Citizens Beyond Coal

“Mining and burning coal continues to destroy people’s homes, their communities and their health. Quickly moving beyond it to clean energy will help address all these problems, but the transition needs to happen in a just way so more people do not suffer as the coal industry declines.”

Here we have collected stories from people across Europe whose lives are affected by coal, through its use, and, increasingly, its shutdown.

Citizens Beyond Coal

“For the UNFCCC COP24 climate conference in Katowice, Poland, CEE Bankwatch, Greenpeace and Europe Beyond Coal created a unique artistic installation to explore the challenges people across Europe are confronting as we collectively transition beyond coal.

The installation featured five 3D printed statues, made from 3D scans of people in communities from Alcudia, Spain; North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany; the Jiu Valley, Romania; and Silesia, Poland – the heart of coal country where COP24 took place in December 2018.”

One year later, some progress has been made, but still, there is a long way to go.

People across Europe are suffering from the impacts of coal in their lives and their stories should be heard. This is why we continue bringing those stories to national and regional leaders with our 3D statues installation – this year in Bratislava, initiated by Greenpeace with the occasion of the European Commission’s discussions about air pollution at their annual Clean Air Forum in November 2019.

Cologne Paediatrician Christian Doering, like many of his small patients, is exposed to air pollution from RWE coal plants. He’s concerned about how this pollution contributes not only to poor air quality in Cologne, but in the region and beyond, as pollutants such as ultrafine particles can travel long distances.

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Josep Alonso Aguiló is a lawyer, and a resident of Alcudia, Mallorca, Spain, home to Endesa’s Es Murterar coal plant in Alcudia. He has campaigned against the plant since before it was built in 1976, and has been forced to live with the coal dust and its health impacts ever since. >> Read More

Alicja Zdziechiewicz, a local literature teacher of 17 years, is one of the most active locals in opposition to PGE’s new coal mine in Imielin, Poland. “We are opposing a looting economy, we want to protect the environment and live in peace in our green city. I took the megaphone in my hand and I had to make it work.” >> Read More

Tomasz Lamik, head of the city council in Imielin, Upper Silesia, is at the forefront of a battle bringing together citizens and local authorities to oppose new coal mines in this uniquely green town in Poland’s main mining region. There are many ideas for the post-coal future, but they may turn to dust if a new planned coal mine is built in the town. >> Read More

Find the installation at the Greenpeace Climate Hub
Królestwo Rondo im. gen. Jerzego Ziętka 1, 40-001 Katowice, Poland

Overall concept and design: Greg McNevin
Produced by David Labi and Good Point
3D Modelling and design: Camila Roriz
3D print consultancy: Caroline Barrueco
Printed by ViNN Lab Makerspace @TH-Wildau Berlin and 3Dream Warsaw
Metalwork by: Jarosław Czupryński