On April 5 CSW tuned into another Climate Reality Check Coalition conference call, this time discussing upcoming events that climate activists and allies are organizing to draw public attention to the grave environmental problems we face today – in particular the stranglehold of the fossil fuel industry on our energy system. Organizers discussed upcoming actions including: Earth Day 2012, 350.org Climate Impacts Day, Alliance for Appalachia’s Week in Washington and Day of Action to End Mountaintop Removal, and Hands Across the Sand. The call included a lively discussion about tying a wide variety of actions into a coherent narrative of positive change.
You can listen to a recording of the teleconference here.
The participating organizations are acting as vehicles for large-scale actions, but also helping to foster smaller, community-led events. In this way, the climate change movement takes on both local and global significance simultaneously. For the most part, participants can choose to attend already-scheduled events, or create one of their own. Such an interconnected structure is essential for keeping direct action relevant on local, national, and global scales, as well as to as many environmentalists as possible.
In this call, speakers representing separate organizations spoke about upcoming opportunities to take action for change. The call also functioned to place the organizations themselves within a larger narrative, where many causes taking on different roles but acting in tandem can help move the world away from fossil fuels.
Earth Day 2012: Mobilize the Earth
- WHEN: April 22, 2012
- WHERE: Global; Earth Day on the National Mall
- WHY: Earth Day is building a new movement of sustainable change in a sustainable future, where people take better care of their environment, of their communities, and of themselves. To let world leaders know this is a movement that the global population really cares about, Earth Day Network is hoping to collect 1 billion Acts of Green to take to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiroon June 22, 2012.
To participate, you can attend an Earth Day event or organize your own. Be sure to also register your “Act of Green.” You can plant a garden, organize an Earth Day event, plant a tree, sign a petition to protect the Amazon, or create your own.
For those interested and/or living in the Washington, D.C.area, check out Earth Day on the National Mall, which will feature speakers, celebrities, musical talent, renewable energy demonstrations, non-profit/embassy booths, and interactive exhibits.
350.org Climate Impacts Day: Connecting the Dots Between Extreme Weather and Climate Change
- WHEN: May 5, 2012
- WHERE: Global
- WHY: to link individual thoughts and opinions on climate change, like individual events, into a single, worldwide narrative that underscores the urgency of climate change mitigation and serves as a wake up call for the world.
The organization’s “About” page reads:
"Record heat-breaking waves inRussia, wildfires inAustralia, floods inThailand. Every time we pick up the newspaper and read about another record-breaking natural disaster, it becomes increasing clear that climate change is not a future problem – it’s happening right now. Connect the Dots is a project of 350.org and our partner organizations, to shine a spotlight on the connections between extreme weather and climate change. We will use these connections as a wake-up call for our communities the media, and our politicians.”
You can start an event or attend an existing one. So far, there are five events planned for various locations around theWashington,D.C. area, CSW’s stomping grounds.
Alliance for Appalachia’s Week in Washington and A Day of Action to End Mountaintop Removal
- WHEN: June 2-6, 2012
- WHERE: Washington,D.C.
- WHY: to bring together citizens from across the nation who want to end mountaintop removal mining and want to make this topic a priority in the election year.
- Sign up here for more information.
Alliance for Appalachia is a coalition of grassroots groups fighting mountaintop removal mining. They aim to hold bad actors in Appalachian districts accountable for the destructive effects of their actions on communities.
Participants will meet with their Congressional representatives and agency officials, as well as participate in the culminating event on June 6, A Day of Action to End Mountaintop Removal.
Participants will receive training on mountaintop removal information and strategies to end it. Be sure to check out a detailed schedule and sign up to participate using the links above. If you are unable to attend but still want to help, you can donate to support the Week in Washington or sponsor and attendee.
Week In Washington is just one of eight actions that will occur within a three-week period – all part of the organizers’ attempts to create an “Appalachia Rising” narrative.
Hands Across the Sand
- WHEN: August 4, 2012
- WHERE: Global
- WHY: Hands aims to bring together like-minded organizations and individuals to promote a clean energy future that will end our dependence on dirty fuel sources. By creating human chains, Hands Across the Sand metaphorically and literally stands against the threats fossil fuels pose to the planet.
Hands Across the Sand is a small organization that got its start in February 2010 to protest the efforts by the Florida Legislature and the US Congress to lift the ban on oil drilling in the near and offshores of Florida. The movement gained national and international significance as more than 1000 Hands events took place on June 26, 2010, in response to the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.
Visit the organization’s webpage to enroll in an event planned for your area, or sign up as an organizer to make your own. Participants will physically link hands in solidarity against offshore drilling and to support clean energy. Events will occur at various locations across the world. You can find one or start your own; Hands Across the Sand will provide organizers with guidance and promotional resources like flyers, t-shirts, banner ads and press materials.