Job Advertisement: Climate and Energy Justice Campaign Manager

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Job Advertisement: Climate and Energy Justice Campaign Manager

 25 October 2022

 The Groundwork Trust (groundWork, Friends of the Earth, South Africa)

groundWork is an environmental justice organisation working with communities to resist dirty energy and toxic production, build local alliances with workers for a just transition and advocate for open democracy. It was formed in 1999 to support people’s struggles for environmental justice, starting with people living on the fencelines of petrochemicals industries and waste facilities. It is a principles-driven NGO with committed and capable staff making significant contributions to building the environmental justice movement in South Africa and on the continent, and to holding government and companies accountable. groundWork operates through the lens of just transition and open democracy.

groundWork works with a broad spectrum of people, ranging from NGOs, community organisations and peoples’ movements to governments and administrators (mainly in the health sector), primarily in South Africa but also across the continent. groundWork co-operates with people who are challenging environmental racism and injustice on the ground and who are fighting for democratic control over resources such as energy and waste, to ensure their Constitutional right to ‘an environment that is not harmful to their health and well-being’, and sustainable livelihoods.

groundWork aims to achieve the objective of environmental justice through six campaigns:

  1. Climate and Energy Justice
  2. Coal
  3. Waste
  4. Environmental Health
  5. Environmental Justice Education.
  6. Communications

groundWork is an equal opportunities employer.

This is a call for a Climate and Energy Justice Campaigner to manage the groundWork Climate and Energy Campaign, ideally to be based in Durban or Johannesburg.

The Climate and Energy Justice Campaign

The Climate and Energy Justice (CEJ) Campaign seeks to support and work with fenceline communities who cultivate community resilience to climate impacts and build social power through mutual solidarity and alliances with workers and the wider justice movement. The campaign aims to work with fenceline communities to build community solidarity to resist dirty energy and mobilise the community to articulate demands for a just transition and open democracy. This includes people’s food, energy and water sovereignty, to create resilience to climate impacts and to demonstrate steps to a just transition towards a regenerative economy.

The focus of the CEJ Campaign includes:

  • Supporting the movement to resist oil and gas development (onshore and offshore), ensuring that it is sustained and expanded in South Africa and the region;
  • Identifying and resisting (in the media, on the streets, and in the courts) plans that support dirty energy, false solutions and people’s exclusion from decision making;
  • Working with Community Based Organisations (CBOs) mobilising for people’s energy sovereignty and food sovereignty;
  • Facilitating community exchanges to share information about climate change, respond to local, national, international and corporate climate policies and strategies for people’s solutions in an open democracy context; and
  • Monitor and explore the social and environmental impacts from an extractive economy re-oriented to renewable energy technologies through regional/international exchanges.

The Campaign works across global initiatives and in coalition with several leading environmental campaigns internationally, including Friends of the Earth International and Oilwatch International. At a regional level, the Campaign will link with Friends of the Earth Africa, Oilwatch Africa, the African Climate Justice Convenors and the African People’s Counter CoP processes, to resist dirty energy and advocate for an equitable climate response on the continent and in North-South relations. Nationally, the campaign supports the Life After Coal Campaign, a partnership comprising groundWork, the Centre for Environmental Rights and Earth Life Africa, working with national gas resistance and climate movements.

The Climate and Energy Justice Campaign intersects with groundWork’s other campaigns. The Coal campaign aims to resist coal expansion and demand a just transition. The Waste Campaign aims to strengthen the waste picker movement and prevent incineration. The Environmental Health campaign encourages health workers to advocate for climate and energy justice. The Environmental Justice Education Campaign seeks to develop community activists to mobilise on key environmental justice issues. The Communications Campaign seeks to communicate environmental justice struggles and promote open democracy and a just transition. The CEJ campaign brings these strands together and adds resistance to oil and gas expansion, to make a ground-based movement for climate and energy justice.

The ideal candidate should be well-organised, experienced, motivated and have a balanced understanding of current debates, theories and development trends, and a sound knowledge of the political influences in the environmental sector at a community, local, regional, national and global level.


The Climate and Energy Justice Campaigner will report to and be accountable to the groundWork Operations Director and the Management Team.

Key Responsibilities include:

  • Coordinating and taking responsibility for the successful implementation and management of the CEJ Campaign in groundWork;
  • Managing and supporting Campaign staff to deliver effectively on the objectives of the Campaign and groundWork’s vision;
  • Working in cooperation with all groundWork Campaigners to respond collectively and efficiently to environmental justice needs from society, and to support movement building on the ground;
  • Supporting the needs of groundWork partners – ensuring that their campaign activities are efficiently communicated to groundWork, and responded to by groundWork;
  • Responding to/and coordinating the development and implementation of relevant strategies for dirty energy phase-out, and addressing climate change vulnerabilities and the just transition, in South Africa and regionally.
  • Working with our global partners to respond to the global urgency of the phase-out of dirty energy, and the transition to just clean energy within an open democracy framework.
  • Supporting and strengthening the Campaign by effective networking, including convening and facilitating regular meetings, developing and evaluating strategy, convening webinars, and working closely with the CEJ programme;
  • Working in partnership with the Communications Campaign to increase the visibility of the Campaign’s objectives, activities and outcomes to key audiences, being a spokesperson on Campaign related issues and communicating campaign demands to various external audiences;
  • Working and travelling both nationally and internationally; and
  • Working outside normal working hours when necessary, as is required of a Campaigner and staff member.

Skills Required / Qualifications

  • A relevant tertiary education with a focus on social and environmental justice, and sciences;
  • Ideally, an education or history in the energy justice sector;
  • A minimum of seven years’ experience within the social and/or environmental justice sectors;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and isiZulu, including being a strong spokesperson;
  • Strong work organising skills that ensure time bound deliveries will be met;
  • Strong outcome-based facilitation skills;
  • A commitment to groundWork’s vision, mission and values;
  • Being motivated to exchange information with and learn from, colleagues and movements;
  • Being willing to work as part of a dynamic and varied team;
  • Demonstrated computer literacy, including Microsoft’s web-based systems (e.g. Google Docs) and other relevant platforms;
  • Experience and knowledge regarding the use of social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.; and
  • A current driving license (Code 8 or 10).

Application process and timeline

Please send your CV (maximum 3 pages) and a Letter of Motivation (maximum 1 page) to by Monday, 7 November 2022, not later than 17h00.

Shortlisted candidates (only) will be notified and invited to interviews.

Interviews will be scheduled for the week of 21 November 2022.

For more information about groundWork please visit our website at