“On Wednesday, October 12th, the Los Angeles City Council passed a resolution in support of Occupy LA activists who have been growing in numbers the past two weeks. Large numbers of activists have been on the grounds of the LA City Hall daily and hundreds of tents house those who are camping there at night.”
Posts Tagged campaign
ver 100 Actions Planned Demanding Schools Switch to 100% Clean Energy
Washington, DC – This week students at Virginia Tech, Purdue University, Bates College in Maine and the University of Illinois kicked off a nationwide month of creative actions focused on moving America’s campus’ beyond coal. The coordinated effort called 100% Clean: 100 Actions for Clean Energy aims to unite local efforts into a nationwide movement to retire university coal plants, cut university ties with the coal industry and move the nation’s institutions of higher education to clean energy solutions.
“We have students on our campus who are getting sick from breathing coal dust coming from the campus coal plant across the street from their dorm. This is unacceptable. We want Virginia Tech and universities nation-wide to be leading the way towards an innovative, healthy and clean energy future, not stuck in the past relying on dirty coal,” said Kara Dodson, a senior at Virginia Tech and Coordinator of the Campuses Beyond Coal campaign on campus.
Since the Sierra Club launched the national Campuses Beyond Coal campaign 16 schools have already committed to retiring their coal-fired plants on campus. Pollution from these plants is responsible for dangerous pollution including mercury, carbon dioxide, arsenic and lead and can lead to more severe asthma attacks, bronchial infections and cancer.
More than 150 students from across Virginia rallied at Virginia Tech wearing face masks and green hard hats at the Virginia Power Shift summit on Sunday. They called on the university administration to live up to their motto, “Invent the Future” by retiring the campus coal plant that poses a health hazard to students.
Speakers included a student who lived in Thomas Hall, a dorm next door to the Virginia Tech coal plant, showing off a black soot covered towel she used to wipe down her window sill. Other students keep air filters in their windows to keep the coal dust out of their homes, but still struggle with the light and noise from the plant on a daily basis that can make it difficult to sleep or study.
“Every year a new group of students are subject to the pollution from this plant and others like it on campuses across the country. It’s time for our universities to step up and lead the way to moving our nation beyond coal and dirty energy to real clean energy solutions,” said Madeline Rigatti a sophomore at Virginia Tech and former Thomas Hall resident. “Students like me have had to live with being sick because we had the bad luck of living near this plant and it’s simply wrong.”
“Students are leading the way pushing their universities to invest in innovative clean energy solutions. This month of action demonstrates the growing momentum on college campuses to move our nation off dirty, 19th century, fuels that are making people sick. Coal, and the soot, smog and other pollution that comes from it impacts Americans across the country. We think that students can help reinvent the American economy by pressuring our administrations to invest in clean, safe and reliable energy on campuses from California to Connecticut” said Kim Teplitzky, Campuses Beyond Coal Campaign Coordinator for the Sierra Club.
Over the next four weeks students will be hosting flash mobs, 60’s dance parties, camp outs, rallies, art builds, call-in days and more to call attention the public health risk of depending on dirty energy in their campuses and communities. At the end of the month student leaders will bring the stories and photos from these events to Washington, D.C. to deliver to the Obama Administration demanding further action to protect public health.
For more information visit wearepowershift.org/100actions
“Reporting from Washington— Not so long ago Barack Obama and his campaign team might have masterminded the kind of conference that is unfolding in downtown Washington, D.C.
Thousands of college students and idealistic young voters came in this weekend to learn organizing techniques aimed at pushing the country toward renewable energy.
But in a measure of how much has changed since the “Yes We Can” spirit of Obama 2008, many in attendance now see him as something of an obstacle.
Frustrated by the pace of clean-energy initiatives, they are planning to use organizing techniques borrowed from the Obama campaign to pressure him to rethink his energy policy.”
For young environmental activists, Obama’s now the one to pressure via Peter Nicholas – LA Times
“At Benedictine Academy, we believe that every child has the right to an education and to be treated with dignity. Child slave labor in the chocolate industrymust be stopped.
A new documentary was recently released, The Dark Side of Chocolate, about child slave labor. We saw how the children were getting beaten and working in the hot sun, unable to go to school,” says student Norky Diaz. Her classmate, Kai Alexander, adds “We knew we had to get involved because we care what happens to children. Chocolate child labor is immoral.” And that is just what we did. Kai Alexander, a passionate writer immediately connected her pen to her heart and wrote a rap/poem for the SHAC (Students helping All Children) Squad to use to raise awareness among their classmates and students in other schools. It is also being used as the soundtrack of our new short documentary about child slave labor in the chocolate industry.”
Why I am Marching at Hershey’s Store in Times Square via Ariana Taveras – Huffington Post
“Double-cupping on your morning cup of Joe will be a thing of the past if some activists have anything to say about it.
And so will paper cups in general.
Seattleite Karin de Weille recently launched an ambitious campaign to banish disposable cups from the everyday routines of people all over the city. She believes quitting to-go cups is a lot like detoxing from any addiction: The first few weeks are the hardest.”
New 3-week community-wide campaign to kick the disposable cup habit
SEATTLE, WA – May 5, 2011 A unique three-week effort to prompt a simultaneous shift in one of our country’s biggest waste problems begins May 21.
Led by New World Habits and supported by coffee shops, non-profits and others, the idea for sudden change is prompted by the theory that any habit can be changed with a concerted three week effort. This theory will be put to the test in Seattle.
The good news is that you don’t have to give up your coffee. You simply need to bring your own cup, just as most of us have learned to bring our own bag to the grocery store.
The habit change is relatively painless yet important as Americans throw away almost half a million cups every 15 seconds. Last year, paper cup usage created close to 400 million pounds of solid waste, and that represents almost a third more than just 4 years earlier! Our thoughtless disposal of single-use items is getting out of control. This trend must be reversed.
Via the website, New World Habits will provide the two essential ingredients to facilitate change: support and a deadline, not to mention the added incentive of a magnified collective impact that is practically instantaneous. The website will track the growing numbers.
Participants will join the effort online and then they can watch a change in personal habits become part of a much larger wave of change. The actual 3-week shift will launch at Green Fest, who is partnering in the initiative along with Sustainable Seattle, Zero Waste Seattle and other organizations. Equally important is the collaboration of coffeehouses, including Caffe Ladro, who will promote the effort by offering discounts. Individuals are encouraged to approach their neighborhood coffeehouses (or office, cafeteria, or community organization) to get them involved: the website offers a flier, including a list of incentives for businesses. Everything is designed to make it easy for the movement to spread at the grassroots level.
“It’s not as difficult as we make it out to be,” says founder and executive director Karin de Weille. “We need to show ourselves that we have the power, that we are the adaptable organisms that today’s fast-changing world requires.” And she believes Seattle is the perfect place to test this point. Seattle City Council President Richard Conlin concurs, “This initiative is another example of Seattle’s environmental leadership. Let’s show that we can do this, and our success will be duplicated in other cities.”
The campaign addresses the powerlessness we often feel as individuals. According to de Weille, “We often feel overwhelmed and so we retreat into denial and a sense of powerlessness. We find reasons to maintain habits whose value we’ve come to doubt. Deciding to carry a reusable cup can become a powerful way to align ourselves with what we know to be true and necessary. And when we make this single move together, we feel that much more empowered as a community to steer our way into the future. Really, the goals of the campaign are quite broad. A campaign targeting disposable cups is one way in. And an especially good way here in Seattle, where we drink a lot of coffee!”
ABOUT NEW WORLD HABITS
Founded in Seattle in 2010 and aimed at empowering individuals and groups to shift personal behavior and through collaboration move towards a future they believe in.
Karin de Weille
New World Habits
facebook page: Reusable Cup Campaign
New Publication Looks Critically at Fair Trade Standards and Goals
Boston, January 6, 2011 – The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) recently launched the Fair World Project (FWP) to promote fair trade in commerce, especially in organic production systems in developing countries as well as at home, and to protect the term “fair trade” from dilution and misuse for mere PR purposes. The OCA’s new project fills the critical need for a watchdog of misleading fair trade claims, and a cheerleader for dedicated fair trade mission-driven companies. Through FWP, OCA focuses on promoting projects that connect the environmental and health benefits of organic agriculture with the social benefits derived from fair trade.
The Fair World Project’s inaugural publication of For a Better World debuted at the Fair Trade Futures Conference, September 10-12 at the Boston Marriott Hotel-Quincy. Fifty thousand copies were distributed to fair trade outlets such as co-ops and organic markets nationwide. The publication features candid articles on the fair trade movement, including different approaches to fair trade certification, exceptional fair trade projects abroad and at home in the West, as well as how to reintegrate fair trade back into the organic movement.
“As demand from conscious consumers expands the market for fairly traded products we must ensure that claims made by companies hold up to fair trade standards and that marketing and labeling of these products are accurate,” says Dana Geffner, Executive Director of the Fair World Project. “With new fair trade certifiers joining the movement, seasoned certifiers enabling questionable opportunistic fair trade claims and “fair-washing” practices more common, the Fair World Project aims to discuss and dissect,” adds Geffner.
The FWP intends to encourage critical thinking rather than blind faith regarding fair trade claims and certification schemes. Through publications, events, and targeted campaigns the group articulates and advances the issues involved in fair trade, with the goal of helping consumers, business owners, employees and activists make informed decisions about where and on what to spend their money and resources – to build a better and more just world. The FWP’s new website provides a space and forum where consumers can discuss issues within the Fair Trade movement, ask tough questions and share information.
“We celebrate corporations that are adopting fair trade into their business models, but at the same time hold ‘fair-washers’ accountable and insist on keeping fair trade’s integrity. We make sure fair trade certifiers and membership organizations maintain high standards to keep fair trade meaningful, not just in the wording of their standards but also in their inspection and certification processes. We pressure our schools, employers and other institutions to adopt fair trade purchasing practices with regard to food and other consumer products. We confront corporations, especially those already dealing in certified organic products, and government agencies everywhere to compel them to implement fair trade practices in their supply chains. We look forward to a day when all trade is fair,” adds Geffner.
The Fair World Project promotes fair trade, insists on integrity in fair trade, and cultivates a holistic approach to global economics. For further information, go to: http://www.fairworldproject.org