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Over 3,500 people take to the streets for biodiversity and human rights in Montreal

The COP15 Collective, the CBD Alliance and the Global Youth Biodiversity Network, along with Greenpeace Canada, are pleased to announce that over 3,500 people gathered today to join the Great March for Life, which started at 1:00 pm at the Mount Royal statue, despite the freezing cold.

COP15 is the most important global meeting on biodiversity in over a decade and the groups present at the march argue that world leaders have a responsibility to live up to this historic moment. These major coalitions and their hundreds of thousands of supporters  that governments establish a Global Biodiversity Framework that is strong enough to reverse the loss of biodiversity and ensure the rights of communities and individuals, including Indigenous peoples, who protect the world’s ecosystems.

The march will continue to the Parterre du Quartier des spectacles where a stage will be set up to host the following speeches :

  • MC : Ashley Torres (Muskrat Collective) and Samuel Rainville (Innu land defender)
  • Swetha Stotra Bhashyam, Global South Focal Point of the Global Youth Biodiversity Network [in English]
  • Anne Céline Guyon, climate expert project manager for Nature Québec, member of the COP15 Collective of Quebec civil society [in French]
  • Ta’Kaiya Blaney, Tla A’min First Nation land defender (British Columbia) [in English]
  • Lucien Wabanonik, Councillor, Council of the Anishnabe Nation of Lac Simon (Quebec) [in French]
  • Puyr Tembé, President of the Federation of Indigenous Peoples of the State of Pará (FEPIPA) (Brazil) [in Portuguese, direct translation to English]
  • Mariann Bassey, Food Sovereignty Programme Coordinator, Friends of the Earth Nigeria and Africa [in English]
  • Katsi’tsakwas Ellen Gabriel, Kanien’kehá:ka land defender from Kanehsatà:ke homelands (Quebec) [in English]

The mobilization of a crowd of this magnitude in the bitter December cold, is reflective of the importance of this moment for civil society, and the urgency communities from across the globe feel to make their voices heard at COP15, which runs until December 19th at the Palais des Congrès.

“I will never forget today’s march: the solidarity between people! Solidarity with our living planet, solidarity with people near and far, solidarity with land defenders, and solidarity we have to demand an ambitious global framework from our leaders — one that meets the scale of the environmental crises we face. The crowd of 3,500 people who gather here today have a clear message for negotiators at COP15: failure is not an option,”

Anne-Céline Guyon, project manager and climate expert of Nature Québec, member of the COP15 Collective.


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