This is a generous and very timely gift. The funding will support Stop Ecocide’s legal work to establish an international crime of ecocide.
The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation in Lisbon award their annual million euro prize to “distinguishing people and/or organisations worldwide that have stood to the fore in tackling the climate crisis”. The inaugural prize was awarded to climate striker Greta Thunberg.
The Greta Thunberg Foundation will donate the award money to charitable causes, starting with €100,000 to the Stop Ecocide Foundation and to the SOS Amazonia campaign by Fridays for Future Brazil.
From 136 candidates, a shortlist of ten was considered by an independent Grand Jury of international experts chaired by Jorge Sampaio, former President of Portugal. He said this year’s prize was very much a consensus choice and celebrated “the way Greta Thunberg has been able to mobilize younger generations for the cause of climate change and her tenacious struggle to alter a status quo that persists.”
Thunberg said that her foundation will “as quickly as possible donate all the prize money … to support organizations and projects that are fighting for a sustainable world, defending nature and supporting people already facing the worst impacts of the climate- and ecological crisis — particularly those living in the Global South.
“The first two donations of €100,000 will go to the SOS Amazonia campaign led by Fridays For Future Brazil to tackle Covid-19 in the Amazon, and to the Stop Ecocide Foundation to support their work to make ecocide an international crime."
Jojo Mehta, co-founder of the international Stop Ecocide campaign and Chair of the Stop Ecocide Foundation, responded: “This is a generous and very timely gift. The funding will support Stop Ecocide’s legal work to establish an international crime of ecocide.
"Thank you for recognising the significance of this work, and its potential to steer our collective ship towards safety and a healthy recovery for people and planet.”
There is growing support for the move to make ecocide an international crime: last November Pope Francis called for ecocide as a “fifth category of crimes against peace”; in December the small island states of Vanuatu and the Maldives called for serious consideration of ecocide crime at the International Criminal Court’s assembly; earlier this year the Swedish workers movement urged Sweden to lead on proposing it; and last month President Macron of France promised to champion it on the international stage.
This article is based on a press release from Stop Ecocide.