Code Rood - Nina
Climate Action as Transformative Power
Code rood (CR) is a coalition of activists, who bring together different organisations and parts of society to fight the fossil fuel industry. They organise mass actions of civil disobedience which block and disrupt the ‘business as usual’ working of the fossil fuel companies and their mission is a 100% phase out of fossil fuel energy in the near future. It is a global mission - because the climate has no borders. So, although the actions that they organise are based in the Netherlands, they work closely with other international organisations like Reclaim the Power in the UK and Ende Gelände in Germany, and also mobilize internationally. In August this year, for two days and nights, they blocked the gas company in Groningen responsible for the earthquakes there.
Yet, Nina explains, that Code Rood is not about creating a successful action but really aims, on a wider level, to change public and political discourse surrounding the fossil fuel industry. They therefore, worked extensively on alliance building between local people in Groningen and CR as an organisation. Activists from CR joined local actions and as well as provided action trainings and skill sharing sessions for the people of Groningen, showing solidarity for the local impact of gas extraction. The action camp was even hosted in a local person’s backyard.
Code rood is a grassroots organisation, structured so that it is open and accessible to anyone who wants to join. They host open conferences, which are where they make the most important decisions, and work by consensus decision making, instead of majority voting. This means that if a single individual disagrees with some suggestion by the group, then that viewpoint will be considered properly by the group. They also work with working groups which, although there is often different levels of engagement, are non-hierarchical. This structure is something that makes the organisation different from more traditional systems.
Nina, who is a member of the action camp working group, explains that what motivated her to join was that she saw too much responsibility being put on the individual rather than the corporations and governments. She sees the energy issue as a power-problem rather than a technical issue and feels frustrated by the blaming and division of ordinary people, instead of getting together for a common goal. Code Rood was inspired by the idea that, we, as people can really change something and Nina recognises the value that unifying and empowering people can have. She is particularly grateful for the way that individuals are listened to within the group, no matter what their level of knowledge and experience is.