Is VW still lobbying against car standards?
by Emma Gibson, climate campaigner
When the Financial Times reported that VW had done a policy U-turn and now supported the proposed EU law that would force car makers to make their cars more fuel efficient we were really keen to find out if it was true. When some of our 460,000 Jedi failed to get a response from VW we decided to send a stormtrooper and camera crew to their HQ in Milton Keynes to doorstep their PR boss. Unfortunately, but predictably, he was evasive on the issue of VW's lobbying so we are still none the wiser. But with the negotiating process for the car efficiency law starting soon VW are going to have to make their position clear.
In other news, we now have a shortlist of films from the competition to produce a fake VW ad www.films.vwdarkside.com. The winner will be announced on 22nd November. And in October an international team of activists had a friendly reaction when they disrupted a conference of 10,000 VW dealers, yes 10.000, on Ibiza.
The Rainbow Warrior returns
by Chris Jackson, supporter services team
9am, Tuesday 8th November saw the brand new Rainbow Warrior arrive at West India Dock, London following her maiden voyage from Amsterdam.
The 838 tonne, 60 metre ship, with a sail capacity of over 1200 sq meters is the first Rainbow Warrior to have been designed and built to meet our specific campaigning needs; the previous two Rainbow Warriors were refitted from existing ships. The new Rainbow Warrior is the most technically advanced boat in its class and is one of the world's most environmentally efficient ships of her size.
The original Rainbow Warrior, a converted British fishing trawler, was blown up by French special forces in New Zealand in 1985. As we said at the time, the ship was sunk but not the rainbow... and so the second Rainbow Warrior came into service. This has now been donated to a medical charity in Bangladesh where it will be used as a hospital ship.
Speaking at West India Dock, when the boat and its crew arrived, John Sauven, Executive Director of Greenpeace said:
"Just over three decades ago the first Rainbow Warrior was launched from the Thames. The ship, and those who volunteered to serve on her, defined environmental activism for a generation. The success of the first two Rainbow Warriors was in raising awareness of the many environmental injustices of the time, from commercial whaling to nuclear testing in the Pacific Islands, from deforestation in the Amazon to the dumping of hazardous chemicals at sea. It was also used to help in the relief of tsunami and nuclear test victims.
"Today we can see the results in international treaties signed and new laws introduced. Although some of the challenges for this generation of environmental campaigners may differ from the first pioneers of the Warrior, what is clear is that the planet needs protecting more than ever. The new Rainbow Warrior will be vital in supporting the millions of people around the world committed to environmental protection and social justice."
It has been an extremely busy week with several receptions, innumerable tours of the ship, a celebration event at the Design Museum and open boat days on 12th and 13th November with an unprecedented 6,000 supporters visiting the ship.
Huge thanks to those who helped out at the various events. The ship has now left for Scandanavia and we wish her well.
And in response to hundreds of requests, here is a history of the Rainbow Warrior.
London-wide day of VW campaigning, 10th December Networks in and around London will be campaigning en masse on Saturday 10th December and will gather together afterwards to compare notes and have a festive drink! If you want to get involved with this campaign activity, please contact email@example.com for more info.
Newcastle Development Day, 28th January A mini - skillshare for active supporters in Newcastle and the North East with the twin aims of developing campaign skills and practical street campaigning in Newcastle. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more info.
London, Saturday 1st October for active supporters and people interested in getting active in London and the South-East. Contact Rachael for more information. York, Saturday 15th October for Network Co-ordinators in Yorkshire and the North East. Contact Malcolm. Birmingham, Saturday 22nd October for Network Co-ordinators in the Midlands and Wales. Contact Malcolm.
If you would like to get involved in Greenpeace's non-violent direct actions, you need to attend a one-day basic training which provides an opportunity, through discussion and practical exercises, to explore non-violence, a Greenpeace core value. It covers various concepts, basic techniques and behaviours but does not cover handling equipment or more advanced NVDA techniques. The different types of actions, how to behave when arrested and Greenpeace support systems for volunteers are all explained.
Thank you. We couldn't do it without you.