Blog

Spoiler Alert.

2
May 22, 2014

I think I should say “SPOILER ALERT” at this point, because what I’m about to say will spoil the way you look at your groundwater forever.

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There is a new generation of young social media storytellers out there - people who are using their design and social media skills to tell the stories of activists and social movements that are giving hope to our time. Often we don't hear about these storytellers, but they are responsible for much of the hopeful stories we see in our social media feeds and they too have stories and valuable reflections to share (often, they're organizers just like the rest of us, too!).

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Last month, the Minneapolis City Council voted unanimously to name October 13th Indigenous Peoples’ Day as well as Columbus Day. The following blog was written by Will Steger Foundation Equity Consultant, Joe Kruse, and makes clear as day the connection between Columbus Day and the destruction of the fossil fuels industry.

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534 On Tuesday, the White House’s United States Global Change Research Program (USGCRP) released its third National Climate Assessment which represents the most comprehensive evaluation to date of the impacts of climate change on the American people across the nation. This dire new report shows that every region of the country is already impacted by climate change — from drought drying up farmlands, to extreme weather devastating communities, to dirty air and extreme heat days sending people with asthma and respiratory diseases to the emergency room. It also follows a series of other reports released in the past year by the International Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which highlight these impacts globally, what we can expect if we don’t act, and what our options are to avoid the worst of these scenarios. 

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This spring, we've seen incredible victories in the fossil fuel divestment movement. We've seen bold action on campuses across the country including Washington University and Harvard. We've seen the largest youth-led action against the Keystone XL pipeline to date at the gates of the White House. We're seen endorsements by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and UN Climate Chief Christiana Figueres. And in the final weeks of this semester we've seen real leadership from colleges like Pitzer and Stanford that have committed to divest -- it feels like the dominoes are starting to fall. It's been amazing to be a part of the divestment movement since 2012 and to witness how it's evolved and ignited our generation.

So how can we build on this unprecedented momentum as this semester comes to a close? The themes from528 Photo Credit: Shadia Fayne Woord this year’s Fossil Fuel Divestment Convergence have resonated with me and I think they continue to offer a powerful framework for a strengthened movement moving forward:

Dig deep – We need to dig deep within ourselves, hold onto what motivates each of us, feel our anger at the violence committed by the fossil fuel industry, and keep our vision for a healthy and just world close. We need to be honest with ourselves and each other about what we’re up against, what it’s going to take to break the power of the fossil fuel industry. And we need to find creative ways to communicate our vision. With art, music, and storytelling, we can stir people’s souls, reach new people with creativity, hope, possibility, and a sense of the urgency and magnitude of the crises we face.

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From www.energyjusticesummer.org:

About

We are young organizers who care deeply about social justice and human rights. We seek a world where everyone has access to sustainable energy and no one suffers unjustly because of our fossil fuel economy. We believe that fracking presents a grave threat to people everywhere, especially those on the frontlines of extraction. To create a just energy future, we must stop fracking.

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For 5 days, Native American tribal leaders, ranchers, and farmers made their united presence known on the National Mall, as they peacefully demonstrated against construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. Their message was: Reject and Protect.

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