On Friday morning 15th October, on the tenth anniversary of the four-month long ‘Occupy London’ protest, activists climbed outside the Stone Gallery at St Paul’s Cathedral in London, and unfurled a huge banner reading ‘Jubilee For Climate’.
Far below them in front of the London Stock Exchange in Paternoster Square a small crowd listened to speakers from the new Jubilee for Climate campaign, Africans Rising, and the Jubilee Debt Campaign.
The date also marked the anniversary of the assassination of Thomas Sankara, the revolutionary President of Burkina Faso between 1983 and 1987. He is famous for kicking out the IMF and World Bank and transforming the country by increasing literacy and health, banning female genital mutilation and fighting for women’s rights, and protecting the environment and achieving food self-sufficiency. After 34 years his assassins are currently facing trial in absentia.
At the event, Real Media interviewed international development worker Nathan Bryant, who has visited Burkina Faso and experienced temperatures way over 50ºC, speaking with elders who described the changes in climate they’ve seen in their own lifetimes. He ties together the environmental struggles the country faces, with its entrapment in extractivist models of debt and trade, and he also explains how well-meaning international development models are no longer fit for purpose.