GDAMS 2023 Appeal · War Costs Us the Earth
Global Days of Action on Military Spending – April 13 to May 9, 2023
The world’s militaries are responsible for roughly five percent of global Greenhouse Gas emissions, however their carbon footprint, as well as the various other ways that they contribute to climate breakdown, are rarely scrutinised. Our governments currently spend more than US$2 trillion on militarisation, but military expansion is inconsistent with efforts to reach essential emissions targets and will exacerbate, not stem, the climate emergency. War and armed conflict lead, not only to death and destruction, but also to environmental devastation and climate breakdown. Although our governments may argue that such “defence” spending is necessary, it will ultimately render us defenceless in the face of the existential threat posed by the climate crisis.
Global heating poses a major and sustained risk to our planet’s climatic cycles and the resultant weather-related disasters often exacerbate existing injustices – and this can lead to conflict for access to land and basic resources, as well as forced displacement. Tackling Climate change must involve dealing with other structural problems such as poverty, economic shocks and weakened institutions. This is particularly true in regions that have contributed the least to the climate crisis, yet are impacted the most by its devastating consequences.
As well as their carbon footprint, the world’s military structures also contribute to the climate crisis in other key ways:
– Crucially, military spending diverts resources away from essential environmental and social spending, including initiatives to slow the speed of climate change, deal with loss and damage and to respond to weather emergencies.
– Military structures in the form of national armies, militarised police forces or private security companies are often deployed to protect the fossil fuel industry. This sector is one of the largest producers of GHG and military protection of it makes it complicit in these emissions.
– Although we urgently need to protect our ecosystems from environmental destruction, all too often when environmental activists take steps to safeguard their lands, rivers and seas, they are violently repressed by militarised security structures including the police, private security companies and, at times, the army.
– The nexus between fossil fuel and extractivism, and armed conflict and war is well documented, from the colonial period to the wars of today.
– More and more people are being forced from their homes due to extreme weather events brought about by climate change. In the same way that the border security apparatus currently contains people and stops them from reaching safety or seeking asylum, the military will likely be further deployed to keep out those fleeing climate-related disasters.
– Moreover, the arms industry, which in many ways is the backbone of militarism, invests significant time and finance in corporate lobbying to advance its own profit-driven agenda. In recent years it has used the climate crisis as an opportunity to position itself as a key player in designing ‘greener’ weapons and has lobbied for more funding to be earmarked for that purpose. This approach prolongs and deepens the logic that drives militarism and war.
Political leadership has focused on hawkish politics and sabre-rattling, stoking tension and fear, instead of cultivating international relations based on mutual trust, diplomacy and cooperation – three components that are essential to tackle the global nature of the climate threat. Funds that could be used to mitigate or reverse climate breakdown, and to promote peaceful conflict transformation, disarmament and global justice initiatives, are instead being spent on militarising an already over-militarised world.
We urgently call on governments to:
- change course and focus on rapid, deep cuts to military spending, driving an arms race and fuelling war;
- demilitarise public policy including policies designed to tackle the climate crisis;
- implement human and common-security-centred policies that protect people and planet and not the profit-driven agenda of the arms and fossil fuel industries;
- create governance structures and alliances based on mutual trust and understanding, cooperation and true diplomacy, where conflict is resolved through dialogue, not war.
The opportunity cost of doing otherwise just can’t get any higher.
War costs us the Earth.
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This appeal is also available in German, Catalan, Italian, Dutch, Korean, Norwegian and Spanish (other languages will appear here soon).
Updated on May 9, 2023
|1||Actions for Development and Empowerment||CM|
|3||Alianza Global para Ministerios e Infraestructuras de Paz América Latina & el Caribe – GAMIP. ALC||América Latina|
|4||Alianza Iberoamericana por la Paz||US|
|5||Alianza por el Desarme Nuclear||ES|
|7||American Friends Service Committee||US|
|8||Aotearoa New Zealand Campaign on Military Spending||NZ|
|11||Asociación Española de Investigación para la Paz (AIPAZ)||ES|
|12||Asociación Española de Investigación para la Paz (AIPAZ)||ES|
|14||Aturem les guerres Bages||ES|
|15||Bff. Bestemødre for fred i Arendal||NO|
|16||Brandywine Peace Community||US|
|17||Campaign Against Arms Trade||GB|
|18||Canadian Voice of Women for Peace||CA|
|19||Cátedra UNESCO de Filosofía para la Paz||ES|
|20||Catholic Peace Ministry||US|
|21||Centre Delàs of Peace Studies||ES|
|22||CGT Confederación General del Trabajo||ES|
|24||Comisión General Justicia y Paz||ES|
|26||Coordinadora d’ONGD i aMS de Lleida||ES|
|27||Corruption Tracker Project||GB|
|29||Ecologistas en Acción||ES|
|30||Área de Paz y Solidaridad de Ecologistas en Acción Andalucía||ES|
|31||Grupo de Noviolencia Elaia-AAMOC de El Puerto de Santa María||ES|
|34||ENAAT – European Network Against Arms Trade||BE|
|36||Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR-USA)||US|
|38||Gamip América Latina y el Caribe||AR|
|39||Gamip América Latina y el Caribe||AR|
|42||Glossop Peace Group||GB|
|43||Greek Observatory of International Organisations and Globalisation-PADOP||GR|
|44||High Peak Green New Deal||GB|
|45||HRM Chapter of the Council of Canadians||CA|
|46||Institute for Policy Studies||US|
|47||International Peace Bureau (IPB)||DE|
|48||Just Peace QLD||AU|
|50||Kingston Peace Council / CND||GB|
|51||Asociación Pro Derechos Humanos (APDHA)||ES|
|52||Coordinadora de Organizaciones para el Desarrollo-España||ES|
|53||La Guerra Empieza Aquí (LGEA)||ES|
|54||London Campaign Against Arms Trade||GB|
|56||Michiana War Tax Refusers||US|
|58||Mouvement de la Paix – France||FR|
|59||Movement for the Abolition of War||UK|
|60||Movimiento Por Un Mundo Sin Guerras Y Sin Violencia||CL|
|64||National Campaign for Sustainable Development Nepal||NP|
|65||National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee||US|
|66||New Jersey Peace Action||US|
|67||Nkhadze Alive Youth Organization||US|
|68||North American Climate, Conservation and Environment(NACCE)||US|
|69||Northern Friends Peace Board||GB|
|70||Norwegian Peace Association||NO|
|71||Nouveaux Droits de l’Homme||CM|
|72||Nova Scotia Voice of Women for Peace||CA|
|73||Oblatas del Santísimo Redentor||ES|
|74||Observatoire des armements / CDRPC||FR|
|75||Observatorio por el Cierre de la Escuela de las Américas en Chile||CL|
|76||Oregon Community of War Tax Resisters||US|
|77||Pax Christi England and Wales||GB|
|79||Peace Action New York State||US|
|81||Peace Movement Aotearoa||NZ|
|84||People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (PSPD)||KR|
|86||Religions for Peace||US|
|87||Rete Italiana Pace e Disarmo||IT|
|89||Scientists for Global Responsibility (SGR)||GB|
|91||Shadow World Investigations||GB|
|92||Share The World’s Resources||GB|
|93||Stop Fuelling War, Cessez d’alimenter la Guerre||FR|
|95||The Global Sunrise Project||CA|
|96||The Norwegian Peace Council||NO|
|97||The Peace & Neutrality Alliance||IR|
|98||The Peacemovement of Esbjerg, Denmark||DK|
|99||The Polar Blast||NZ|
|100||Tipping Point North South||GB|
|101||Transnational Institute (TNI)||IE|
|102||Unipau – Universitat Internacional de la Pau||CAT|
|103||United for Peace||SK|
|105||Vrouwen voor Vrede Enschede||NL|
|106||War Resisters’ International||GB|
|107||Western New York Peace Center||US|
|108||Whatcom Peace & Justice Center||US|
|112||Women Against Nuclear Power||FI|
|113||Women Against War||US|
|114||Women for Peace, Finland||FI|
|115||Women in Black, London||GB|
|116||Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, Aotearoa Section||NZ|
|117||Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)||GB|
|118||Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom Australia||AU|
|119||Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, US||US|
|120||Womens International League for Peace and Freedom, Norway||NO|
|121||World BEYOND War||US|
|122||World Without War||KR|
|123||Youth Fusion – Abolition 2000 Youth Network||GB|