Climate Change Activism Group Forming

The new group will meet over 6 months, beginning in late March. Some will meet together in person, others to participate through videoconferencing.

The Forecast: Climatologists are warning that the temperature increase over pre-industrial times could reach 4°C (>7°F) by 2060. Many more areas would see decreased precipitation; others with increased precipitation would still have drier soil, causing floods and famine; the hottest day of the year in northeastern North America could be 18-22°F hotter than ever before. Yet the numbers of Americans seeing climate change as serious, or caused by what we do, declined significantly in the last year and a half.

The Invitation: Become a Climate Change Activist. Join the support and learning group described below to give your activism focus and impact. For instance, an effective climate change activist engages in a few vital behaviors:

• Teaching climate change science and impacts to others and hold them emotionally during the process. Those who don’t take climate change seriously are often in emotional denial. Denial is also seen in the solutions people choose.

• Reducing your own greenhouse gas emissions in the coming year, and working with others to reduce theirs. This gives the activist a realistic sense of what helps and what blocks voluntary behavior change, which is a necessary part of the solution.

• Finding a solution that Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says is necessary and important, ideally one that makes you uncomfortable. Learn why policy analysts say it’s necessary, and advocate for it. The goal is to move away from choosing solutions we want, to working for solutions that are recognized as essential.

• Accessing the spiritual wellsprings that support and nurture us in selfless activism. We will keep a process log or journal that includes reflections on where and how we seek guidance and draw strength for the struggle, as well as honestly naming our doubts, concerns and questions about what is being asked of us.

The Format for Group Support and Study: meet twice monthly for six months.
• one session/month to study what is known about teaching and working on climate change, update our current information and evaluate sources.
• one session/month to work on vital behaviors above, and evaluate impact of your actions. The group may unite to work on one project, or support one another on a range of projects.

Prerequisites: Besides commitment to the group and its aims, a general agreement on sources (IPCC and the sources IPCC sees as valid) is important. There are sources that tell us that IPCC is wrong, but they are rarely peer-reviewed (a minimum requirement) and feed into our prejudices rather than provide a much-needed guide to what’s real.

I’ve heard this question so many times: what can I do that will be effective? Perhaps this group can help you answer that question.

Holding the Earth
photo credit

Leave a comment (with a “do not publish”) if you are interested in joining this group. We’ll begin in late March, and take a summer vacation. Young people also welcome. The hope is to meet together in Berkeley and online at the same time.

This addendum adds details.

Share with others who might be interested.

3 Responses to “Climate Change Activism Group Forming”

  1. Lara Gary says:

    Would it be practical to join this group even though I live in Woodland? I can see many ways in which I could add a climate-change activism component to my teaching, as well as finding the support and new ideas a great support for the changes I need to make in my own actions.

    (do not publish)

  2. paul harris says:

    sorry karen, yes I am interested in joining the group. I am not computer savy, so don’t know how teleconferencing works. I am alos very busy right now with work, and haven’t been able to write the articles you suggested. I do want to get to them when time permits.


  3. Killian says:

    Tackling climate change means tackling energy and economics, just to get started. We don’t need another organization attacking just the one. We DO need an organization taking on The Perfect Storm to look at fully systemic solutions.

    Take a look at my site and let me know what you think.