This past Saturday on Green 960 Sandra Steingraber was discussing her article The Big Talk: How to tell a six year old where all the birds and bees have gone. The most striking part of the interview was Steingraber's recollection of a comment she received from a retired teacher, regarding an experience she had with her students during the 1960s.
It seems that when the teacher asked how many of them believed that the country would be destroyed by a nuclear bomb, every student, except one, raised his or her hand. So of course, she asked the one student why she felt differently from the rest of her classmates.
Because my parents are activists in the anti-nuclear movement, the student responded.
WE ALL SHOUTED PUSH!
This segues superbly into the theme of tonight's Ecojustice: standing up, being counted, and growing movements of solidarity.
This week marks the beginning of the second trial of Stine Gry Jonassen and Tannie Nyboe, who were arrested for initiating the Reclaim Power demonstrations during December 2009's COP15. Jonassen and Nyboe were tried and found guilty under Danish anti-terrorism laws and are currently engaged in an appeal to have all charges dropped. Charges against them include planning violence against police, gross vandalism, serious disturbance of public peace and order, and trespassing. The results of the second trial are due to be released at the end of this week. (Follow The Climate Collective for updates.)
The scapegoating of these two activists has solidified the climate justice movement, most visibly through its WE ALSO SHOUTED PUSH campaign, but also in the online and real world collaborations which were birthed on the streets outside the Bella Center and are gaining momentum in the lead up to the COP17 talks next November in Durban, SA.
Time to be honest
Nick Buxton speaks to Tim DeChristopher, an activist shaking up the mainstream US environmental movement
Tim DeChristopher caused consternation among oil executives and their US government cohorts in December 2008 when he won 14 bids at an auction of oil and gas leases in Utah – worth $1.8 million dollars – and then announced he had no intention of using or paying for them. It turned out he was a 28 year old economics student from Salt Lake University, who came to the auction to take direct action to keep fossil fuels in the ground in an area known for its natural beauty.Read the entire interview here
Forcing delays in the auction in the dying days of the Bush presidency, his action proved successful as most of the leases were subsequently cancelled by the Obama administration. However this environmental victory did nothing to prevent the legal system punishing DeChristopher for his principled audacity. In March 2011, an eight person jury - confined by the parameters set by the judge who disallowed any examination of his motives - found DeChristopher guilty. He will face sentencing on 23 June, and could face up to ten years in jail and up to $750,000 in fines.
Since his arrest, DeChristopher has emerged as a leading and critical voice in the US environmental movement, calling for more radical direct action and slamming the major environmental groups for pursuing a strategy of ‘incrementalism’ that has not delivered results. He has also urged environmentalists to be honest and not pretend we can stop climate change; but instead look to stop its worst effects and make sure that we undermine the structures and corporations that will try to benefit from the climate crisis. Red Pepper writer Nick Buxton spoke with DeChristopher at a student-led conference on sustainability at the University of California of Davis on 30 April 2011.
The June Fast Magazine showcase of the 100 most creative people in business includes Brazil's Chief Almir of the Surui, who partnered with Google earth to tackle deforestation and illegal logging in the Amazon. Members of his tribe are equipped with GPS-SmartPhones to video and geo-tag and upload images to Google Earth. The tribe documents clear cut areas and begins plans to replant.
Almir's message: "It is not simply about planting, but how planting can affect climate change."
"Let's Amazonize the world," he said in an interview with Fast Company.
I'm with you, Chief Almir. You plant. I'll push.
The EcoJustice Group focuses on environmental justice: the disproportionate impacts on human health and all living things as a result of climate change, extreme weather, and pollution. A key emphasis of our writing is the disproportionate environmental impacts on minority communities and developing countries around the world. A key tenet of Environmental Justice is that all living things have a right to clean, healthy and sustainable communities.
Today, the concept of Environmental Justice extends to include such related issues as climate, food and ecosystem justice.
Please join EcoJustice Monday evenings at 7PM PDT.
About the Climate Collective
The Climate Collective is a network of people and groups working to prevent catastrophic climate change. We are a broad network that has come together around the following points:A video of the Reclaim Power Action @ COP15
* A clear anti-capitalist stance in the climate debate
* Supporting real solutions to climate change
* Taking radical action NOW to confront the underlying causes of climate change
Wed Jun 01, 2011 at 10:41 AM PT: Stine and Tannie's court case that had been appealed to the second level
of court has finished today. The two CJA spokespersons have been
sentenced to two months jail plus two months probation, and to pay the
costs of court.