What is Sign for my Future?
The climate campaign Sign for my Future was launched on 5 February. Sign for my Future is a petition that targets all Belgians, asking them to encourage our politicians to adopt an ambitious climate policy. The goal is to send a strong message to all politicians ahead of the elections in May 2019.
Sign for my Future's concrete goals are making Belgium carbon-neutral by 2050 and significantly reducing emissions in the upcoming years. To achieve this, the campaign proposes three measures: a climate law to steer Belgium towards zero emissions, an investment plan and an independent climate council to monitor the climate policy.
How was Sign for my Future founded?
It all began in 2016, when Guy Weyns and Koen Verwee – two concerned citizens – started talking. They came up with the idea to launch a large-scale campaign. The goal? Giving our politicians a climate mandate by May 2019, to let them take any and all steps necessary to keep global warming below 1,5°C, as stipulated in the Paris Agreement.
To make their idea a reality, Weyns and Verwee involved as many actors as possible. That is why, in June 2017, they contacted The Shift and David Leyssens, our Director. The duo asked whether we could help them organise a massive movement with the power to affect the country's climate policy.
After extensive talks with civil society, scientists, the media and the corporate sector, fifteen individuals finally founded the non-profit organisation Klimaatmandaat (Climate Mandate) in 2017. Its aim? To give our politicians a positive and powerful mandate by the next elections.
Sign for my Future is a temporary coalition. After the elections, the initiative will be disbanded.
What are The Shift's members doing?
Many of our members regularly take action against climate change. During the Impact Network we organised in mid-February, various companies shared their best practices and mobility solutions with each other. Several organisations in our network, including Deloitte, Accenture and IBA, already have an ambitious mobility policy. They encourage sustainable mobility, including by offering employees shared-cycling subscriptions, limiting the availability of parking spots and promoting conference calls to avoid business travel as much as possible.
What is the role of the ambassadors?
Being an ambassador the campaign means spreading the campaign's message to other organisations and your network. As an ambassador, you first sign the petition on www.signformyfuture.be. Then you commit to enthusiastically supporting the campaign and spreading the word internally (to colleagues and employees) and externally (to suppliers, partners and customers). Many of our ambassadors have already testified that the campaign is a fantastic opportunity to rally their team around climate change and encourage their organisation to be forward-thinking.
You've probably already seen the many pictures of white thumbs and the ambassador videos in various communication channels. Here are a few other inspiring examples:
BNP Paribas Fortis has launched a "Challenge", with the goal being to collect 10.000 signatures through a unique url. BNP also put up posters at all its local branches and encouraged employees to sign on a large wall at two of its head offices. EDFLuminus published an article about changemakers David Leyssens and Herlinde Baeyens on its blog. VDKBank created a separate website to encourage people to sign the campaign. Anyone signing VDK Bank's "Sign for my Future" petition through that website simultaneously lends their voice to a campaign for more forests in Belgium: for every ten signatures collected, a tree is planted in the Flemish Ardennes.
Eneco asks Batibouw visitors to sign the campaign on one of its tablets. Several other members have followed suit and placed tablets in their offices' lobbies. On 10 March, you will be able to spot our thumbs at Noah's Train, an initiative by Lineas (open to the public at Train World until 10 March). More information here. Unilever invited two of our young spokespeople to a Town-Hall meeting with all employees, followed by a signing-up opportunity. On 4 April ERM organises an inspiring lunch around water risks and the available solutions that help companies avoid potential disruption of business operations.