It has never been clearer: profit-driven energy corporations have influenced governments, international institutions and UN environmental conventions in support of policy decisions that favour greed and capital accumulation. As such, these policies are failing to prioritise ecological and human needs. There are severe and deep cracks in the blind faith in neoliberal market economics, founded upon decades of privatisation, extraction and exploitation.
As billions across the world face energy poverty and record high energy bills, this is a crucial moment to transition towards a public energy system rooted in justice, solidarity and democracy. It is time to unite globally to put the care of people and our planet before profit.
As we rise up against injustice, we work together for energy democracy. We see the fight for energy democracy as part of the wider struggle towards climate justice that acknowledges the intersections between racism, classism, capitalism, economic injustice, gender exploitation, and environmental harm. We need to make the necessary systemic changes to realign our economies with our natural systems. From local collectives to regional, national and international transformations: we have solutions. There are social and technological challenges ahead of us. There are also false solutions to the climate crisis which replicate colonial capitalist patterns. Yet groups fighting for energy democracy at all levels of society are leading resistance and remedies towards a better future.
We stand at a turning point at the intersection of multiple crises. How do we end energy poverty without further fossil fuel extraction? What does it look like to decolonise and dismantle exploitative energy policies at local and international levels? How do we actualise reparations with and for global South countries on the frontlines of the climate crisis so that they can decarbonise? How do we develop participatory planning and ensure equity in new energy models?
Ultimately, we have the choice of two energy transitions: green colonial imperialism or energy democracy underpinned by equitable public ownership. The latter ignites a fundamental shift in how we understand, value, consume and manage energy beyond economic cost.