The sovereign and democratic management and control of funds for
mitigation, adaptation and the development of clean, safe and renewable
energy; And for the World Bank, ADB and other similar institutions with
a horrible track record to be kept from any form of control and
inolvement over the disposal and use of these funds.
• Stop to all false solutions such as agro-fuels and carbon trading.
• Rejection of all loans, aid and subsidies for fossil fuel extraction,
dirty technologies and exploitation of natural resources that violate
our national patrimony and the rights of indigenous peoples.
• An end to imposition of all conditionalities (e.g. privatization,
liberalization and deregulation) by international financial institutions
and northern governments through loans, aid and debt.
• Total and unconditional cancellation and repudiation of debts that
have contribute to climate change, and all other illegitimate debts and
“obligations” claimed from us by the north and lending institutions.
* Thing Siew Shuen, Environmental
Officer to DAP Secretary-General.