After six months of intense preparations, consultations, drafting, coaching and submission and sometimes rewriting texts, Power Shift projects are getting started one after the other in Africa-Arab world. Two weeks back, team Gabon kicked off with a workshop on climate leadership that gathered 40 young people who will be playing the role of local climate mobilizers in their residential areas.

This Thursday morning, a press conference is scheduled at the Carter Center of Kinshasa to officially launch activities of Congo Power Shift. Journalists, environmental and other local and international environment and development partners’ organisations will be present to hear the details of the Congolese campaign to fight against development fossil fuels.

Climate leaders from Africa and Arab World during the Istanbul SummitClimate leaders from Africa and Arab region during the Istanbul Summit

And from the beginning of March, a wave of Power Shit events that will move from Lilongwe to  Dakar, through Bujumbura, Kigali, Kampala, Nairobi, Addis Ababa, N’Djamena, Yaoundé, Niamey, Cotonou, Lomé, Accra and Abidjan. In the Middle-East, similar events are scheduled soon in Hurghada (Egypt), Amman (Jordan) and Sulaymaniyah (Iraq). They will include training workshops, awareness raising caravans, climate festivals, media campaigns including on social networks, policy advocacy and networking. Most of these mobilizations aim to train young climate leaders capable of serving as organisers in their communities and to engage policy makers on key issues of renewable energy, the danger of fossil fuels and the fight against deforestation. In countries that have already developed clear strategies against climate change, popular advocacy campaigns are planned to stimulate the effective implementation of these plans.

With the support of various local and international stakeholders, media, individuals, Power Shift events are slowly taking shape. These events will significantly boost the African climate movement; help define national priorities for action on climate issues and encourage a strong public action toward real change. We hope that, at the end of all these events, the image of a region that is passively devastated by ravages of climate change will shift into the one of  African and Arab countries rising to take the bull by the horns.