We live in a world that has many problems. Governments across the world are spending less on education and public health. Food has become very expensive, water is becoming scarce and a lot of people have lost their jobs. The weather has become more difficult to predict. Farmers can no longer plan their farming because the rain does no longer fall when it is expected. In the Western Cape, where rain is expected to fall in winter, rains are scarce while it rains in both winter and summer in the Eastern Cape. This is proof that it is true that the climate is changing. What is important about this is that this affects how food is produced. Farmers will be forced to change their farming methods. When they do that, they will raise the price of food.

How will the unemployed be able to find food?  How will they find jobs when those that are employed are being retrenched? It is clear that the solutions we need must respond to the problems with the weather and also be able to restore the dignity of people. The 1 Million Climate Jobs Campaign is one of the proposed solutions. This is an international campaign that aims to combine the issue of environmental sustainability and creation of stable jobs. The belief behind the campaign is that it is necessary to provide solutions to stop environmental pollution that puts the life of the future generations in danger. Furthermore, alternative systems need to replace those systems that are destroying the environment. New systems, therefore, will need to be built and operated.

The 1 Million Climate Jobs is based on the following:

  • An economy that is not polluting nature will need to be built so that while we are healing a polluted planet we can also create jobs in the process.
  • Unemployment is one of the key reasons why so many people have become poorer not only in South Africa but in other countries as well.
  • In order for solutions to last, they must be able to deal with problem of the environment and also the problem of poverty.
  • Jobs must be created for reducing pollution of the environment and these are the kind of jobs that will create more jobs. Instead of cutting jobs, more can be created.

As heads of states will be gathering in Durban in November 2011 for their yearly meetings on climate, 1 million Climate Jobs is one of the concrete proposals from civil society organisations. It is a demand that aims to rescue the environment as well as people’s jobs. Government and business are proposing ‘green jobs’, something that means that the manner in which goods are produce should not change but employ more people in agriculture and other sectors. This campaign suggests that the climate will not change if we don’t change how we live, how we produce and how we use earth’s resources. The jobs we need are those that would protect the earth, not those that are destroying it.