It’s simple — the elections are the opportunity for our voice to be heard by those who hold positions of power about issues that affect the majority of the population.
We want to be empowered as citizens of our fundamental democratic right of participation on all levels especially relating to the reality of climate impacts
It’s clear to us, more than ever, that we need to fundamentally shift the way power is distributed. People should take back that power, and they’re increasingly doing so. Africa has an abundance of renewable energy sources that are available as a source for affordable and accessible energy for people. By advocating for community-led and decentralized renewable energy, people can take back the power.
Across the world, people are joining to dismantle the power of the fossil fuel industry, cut their funding, and stop fossil fuel projects in their tracks. This is a fight that unites all of those in Africa who have not reaped the profits of the extractive economies, and never will.
Where governments fail, it’s up to the people to lead and we’ve seen throughout history that real and lasting change is built by social movements and civil resistance.
This whole week, people across South Africa are engaging political parties to know which ones have serious plans to take on the fossil fuel polluters and ensure a just transition to 100% renewable energy — and which ones will only speak vaguely about the reality of the crisis without committing to take the bold action science and justice demand.
Here's a step-by-step guide on how you too, can engage the political party you will vote for:
1. Know Your Story
We put together a guide that has a summary of 10 political parties in the country, their positions on topics like climate change, energy and water as stated on their manifestos. It is not a ranking guide but rather an awareness-raising guide which seeks to encourage open dialogue with the political parties rather than confrontation. Download it here!
2. Which Political Party Would You Like To Engage?
Now that you know how climate change is impacting South Africa. It’s time to identify the political parties you would like to visit, their addresses and choose a date to go there.
Remember to let them know that you are coming to see them.
3. What Are They Doing To Protect Our Climate?
You can use the questions below as a basis for your conversation with the political party.
In the context of the climate change crisis, how can your party be committed to both coal and renewable energy at the same time?
How can your party be committed to addressing climate change, yet encourage the exploration of both gas and oil and the continued mass exploitation of coal?
How is your party going to encourage the development of the manufacturing of renewable technologies in South Africa as part of a Just Transition?
What specific policies have been developed by your party to make cities more sustainable?