London Leap

London Leap seeks to resource, uplift, and coordinate grassroots campaigns in London to illuminate their constituent’s solutions for a meaningful just transition in the capital. We will strive to elevate their solutions in order for them to be resourced by central and local authorities and others.

A Just Transition is a model and set of principles that look at the economic and social systems we need to achieve for an equitable society. Importantly, it also looks at how we get there. The process itself has to repair the harm that has been caused by living under an exploitative economic system from austerity in London to enabling oil companies to carry out neo-colonialism.

Platform through the London Leap project has worked with community campaigners and activists from across London to cultivate a values system that is based on their work and the Just Transition principles. These values will operate as a framework for the development of policies that London authorities could adopt to move us towards a just transition in the capital. The London Leap Just Transition values are outlined in this document.

Just Transition strategies were first forged by labour unions and environmental justice groups, rooted in low-income communities of colour, who saw the need to phase out the industries that were harming workers, community health and the planet; and at the same time provide just pathways for workers to transition to other jobs. It was rooted in workers defining a transition away from polluting industries in alliance with frontline communities.

Local to global  

We’ve teamed up with the Women’s Environmental Network and eight other local organisations on the Just FACT (Just Food and Climate Transition) programme in Tower Hamlets. Over the next five years, we’ll be working alongside local residents, community groups, and organisations to create and implement a community-led food system.

Why we do it

Our economy is built on the historic and ongoing exploitation, extraction, and oppression of countries and people. From working-class communities in London to frontline communities in Patagonia, to the Ogoni people in the Niger Delta. This extractive practice has deepened global inequalities and has caused and accelerated climate breakdown.

After decades of campaigning from Global South communities on the frontline of climate breakdown and UK climate justice campaigners; we have reached a tipping point in public consciousness on climate change in the west. As those in power draw up plans for a response we must engage them to ensure climate justice can be achieved with just transition principles at the heart of it.

London has a historic responsibility to respond to climate breakdown. The corporations housed in the city of London produce 14% of global emissions. They use our city’s reputation to commit human right abuses and plunge Global South communities into escalated and multiple crises. This story of injustice is replicated in London where blighted communities are left ill-equipped to deal with ravaging impacts of inequality whether through unsafe air quality, fuel poverty, or inhumane housing.

London needs a climate transition that is ambitious, rapid, equitable, and transformational. Uprooting the deep inequality in the city is intimately linked to achieving climate justice. This could mean decent housing, sustainable and accessible transport, community ownership, well funded local services and much more yet to be defined by the groups we work with.

Project team

Sakina Sheikh

Sakina leads on the London Leap project. For the last couple of years she has been campaigning for fossil fuel divestment from Local Governments. As part of her Climate Justice work, Sakina has been developing sustainable investment strategies that Local Governments can use to develop their local economies, build community wealth and develop energy democracy. She has previously worked at Global Justice Now on the intersections between Climate Justice and Trade Justice, as well as at Keep our NHS Public.

You can find her on:

Twitter: @SakinaZS

[email protected]

Kennedy Walker

Kennedy is a campaigner, researcher, and facilitator who first came into activism through grassroots organising in London. He is a co-founder of black activist and organiser network, KIN, and was a founding member of Resourcing Racial Justice; a funding pool to financially support organisations working towards racial justice. Currently, he’s a Lead Campaigner at climate justice charity, Platform on the London Leap programme.

You can find him on:

Twitter/insta: @kennedysrwalker

[email protected]