Newsletter for Greenpeace activists
August/September 2009

© Rezac / Greenpeace


Kumi brings with him a passion for activism, for nonviolence and clear ideas to help shape the future of Greenpeace.

Cover: Greenpeace activists block a 20,000 tonne coal shipment to Kingsnorth power station in Kent. Above: Ending a week of actions calling on the G8 to take the lead on climate change, Greenpeace activists intercept a coal shipment in Italy.

New Executive Director for Greenpeace International
Prominent activist Kumi Naidoo from South Africa has been appointed Executive Director of Greenpeace International. Kumi will take over from Gerd Leipold in November 2009. Kumi says… ‘I have long been an admirer of the work of Greenpeace, from my days as a young anti-apartheid activist in South Africa and currently as a member of the Greenpeace Africa Board... The way Greenpeace works on all levels – from confrontation to cooperation with governments and corporations – is an inspiration. The mix of pragmatism and passion really gets things done and effects real change in the world. I believe that Greenpeace is one of the most precious assets the global community possesses, and plays a critical part in reversing the current fatal trajectory of our planet.’ Kumi was one of the founders of Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) in 2005. The organisation that has since grown into a powerful coalition of anti-poverty campaigners from over 100 countries. GCAP calls for action from world leaders to end poverty and equality by fulfilling promises on aid, trade, debt, climate change and gender equality. He now sits on the Greenpeace Africa board, working to end environmental destruction and fighting for the right of Africans to a healthy environment and is also Chair of the Global Campaign for Climate Action. Kumi will continue to use his influence to generate civil society pressure and cooperation to demand a strong deal at the UN Climate Summit in Copenhagen in December – one that reduces CO2 emissions, protects forests and promotes renewables and energy efficiency.

Politicians talk, but leaders act
Jim Footner, climate campaign

June and July proved busy months for activists in the UK and abroad taking direct action to demand that leaders deliver policy changes that will seriously combat climate change. Kingsnorth: In June, Greenpeace volunteers swam in front of an E.ON ship and others climbed aboard to stop it from unloading coal at Kingsnorth power station. The activists took direct action where Energy Secretary, Ed Miliband has failed to take political action to stop new coal. Despite the government assuring us that newly built power stations will capture some of the carbon they release, the Government’s proposals would effectively allow three tonnes of CO2 to be emitted from coal plants like Kingsnorth for every tonne that is captured and stored in the ground. Just 12 days later and actions at Kingsnorth were in the news again. A thousand people from groups ranging from the Women’s Instutute to Oxfam joined together to form a giant human chain around the power station demonstrating the growing coalition opposed to prospect of emissions from new coal. Drax: Also in June, the 29 volunteers who blocked a train transporting coal to Drax power station last year were found guilty. The judge refused to allow the defendants, who were representing themselves, to officially run a defence based on climate change, despite that being their motivation to act. However, he described their defence as ‘eloquent, sincere, moving and engaging’ as the defendants still managed to bring the threat of climate change and the urgency to act to the forefront of their defence. Italy, G8 summit: Greenpeace volunteers from around the world occupied five coal power stations in Italy to demand that world leaders, gathered in Rome for the G8 conference, take leadership on climate change. Once again however, the G8 failed to act sufficiently to put the world on a path to avoiding dangerous climate change. We now have less than five months, before the international meeting in Copenhagen, for our politicians to become leaders. In the UK, that means Ed Miliband must stop proposals for new coal fired power stations like Kingsnorth from going ahead.

Sign the Big If pledge
Tell Ed Miliband what you’ll do if he gives the go-ahead to new dirty coal at Kingsnorth. Go to

© Giannotti / Greenpeace

© Okhuizen / Greenpeace


Greenpeace activists tell diners at the celebrity-favourite restaurant Nobu in London not to order bluefin tuna, an endangered species. Nobu, partly owned by actor Robert de Niro, has been in the media spotlight as it continues to offer bluefin on its menus.

The Greenpeace field had an Airplot theme, including an out-ofcontrol tower for climbers and a replica of the Sipson village pub.

An ocean of news
Willie Mackenzie, oceans campaign

Lisa Weatherley
You can usually find her on the end of a phone in Supporter Services, but for the past five months, Lisa has been on secondment to the Active Supporters’ Unit. I’ve really enjoyed the past few months. Among other things, I was organising active supporter involvement at this year’s Glastonbury. It was lovely to meet real people and leave behind the months of application forms and spreadsheets. I knew some of the crew from previous events and actions but there were plenty of new faces too. After seeing the plans for the Greenpeace field weeks earlier, it was stunning to see it in real life for the first time. Together, we all made sure the field and campsite ran without a hitch and gained over 8,000 new Airplotters. Everyone there worked incredibly hard – no mean feat given all the other Glastonbury distractions! If you’d like to volunteer for us at next year’s Glastonbury, applications forms will go out to previous helpers and Network Coordinators next March so keep an eye out. You’ll be back in Rachael’s capable hands next year, but would I do it again? You bet! Active supporters are so dedicated. I’m always amazed at the time people give and their enthusiasm, even though I started my own Greenpeace life doing whale walks and street collections (I’m showing my age there!). The best part, by far, was meeting you all in person, an opportunity I rarely get in Supporter Services.

Active supporters all over the UK, from Islington to Inverness, helped make the special screenings of The End of the Line a great success on 8 June – World Oceans’ Day. The new documentary about overfishing, has had an amazing reception, and as a result, ran for four whole weeks in London’s West End and across the UK. The press coverage generated by the film has ensured that the problem of over fishing has remained a high priority for journalists. Greenpeace has worked closely with the film team to make sure that the issues have been documented in newspapers, magazines, TV and radio – and everyone has been talking tuna, from naked celebrities to Prince Albert of Monaco. In an amazing development, the UK, Dutch, German and French governments have announced they are backing a ban on the international trade in bluefin tuna. In the meantime, tuna fishermen reacted violently to activists documenting the bluefin tuna fishery in the Mediterranean. One crew member of the Rainbow Warrior was repeatedly punched and beaten. The good news is that she’s going to be fine, but this is further proof of just how far this unpleasant end of the industry will go to facilitate high dining at sushi restaurants like Nobu. The International Whaling Commission (IWC) met in June in Portugal. Member governments decided that they want to break the deadlock within the IWC between pro- and anti-whaling countries, but also want to avoid controversy. So, instead of addressing urgent issues of conservation, they have set up a group that will discuss possible ways forward for the IWC for yet another year. The concern is that this can only mean a compromise to allow commercial whaling and so far Japan and its allies show no sign of being prepared to stop whaling. Greenpeace’s political work to protect the ban on whaling and see an end to commercial whaling continues in Europe, Japan, the US, Latin America and the Pacific. We need governments like the UK to take this issue as seriously as Japan does.

Go and see The End of the Line
Visit to find where the film is showing near you.

Want to work at Glastonbury next year?
Get involved with your local network and help campaign in your area. For contact details, go to

Pledge to boycott bluefin tuna and those who sell it
Go to to help save bluefin tuna.

© Christellis / Greenpeace

© Rezac / Greenpeace


A host of British sports stars are sponsored by Nike and wear their products, including Wayne Rooney, Rio Ferdinand, and the entire English Rugby Union team.

True nonviolence: Greenpeace activists snatch some sleep on a buoy in the River Medway having worked through the night to stop E.ON’s frieghter unloading coal at Kingsnorth.

Nike steps up for the Amazon
James Turner, forest campaign

STREET CAMPAIGNING TRAINING York, Saturday 26 September. Contact Jo. THE 20TH WAVENEY GREENPEACE FAIR Sunday 6 September, 11am – Midnight, Hulver farm, St Michael, South Elmham, Suffolk. In 1987 a group of Greenpeace supporters ran a village fete to raise money. Now in its 20th year, the fair has over 5000 visitors, raises over £15,000 and gets everyone thinking about Greenpeace’s work whilst capturing the spirit of the free festivals of the 60’s and 70’s. This year’s fair is free for people but cars are £20. With an improved bus service from Bungay and Halesworth there’s no need to pay. Email Richard (below) to volunteer to make this 20th anniversary a very special success. See, or call 01766 830444 or 07515 9145146 ACTIVE SUPPORTER NETWORK OVERVIEW
Greenpeace’s active supporter network is made up of network coordinators, local networks and individual active supporters. Today we have 101 network coordinators, 90 networks and 23,336 active supporters.

Greenpeace report, Slaughtering the Amazon, sent shockwaves through Brazil’s cattle industry when it was released in June. It described how the cattle industry has become the single biggest cause of deforestation in the world and exposed the global companies, including Nike, Clarks, Adidas and Reebok, which are buying products implicated in the destruction. As a direct result, Nike has announced that it will stop buying leather from the Amazon as well as demanding assurances from all its suppliers that their leather does not come from areas that have suffered from illegal deforestation. This is a fantastic result and shows that careful research, followed by targeted action and political pressure can force industries to face the consequences of their environmental impact and change their policies. Greenpeace is now demanding that other companies follow Nike’s lead and support a moratorium. We have also written to the UK’s leading supermarkets telling them to stop buying beef from farms that are involved in forest destruction. Ultimately, we want an end to deforestation for cattle ranching in the Amazon – similar to the soya moratorium Greenpeace helped achieve in 2006. In South East Asia, pressure is also building on companies that are clearing and burning peatlands and rainforests to produce palm oil. Following our work last year to expose Unilever’s role in forest destruction, Greenpeace has helped drive forward a new coalition of consumer companies which aims to stop deforestation completely and punish suppliers who continue to destroy natural habitats. We are continuing our research to isolate the worst offenders and are demanding that UK companies scrap contracts with the worst suppliers.

CONTACT DETAILS Rachael King 020 7865 8174 Jo Melzack (Scotland, North England & Northern Ireland) 0161 448 1929 Malcolm Carroll (West) 020 7865 8172 Richard Martin (South England) 020 7865 8178

Shipping news
The Esperanza is in the Cook Islands working with local communities to tell world leaders to take action on climate change. People in the Pacific are at the frontline of climate impacts as sea level rise threatens their homes, contaminates soil and ruins crops, while warming oceans threaten food supplies from coral reefs and the sea. The Arctic Sunrise is on a three month expedition in Greenland with leading climate scientists on board gathering climate change data for the UN Summit in December. The Rainbow Warrior is in the Mediterranean calling for marine reserves. Meanwhile, construction of Rainbow Warrior III has started at the Fassmer shipyard in Germany.

Canonbury Villas London N1 2PN t 020 7865 8100 f 020 7865 8200

© Rezac / Greenpeace

© Rose / Greenpeace

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