2018-2020, what strategy to use to “save the climate?”

America First! It’s in the name of U.S. employment that Donald Trump decided to withdraw the United States from the Paris agreement.

Even though the United Nations has stated that there is a “catastrophic gap” between the commitments made by the States to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and efforts needed to contain the global temperature rise at less than 2 °C, with the IPCC reminding us that it is absolutely necessary that global greenhouse gas emissions begin to decline before 2020, the US President asserts that implementing this agreement could “kill jobs and business.”

Planet First! We want Europe to be the first to prove “full scale” that not only is climate protection not an obstacle to welfare but also a powerful lever for creating jobs, innovating and combating unemployment, all the while recreating a show of solidarity between individuals and people

If Europe quickly and successfully changes its model, it can be assumed that other major regions will follow suit and that Donald Trump’s successor will equally be inspired by our action…

While the COP 24 will be held in Europe in December 2018, and the IPCC, which met in Paris in March 2018, will publish a ‘special report’ showing that it is urgent to shifts gears in order to limit global warming to less than 1.5 °C, we want to ensure that Europe has the means to hold and exceed its GHG reduction targets, all the while helping the countries of the South combat climate change.

To do this, we are pursuing a double objective:

  • Improve the understanding and awareness of climate issues amongst all participants (citizens, the elected, peasants, workers, students, industry workers, etc.): no, global warming is not an imaginary invention. It has become increasingly visible with increasingly serious consequences. We have every interest to act forcefully to limit its effects. This issues concerns not only scientists and heads of state. Each of us is concerned. Everyone can act.
  • Obtain a European Treaty as soon as possible ensuring sufficient and sustainable funding to finance the monumental energy transition project (energy conservation & renewable energy development).

The former head of the World Bank, economist Sir Nicholas Stern, shows that, if we want a chance to win the race against climate change, each country must devote 2% of its GDP every year and in a sustainable way. For France, that’s between 45 and 50 billion euros needed every year to finance public and private investments related to the energy transition.

While Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron wish to negotiate new treaties to “relaunch Europe”, and they’re asking the citizens to get involved in this important debate that has to be closed by the end of 2018, we want to do everything in our power to implement a Marshall Plan for the climate, financed by money creation by the ECB and a climate contribution of 5% from corporate earnings. For 30 years, each country would have a drawing right corresponding to 2% of its GDP to fund the energy transition: France would have 45 billion euros each year at a rate of 0%. Germany would have 60 billion euros annually. Spain 22 billion euros annually. Belgium, 8 billion euros per year… and Europe would have 100 billion euros to help finance the project in Europe and in the countries of the South.

A 4-part campain:

  • Campaign launch December 9, 2017, with an appeal signed by 150 representatives from 12 countries and a large number of associative networks.
  • 2018, year of choice. We have one year to convince a majority of citizens and leaders and European Governments. The diversity of representatives and networks that support our initiative proves that we can win the battle by the end of 2018. By simultaneously bringing together construction employers and networks activists, having the support of elected representatives from all walks of life as well as of a large number of citizens, we are confident of reaching a major decision by the end of 2018. Many of our leaders understand that Europe will fall apart if it is incapable of a leap forward, a new enthusiasm.
  • 2019, the year of ratification. So as to not waste time and so the Finance Climate Pact can be quickly ratified (in a pan-European referendum, the same day in all the countries of Europe, as suggested by Jürgen Habermas), a team will begin drafting the Treaty at the start of 2018.

Miguel Ángel Moratinos, former Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs and former Special Envoy to Europe for the Middle East (in other words, a great diplomat) has agreed to lead this working group. The goal is simple: in December 2018, when all the heads of state meet in Poland for COP 24, we will give them a few million signatures from citizens sustaining the pact as well as the pact, ready to be ratified.

  • 2019-2020: effective implementation of the Climate Finance Pact. The work of harmonizing the tax bases necessary for the creation of a European corporate tax has already been achieved by the European Commission. If we want and have the political will, the whole of the pact can be implemented by mid-2019.

To anticipate the practical difficulties in implementation, (What accompaniment in the field? What standards need to be changed in housing or public transport? What is needed for research? How to speed up the transformation of the agricultural model? How to support the businesses that will see their numbers decrease? How to relegate job training in the sectors in the sectors that will be seeing an overwhelming amount of new jobs? …), we will implement a second working group, which will make concrete recommendations to governments and social partners.

If we wish to maintain the primary objective of reducing greenhouse gas emissions before 2020, the year 2018 is really a crucial year. We are calling all those who wish to join us to action. Action-oriented ‘decision-makers’ (members of Parliament, Ministers, heads of state and government,…) of all the European countries. As well as action-oriented professional organizations, opinion leaders, moral and spiritual authorities, students, employees and the unemployed, farmers and employers of SMEs…

Action oriented towards the public, through mass media and social networks, but also “in the streets.” During the of summer of 2018 (with its heat waves and free time during the holidays, summer marks a good time to talk about the climate), we will put on a Festival [1] and holiday resort tour. We will have trained a few hundred Climate Ambassadors ahead of time.

What are the chances of success?

Can we convince Germany’s leaders and the majority of the other leaders of European countries? Two years ago, Philippe Maystadt, Honorary President of the European Investment Bank, presented our project to Hans Tietmeyer, former Secretary of State for CDU finance and former President of Bundesbank. A worthy representative of an “orthodox” German. In just two hours, Philippe Maystadt convinced him[2]: ” Initially, the German leaders did not wish for Quantitative Easing from the ECB. But now that it’s in motion, we may as well use it to combat climate change and create a massive amount of new jobs instead of fueling speculation.”

Let us repeat: this is not about pushing the ECB to create more money, but to make sure that the money created is effectively used for the priorities of fighting against climate change and creating meaningful, quality jobs.

Civil society “laying the groundwork” for policy-making

June 24, 2017, the President of the French Republic, Emmanuel Macron, announced that he was taking care of it and going before the General Assembly of the United Nations to present the global environmental pact project which a French think tank has been working on for the past several years.

Along the same lines, our goal is that from now until the end of 2018, a majority of European leaders take up their Climate Finance Pact and that it be implemented as quickly as possible in Europe, Africa and all of the Mediterranean countries.

[1] For this festival tour in France, we will be using the network built by France Nature Environnement.

[2] Philippe Maystadt, the Belgian Minister of State known for having put the country’s public finances in order all while being devoted to social justice, has been suffering from an incurable disease over the past few years, which severely diminished his pulmonary capabilities. He died the morning of December 7, 2017. Many Belgians shed tears when they heard the sad news. Throughout the summer of 2017, Philippe made an important contribution in helping Jean Jouzel and Pierre Larrouturou construct the Climate Finance Pact and define the argument. At the end of November, he sent emails to the leaders of his friends to invite them to commit to this European revolution. One cannot say enough about his courage, intelligence, kindness, and humanism.