“Apartheid seemed an overwhelming challenge that could not be defeated but we mobilized and defeated it. We need the same passion and determination to defeat climate change,” said Tutu. “Climate change is an even greater threat to us than apartheid was, because as temperatures rise, millions of Africans will be deprived of water and crops. This will cause enormous suffering. It is something we simply cannot allow.
In the face of such a huge threat, many of us feel numb and throw up our hands, believing we can’t make a difference. But we can make a difference – come to the rally.”McKibben made the point that the Environmental Movement has to be an actual ‘movement’. We all must rally and put continual pressure on our government(s) to stop subsidizing the fossil fuel industry and to adopt clean and renewable energy alternatives immediately.
McKibben recounted that when he sat in jail after being arrested at the demonstration in DC against the Tar Sands Pipeline, in the next jail cell, was Gus Speth who was one of the founders of the Natural Resources Defense Council. Gus had, at one time, been the Dean of Yale University. Those in jail were not being allowed contact with the outside world but Gus was able to slip a note out to the public via his son, who is an attorney, in which he said: “I’ve held a lot of important positions, but none were as important as the one I’m in now.”
This Fall, McKibben will embark on a 20 city tour of the U.S traveling in a bio-diesel van to hold rallies against climate change in each location.
I hope Obama wins the election but, even if he does, he won’t be able to stand up to the fossil fuel industry without all of us making our voices heard and insisting on clean, renewable energy and saying no to oil drilling in the Arctic and no to the Tar Sands Oil Pipeline! Having a sustainable future on our beautiful planet is our birthright and it’s up to us to take active measures for the sake of all species who are here now and the well-being of all those to come!
I’ll soon be back to posting nature photos and poetry but I felt this was too important not to share.
[Thank you, Andrea, for sharing this, and allowing me to post it here. Bill McKibben wrote a very similar piece in the Rolling Stones Magazine this summer. It can be read here – http://act.350.org/signup/reckoning/]