Grassroots action opportunities in Seattle at Golden Gardens Park, and in Washington DC by Beyond Coal and 350.org. See details below:
|From Washington State to Washington, D.C., join thousands across the nation in stopping the export of dirty and dangerous fossil fuels. Washington is currently under threat from proposals by Big Coal to ship over 100 million tons of coal through our communities.Governor Jay Inslee has called coal exports, “the largest decision we will be making as a state from a carbon pollution standpoint certainly during my lifetime.” Now is the time to stand up and use our voices to protect our communities and our environment.As thousands march in Washington, D.C. for the 350 Presidents Day Weekend Keystone XL March on the White House, show your support here in Seattle and join in on our first ever “Walking Train Against Coal Trains” March.When: Sunday February 17th, Rally at 11:30, March at 12 (noon)Where: Golden Gardens – At noon we will form a walking train and walk along the beach, wearing red no coal export t-shirts. Along the way we will learn about the dangers of exporting fossil fuels to our climate, waterways and local economy. We will end at Rays Boathouse where appetizers will be provided.
Bring something to make some noise! Kazoos, tambourines, whistles, harmonicas, whatever you want!
Show your support for better vision for Washington, say yes to clean jobs and no to coal exports!
– from Robin Everett, Sierra Club Coal Campaign Organizer
In Washington D.C. grassroots activism has been credited with having played a major role in shutting down or preventing many new US coal fired power plants as well as the failure to (as yet) approve the Keystone XL Tar Sands pipeline construction during the first Obama administration. The Beyond Coal campaign led by the Sierra Club and the 350.org anti tar sands oil campaign have teamed up to push for more serious action on climate change during Obama’s second term. See recent Grist post (Missing the point of cap-and-trade defeat by Mark Hertsgaard) on how the grassroots approach has perhaps greater potential that pushing for one key policy such as the cap and trade legislation has had. There it is said that:
…the two biggest victories the U.S. climate movement scored during Obama’s first term — stopping new coal plants and blocking (for now) the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline — were grounded in the grassroots organizing done by the Sierra Club and 350.org, both of whom see such organizing as a means to a larger end: building a popular movement that is strong enough to challenge the fossil fuel industry’s longstanding dominance of government policy.
Now, as Obama’s second term begins, these two groups have joined hands to sponsor a new effort to pressure the president and federal officials in general to take much stronger actions against climate change during the next four years: the “Obama Climate Legacy and Clean Energy” campaign, which kicks off with a rally in Washington, D.C., on President’s Day weekend, Feb. 17.
Grassroots organizing is not a quick fix. It takes time, humility, and the kind of sustained financial support that few environmental foundations have been willing to provide. But the history of the climate fight — indeed the history of most of America’s progressive reforms, from civil rights and anti-war to economic justice to environmental stewardship and more — suggests that building a robust grassroots movement is a prerequisite to achieving strong and lasting results. It is past time to acknowledge this lesson and apply it as broadly as possible in the fight to preserve a livable climate for our children.