Today, on September 21, 2014, we witnessed something massive across the planet.
Marching together on six continents, we proved that to change everything, we need everyone.
And that includes dogs, too.
In the coming days, we are going to reflect, celebrate, and take action. News is exploding everywhere about the march and we know the road ahead is full of tireless effort.
But tonight, we encourage you all to soak it in and enjoy it. And to help you appreciate the breadth, diversity, and fun of the People’s Climate March, we are providing you with the “Best In Show” of today’s events.
So, without further ado…
“The Don’t Deny It” Dog
The “Solar Good, Fossil Fuels Bad” Dog
The “Sit, Stay, Divest” Dogs
The “Future is Just Over there” Dog
The “Carbon Concerned” Dog
The “Observer” Dog
The “Powered by Flowers” Dog
The “Captain Planet” Dog
The “Global Warming” Dog
The “Photog” Dog
The “Parachute” Dog
The “Can We Save the Planet Now, Please?” Dog
It started — The People’s Climate Mobilisation is happening all over the world!
Just get a sense of what its looking like:
Rallies in Lisbon and Delhi, marches in Istanbul, Manila, Cape Town, Majuro and Papua New Guinea, concerts in Johannesburg — this is true people powered movement: enormous, powerful, diverse and beautiful. People from all backgrounds acting locally, mobilising their communities, shaping the future of our planet. And this is just the first day — tomorrow there’ll be even more in places like London, Rio, Melbourne and Jakarta.
Now it’s time to show these stunning organising images to world leaders — literally. We are collecting photos and videos from actions all over the world, and we will display them on huge screens in New York City so heads of state coming to the city for the climate summit wont miss them.
Please share your images with us — let’s show what Action, Not Words looks like!
- Submit your photos and videos: send them to us following the instructions here. We’ll make sure we’ll display them on screens during the People’s Climate March in New York. We’ll also feature some of them on People’s Climate website.
- Share on social media: You can also share images on social media using the hashtag #PeoplesClimate. We will be tracking and featuring these posts on the People’s Climate Mobilisation website and at the march in New York City — and re-sharing on social media too!
All of us, everywhere, together, demanding Actions, Not Words on climate — and in pictures. There’s no way heads of state will miss that.
Eduardo, Hoda, Mahir, Payal, and Will for the whole 350.org team
PS: If you want to join another People’s Climate Mobilisation action tomorrow (or if you could not make it today) you may still find another action nearby — search for another event here.
Most of us have never met in person. For months, we’ve seen each other’s names on emails and petitions; we’ve made plans and spoken on the phone.
But this weekend, all of that changes.
Right now, on this Saturday morning, you might be reading this post from one of the 500 buses driving from Minnesota, Colorado, or Massachusetts. Or you are on your way to the hundreds of side events happening this weekend in NYC, such as the Student Convergence or the Community Divestment Meet-up, both happening now. But on September 21, 2014 at the People’s Climate March, everyone will be together to meet, to march, to change the course of our future.
Where will divestment be?
Tthis is the most diverse climate march in history. The motto, “to change everything we need everyone,” aims to unite us all in this fight - indigenous peoples, women, elders, student and youth, musicians, beekeepers, veterans, parents, community leaders, and more. Over 1,500 partner organizations are coming together in a march that truly belongs to us all, so how does divestment fit in? As people march with their communities and schools, their tribes and faith groups, divestment might not clearly stand out from the crowd.
But that’s because divestment is present in nearly every block of the march, overlapping with issues from across the climate change movement.
In the “We Can Build the Future” contingent, there will be wide banners held by students pronouncing “Youth Choose Climate Justice.” Standing behind these banners march student divestment groups from Yale, Bowdin, Swathmore, the UC schools, and American University, among many many others. “In the We Have Solutions” section of the march, the NYC and DC Fossil Free campaigns will carry large checks calling on their state comptrollers for pension fund divestment. In the fourth section of the march, “We Know Who Is Responsible,” the NY state divestment group will march next to the fracking group, both fighting for a shift away from fossil fuels. In section five, “The Debate is Over,” faith groups from across the religious spectrum who have called on their congregations to divest will march united. And in the final wave of the march, “To Change Everything We Need Everyone,” community, city, and state divestment groups will rally together for divesting their pension funds. Some of these groups number in the hundreds, such as 350MA who is sending over 30 buses of people; other groups will be a few representatives for their friends and family who are supporting the movement from far away in Hawaii, Alaska, Minnesota, or even New Zealand.
There won’t be one divestment section, and if you look at the march plan below, you won’t see any mention of Fossil Free. But that’s because in this world of currencies and climate change, divestment is present in any and every group. So march with the beekeepers and the musicians, the pastors and the monks, march with the students and the fracking coalition, march wherever you plan to march.
And know that everywhere you are marching, divestment marches with you.
For more details and to RSVP for the People’s Climate March, visit here.
For the first two weeks of September, a flotilla of handmade paper canoes journeyed the improbable waters of the Hudson River from Troy to Manhattan, weaving stories of resistance and resilience on a voyage to the People’s Climate March. The flotilla’s journey wove together many distinct stories of local environmental threats in the context of a common and looming global crisis. Our paper canoes sit low in the water – you feel each wave like a new land rising beneath you, pulling you up and into some improbable future.
We are in the untold times. Some of our species has managed to rocket the planet out of the geologic age we were born into, and to create our own: It is time to create new mythologies for the Anthropocene. For the first two weeks of September, a flotilla of handmade paper canoes journeyed the improbable waters of the Hudson River from Troy to Manhattan, weaving stories of resistance and resilience on a voyage to the People’s Climate March. The flotilla’s journey wove together many distinct stories of local environmental threats in the context of a common and looming global crisis.
As a generation with the mixed fortunes of being alive in an age with both cheap weekend flight packages and rising sea levels, we have no choice but to embrace the improbability of this moment. We are in a tiny window of opportunity within which we can determine if the climate crisis will be merely a major crisis or a complete catastrophe for our planet. This is an improbable situation, and many move straight from denial to hopelessness; but it is not an impossible situation. We must inhabit that sliver of hope, and enact stories inside it.
The past two weeks I have lived this improbable paper story, voyaging the two-water waters of the Hudson River with a band of fellow dreamers. By enacting the dream – we awoke, and saw the magnitude of both the beauty and the danger that surrounds us. We saw the mist that rises over the river at sunrise and the steam that rose from Indian Point’s cooling tower; we heard the sound of a stork’s wings flapping above our heads and the warning whistle of the explosive train-units as they hurtle past intersections; we learned the surface of the water and its depths. I have returned from this journey with a new sense of scale of the danger and an understanding of the depths of what might be lost. In New York we are gambling our entire River: high stakes for another decade of living a dying American dream.
Our route began in Troy – chosen for its forgotten history of paper boat making rather than its name’s epic connotations. Quickly we realized we were inadvertently following the exact route of Global Partners’s proposed “virtual pipeline” that uses a series of trains, barges and trucks to bring crude oil from the Bakken fields of North Dakota through Albany and Newburgh, and down to the New York Metropolitan area. Currently and stealthily, this trickle of oil is flooding along the river: 40 times more crude oil is already being transported down the Hudson than it was four years ago. New proposals have been filed for new heating centers that would allow crude oil and tar sands from Alberta to be processed in Newburgh and Albany, then loaded onto barges and sent downstream. “The problem we’re facing is that with the tremendous and increasing volume of crude oil being transported throughout the Hudson Valley, a spill is inevitable” says Kate Hudson of Riverkeeper. An oil tanker has already run aground in December 2012, carrying about as much oil as spilled in the Exxon Valdez disaster, and New York State has seen at least four derailments in the span of just three months. A spill anywhere along this “virtual pipeline” would mean disaster for the river, what doesn’t spill and is burned means disaster for our climate. We are being bribed into a lose-lose situation.
Our very first day of the journey, local organizers in Albany showed us where the long black trains are parked – just yards from housing apartments and playgrounds. Railway workers call these the “Bomb Trains”, because the railcars become pressurized along their journey, becoming volatile and explosive. An explosion in Albany, the like the one in Lac Megantic in 2013, could mean up to 5,000 dead. A retired MetroNorth worker told us such a disaster was only a matter of time, that these were time bombs running along an underfunded and rotting rail infrastructure – an accident waiting to happen. Every night of our journey we camped along side of the river, we were always within range. Many people live with this illegal (for the railcars aren’t rated to take pressurized contents) menace. A rupture in one railcar could set off a chain-reaction across the railcars, could spill into the river, could set the river on fire for days. Our entire watershed could become a casualty to Global Partners’ bottom line.
I shudder to think of a spill: crude oil sinking to where the massive sturgeon feed on the bottom of the river, or the lighter Bakken Crude floating to the top with the herons and lilies bathe in moonlight, and where we swam. In minutes, a spill could erase the decades of devotion that is returning health to the Hudson – a sticky layer of flames pushed to and fro by the river’s two-way tides, the river boiling under a blanket of death. This could happen at any moment. Why do we play this game if the stakes are so high? 250,000 people’s drinking water comes from the Hudson – water is a right, not a privilege; it is the ecological ground for all life, not an unregulated highway for corporate profits. Each day of our journey I fell deeper in love with the beauty of this river-that-flows-both-ways; to risk it seems unbearable.
At night the Aphrodite oil barge, like some ominous pendulum, with 9.6 million barrels of crude in her belly, swings up and down the river at regular intervals, just part of the 25 million gallons of oil that is already making its way down the Hudson River each week. Its name – “Aphrodite”: goddess of love, beauty, pleasure, and procreation – scared us in its irony, just as the names of the proposed fracked gas pipelines that cross the Hudson: Algonquin, Iroquois, Pilgrim. The imperialism of greed threatens to reclaim even our past.
Towards the end of the journey, we caught an evening glimpse of Manhattan, its lights shone in the distance like a cubist landscape even from well before the Tappan Zee Bridge; for three days we quietly approached it – the buildings growing slowly in scale until they towered over our small boats. Early on, our journey had adopted the motto: “We All Live Downstream”,acknowledging that all of our waters are connected – they circulate, infiltrate, rain, freeze and flow throughout the ages. What we do to the water, we do to ourselves. Our arrival in Manhattan localized this adage – here we saw not only a city perched on the end of a river, but also a city at the end of a massive and hidden infrastructure. What had been invisible was suddenly all around us. The grandiose immortality of this “city that never sleeps” requires a revising when you have seen the risks required to keep it lit-up and zooming down the avenues. It no longer seems like some autonomous beast, rather an aging boiler that requires constant fueling; a city that has enslaved us to its own designed addictions. Inside the glass buildings, there are businessmen taking grave gambles with things that do not belong to them, raking in rewards but taking none of the risk. They move money to stoke the fires to keep this city from sleeping, but I remember what Sandy did to this city-that-never-sleeps when it opened New York’s skies to the stars again.
On our last day, we paddled quietly down the West Side of the island of Manhattan, watching trees grow into skyscrapers and back down again to humbler brick buildings. As we passed you could see up the streets far into the heart of the city, at 42nd street the neon glow of Times Square blared out even along the water. I wondered what is burned to make the electricity to keep those vital advertisements illuminated. The current whisked us quickly by.
The skyscrapers seem minuscule when you know the size of this ribbon of river that flows the length of our two week journey. We had begun to measure distances in days, and this city is only a day to paddle around. From the water, New York City doesn’t seem so invincible. It hangs low, inviting a brave wave to take a shortcut from the East River across to the brackish Hudson. I had seen the whole downtown darkened by such waters only two years ago – despite the great height of our buildings we will not be able to escape into the sky.
The tasks our generations currently face should not be underestimated, as the organizers of the People’s Climate March state - to change everything it takes everyone. We know this world is changing – chemically, politically, economically, socially, physically – how we react to those changes is the only thing we still control.
If you pay close attention on a tidal river, there are moments when you can feel the sea change beneath you. A split second when the river hovers, unmoving, neither ebbing nor flowing. Your boat lingers in a moment, but only for a moment. By the next time your paddle hits the water everything is in motion again, slowly at first, but surely. We are all in this pivotal moment as a global community. Whether we decide to push on against the current that is flowing increasingly against us, or we change course and let the wise currents pull us easily into the future that wants to be.
Take Action! You are part of this story:
Join us on Monday September 22nd for #FloodWallStreet, a direct action aimed at the economic causes of the ecological crisis.
And/Or tell our government what you think about crude oil transport on the Hudson here.
We only have until September 30th to submit public comments. If we get enough support on this, we could stop this project before it gets out of control.
For more on the SeaChange Voyage visit www.seachange2014.tumblr.com
A number of authors and other public figures from across Canada are supporting the Peoples Climate March this weekend in New York City, check out their statements below. These endorsements were gathered by Toronto350, who are organizing hundreds of people from Toronto to come to the Peoples Climate March in New York, find out more about Toronto350.
“Governments must now do what many cities and towns have been doing on their own: face up to the reality of chemistry and physics. Germany and China are moving. Those who don’t join them risk being left behind with an outdated economic model.” Margaret Atwood
“I am marching on Sunday because climate change is the most pressing global issue of our time. Full stop.” John Vaillant, author of The Golden Spruce and The Tiger
“This is the weekend the world stands up and demands climate action before it’s too late. Be part of history. Get your butt to the nearest march on Sunday! There’s one happening in nearly every corner of the globe, including Toronto!” Adria Vasil @ecoholicnation
“My Prime Minister won’t be there but I will be! Canadians care and we are organizing for a safe climate!” Tzeporah Berman @Tzeporah
“Our generations’ actions define the future of our planet and humanity. Climate change demands bold leadership of the world’s decision makers and for all of us to ensure that happens.” Nicole Rycroft, founder and executive director of Canopy
“As stewards of this earth, our home, our responsibility is to give our children a world that is healthier than the world we inherited. The Peoples’ Climate March on September 21st demonstrates our commitment to this stewardship.” Gail Bowen, author of the Joanne Kilbourn murder mysteries
“World leaders who don’t recognize climate change as the global priority fail to understand their role as leaders.” Valerie Langer, Director of BC Forest Campaigns, ForestEthics Solutions
“We will be marching on Sunday in Montreal with our families and community, in solidarity with people globally, as part of an ongoing force on the issue of climate change. We believe we are at a turning point, where climate awareness is mobilizing social and environmental movements internationally that forge a link towards new ways of being and living together. Our book, Girl Positive, explores the political and cultural issues facing girls today. Our work uncovers how the barriers girls face are also interconnected with the environment —from resource extraction to toxins found in beauty products, to overarching and outdated social, economic and political attitudes. Women and girls are both on the front lines of the environmental fall out, and on the front lines of the avant-garde, innovating and leading pivotal change. We find hope and inspiration in this leadership, as in Indigenous, racialised and marginalised voices, and grassroots innovation. We all have a role to play in turning the tides of environmental peace and justice.” Tatiana Fraser & Caia Hagel, authors of the forthcoming book Girl Positive
“The UN Climate Summit is crucial and desperately overdue. Wherever you find yourself this Sunday, march; it’s all the same planet, and it’s the only one we’ve got.” Alissa York, author of Fauna and Effigy
“If you’re a fan of eating, breathing and non-toxic sunlight—be there.” Mark Leiren-Young, author of The Green Chain and Free Magic Secrets Revealed
“If the scientists are to be believed, if the international panels of the world’s best thinkers—climatologists, biologists, meteorologists, physicists, chemists, statisticians–have got it even half right, we have a serious problem on our hands. Climate change is poised to affect every aspect of life on planet earth. We cannot hope to mitigate this planetary disaster without showing those in power that this issue is gravely important to us and that we care. Please support the UN Climate Summit, and consider joining the People’s Climate March, the largest climate mobilization in history.” Alexandra Shimo, co-author of Up Ghost River and author of The Environment Equation
“Not all marches make or change history, but some do. So many crises have been consuming world leaders’ attention over the past few months (okay, decades) that it’s easy to forget our planetary ecosystems are on a slow boil. Kudos to all who are mustering the resources to go to New York this weekend…please howl for those of us who are with you in spirit.” Arno Kopecky, author of The Oil Man and the Sea
“Communal, diverse, heartful, and spirited actions like The People’s Climate March and the UN Climate Summit are groundswell mobilizers against a big money and large corporation economy which is rampantly and wantonly consuming the earth’s very integrity—its so-called “resources.” It is necessary that the world’s leaders are fully awakened to the realization that the stake in climate issues is not an economic one. Rather the true stake is precisely this: the humanity of our species.” Kathryn Kuitenbrouwer, author of All the Broken Things
“All the great writing in the world, from Beowulf to Shakespeare, Austen, Borges, Atwood and beyond ceases to matter on a dead planet. The UN Climate Summit represents a chance to create real change in order to preserve what we have for future generations. I support the march.” Aislinn Hunter, author of The World Before Us
“ Please think about the People’s #climatemarch in NY Sunday, Sept 21st, ahead of UN Climate Summit. Take the kids.” Alix Hawley @alixhawley, novelist, short-story writer and author of the upcoming novel All True Not a Lie In It
In the next 5 days tens of thousands of people around the world will be rallying for climate action from our world leaders. For those of us who work on fracking, we’re especially excited to see how folks are starting to connect the dots between extreme extraction and climate change.
In California, we’re watching folks here battle a historic drought that’s been inextricably linked to climate change. While citizens are being asked to curb their water use with shorter showers and not to water their lawn, we’re also watching fracking for oil get the green light. While this is all happening people like Governor Brown get to ride his own coattails from 20 years ago as a climate champion despite his current actions to give the go ahead to expand extraction.
We know that fracking for gas and oil only makes climate change worse. We know that we’re choosing to frack because we’ve gotten to the end of the line. Outside of just the climate impacts of fracking, we’re watching communities get sick, lose fresh water, and scramble to get answers from those they elected into power.
That’s why those of us who work to fight fracking are using the People’s Climate March as a rallying space for us to make sure our leaders hear stories from communities. We want to make sure on the day after the march, people know that climate leaders don’t frack.
There are events all week leading up to the big rally on September 21st that will give you an opportunity to hear from different folks from all around the world about how fracking has impacted them.
We’re going to be supporting our New York friends on Thursday afternoon and bird dogging the Governor of NY pushing him to keep the moratorium on fracking. More information here: https://www.facebook.com/events/734669846604843/
On Thursday September 18th, we’ll be hosting a panel at the MayDay Arts Space in Brooklyn at 7pm where impacted community members from all over the world will be sharing stories of what fracking looks like on the ground. https://www.facebook.com/events/293948137456267/
On the day before the rally, Saturday September 20th, there are multiple events that will be focused on fracking. Some of our favorites so far are a meet up of folks who’ll be marching in the Fracking Bloc!
We’ll be meeting at Tompkins Square at 3:30pm at the Gaia Tree, which is at the center of the square. The closest address is: 500 E 9th St, New York, NY 10009. For more information you can reach out to email@example.com
There’s also a great panel right after the meet up at the New School hosted by our friends at Idle No More and Frack Action at 5pm. #FRACK OFF: Indigenous Women Leading Media Campaigns to Defend our Climate https://www.facebook.com/events/1465144983761870/
We also want to encourage you to come march with the fracking bloc at the People’s Climate March! We will be lining up between 80th to 81st St with our allies who fight Tar Sands and Mountaintop Removal. Make sure you get to the rally point early, the NYPD may need to close off certain meet up spots after 11am to make sure the march gets moving on time.
Looking forward to seeing all of you in the streets on the 21st!
At a meeting of the full Council on July 14, 2014, a motion proposed by Green Party Councillor Craig Simmons was passed, committing the council to make no direct investments in the fossil fuel industry for moral reasons.
Thanks to hard work from the inspiring local campaign group ‘Fossil Free Oxfordshire’ and dedicated councillors, the motion received near unanimous support and is a cause for celebration.
The group publicly announces the success this week as part of the People’s Climate Mobilisation, the largest mobilisation on climate action ever, ahead of the UN Climate Summit in New York. Hundreds of thousands of people will be demonstrating over the weekend, with more than 2,000 events registered in 150 countries.
Councillor Ruthi Brandt who seconded the divestment motion says, “We are proud that Oxford is the first local authority in the country to highlight the need to stop investing in fossil fuels.This is an industry that should be winding down rather than investing in more and more extreme forms of fossil fuel extraction.”
Al Chisholm, a driving force behind the Fossil Free Oxfordshire campaign says, “We are delighted that the council has publicly recognised that the fossil fuel industry’s business model and activities are harmful and inconsistent with the Council’s mission and values. This move denies the industry the economic and moral support of another public institution.”
Fossil Free Oxfordshire celebrated the move but stressed that the campaign group was committed to going further; todays announcement ‘strengthening their resolve’ to take on the City Councils indirect investment policy, and Oxfordshire County Council, whose pension fund has £42m invested in fossil fuels.
Oxford has been a real hub of divestment activity in the UK, with powerful campaigns across the University and Church community as well. A fossil fuel divestment motion will be taken to the Oxford Diocese in November, increasing pressure on the Church of England to make a firm commitment as churches here and abroad reconsider their relationship with this damaging industry.
Following intense pressure from the Oxford University Fossil Free campaign – including supportive motions from over 50% of college Common Rooms and a letter signed by 64 academics – the Socially-Responsible Investment Review Committee (SRIRC) of the University will also make its first presentation on fossil fuel divestment in November.
Although by no means the end in Oxford, this is a positive step for both the UK and global movement. Already 29 cities, 13 universities and a number of faith groups, foundations and other organisations around the world have committed to end investments in the fossil fuel industry. In the UK organisations such as the Quakers and the British Medical Association are amongst that number, and we hope today’s announcement may spark a ripple of activity in councils across the country.
If you’re interested in encouraging your council to divest from fossil fuels, please do get in touch! firstname.lastname@example.org
On September 22nd, I’m skipping school.
At 12:00pm on any normal Monday, I’d be sitting in “The History of Energy” at my small liberal arts school in midcoast Maine, learning about the fossil fuel extraction that got us here and where we’re headed next. The day after the People’s Climate March, however, I’m trading the classroom to confront the board room to stand with the #FloodWallStreet call to action, because the history of energy isn’t in a textbook – It’s on Wall Street.
In my hometown of Deer Park, Texas – just outside of Houston – I’ve seen firsthand how our economic system is tied to the environmental injustice of the fossil fuel industry. Coming from a community financially dependent on companies like Shell, Exxon Mobil, and Dow Chemical, I joined Bowdoin’s divestment campaign this past year because I didn’t want my college investing in and profiting from an industry that polluted the air of my friends and loved ones. I’ve realized, however, that the real battle isn’t against the refineries in Houston, nor against the people who work there to feed their families. The heart of the movement is about changing the system that allows such practices to continue, and by bolstering the extractive economy of fossil fuel companies, Wall Street has entrenched itself in the climate crisis.
It’s hard to dispute the interconnectedness of the fossil fuel industry and Wall Street. The big banks are in bed with the carbon industry, thus financing new extraction projects and collaborating on changing the rules and regulations through lobbying groups like ALEC. But Wall Street isn’t only in bed with the industry – Wall Street firms and fossil fuel companies have entered our institutions of higher education. From big bank big-wigs on university boards of trustees, to the high finance resumes of our college presidents, the connection to our school systems is all too clear. The people in our board rooms are in those offices, and it’s time we address them front and center.
Campaigns across the country have fought to meet with their board of trustees, but this time, we’re not requesting a meeting. We’re flooding Wall Street to say that we believe a “good economy” invests in industries that value the people who sustain it; to call for real investments in a just future for all; and to show our schools, our board members, and the big banks that if investing in an extractive economy is business as usual, business hours are over. We won’t stand any longer for an industry that’s destroying our environment and our lives. It’s time we stand up for our futures by sitting in on Wall Street.
In our class last Wednesday, my professor said that climate change in the History of Energy was “the elephant in the room.” We’re never going to address the topic directly, but climate change affects all aspects of our energy system – where we’ve been, where we are, and where we’re going. While we can’t change the history of energy, my hope for next Monday is to take its future into our own hands. I may be missing class for this, but I think my professor will understand.
Story by Allyson Gross, student at Bowdin College.
Photo by Miles Goodrich.
*Participation in this event is being led by students of the divestment movement.
To attend: Student Divestment Bloc at Flood Wall Street
When: Monday, September 22, 8:30 AM
Where: SE corner of Battery Park, NYC
Why: Student divestment activists will take part in the Flood Wall Street action targeting Wall Street profiteers’ influence on campus and impact on our climate.https://www.dropbox.com/s/9gw5rxgoo4289tf/Flood%20Wall%20Street.mp4?dl=0
Love the Bald Eagle? How about the Baltimore Oriole? These are just a couple of the bird species threatened by climate change. According to Audubon’s Birds and Climate Change Report, shifting and shrinking ranges could endanger nearly half of North American bird species. Watch the video below to find out more.
Courtesy of the National Audubon Society
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 15, 2014Communities Across Canada Gear Up for Historic Climate Mobilization Hundreds from Across Canada to Join March in New York, Dozens of Rallies Planned at Home
New York, NY – Next weekend, hundreds of people from Canada will be heading to the Peoples Climate March in New York City, slated to be one of the largest and most diverse climate change mobilizations in history. Even more communities in Canada will be joining local events in their communities on September 20th and 21st, just days before the United Nations Climate Summit.
“This match isn’t just about size. It’s about showing that people are standing alongside those impacted most by climate change and extreme extraction,” said Eriel Deranger, Communications Coordinator for the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation. “People are impacted from the extraction of carbon polluting industries such as the Tar Sands and fracking, as well as the way to the extreme impacts of climate change. People in New York know that all too well having faced the devastating impacts of Superstorm Sandy. It’s important we march together.”
Up to a dozen busses will be travelling to New York from Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Kingston and Halifax. Youth, elders, members of the faith community, labour union members, renewable energy advocates, students and many more will be gathering as a part of the Tar Sands Free bloc at the march, marching behind communities impacted by climate disasters like Hurricane Sandy, and Indigenous peoples resisting tar sands and other extreme extraction in Canada and beyond.
“It’s time to stop negotiating, because whilst these governments haggle over our lives, Indigenous and People of Color on the frontlines are dying.” says Crystal Lameman, a member of the Beaver Lake Cree First Nation and Climate Campaigner with Sierra Club Alberta. “We are here to take a stand. Enough is enough, we will not allow these governments to covet our air and our water. We are building a wall of defense and we are stopping tar sands at the source.”
Stephen Harper has announced he will not attend the UN climate summit happening two days after the march while Canada’s climate inaction and support for fossil fuel expansion remains a major issue blocking global action on climate change.
“It’s shameful that in this era of climate change, Stephen Harper refuses to face the music about his atrocious climate record in front of the world,” says Melina Laboucan-Massimo, a member of the Lubicon Cree Nation and Climate Campaigner with Greenpeace Canada. “We know he’s reluctant to go for a reason and we’re prepared to bring momentum home from this march and build a chorus calling for real, just climate action back in Canada.”
Dozens of actions are being planned across Canada to coincide with the summit in New York, many connecting the dots between the summit and local struggles against tar sands, pipelines and other fossil fuel infrastructure. Actions are being planned all along the route of the newly proposed Energy East tar sands pipeline, and hundreds of people are expected to gather on the West Coast for a cross-border rally at the Peace Arch Border Crossing opposing extreme energy exports through the Salish Sea.
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For all inquiries about the March in New York and general media inquiries contact:
Maryam Adrangi – email@example.com, 917-355-7292
For inquiries about actions in Canada, buses or to be put in contact with local spokespeople in Canada contact:
Cameron Fenton – firstname.lastname@example.org, 604-369-2155
3) Activists promise biggest climate march in history (The Guardian)http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/sep/08/activists-promise-biggest-climate-march-in-history 4) Will the People’s Climate March be this generation’s March on Washington? (Waging Nonviolence) http://wagingnonviolence.org/feature/will-peoples-climate-march-historic-waste-time/ 5) Climate Film Gets Activists Pumped for NYC March (Grist) http://grist.org/politics/climate-film-gets-activists-pumped-for-nyc-march/ 6) New York to Become a Hub of Climate Hubbub (Climate Central) http://www.treehugger.com/climate-change/over-950-organizations-commit-peoples-climate-march.html 8) DA Drops Charges Against Anti-Coal Activists, Says He’ll See Them at the Climate March (Salon) http://www.salon.com/2014/09/08/da_drops_charges_against_anti_coal_activists_says_hell_see_them_at_the_climate_march/ 9) Climate Week NYC: Top 10 Places To Be (Inside Climate News) http://insideclimatenews.org/news/20140908/climate-week-nyc-top-10-places-be 10) City Hall rally promotes People’s Climate March (Capital New York)
Cross-posted from peoplesclimate.org…
I am not much of a writer, but I can’t help but write about what I’m witnessing right now. Both as 350 and as a larger climate movement, I believe we are hitting a new stride – and it is completely thrilling to both be a part of and imagine where this could take us. Let me explain.
We’re just more than one week away from the People’s Climate March and Mobilisation (PCM). Tens or hundreds of thousands of people will turn out on the streets of New York City in likely the largest and most diverse climate demonstration ever. Around the world mobilisations are planned in over 1,500 locations in 138 countries and counting. If you are not involved already, don’t miss out: www.peoplesclimate.org/join-an-event (or start your own here: www.peoplesclimate.org/register).
This is going to be huge, powerful, and beautiful. And it is not just the scale that makes this moment so special. Perhaps even more interesting is all that is emerging in the process of organising and coordinating this moment.
Beginning with what I’m closest to here is a taste of what’s going on within 350 amidst the PCM build-up:
In India and Indonesia our teams are connecting more deeply than ever with local groups to step up action in the push to shift away from coal to community based renewable energy – a struggle that will continue as long as it takes to get the job done. In Europe and Australia where friends at Avaaz and GetUp! are planning some of the largest PCM events our team is working with them to mobilise Fossil Free Divestment groups to join in as we continue to scale up the divestment movement across those continents as well as in the US and Canada. (Oh, and just to top it off, we’re calling on the Vatican to divest too!) In Africa our team has just launched the #WeLeadYou campaign to stand up for climate justice in the places where climate change is hitting hardest. In Brazil, we are taking on the Ruralistas in the upcoming Brazilian elections. Elsewhere in Latin America our team is collaborating with communities in Argentina to step up the fight against fracking, and we are teamed up with the groups preparing for a People’s Climate Summit at the next UNFCCC summit in Lima, Peru this December. And in Oceania, Pacific Warriors are working with local groups in Newcastle, Australia to blockage the largest coal port in the world on 17 October. In all of these places, Global Power Shift groups are among main drivers making all these efforts a reality.
All this creative action and campaigning is reflective of progress being made by a much wider movement as well.
The Pacific Warriors action in Australia will also be a part of anti-coal actions planned during a whole week of action planned in October called Reclaim Power, which also features the Global Frackdown Day. Greenpeace recently organised #SaveTheArctic events around the globe, and they are keeping the campaign going with the Global #IceRide on 4 October. The International Trade Union Confederation’s World Day for Decent Work on 7 October is geared towards Climate Justice. The communities hit by Typhoon Haiyan are preparing for action on the 1 year anniversary of that horrific storm. And there is undoubtedly far more climate organising locally, nationally, and regionally around the world than we could possibly capture in one blog post.
All of these efforts and more are combining into an ever-growing movement force. And as local groups, organisations, and networks we’re finding more and more ways to synergise, unite, and reach new audiences. As has been the slogan for the People’s Climate March in New York: to change everything, we need everyone. And I will simply add, we need to work together.
Whether it be through formal alliances or ad hoc collaboration we need to mobilise together – more strategically and more powerfully. Not everyone can be a part of every mobilisation there is, but no one single mobilisation will be all it takes either. It’s our collective, growing drumbeat that will ultimately create the cultural, political, and economic conditions where the transformation we seek can be realised.
PCM is the mobilisation at hand now, but it definitely does not stop there. And through PCM we are learning how to connect and unite in just the ways we need. I for one, can’t wait to see how we take all this learning and energy collectively into 2015 and beyond. But I’m getting a bit ahead of myself. For right now the focus is on 20-21 September: #PeoplesClimate!
Will Bates is the Global Campaigns Director at 350.org
Here are just a few of the more impressive numbers coming together for the People’s Climate March on September 21st. If you’re ready to be a part of this historic event, click here to get plugged in.
50: US states that will be represented at the march.
374: Buses and trains currently listed online for travel to New York City for the march.
26: City blocks the NYPD has reserved for us to assemble in before the march. That’s a lot of room for us to fill.
1100+: the number of community, labor, environmental justice, faith and progressive groups who have endorsed the march. More join every day.
28: Different religious faiths and denominations represented in that list of endorsing organizations.
20: The minimum number of marching bands we’re expecting, to make sure we are a movement that dances as well as marches.
300+: The number of college campuses where students are mobilizing to come to New York.
1500: Actions planned worldwide for the weekend of Sept. 20th and 21st, in 130 countries.
40,000: The number of people at the biggest US climate march to date. (Last year’s Forward on Climate march in DC). I’m confident we can do much bigger on the 21st.
401 parts per million: The peak concentration of carbon in the atmosphere measured by the world’s leading scientists this spring — higher than any time in human history.
0: The amount of progress we’ll make if we stay home. There’s no guarantee this will work. The only thing that’s for sure is if we stay home, nothing will change — except the climate.
In October this year 30 Pacific Climate Warriors from 12 different islands will arrive on Australian shores to stand up to the coal and gas industry.
We are now excited to announce that on October 17th, the Pacific Climate Warriors will use the canoes they have built to paddle out into the harbour of the world’s largest coal port – Newcastle – to stop coal exports for a day.
The port of Newcastle is exporting destruction upon our Pacific Islands at an unprecedented scale, and plans for expansion are underfoot. If the port were a country, it would be ranked 9th in the world in terms of emissions.If nothing is done to transition away from the fossil fuel industry, many of our Islands will lose everything.
Pacific Islanders have spent over twenty years negotiating and pleading with countries like Australia to cut their emissions and to stop digging up fossil fuels – to save their homelands and their cultures. But still, the coal and gas industry is doing the opposite of that. They’re ramping up extraction at an unprecedented rate, while continuing to attack the renewable energy industry. It is a radical attack on our Islands and our cultures.
For the future of our cultures and Islands, we can’t sit by and watch that happen. That’s why Islanders from across the Pacific have been preparing for this journey to Australia, and building traditional canoes. For most, this has been a first – warriors have been reconnecting with their cultures in order to take up the fight they need to save them.Next month we will bring those canoes to Australia to stop the destruction of our Islands at its source. This is going to be an incredible, landmark action, and will send a powerful message: we will not stand idly by as the coal industry sinks the future of the Pacific Islands.
And you can help us!
Firstly, This is an expensive undertaking and our Pacific Island teams have been fundraising locally to build the canoes and make the journey. Any contribution towards these costs would be greatly appreciated. Click here to chip in and support the Pacific Climate Warriors!
Second, if you’re in Australia and close by we want you to come and join us. The more people we can get to join us the bigger and better the message will be. Register for the event here! For those outside of Australia, visit the website to find out how you can stand in solidarity with the Pacific Climate Warriors – click here.
Why not? The answer will (probably) both shock and disturb you. Watch the video below to find out:
Courtesy of Climate Council
Petrolify: The miracle pill that can help satisfy your every want, but with potentially fatal side effects
Is this concentrated oil solution right for you? Watch the video below to find out, but remember, side effects can be severe and continued use could even lead to extinction.
Courtesy of Post Carbon Institute
A poetic action by artists local and global is making its way to the convergence in New York by way of the Hudson River. SeaChange: We All Live Downstream, a collaboration between 350.org and Brooklyn-based maritime arts collective Mare Liberum
, has handcrafted a flotilla of life-size canoes made of paper and is paddling them the full length of the Hudson River estuary from Troy, NY to New York City in the weeks leading up to the People’s Climate March.
The SeaChange crew will be joined by local paddlers as they make their way down the river, stopping to hold community potlucks, performances, screenings, and talks in riverside towns including Albany, Catskill, Hudson, Tivoli, Newburgh, Cold Spring, Peekskill, Ossining, and finally New York City. The Hudson Valley is an important watershed region and home to communities struggling with the effects of climate change and the industries that fuel it, from encroaching hydro-fracking developments to dangerous crude oil transport. The SeaChange journey will connect these local communities’ concerns to each other, as well as to the larger global struggle against climate change manifesting in New York City this September during the People’s Climate March and the UN Climate Summit.
Some of these issues and projects on the Hudson include:
• Dangerous proposals by Global Partners and other energy companies to create a “virtual pipeline” of trains and boats that would increase transport of fracked Bakken crude and crude oil – potentially from Alberta’s tar sands. A spill would mean disaster for the Hudson River ecosystem and the communities along its shore, and what isn’t spilled means disaster for our climate and civilization as we know it. The SeaChange Flotilla passed one of these transshipment points on the second day of their journey.
• Organizations like Riverkeeper
are working hard to revive the Hudson’s water quality from decades of industrial misuse, and to halt the advancement of industrial gas drilling.
• At Indian Point, near Peekskill and just 40 miles north of New York City, a nuclear power plant is using river water as a coolant, creating radioactive waste and potential for a Fukushima-like nuclear catastrophe which would affect the whole region, as well as the ocean. Nuclear energy has been touted as a “sustainable” alternative to burning fossil fuels, but local organizations like Indian Point Safe Energy Coalition show us why this high volume of water appropriation and radioactive waste are NOT sustainable or carbon neutral.
So what do paper boats have to do with all of this? As artists, the makers of SeaChange are interested in the poetry of the paper boat. These social sculptures and the accompanying journey provide a model of a sustainable, nomadic community on the water. It gives a sense of what might be possible.
Confronting climate change and the powerful industries which fuel it can sometimes seem as impossible as a boat made out of paper, but the SeaChange idea is that if we apply resistance, layer upon layer, just as they’ve applied paper to make these boats, we will come up with something strong and sturdy that keeps us afloat.
The SeaChange flotilla will arrive in New York City on September 13th and lead an exciting circumnavigation of Manhattan the next day and into the night of September 14th. Expect music, lights, and fanfare on the water as the paddlers model the need to stay afloat on rising sea levels and come up with creative solutions to the challenge of climate change.
Follow SeaChange on Twitter: @seachange2014
& Instagram: @seachange2014
Read dispatches from the river on our SeaChange Journal