Annual report from (Stockholm, Sweden)

One year ago, when we summarized our 2008, we where a bit cocky and claimed that it had been our most active and successful year so far. We could definitely say the same thing this year as well, because 2009 where both productive and exciting for Following is a brief account of some of the most fun things we did in 2009.

The year started with SL (the public transport company in Stockholm) making a bizarre promotion campaign towards university students, which we adbusted in the the student magazines. We formed the public transport opinion institute “Kollektivtrafikens Opinionsintitut” and made a big survey among commuters in Stockholm and their attitudes towards barrier-free public transport. The survey was then used in our report “At any Cost?” which was released to coincide with the free public transport day and got some good attention among politicians and the media.

The greenwashing happening Earth Hour was a golden opportunity to shed some light on the double standards of Sweden’s climate policies. lighted up the facade of the Swedish Ministry of Environment, who to our dismay choosed to join Earth Hour instead of doing something real about the climate problems.

The first of May was celebrated according to tradition, for the ninth year in a row we marched with the anarcho-syndicalist union, and for one of the first times the sun was shining!

We made a big survey among all our members and printed thousands and thousands of stickers to make the public transport system more attractive.

On the World Environment Day we arranged a climate crash together with our friends in Klimax and Friends of the Earth. For a few hours all car traffic on one of the biggest and most polluted streets in Stockholm where shut down and we had a street party. After this we took the ferry to Gotland to participate in Politikerveckan – the yearly spectacle for political broilers. When we got back home SL had made another funny and strange campaign to try to get to us, we countered with a new instruction movie on how to free ride in the public transport.

SL where spending most of August doing different campaigns against us, but it was an epic fail on their behalf since that month was one of our most active and we also got a lot of media coverage for our actions. Among other things we debated fare dodging on one of the biggest morning shows on Swedish television.

We introduced new and easier ways to pay for your membership, got over 9000 fans on our Facebook page and helped President Obama.

We celebrated the end of summer with a huge party in support of the workers at Lagena (whom where threatened to be fired and replaced with people from a staffing company), the party raised over 2000 euros. When school started we handed out free course literature to the students at the University of Stockholm, and two of our activists moved to Prague to work at the World Carfree Network (which we are a member of).

In September we participated at the big demonstration against the current right-wing government and went to Budapest to celebrate the European Mobility Week and take part in a ten day long workshop on urban planning. During the nights in Budapest we also managed to finish the first English translation of one of our reports, and we released Travel doesn’t have to cost the earth on the World Carfree Day.

On the fifteenth of October we participated in the blog action day. Some days later we printed 100.000 golden stickers. During November we had lectures in different cities every week, Gothenburg, Oslo, Malmo and Prague.

In the beginning of December we hosted another party, this time in support for Carbusters Magazine. The founder of critical mass, Chris Carlsson, held a lecture before the party and we released our second report in 2009, Trafikmaktsordningen (The hierarchy of traffic). Then we went to Copenhagen to party, meet new people, demonstrate and watch the disastrous outcome of the negotiations.

We finished the decade in style with a free showing of the movie Metropia and a new adbust campaign.