Call For Days Of Climate Direct Action In D.C. And Elsewhere

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10,000-strong crowds marched through Sydney, Melbourne and other major cities, in a call for a strong and binding agreement at UN talks in Copenhagen, 2009.  AFP PHOTO / Greg WOOD

Call to Action 

In recent months many voices have called for larger, escalated action on climate change. We agree. At the beginning of November, as the election campaigns conclude, we call for multiple, consecutive days of climate direct action in Washington, D.C., and elsewhere. Vote we must, but we must do much more.

    We hurtle toward a climate precipice with one foot occasionally, tentatively tapping the brake but the other simultaneously flooring the accelerator on our fossil-fueled economy.

    At the wheel, among others, is the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).  Our government is pretending to navigate, but industry is calling the shots from the back seat. 

    We know how this will end:  very badly, unless we change how we make energy, how we transport ourselves , how we grow food, how the economy is structured, how we measure the economy, and what we value.

    Only our action can make the difference.

    Warnings are everywhere:  persistent drought and heat waves, super storms, rising seas, dead oceans, wildfires, melting glaciers, spoiled rivers, exhausted aquifers, vanishing species, poisoned people. While some of us and some nations have more resources to protect themselves from these catastrophes in the short term, low-income people and people of color globally are already disproportionately harmed.

    But business-as-usual prevails:  pipelines snake through communities; compressor stations are installed; flames roar from frack chimneys; wells, springs and rivers are polluted; families are forced to buy replacement water; forests fall; farmland turns into fracking factories; toxic and radioactive waste roams the countryside; coal ash and chemicals slide into rivers; blobs of tar lap at our beaches; oil gushes into oceans; methane leaks; explosions rock our towns. They are drilling under our homes, farms, schools, rivers, oceans, parks and graveyards. They are exploding our mountains, stripping our soil. And in Oregon, Louisiana, Georgia, Maine, Texas and Maryland, expensive and dangerous gas export plants now await construction.

    In our November actions, we will turn our attention to fracked gas and all its tentacles. Government, industry and even some big environmental groups herald shale gas as a cleaner energy bridge to the future. The science says otherwise. But adhering to a broken rulebook, FERC and other federal agencies rubber stamp almost every plan. Everywhere becomes the next sacrifice zone. And global temperatures continue to climb.

Our goals:

    WE call on our government to drop its “all of the above” energy strategy. Extreme energy extraction — fracking, tar sands, deep ocean drilling, Arctic drilling, mountaintop removal — of the last fossil fuels condemns us to ravaged landscapes, poisoned water, and weather convulsions. And it ensures catastrophic global warming for future generations.

    WE call on FERC to make decisions based on the well-being of current and future generations and the protection of our shared natural resources. Rubber stamping industry pipelines, compressor stations and export facilities contaminates the air, water, land and climate that support all life on Earth. Specifically, we call on FERC to reject the proposal to build a dangerous gas export facility at Cove Point and to place a moratorium on approvals of other export facilities.

    WE can no longer allow our government to segment gas projects from all others, thereby hiding the full danger. We must look at the whole picture, evaluating what is happening downstream and upstream. Each export terminal creates hazards not only for the local community, but for communities where the shale gas will be extracted, for communities where pipelines and compressor stations are built to transport the gas, and for communities receiving the exported gas. We must also measure the release of climate-disrupting methane and other greenhouse gases during this whole process, from extraction, transport, export, and eventual burning in faraway communities.

    WE call on the Obama administration and FERC to recognize the unfolding disaster guaranteed by fueling our economy from the last dregs of fossil fuels.

    Nothing less will protect our communities, the climate and the Earth. 

 

ACTION: During the week beginning November 1, our coalition will take to the streets of Washington to make these goals a reality. PLEASE JOIN US.

 

Endorsed by:

350 Loudoun

Athens County Fracking Action Network

Berks Gas Truth

Berkshire Environmental Action Team

Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy

 

Calvert Citizens for a Healthy Community

Canary Coalition

Chesapeake Climate Action Network

Chesapeake Physicians For Social Responsibility

Clean Air Council

Code Pink

Food & Water Watch

Fresh Water Accountability Project

Friends of the Earth

Gas Free Seneca

Great March for Climate Action

Interfaith Moral Action on Climate

Marcellus Outreach Butler

Marcellus Protest

Minisink Matters

Myersville Citizens for a Rural Community

Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition

Organic Consumers Association

Pennsylvania Alliance for Clean Water and Air

Pennsylvanians Again Fracking

Popular Resistance

Protect Our Children

Sane Energy Project

Save Lake Arthur Watershed

Shalefield Stories/Friends of the Harmed

The Shalom Center

Stop the Frack Attack Advisory Council

Sandra SteingraberBill McKibbenTim DeChristopherMatt Leonard, Kristin Cook/350 MoCoBarbara Hurd and Ann Bristow Frostburg, Md., Victoria Furio (Climate Justice Convener, Union Theological Seminary)Dana DolneyMichael Bagdes-CanningBriget ShieldsRichard Fireman, MD