Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Global Warming Teach-Ins

The Hartford Courant is reporting that thousands of schools, colleges, and other organizations, including some in Connecticut, will participate in a national teach-in on global warming on January 31. An excerpt of the story is below:
Students in Missouri will truck in 15 tons of coal. Wesleyan will serve a "sustainable" dinner, while kids at the Laureate Elementary School in San Luis Obispo, Calif., are using worms to compost the remains of their lunches.Central Connecticut State University invited all the presidential candidates, but none of them can make it. But that's OK: The clowns from Middletown's ArtFarm will be there to perform their show, "Circus for a Fragile Planet."They all will be a part of Focus the Nation, a nationwide effort later this month to teach students and policymakers about climate change and prompt them to act.
With an urgency — and a sense of irreverence — reminiscent of the anti-war movement of the 1960s, a group of activists from Portland, Ore., has recruited students at more than 1,000 college campuses, K-12 schools, civic organizations, church groups and private companies to conduct a massive "teach-in" on global warming Jan. 31."It's kind of overwhelming," said project director Eban Goodstein, an economics professor at Lewis & Clark College in Portland. "This started out as a project with just two of us, and now we have 10,000 volunteers around the country. … All we have to do is tell people about this and they get excited. People are really recognizing the critical nature of the times we are living in and looking for a way to be leaders."The goal is to bring 1 million or more students into a nonpartisan discussion on global warming and encourage them to fight for solutions, said Alexander Tinker, one of the group's organizers.Events are being scheduled by at least 40 Connecticut schools and organizations, including all six University of Connecticut campuses, the four regional state universities, Yale, Wesleyan, Trinity, Connecticut College and many others.The events will begin with an interactive webcast, "The 2% Solution," on the night of Jan. 30, billed as a discussion of what people can do about global warming. Jan. 31 will be a day of workshops, classes and discussions leading up to forums with national and local political leaders.Starting Jan. 21, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, students can vote at the Focus the Nation website for their top five solutions for global warming. The leading solutions will be delivered Feb. 18 by student teams to congressional offices around the country during the Presidents' Day congressional recess.State environmental Commissioner Gina McCarthy will be the keynote speaker at CCSU on Jan. 29. The school has been planning its activities for a year and has a packed a three-day schedule with speakers and events, said Charles Button, an assistant professor of geography who has been involved in the project from the beginning."The 2% Solution" webcast is being produced with support from the National Wildlife Federation, hosted on Earth Day Network TV — an online TV channel — and will be broadcast live from the University of Central Florida in Orlando.The webcast's name refers to what organizers say is the amount by which greenhouse gas emissions would have to drop each year in developed countries for the next 40 years to minimize the damage from global warming. That's a goal also seen in the environmental policies proposed by several presidential candidates.

Related Links:

Interfaith Power and Light is a religious response to global warming with chapters in 25 states and Greater Washington, D.C. Find a link to your local chapter at
Find discounts on energy saving products at

No comments: