GREENPEACE ship Rainbow Warrior has finished its tour of Spain in Vilagarcía de Arousa (Pontevedra).
The voyage was to raise awareness of the importance of fighting the climate crisis, and the trip was ended with several calls to action aimed at government and citizens.
The captain of the ship, Pep Barbal and head of this campaign, Maria Prado, presented five demands that mark the priorities of Greenpeace in its response to the climate crisis. The first of these is the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions so that the EU reaches a net zero rate by 2040, which would imply that Spain should reduce them by 55 per cent as opposed to the “meagre” 20 per cent proposed by the current government.
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It advocates accelerating the transition to a completely renewable energy system by 2030, a step related to the third demand, which is to close all thermal and nuclear power plants in Spain by 2025.
Fourthly, Prado demanded a “leap” towards an “intelligent and efficient” transport model in which shared use becomes the norm and in which the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles be banned in 10 years’ time.
Finally, he called for all these actions to be underpinned by a “stable legal framework”, which includes passing a law on climate change and energy transition that will make it possible to tackle the situation at a “historic moment at a political level in order to take urgent and forceful decisions”.
Among the participants in the press conference, the meteorologist and television presenter Martin Barreiro, who has warned of the “chaos” that is present in the climate system, where heatwaves are increasingly frequent, and caused the average duration of summer increasing by “a month and a week” in recent years.
Barreiro has stated that this fact is “really dramatic” and invited people to reflect on their lifestyles in order to achieve a fully sustainable society in the long term.
This message was amplified by the rest of the speakers, such as Silvia Mete, spokesperson in Galicia for the youth organisation Fridays for Future, who insisted that the current consumption model “is not sustainable” and called for “adopting necessary measures” to favour an energy transition.
For her part, Miriam Leirós, coordinator of Teachers for Future, stressed the importance of transferring the ecological agenda to education and being able to implement measures in the more than 28,000 educational centres in Spain, such as preventing children from carrying their snacks in single-use bottles and plastics.
She also advocated creating “safe school roads” to reduce the number of cars around schools. “It is necessary to organise,” said Leirós, who considered that, in this area, “individual action does matter.”
Sara Pizzinato, Greenpeace’s energy democratisation advisor, took up this point and argued that it is “urgent” that all people share the effort to halt the climate crisis.