Climate Organizing Leadership Development Training

Posted by Brad Johnson Sun, 16 Sep 2007 04:00:00 GMT

The 2008 legislative session is only 5 months away. Do know what you need to do to save the climate?

You need to get COLD, the Climate Organizing Leadership Development. Starting in September the Chesapeake Climate Action Network will kick off an advanced global warming activist training series designed to empower new climate leaders in Maryland, DC and Virginia.

The training series will feature expert speakers, guest trainers, and will provide you with the valuable skills that you need to become the lead climate organizer in your area. The COLD trainings will capitalize on the years of experience of some of the most respected organizers in the region to help give you the insider information that you need to stand up to even the most powerful of foes.

Trainings will be located in Baltimore, Richmond, Falls Church, and Washington DC. There will be five trainings in all, once a month from September to January 08.

For more info on the DC trainings, email: dctrainings@chesapeakeclimate.org or apply here.

For more info on the Baltimore trainings, email mdtrainings@chesapeakeclimate.org or apply here.

For more info on the Richmond trainings, email richmondtrainings@chesapeakeclimate.org or apply here.

For more info on the Northern Virginia, email novatrainings@chesapeakeclimate.org or apply here.

Health Consequences of Global Warming

Posted by Brad Johnson Fri, 14 Sep 2007 18:00:00 GMT

A Conference: Health Consequences of Global Warming: Examining the Links; Breaking the Chains

Friday – Sunday September 14 – 16, 2007

Hotel Veto Conference Center 201 S. Linn St Iowa City, IA

Jointly sponsored by: The University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine and Physicans for Social Responsibility, in cooperation with the University of Iowa Center for Human Rights, Global and Regional Environmental Research, and College of Public Health.

Introducing the Challenge: Halting Climate Change Addressing Health and Human Rights Links

  • Introducing Climate Change Science and Wedges, Jerry Schnoor PhD
  • Introducing Human Rights Issues, Burns Weston LL.B, JSD
  • Introducing Public Health Concerns, Jim Merchant MD PhD
7:00 PM Dinner Speaker:
  • Michael McCally MD PhD, Executive Director, National PSR, Challenge of Global Warming to Preserving Global Health
8:00 PM Concurrent Roundtables
  1. Redefining Security, Catherine Thomasson MD
  2. Introducing Student Groups’ Responses to Global Climate Change
  3. How Cuba Survived Peak Oil. Film, Maureen McCue MD PhD
  4. Faith Based Responses to Goobal Warming, Mark Kresowik & Lynn Heuss
  5. Invoking the Precautionary Principle, Carolyn Raffensperger JD
  6. UNA Process on Global Warming, Katy Hanson, Kate Karchay, Douglas Taylor PhD & Jerry Schnoor PhD

Saturday, September 15

9:00 AM Opening Keynote
  • Michael A. McGeehin PhD MSPH, Climate Change, Myriad Threats to Global Health: From Malaria Movement & Complex Disasters to Failing Food Production

9:45 AM Plenary Panel II

Linked Threats to Health and Environment: Current Energy Sources
  • Health Threats of Auto-Centered Cities, Catherine Thomasson MD
  • Ports, Trade & Transit: Health Threats to Workers, Neighborhoods, and the Global Climate, Andrea Hricko MPH
  • Nuclear Power’s Insurmountable Risks, Arjun Makhijani PhD

11:30 AM Plenary Panel III

Collateral Damage: Overlooked Health Costs of Disasters
  • Disasters–Loss and Mental Health–Challenge, Curt H. Drennen PsyD
  • Disasters–Challenges to Maintaining Research and Care, Tyler Curiel MD MPH
  • Unstable Climate–Challenges to Global Food/Water Security, Douglas Taylor PhD

1:15 PM Luncheon Speaker:

  • Michael Klare PhD, Blood and Oil–Further Dangers and Consequences of Dependency on Petroleum
2:15 PM Concurrent Roundtables
  1. “Low Carbon Diet”– Food Production with Low Carbon Emissions, Rich Pirog
  2. Consumption, Denial, and Fear, Fred Myer MA and Carolyn Raffensperger JD
  3. Iowa’s Uniquely Unhealthy Energy Options (Coal, Bio-fuels, Nuclear), Mark Kresowik BA, Alana Stamas, and Michele Kenyon Brown
  4. Healthy Sustainable Businesses–Incorporating Environmentally Friendly Practices, Peter Barnes MA, Fred Kirschenmann PhD, Geoff Willming, Matt Bulle
  5. Environmental Ethics, Voluntary Initiatives vs. Legal Imperatives to Heal Our Planet, Burns Weston LL.B, JSD and Andy Jameton PhD
  6. War, Global Warming, Public Health, and Opportunity Costs, Victor Sidel MD and William Hartung

3:30 PM Plenary Panel IV

Global Warming, Health and Human Rights Links
  • The Arctic Bellwether–Impact of Energy Extraction, & Use on Health and Human Rights of World’s Indigenous, Marginalized & Poorest, Donald Goldberg JD
  • Healthcare of Poor, Minorities, Marginalized Before, During, After Katrina, Ravi Vadlamudi MD
4:30 PM Plenary Panel V Halting and Reversing Global Warming: Affordable, Attainable, Sustainable Solutions
  • Promoting and Attaining a Healthy, Rights Based Paradigm, Michael Dworkin JD
  • Confronting Coal, Bruce Nilles JD
8:00 PM Concurrent Workshops
  1. Concerned Scientists, Health Care Providers, Arjun Makhijani PhD and Catherine Thomasson MD
  2. Student Groups—Student PSR, AMSA, ESW, Global Pulse Leader
  3. Concerned Business Leaders, Peter Barnes MA, Fred Kirschenmann PhD, Geoff Willming, Matt Bulle
  4. Faith Based/Religious Leaders, Ben & Cathy Webb, others
  5. Law Makers, Rights Based, Andy Jameton RN PhD, Carolyn Raffensperger JD, and Ed Fallon BA
  6. Indigenous Peoples, Minorities, Labor, Mike McCally MD PhD, Ravi Vadlamudi MD MPH, and Dan Holub JD

Sunday, September 16

9:00 AM Opening Inspirational Remarks
  • Imperatives of Tikkun Olam, Gerald Sorokin
  • Cool Congregations–Compelling Commitments, Rev. Ben Webb
9:30 AM Closing Keynote
  • Peter Barnes MA, Introducing the Sky Trust to Protect the Atmosphere

10:15 AM Plenary Panel VI

Good News: Cases of Humane Healthy Living Through Sustainable Energy
  • How the West Coast is coming Clean & Green, Catherine Thomasson MD
  • Cool Cities, Mark Kresowik BA and Frank Cownie (invited),
  • UCS, Assessing the National Legislative Frontier: The Good Bad, and Nonexistent, Rich Dana

11:30 AM Plenary Panel VII

Developing Coalitions, Learning from Others, Working Together Toward a Healthy, Secure, Sustainable Future, Saturday Workshop Leaders Report Results & Consult Audience Members

Architecture 2030

Posted by Brad Johnson Fri, 07 Sep 2007 14:12:00 GMT

Architecture 2030 is an initiative started by architect Edward Mazria (The Passive Solar Energy Book) with two components: the 2030 Challenge, which calls for all new buildings and development to be carbon-neutral by 2030, starting at 50% of the regional energy consumption; and the 2010 Imperative, which calls on all design schools to be carbon neutral by 2010 and achieve complete ecological literacy in design education.

Architecture 2030 is also running ads with the message of no more coal, stating:

Without coal, all the positive efforts underway can make a difference.

Over an 11-year period (1973-1983), the US built approx. 30 billion square feet of new buildings, added approx. 35 million new vehicles and increased real GDP by one trillion dollars while decreasing its energy consumption and CO2 emissions. We don’t need coal, we have what we need: efficient design and proven technologies.

Today, buildings use 76% of all the energy produced at coal plants.

By implementing The 2030 Challenge to reduce building energy use by a minimum of 50%, we negate the need for new coal plants.

So Others Might Eat: The Climate Emergency Fast

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 04 Sep 2007 04:00:00 GMT

As global warming rapidly intensifies, the prospect of much more extensive hunger worldwide becomes increasingly likely, especially in poor countries, due to drought, Katrina-like storms, glacial melting and sea level rise. These impacts will lead to crop failures and economic and social disruption on a massive scale.

To draw attention to this threat and its moral implications, the U.S. Climate Emergency Council is calling on thousands of caring citizens to voluntarily give up food for one day on September 4th, 2007. Other participants will fast even longer beginning on that date, some for weeks. Give up food for one day now to draw attention to the fact that all of us may have no food tomorrow unless we halt global warming.

Shareholders Pressure Exxon on Global Warming

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 14 Aug 2007 17:32:00 GMT

In Resolved: Public Corporations Shall Take Us Seriously, the New York Times Magazine describes the rising tide of shareholder resolutions on climate change against ExxonMobil:
The ring tone on Sister Patricia Daly’s cellphone is the “Hallelujah” chorus from Handel’s “Messiah,” which makes every call sound as if it’s coming from God. On the particular May afternoon, however, David Henry, who handles investor relations for the ExxonMobil Corporation, was on the line. Henry wanted to know if Daly planned to attend the annual shareholder meeting later that month — a rhetorical question, really, since Daly had been at every one of them for the past 10 years. At each she posed roughly the same question: What is ExxonMobil, the world’s largest publicly traded oil company, planning to do about global warming?

The article makes reference to Citigroup’s influential climate change investment report from the beginning of the year, Climatic Consequences: Investment Implications of a Changing Climate, and the May 2007 Greenpeace report ExxonMobil’s Continued Funding of Global Warming Denial Industry.

Further excerpts:
Yet global warming does seem to be an area in which social and fiscal concerns overlap. Recent reports by Goldman Sachs, Citigroup and Lehman Brothers have reinforced the notion that climate change has the potential to affect a company’s bottom line, and shareholder resolutions have been remarkably effective at getting companies to take global warming seriously. After the Connecticut state treasurer’s office filed three consecutive climate resolutions with American Electric Power, the nation’s single-largest producer of carbon dioxide, the company agreed in 2004 to study the impact on its operations of various carbon cap-and-trade proposals, whereby companies must either limit their carbon emissions or purchase emissions credits from other companies that pollute less. Today American Electric is one of the companies calling for mandatory carbon constraints. Other companies singled out by shareholder activists, like Home Depot, Ford, Prudential, Cinergy, Chevron Texaco, Apache and ConocoPhillips, have variously agreed to disclose their greenhouse-gas emissions, study the impact of climate change on their businesses, invest in renewable energy sources or support a mandatory carbon cap.

The exception, as Daly notes, is ExxonMobil. For years the company denied that global climate change was occurring. According to a Greenpeace report in May, ExxonMobil funnels more than $2 million a year to groups that dispute the reality of global warming. The company’s current C.E.O., Rex Tillerson, made headlines in February when he admitted that the risks from climate change “could prove to be significant,” but he continues to emphasize the uncertainty of the science. In May he said: “I know people like to boil it down to something very simple — the polar ice caps are melting, the planet is seven-tenths of a degree centigrade warmer. It’s really not that simple of an equation.” And while BP, Shell and ConocoPhillips have joined the United States Climate Action Partnership, which is lobbying for mandatory carbon limits, and are investing in renewable energy sources like wind, solar and biofuels, ExxonMobil remains coy about which, if any, carbon constraints it would support and has stated unequivocally that the company will not be putting money into renewables.

A Look at Evangelicals and Global Warming 1

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 08 Aug 2007 14:26:00 GMT

The Washington Post has an extended feature today on the growing evangelical advocacy on global warming, “Warming Draws Evangelicals Into Environmentalist Fold”, telling the story of Joel C. Hunter, pastor of Florida’s Northland Church. It discusses how the environmental advocacy of U.S. pastors is a result of an intense six-year effort by their counterparts in Great Britain, led by atmospheric scientist and evangelical Sir John T. Houghton, University of Wisconsin professor of environmental studies Calvin B. DeWitt, and Bishop James Jones of Liverpool, with further outreach by environmental organizations and scientists.
Several eminent scientists also set out to repair the breach that had divided American faith leaders and scientists for nearly a century. Harvard University entomologist Edward O. Wilson, who had grown up Southern Baptist but drifted away in college, decided that if he could win over the religious right, he might be able to convince Americans that their entire ecological heritage was in jeopardy.

“I was working off the ‘New York effect’: If you can make it in New York, you could make it anywhere,” Wilson said. In the fall of 2006 he published “The Creation: An Appeal to Save Life on Earth,” a short treatise in which the biologist makes his case for environmentalism in a series of letters to an imaginary pastor.

Last fall, Hunter and Wilson were among more than two dozen scientific and evangelical leaders who met secretly at a retreat in Thomasville, Ga., to draft a joint statement calling for immediate action on climate change. A month and a half later, they released a statement saying both camps “share a moral passion and sense of vocation to save the imperiled living world before our damages to it remake it as another kind of planet.”

After the meeting, Hunter and Conservation International’s Campbell drafted a tool kit titled “Creation Care: An Introduction for Busy Pastors” to send to evangelical leaders. Within a matter of months, they had produced a package of Bible passages and information on scientific findings to promote action on climate change.

EPW Delegation to Greenland

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 02 Aug 2007 14:43:00 GMT

Last weekend, Sen. Barbara Boxer led a delegation from the Environment and Public Works Committee to Greenland:
  • Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.)
  • Ben Cardin (D-Md.)
  • Bill Nelson (D-Fl.)
  • Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.)
  • Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.)
  • Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
  • Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.)
  • Bob Corker (R-Tenn.)
  • Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

Inhofe sent staffer Mark Morano, a former writer for the rightwing Cybercast News Service. Richard Alley of Penn State University, the lead author on the United States Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change was the scientific advisor on the trip. They met with Arkalo Abelsen, Greeland’s environmental minister.

News coverage

* Associated Press: Georgia senator views effects of climate change in Greenland
Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia traveled to Greenland over the weekend to get a firsthand glimpse at the effects of global warming.

The first-term Republican from Marietta said the trip reinforced his belief that the United States should gradually move away from fossil fuels like oil and coal. But it didn’t convince him that more urgent steps are needed, and he remains unconvinced that the current warming is a departure from long-term natural cycles.

“There is no question that carbon (dioxide) is contributing to the warming but there’s also no question that warming is cyclical and has happened in the past,” he said in a phone interview Monday.

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