Posted by: JanF | September 20, 2014

People’s Climate March: September 21, 2014

With the mid-term elections heating up and a dozen issues being promoted as The Most Important Issue of Our Day, it is easy to lose track of an issue that really deserves our attention: Climate Change. It is, quite literally, an issue that we ignore at our own peril.

In New York City on Sunday, the People’s Climate March will serve to remind people of this vitally important issue and at least get it right-pathed even if it can’t be immediately addressed.

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The People’s Climate March

In September, world leaders are coming to New York City for a UN summit on the climate crisis. UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is urging governments to support an ambitious global agreement to dramatically reduce global warming pollution.

With our future on the line and the whole world watching, we’ll take a stand to bend the course of history. We’ll take to the streets to demand the world we know is within our reach: a world with an economy that works for people and the planet; a world safe from the ravages of climate change; a world with good jobs, clean air and water, and healthy communities.

To change everything, we need everyone on board.

Sunday, September 21 in New York City. Join us.

Addressing climate change makes economic sense: Paul Krugman: Could fighting global warming be cheap and free?

This just in: Saving the planet would be cheap; it might even be free. But will anyone believe the good news?

I’ve just been reading two new reports on the economics of fighting climate change: a big study by a blue-ribbon international group, the New Climate Economy Project, and a working paper from the International Monetary Fund. Both claim that strong measures to limit carbon emissions would have hardly any negative effect on economic growth, and might actually lead to faster growth. This may sound too good to be true, but it isn’t. These are serious, careful analyses. […]

So here’s what you need to know: Climate despair is all wrong. The idea that economic growth and climate action are incompatible may sound hardheaded and realistic, but it’s actually a fuzzy-minded misconception. If we ever get past the special interests and ideology that have blocked action to save the planet, we’ll find that it’s cheaper and easier than almost anyone imagines.

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People can vote to save the earth:

In Ohio, Gov. John Kasich (R) is up for re-election. Here is his position on renewable energy:

Ohio Gov. John Kasich signed legislation [in June] that will freeze his state’s renewable energy and energy efficiency standards at their current levels for two years, legislation that makes his state the first in the nation to roll back its renewable energy standard.[…]

The measure will freeze the state’s renewable energy standard and energy efficiency program at 2014 levels for two years, during which time a committee will study how the standard impacts the state and whether or not further changes should be made. Currently, Ohio’s RES stipulates that the state’s utilities must get 12.5 percent of their energy from renewable sources by 2025. […]

Ohio residents also supported the state’s standards: A poll released last month by the Ohio Advanced Energy Economy found 72 percent of respondents were in favor of the renewable energy standards.

According to a report by the Ohio Advanced Energy Economy, the standards also led to significant savings for Ohioans. From 2009 to 2013, the RES saved Ohio residents $1.03 billion and cost $456 million, according to the report.

In Texas: Seven of nineteen proposed social studies textbooks in Texas distort climate science and climate change, a report by the National Center for Science Education found on Monday.

In Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania state agency that regulates gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing was explicitly ordered by members of Gov. Tom Corbett’s administration to remove several references to “climate change” from the agency’s website

In Florida: 42 Climate Scientists To Rick Scott: Climate Change ‘Is Not A Hypothetical’

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People can support the art of Sebastiao Salgado . His Genesis project is now at the International Center for Photography in New York City:

Genesis is the third long-term series on global issues by world-renowned photographer Sebastião Salgado (born Brazil, 1944), following Workers (1993) and Migrations (2000). The result of an eight-year worldwide survey, the exhibition draws together more than 200 spectacular black-and-white photographs of wildlife, landscapes, seascapes, and indigenous peoples—raising public awareness about the pressing issues of environment and climate change. ICP is proud to be the first U.S. venue of this momentous exhibition, which is curated by Lélia Wanick Salgado.

From NPR: His Camera Takes Us To The World ‘We Must Preserve’

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Next week’s United Nations meeting: New Yorker: Bringing the Noise on Climate Change

Next Tuesday, leaders of a hundred and twenty nations, President Barack Obama among them, are scheduled to gather in New York for the United Nations climate summit, called by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Ahead of the summit, on Sunday, tens of thousands of demonstrators are expected to march through midtown Manhattan demanding that those leaders take action. Almost certainly, the leaders will disappoint the marchers, not to mention anyone else who cares about the future of the planet, though by how much, exactly, will probably not be clear for many months.[…]

Organizers of Sunday’s march are hoping to demonstrate that there’s broad-based political support for cutting emissions; the other day, they told the Times that they are expecting buses from as far away as Kansas and Minnesota. The march is supposed to culminate not with speeches but with a great, deafening clamor. “Own a trumpet?” the author and environmental activist (and former New Yorker staff writer) Bill McKibben has advised. “Bring it. Own a vuvuzela? Definitely bring it.” […]

For next year’s meeting in Paris to produce an agreement that’s meaningful, that agreement is going to have to somehow yield truly significant emissions reductions, and do so quickly. After twenty-two years of failed attempts, it’s hard to be optimistic about this prospect.

But for this very reason, you’ve got to give those who are planning to march on Sunday that much more credit for trying. (It seems that the Secretary-General himself will also attend the march.) There’s a lot of inertia in the climate system, and whatever we do to it now, our descendants are going to have to live with the results for a long, long time. […]

As Governor Jay Inslee, of Washington, recently summed up the situation, “We are the first generation to feel the sting of climate change, and we are the last generation that can do something about it.”

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