Civil Society to Unite Against Climate Change

Civil society to unite against climate change

The Civil Society Committee for COP17 (C17) is calling on the global community to unite against climate change by participating in this year’s Global Day of Climate Action (GDA).

The GDA is a traditional and important event during the United Nations climate change negotiations and takes place at the Conference of the Parties (COP) each year. The primary action – a mass march of international and national community, labour, women, youth, academic, religious and environmental organisations and activists – demonstrates civil society’s common determination to tackle climate change.

This year’s peaceful protest, which will take place on December 3, halfway through the two-week Durban conference (COP 17), provides an opportunity for participants to demonstrate their concern for the global climate crisis and call on world leaders to find a just solution to climate change.

The march will demonstrate that addressing climate change is as urgent for the people of Africa as for those of the North. Behind a common lead banner, it will combine the diversity of formations and opinions within civil society to call for decision-makers to be accountable for the decisions they make on behalf of those they represent.

Participants will gather at Curries Fountain, a site of anti-apartheid struggle significance, for a 9:00am rally. Beginning at 10:00am, the march will be joined en route by the faith communities group, a special needs group and youth. Participants will proceed to the International Convention Centre (ICC) to hand over a memorandum to world leaders.

The march will conclude with a separately organised, free concert on the beach at 15:00.

For more information on the GDA go to
To download a draft programme for the GDA go to


Note to EditorsAbout C17 (The COP 17 Civil Society Steering Committee)

The Civil Society Committee for COP17 (C17) includes representatives of various organisations including social movements, labour, environmental justice organisations, international environmental NGOs and faith-based organisations. It is a facilitatory body established to coordinate the participation of international and national movements and organisations of civil society in the common process but will not seek to represent them or to enter into negotiations with, or lobbying of, governments on their behalf.Rather, the C17 seeks to create opportunities for civil society engagement in the 2011 climate change negotiations during 2011, civil society engagement with the South African government around climate change negotiations and positions, a platform for the expression of diversity in civil society and environmental movement building in South Africa and the region.

In addition to coordinating the GDA, C17 is also hosting an alternative civil society space from November 28 to December 9, 2011, at the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Howard College Campus. Public events will consider issues of climate change, social justice, water, renewable energy and food sovereignty, among others. Entrance is free.

For more information, or to receive communiqués on civil society activities at COP17, go to , and follow us on facebook (C17 South Africa) and Twitter (@C17SA).

Contact Information

C17 Global Day of Action Enquiries:

Desmond D’Sa

GDA subcommittee convenor

031 461 1991

083 982 6939


C17 People’s Space Enquiries:

Bryan Ashe

People’s Space subcommittee convenor


C17 Media Enquiries:

Laura Tyrer

Media and Communications subcommittee convenor


General Enquiries:

Siziwe Khanyile

Coordination subcommittee convenor



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