What do we want

We want our rights to come before mining rights

We want to keep our homes

We don’t want to leave our homes – and we won’t – because we love them. These villages, set to be destroyed for coal, are where we come from and where we’ll stay.

We are fighting for our homes and our villages and we’re ready to go to court to defend them.

We want climate protection – for everyone

We want action on climate change – and that means that RWE’s plans for Garzweiler II must go no further.

We find it unconscionable that evictions for coal are still happening in Germany – when climate change is threatening all of our futures. This has to stop – and North Rhine-Westphalia is just the start.

A healthy climate is in the interests of everyone; evictions for lignite aren’t. To lose your home for coal, in a time of urgent climate action, is unconstitutional and can no longer be justified.

We want an energy transition

We want a coal phase-out. The government has been promising us an energy transition for years and the coal phase-out has finally been agreed. But instead of implementing this, we’re being threatened with eviction so that our villages can be bulldozed for coal.

We want our rights to come before mining rights

We want the regional government of North Rhine-Westphalia to finally represent the interests of its citizens – not coal companies.

We are calling for Germany to stand up for basic rights. We stand at a crucial moment in history – the climate is changing, and if it’s a question of fundamental rights or climate-damaging activities, people must come first.

And for all of these reasons…

…we have called on RWE to make a public commitment, to destroy no more villages for mine expansion. And if it doesn’t, we will turn to the law.

There is a piece of land that sits on the boundary between Keyenberg and the Garzweiler mine. We are using this land as an example, to ask the courts about the legal questions of expropriation. If RWE does not agree we can keep this piece of land, we will use legal means to defend it. So we will not negotiate the sale of this piece of land with RWE. We have notified the company, and the Arnsberg local authority of this, in a formal communication.

If RWE is determined to take our land, we are ready for any step they take next. If they want to expand the mine regardless, as planned, they must start a legal process to win our land from us. If the competent authority in Arnsberg decides that we should be evicted from our homes by RWE, we have pledged to take legal action. Then it’s up to the court to decide whether the expropriation would be justifiable and legally permissible.

At the moment, this is the only way we can get legal clarity about our future and on whether what RWE is doing is legal – turning people out of their homes for coal, as the world struggles to combat the climate crisis.