Different organisations and Organisationen and individuals support us and show solidarity
Solidarity with the "Rise Up for Change" action days
Profound changes are needed for a climate-friendly Swiss financial centre
In 2015, The governments of the world decided in Paris that the majority of fossil energies must remain in the ground, because the burning of coal, oil and gas is the main cause of global climate change. Climate change is already threatening the livelihoods of millions of people, especially in the Global South, because it causes drought and hunger, species extinction, extreme weather and flooding, and forces populations to flee from affected places.
While in Switzerland oil platforms, coal mines or fracking fields are far away from public awareness, the Swiss financial centre is one of the biggest obstactles to a peaceful and ecological future. In order to achieve the globally agreed goal of a maximum global warming of "well below 2 degrees and preferably 1.5 degrees", global greenhouse gas emissions must be drastically reduced over the next nine years and brought down to net zero within the next decade. One of the main objectives of the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement is to align global financial flows with the requirements of policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
As a signatory to the Paris Agreement, Switzerland has committed itself to this goal. However, according to the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN), investment portfolios managed in Switzerland support a catastrophic global warming of 4 to 6 degrees. With their global financial flows, the players in the Swiss financial centre are responsible for many times the Swiss "territorial" greenhouse gas emissions - a total of over 2% of global emissions. Despite this, there are hardly any regulations or legal foundations that would restrict climate-damaging financial flows and thus address one of the biggest levers of Swiss climate policy.
For more than a decade, environmental and human rights organisations and the climate justice movement have been trying to enter into dialogue with different actors in the Swiss financial centre at various levels. Sometimes talks took place, but often the dialogue was rejected. When talks did take place, they usually resulted in empty promises and what can be described as "greenwashing".
At the same time, more and more people see themselves as part of a global movement for climate and social justice because they think it is wrong that few people benefit from the prosperity generated with the help of fossil energies, while many more people suffer from the climate change impacts caused by their emissions. Worldwide, protests and demands are also increasingly directed at financial institutions to make their financial flows more climate-friendly.
The Rise Up for Change week will also include actions of civil disobedience. The consensus of the campaign emphasises safety and transparency for all involved and excludes violence and endangering people through action. Non-violent civil disobedience against existential dangers and abuses has a long and significant democratic tradition. Thus, without resistance - even disobedient resistance - against injustice, many of the things we call achievements today, would not exist. Last year's determined and peaceful occupation of Bundesplatz was an impressive example of this tradition.
We, the undersigned organisations, are shocked by the existential threat posed to millions of people worldwide by climate change, to which the Swiss financial centre contributes significantly with its investments. In view of the threatening climate catastrophe, we can understand why people now feel compelled to engage in civil disobedience for a climate-friendly future.
The action week "Rise Up for Change" is a stirring signal for immediate change in the investment behaviour of the Swiss financial centre, for the global preservation of the environment and for lived solidarity with our fellow human beings worldwide, especially those who are already threatened by climate change. Therefore, we declare our solidarity with all people in their peaceful protest against fossil investments.