From Eastport, Maine to Los Angeles, California, North Americans concerned about global warming are holding events later this week to demand action by the federal government and the thousands of delegates at the United Nations Climate Conference meeting in Montreal this week and next.
In Washington, DC, hybrid cars will ring the White House while fiddlers liken President Bush to Nero, fiddling while the world burns. True to its festive traditions, New Orleans, drawing attention to their unenviable title as ‘most vulnerable city in North America’, according to the International Panel on Climate Change, will host a “Save New Orleans, Stop Global Warming” party in the French Quarter.
In Los Angeles local activists plan to individually reach at least 10,000 people by organizing directly in the streets and city buses in inner city Black, Latino, and Asian LA neighborhoods with the message, “Stop Hurricane USA!”
In arid Arizona, on the Hopi Nation, the newly elected Hopi Tribal Chair Ivan Sidney will be attending a community forum, “Coal, Water, Wind, and Sun” focused on the effects of the closing of the Mojave (coal-fired) Generating Station and Black Mesa Mine at the end of this year. In Madison, Wisconsin there will be a two-hour Critical Mass bike ride on the University of Wisconsin campus. In St. Paul, Minnesota activists will gather outside the residence of Governor Tim Pawlenty for a noontime picket calling for a reduction of Minnesota’s greenhouse gas emissions and that his colleague President Bush help solve the climate crisis.
Students will be active around the country, including at Penn State in State College, Pa., where they will dump coal on the campus green at a demonstration protesting the school president’s refusal to meet with them about reducing greenhouse gases. Also in Pennsylvania, several Native American groups will be rallying in Doylestown and Harrisburg, drumming, praying and singing, calling for U.S.
ratification of the Kyoto Protocol.
Altogether, actions are expected in over 25 states. A fuller listing, including contact information, can be accessed at http://www.climatecrisis.us.
These actions will be part of the International Day of Action to Stop Global Warming, participated in by groups in 30 countries (http://www.globalclimatecampaign.org).
The world’s largest demonstration will be taking place on the afternoon of December 3rd in Montreal (http://www.3dec2005.org). Hundreds of U.S. citizens will be heading north to participate in this action. Smaller actions will be taking place in Montreal throughout the time of the United Nations conference, from November 28th to December 9th.
One such action will take place on the morning of December 3rd in front of the U.S. Consulate in Montreal at the corner of Rue Saint-Alexandre and Ave. Rene-Levesque. At 10:30 am Energy Action, Environmental Defense, Greenpeace, Kyoto and Beyond and other groups will present close to 2/3 of a million signatures of U.S. citizens on petitions calling for action by the U.S. to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
It’s long past time for U.S. government leaders to catch up with popular opinion on this urgent issue. The world scientific community is in agreement. Global warming is real, it is accelerating, and the time is now to get serious about substantial reductions in greenhouse gases caused by the burning of coal, oil and natural gas. According to Fox News, 60% of the American people agree that this is a major issue. U.S. government delegates in Montreal and members of Congress should represent this sentiment and act accordingly. And activists should plan to keep ratcheting up the pressure until they do.