Time to Step It Up This Weekend

Environment
Bill McKibben, an AlterNet guest columnist, is spearheading the Step It Up 2007 campaign. A scholar-in-residence at Middlebury College, McKibben's newest book is the forthcoming Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future. His column is reprinted by permission from Grist. For more environmental news and humor sign up for Grist's free email service.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the U.N. group charged with monitoring the science of global warming, laid out the stakes last Friday -- laid them out as clearly as anyone is ever going to.

On one side, there's an energy transformation -- the conversion of the world's fuel economy from coal and gas and oil to something else. In involves decades of work on conservation and then on innovation. There are changes in habit and economy and way of life and attitude.

And on the other side, if we don't get going fast on all those tasks, there's malaria and flooding and drought and sea-level rise. There's the extinction of species -- of whole ecosystems. There's a planet tossed into such chaotic instability that it's hard to know what will emerge.

In other words, we can choose between change and Change.

That choosing starts, for Americans, this coming Saturday, April 14. Our day of climate action, which we've been organizing at StepItUp2007.org since early January, has turned into a juggernaut of sorts. There will be more than 1,300 rallies on Saturday, in all 50 states.

In the last week, dozens of senators and representatives have signed on to speak at these protests. The media is finally starting to notice -- a team from one of the networks was all over the Step It Up office on Friday, filming us as we worked; this morning, even the BBC World Service was on the phone asking for details.

If we can bring the same passion and the same moral urgency to bear on this challenge that courageous Americans mustered around the civil-rights movement a generation ago, then we have a chance at forcing the right choice. But if we simply worry about the problem, and take the kind of half measures that the politicians and the corporations will naturally push, then we'll miss our opportunity.

We can't say we weren't warned. By now, both the science and the stakes are known to anyone who cares to pay attention. And no one can say they haven't got a way to make themselves heard -- there's a rally to go to in every corner of America on Saturday afternoon. All that's left to see is how much people care.

Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}
@2022 - AlterNet Media Inc. All Rights Reserved. - "Poynter" fonts provided by fontsempire.com.