ABOUT THE LEAP
From fossil fuel divestment to the proliferation of renewable energy co-operatives, the global climate justice movement is growing fast. Moreover, a great many people struggling for changes that can help drive down global emissions—whether for free public transit in Brazil, or an end to public sector cuts in Greece, or a basic income in Spain or clean air in China—do not necessarily identify themselves as “climate activists.”
The fierce commitment behind many of these movements is thrilling to behold. And it’s happening just in time. Climate scientists have told us that this is the crucial decade: our last, best chance to get our emissions under control, and to decisively change course as a planetary civilization.
At The Leap, our premise is that achieving such a change requires fundamentally changing our economic and political systems. And as Naomi argues in This Changes Everything, the realization that we are participants in a battle between capitalism and the climate is one that should ultimately inspire hope, since a great many people—fighting inequality, austerity, institutionalized racism, and exploitative labor conditions—already know that the dominant economic model needs changing. Climate change can be the catalyst for the deep system change so many of us know is needed—and the science puts us on a firm and unyielding deadline.
In short: It’s time to leap. Away from extracting fossil fuels and towards an economy based on caring for each other and for the Earth.
And we need not be driven by fear alone—far from it. On the other side of this leap, we see a way of life far more desirable than what our current system can offer.
This blog is a forum for keeping up with and amplifying the work that is already building the movement we need for a great leap, whether it’s practical on-the-ground solutions, cutting edge research, or innovative thinking. We won’t be covering day-to-day news, or the ins-and-outs of climate science and legislative battles; there are plenty of great blogs doing that already. Instead, we’ll feature analytical, big-picture pieces on the social and political dimensions of the climate crisis and how to solve it.
And our emphasis is on accessibility. The climate field has long been the more or less exclusive province of a small group of experts, and if you’ve ever felt intimidated by the specialized nature of the study of global warming, you’re in good company. But you don’t need to master lots of complex science to grasp what’s important about this challenge—it impacts everyone, and everyone has a profound stake in the debates that need to unfold.
We won’t hide our belief that our society needs to undergo a fundamental shift in ideology and values. But it’s no contradiction to add that we want to help broaden these discussions as much as possible—to move away from various kinds of jargon that too often mask the highly political assumptions that have dominated our approach to climate change for decades. What we need now is an open and vigorous battle of worldviews. So we’ll be trying to elaborate on key themes and ideas in Naomi’s book, take them in new directions, fill in important gaps, and encourage constructive debates.
Every Town should have a leap Manifesto: https://leapmanifesto.org/en/the-leap-manifesto/