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The year ahead

By Helen Collinson | 11 January 2011

The papers are full of economic doom and gloom, but at Christian Aid we have high hopes for our climate change and tax justice campaigns in 2011.

For us, the year kicks off with the launch of a new Christian Aid climate campaign.

UN climate talks got back on track at Cancun, and things are set up interestingly for the next big meeting in South Africa at the end of the year.

In the meantime, though, we'll be turning our focus to the World Bank and its damaging fossil fuel loans.

The World Bank's job is to help countries fight poverty. So seeing as climate change is such a huge obstacle to international development, it's frankly amazing that the Bank continues to finance coal-fired power stations that exacerbate climate change – and do little to help the poor.

We will be asking the UK government to put pressure on the World Bank to stop funding fossil fuels, and to instead invest in low-carbon development that will improve the lives of those living in poverty by ensuring they have access to safe, clean energy sources.

Watch out for our new postcard and online action in the next week or so.

And hot on its heels, we’ll be launching a new phase of our tax campaign with the launch of a global call on G20 leaders to end tax-haven secrecy.

Without this secrecy, multinational companies would find it much harder to dodge tax in developing countries.

Christian Aid is working with a loose coalition of organisations in Europe, the US, Latin America and Africa leading up to November's G20 meeting.

France's President Nicolas Sarkozy will chair the meeting, and he has already expressed an interest in tackling tax secrecy.

However, he has lots of other priorities on his agenda – so we need to campaign hard to make sure our issue is at or near the top!

We'll also be stepping up the Trace the Tax campaign over the course of 2011, and making some colourful visits to our four FTSE 100 companies, Vodafone, Unilever, TUI Travel and, first up, IHG.

Would you be interested in holding a simple stunt outside your local Holiday Inn? We are planning to pop by some branches of the IHG-owned hotel chain to drop off some 'Do Not Disturb' signs with a difference. Phone 020 7523 2264 or email campaigns@christian-aid.org for more details.

So all that's left is for me to wish a very happy new year to all our campaigners. We intend to have one! 

Email our FTSE4!

Get Vodafone, Unilever, Intercontinental Hotel Group and TUI Travel to back our tax campaign. 

Act now!

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 About the author

Helen Collinson

Helen Collinson is Christian Aid's senior public advocacy adviser