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Building a Nuclear-Free, Just, and Sustainable World
Peace and Planet Organizing Panel, March 12, 2015
I’ve been asked to speak about nuclear power and its relationship to nuclear weapons and climate change. At the Climate Convergence last September this was the topic of a three-hour workshop. Since I only have a few minutes, this is going to be the Cliff Notes version. And there are also some additional crib sheets on the table at the back of the room.
Nuclear power is touted in certain circles as the answer to our climate change prayers! Clean green energy! Zero carbon emissions! It’s even gluten-free! So let’s build more nuclear power plants.
But like clean coal and biodiesel and clean-green gas, this is a fantasy – or more accurately, a lie. [read more]
The US has 900 military bases and outposts in 130 countries. Since 2000 it has deployed combat troops to more than 20 countries. The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are beginning to wind down, but the US is expanding its military presence in the Middle East, Africa, and the Pacific Rim and preparing troops for subzero combat in the Arctic.
War at Home
The 1 percent gets bailouts for Wall Street while the rest of us get foreclosures and cutbacks. The banks are propped up while the infrastructure is allowed to crumble. Big Energy gets trillion-dollar subsidies while unions, immigrants, and communities of color fight for their lives. And the public sector is being auctioned off cheap to the private sector.
War on the Planet
Climate change is causing droughts, wildfires, floods, and storms like we’ve never seen before–yet we continue to pump ever more CO2 and methane into the atmosphere. Wetlands and forests are disappearing. Our air, our land, our water are being poisoned. Species are going extinct at rates not seen since the dinosaurs and whole ecosystems are dying. Yet corporations and governments continue to promote their unsustainable policy of “growth”, ignoring the reality of a planet with finite resources. Continue reading →
Stop the Wars Stop the Warming
Our planet is threatened by twin crises: irreversible climate change and the ever-present danger of global war. These two threats are rooted in the same soil – our unsustainable economic system and its insatiable thirst for profit.
We are now witnessing droughts, wildfires, floods, and storms like we’ve never seen before – yet every year we pump more CO2 and methane into the atmosphere. The polar ice caps are melting and the oceans are rising at an alarming rate. Wetlands and forests are disappearing. Whole island nations are drowning. Species are going extinct at rates not seen since the dinosaurs. Yet corporations and governments continue to promote their unsustainable policy of “growth,” ignoring the reality of a planet with finite resources. [read more…]
People’s Climate March, NYC, September 21, 2014
What a day! Historic, memorable, uplifting, spirited. Estimates of over 300,000 people, young, old and diverse, marching through the streets of our city, just as the world’s political leaders met to discuss climate change at the United Nations.
Brooklyn For Peace joined other peace and justice organizations. But the march represented a vast array of different organizations and just plain citizens concerned about the future of civilization. The spirit was one of camaraderie and a feeling that this movement for change was only just beginning to find itself and that it would grow and become broader and more powerful.
Presentation by Gary Goff at the Brooklyn Museum, as part of a “Perspectives Talk” in conjunction with its exhibit on War and Photography.
We usually think of violence as something that is abrupt and explosive-a bomb going off, a bullet finding its mark. The photos on exhibit here tend to reinforce this view. But there is another kind of violence that is increasing worldwide-the violence of climate change. Because it is incremental, it’s mostly invisible or at least not perceived as violence. But we need to reassess this view. Climate change is both violent and largely caused by human activity. It’s as violent as war. People’s homes and livelihoods are destroyed, their countries devastated, their lives taken. According to the UN there have been more than 4 million climate-related deaths since the 1970s.
As starling as that number is, the relationship between war and the environment is more than the high casualty rates they share. Environmental disasters cause wars and wars cause environmental disasters. Let me explain.
Climate Action Rally in Washington, D.C.: Feb. 17, 2013
We came by the tens of thousands – to the nation’s capitol. Our demand was “Save Our Planet.” It was a protest to demand immediate and urgent action to reverse the course of climate change; to change the path of dependency on fossil fuels which is slowly but surely leading to destruction and decline of what has become a fragile environment. (See photos here.)
It was a bitterly cold and windy day but that didn’t us from marching around the White House to tell the President to be true to his words and reject the ominous and hazardous Keystone XL pipeline. Continue reading →
Another World Is Possible: Rethinking the Energy Paradigm: See it on YouTube
What will it take to get rid of dirty fuels and make renewable energy possible?
This was the topic at the forum hosted by Climate Action at the Brooklyn Peace Fair on April 28, 2012. Panelist Lisa DiCaprio, associate professor at NYU and founding member of RenewNEWYORK, says we have the capacity to solarize 165,000 rooftops in New York, but we’re held back by short-sighted funding mechanisms. “We’re facing a planetary emergency,” says Sean Sweeney, director of Cornell’s Global Labor Institute, and the only way we’re going to be able to make the switch from dirty energy is through a democratic planned process. “The movement against fossil fuels needs to embed into its arguments the need for public ownership.”
See Highllights of the Forum on YouTube (28 minutes)
The press release stated: “This announcement is not a judgment on the merits of the pipeline, but the arbitrary nature of a deadline that prevented the State Department from gathering the information necessary to approve the project and protect the American people.” Continue reading →
Who We Are
This task force will examine the nexus between war and the environment. Read more
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