If the flow of money is any indication of the world’s values, then the perpetuation of both fossil fuels and militarism are among society’s top priorities. The International Monetary Fund recently reported that world governments spend $2 trillion annually subsidizing fossil fuels, almost 9% of all annual national budgets. In the past two decades, the world has also seen a steady rise in global military spending, largely driven by enormous defense spending in developed nations. These two budget priorities divert funding away from social services such as healthcare and education.
These trends are alarming, but the activist movements working for both peace and sustainability are growing and gaining momentum, with women at the forefront.
The Nobel Women’s Initiative brought leaders and peace activists from around the world together in Belfast, Ireland from May 28th to May 30th for their fourth biennial conference, “Moving Beyond Militarism & War: Women-driven solutions for a nonviolent world.