Approximately 15,000 people gathered in Ostend, Belgium, on September 9-10 for the latest edition of the solidarity festival Manifiesta. This year’s festival was an enormous success and featured additional programs designed to immerse visitors in the event. Music performances by Meteor and Axelle Red drew large crowds during the evenings, but so did Chris Smalls from the Amazon Labor Union, as he reminded listeners that the workers’ struggle is “a marathon, rather than a sprint.” The experience of building the Amazon Labor Union serves as a practical example of the possibility of creating a different world, a message that Manifiesta’s organizers are eager to convey in Belgium and on a global scale.
On Saturday, 23 activists from around the state gathered on very short notice to protest at another Aegis destroyer 'christening' at Bath Iron Works (owned by General Dynamics) here in Maine. In the past the event was open to the public with weeks advance notification. But after a series of large protests and several high profile civil resistance actions things have changed. In current times there are only a few days notice and attendance is by invitation only. The past long lines of the general public wishing to enter are over. These destroyers are outfitted with nuclear-capable Tomahawk cruise missiles as well as so-called 'missiles defense' systems.
In June, the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network published its Sustainable Development Report 2023, which tracks the progress of the 193 member states towards attaining the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). ‘From 2015 to 2019’, the network wrote, ‘the world made some progress on the SDGs, although this was already vastly insufficient to achieve the goals. Since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020 and other simultaneous crises, SDG progress has stalled globally’. This development agenda was adopted in 2015, with targets intended to be met by 2030.
We are immersed in the irreversible contradictions of the end of the epoch of U.S. and European capitalist domination to a world in which for the first time in more than five hundred years, the Western world will no longer be in a position to establish the rules and enforce its “order” on a global scale without effective opposition from the 90 % that makes up the rest of global humanity. But the white world is not ready to accept the end of white world supremacy without a fight. Under the leadership of the United States, the U.S./EU/NATO Axis of Domination has demonstrated that it is prepared to use unrestrained, murderous violence, the same tools it deployed to establish its hegemony beginning in 1492 – in order to maintain white civilizational dominance.
A new study by 50 leading scientists conducted to supplement the “information gap” between Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports said global greenhouse gas emissions have soared to a record high and are threatening to push our planet into “unprecedented” global heating. Earth’s carbon budget — the amount of carbon dioxide that can be emitted to have a greater than 50 percent likelihood of keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius — is quickly running out, the study warned. “Evidence-based decision-making needs to be informed by up-to-date and timely information on key indicators of the state of the climate system and of the human influence on the global climate system.
We have found the Two Loops model developed by the Berkana Institute very useful for making sense of the variety of approaches and paths on the journey to transforming the economic system (indeed, the image on the cover of this book is inspired by that work). The Two Loops model can also help you better understand what role you might play in supporting the transformation. While we are inspired by the Berkana Institute’s work and want to ensure that all credit for the creation of this model is given to them, for the purposes of our work we emphasize different aspects and interpretations of the Two Loops idea.
The only way of ensuring that the overshoot is temporary is to decisively defeat the fossil fuel cartel. The 1.5°C temperature target is difficult to honestly and openly discuss. Within the climate movement, it has become a locus of anguish, confusion, and even despair. Long a symbol of mobilization and hope, 1.5° has become central to both activist campaigns and scientific analysis. Yet it’s now clear that the planet will almost certainly warm more than 1.5°C. This is a rough prospect. It will likely condemn countless communities, many of them largely innocent of responsibility for the climate crisis, to suffering and destruction on a vast scale.
A Transition group is exploring a new way to make it cheaper and easier for residents to install solar panels on their roofs. Sustainable Bridport (the new name for Transition Town Bridport) negotiated a discount from a local PV panel installer – if the group facilitated a number of homes to come forward for solar panels at the same time. Sam Wilberforce said the approach allowed them to smooth the way for individual householders, who may not have time or knowledge to research different options. Yet neighbours often live in similar houses and face similar challenges – looking at a whole area can be more efficient.
Cecosesola was established in Barquisimeto, capital of the State of Lara, in the central western region of Venezuela, as a cooperative integration organization on December 17, 1967. It is a meeting place where more than 50 community organizations are active, integrated in a network of production of goods and services that brings together more than 23,000 members from the popular sectors. Through this network, we develop a wide variety of activities such as: agricultural production, small-scale agro-industrial production, funeral services, transportation, health services, financial services, mutual aid funds, distribution of foods and household items.
Many years ago I was intrigued to learn of an art institute in the Netherlands, that formally declares its mission to be "working for the commons." That's how the Casco Art Institute in Utrecht presents itself to the world. Their tagline immediately raises questions about how exactly arts and commoning are related, and how an art institute might enter into the world of commoning. I decided to learn more by inviting Binna Choi, Director at the Casco Art Institute, to join me in a podcast conversation for Frontiers of Commoning (Episode #35). Binna, a native of South Korea who has led Casco since 2008, curates artistic work for major exhibitions and was a faculty member of the Dutch Art Institute. She has been a curator or artistic director for the Singapore Biennale 2022, the Gwangju Biennale 2016, and the upcoming Hawai'i Triennial 2025. Choi has brought the ethic and practices of commoning to the creation of art and its exhibition.