Ecosocialist Alliance (EA) (ACR Conference 2021)

Strategy paper on the Ecosocialist Alliance as agreed at the Anti*Capitalist Resistance member conference 2021.

The Ecosocialist Alliance was established earlier this year as an initiative from Green Left. It was quickly supported by Left Unity and then by ACR.

The experience of the EA up to now has been very positive.

Its first public initiative was a statement issued at the time of the G7 meeting in Cornwall in June. This statement, agreed by the three organisations, quickly gathered the support of many individuals and put the Ecosocialist Alliance on the map.

The Alliance has met infrequently since June. Originally, the meetings were open to three representatives from each organisation (Green Left, LU and ACR) but this condition soon became more adhered to in theory than in practice.

The representatives from ACR were Rob M, Joeseph H and Jon D.

The focus of these meetings was the COP26 meeting in Glasgow. There was an agreement on a proposal from Rob M that we produce a broadsheet and two banners for the demonstrations on November 6th and other events leading up to the COP26. It was also agreed that the three organisations would jointly fund this broadsheet. Each organisation produced an article for the broadsheet and Rob M oversaw the production and distribution of the broadsheet. This broadsheet was a success and made sure that the Ecosocialist Alliance become known across England, Scotland and Wales.

Another initiative from the EA was a redrafting and extension of the G7 statement which was circulated and gained the support of many more individuals and organisations both in the UK and across the world.

There was also an agreement that we would need to look at what came out of COP26 and where the movement needed to go in a meeting after COP26.

An assessment of EA by Green Left is here.

Is the EA the embryo of a new party?

Whilst the ACR should be able to recruit activists from the initiatives of the EA, it would be wrong to see the EA as the nucleus of a future revolutionary party. The key task for the ACR is to help develop an ecosocialist pole within the environmental movement and to recruit out of this rather than to see the key task as the building of a revolutionary party out of the EA. This is not to say that we do not see the possibility of mergers and restructuring of the revolutionary left with some of the forces in EA but these would be much longer-term objectives and will be influenced by what we propose for the EA and how we operate within it.

Gains of the EA

It has clearly put ecosocialism on the political map in a way that no other initiative has in recent years. This has allowed us to look at developing a clear alternative to other forces within the environmental movement.

The EA has also shown that it is possible for different organisations to work together collaboratively in pursuit of clear objectives.

Problems with EA

Whilst the EA has an increasing periphery, it has no clear organisation to allow these supporters to influence the development of EA. We need to look at the development of a structure that can involve individuals and organisations outside of the original three organisations.

It is not clear how EA is going to relate to the slow breakup of the UK. At present EA is essentially an organisation in England and EA needs to decide if we wish to continue in this fashion, hoping that organisations in Scotland and Wales will join us, or recognise the separate developments in these countries and support the establishment of EA type bodies in these countries.

EA has no clear perspectives beyond COP26

There is a tension in EA between the desire of LU to pull EA into the orbit of the European Left, of which LU is a part and ourselves who are seeking to have a more ‘autonomous’ organisation able to work with a range of other organisations and individuals around agreed objectives.

Tasks for ACR in EA

In the short term we need to:

  • Propose a more formal structure for the EA, with regular meetings and minutes, and an agreed secretary.
  • Open the EA up to other organisations who support ecosocialism, e.g., rs21.
  • Propose that EA organise a series of meetings around aspects of an ecosocialist solution to the environmental crisis. The first such meeting should be an assessment of COP26 and what are the tasks for ecosocialists.
  • Discuss with the other organisations the development of a conference on ecosocialism later in 2022.
  • Decide if we see the EA as an umbrella body for Scotland, Wales and England or we see the EA as an organisation for England and we would support the formation of EA type bodies in Wales and Scotland

In the longer term, we need to initiate a discussion on the future orientation of EA. Initially, this should be through the ACRs Ecosocialism working group, then the ACR Steering Committee before being taken to EA.

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