In 2009, Friends of the Earth Scotland was one of the driving forces in Stop Climate Chaos Coalition Scotland's (SCCS) mass lobby to push for the strongest climate legislation in the world, The Scottish Climate Change Act.
In July 2012, the Scottish Government failed to meet its first, and not very challenging, target to reduce emissions under the Act. In the light of that, SCCS decided to call for a second mass lobby to tell the government to turn the Act into Action. People from all regions of Scotland travelled to the Scottish Parliament yesterday to speak to their MSPs.
Today, NOAH (Friends of the Earth Denmark) hosted ‘The Climate Law – will it be the strongest in Europe?’ a conference with the Danish government’s climate and energy spokespeople, the leading expert on environmental legislation in Denmark, climate scientists and directors from energy and municipal organisations. At the conference, NOAH presented its case for a strong climate law, advocating for Denmark to be fossil-fuel-free by 2032 and to have a net greenhouse gas uptake in 2050 – absorbing more greenhouse gases than it emits every year.
Several thousand people attended Friends of the Earth Czech Republic/Hnutí Duha's 'Big Ask' festival in a park in central Prague. It was the second year Friends of the Earth Czech Republic/Hnutí Duha organized such a festival to raise awareness of their campaign for a climate law.
The Big Ask campaign in the Czech Republic is gaining momentum with some businesses involved in heavy industry now showing support, including Czech machinery factory, CKD Blansko, and the Czech Green Building Council.
The Finnish government has announced it will be preparing a climate bill – representing a huge step in the Friends of the Earth Finland Big Ask campaign.
The Ministry of Environment has published a preliminary survey on opportunities for a climate change act. It recommends a strong and comprehensive law to improve consistency in climate policy.
This was supported by the main newspaper in Finland, which published an editorial praising a climate change act.
Snowmen all across Finland have today come out encouraging MPs to support a just and ambitious climate policy. The snowmen stood outside the Houses of Parliament in Helsinki and in nine cities around Finland. They were pictured holding signs with two demands: a strong climate law and 40% reductions in Finland's domestic carbon emissions by 2020.
After weeks of sustained negotiations, Friends of the Earth Czech Republic / Hnutí DUHA has today won support for a climate bill from the third out of the four parties in the Czech Republic's governing coalition.
This is a strong signal for the bill's eventual successful passage through parliament, as this party, together with the opposition Social Democrats (who already support a climate bill), are likely to form the next Czech government after elections in 2014.
Targeted public financial support for energy savings, mainly thermal insulation of buildings, creates jobs and increases economic activity across the Czech Republic, according to this latest study from Friends of the Earth Czech Republic and CEE Bankwatch. Over 60 percent of the Czech Republic's current energy consumption could be saved through energy efficiency measures in the building sector - tackling both oil and gas dependency and environmental pollution.
Austria has become the latest country in Europe to adopt a climate law.
Friends of the Earth Austria/Global 2000 has been campaigning for a climate law through its SOS Klima campaign (the name of the Big Ask in Austria). Global 2000 says that the bill passed by the Austrian parliament today, although step in the right direction, is disappointingly weak. Big questions remain over how the law will be implemented and these could either weaken or strengthen the legislation.
The Environmental Law Service (ELS), a partner organization of Friends of the Earth Czech Republic, has launched a Climate Law Database, which provides information about climate change legislation, both existing and proposed, and gives access to a wide range of related materials.
With its legal know-how ELS wants to contribute to the creation of a legal environment that leads to a systematic decrease of greenhouse gas emissions, along with the development of renewable energy sources.
Friends of the Earth Denmark's Big Ask campaign has received a major boost following the new Danish government's commitment to pass a climate law.