Friday, October 30, 2009
Rhode Island rallys for 350
Saturday, October 24th was the international day of climate action, organized by 350.org. Over 180 countries participated, and over 5,000 separate "actions" were logged into the web page. People gathered in cities and towns all over the globe, on mountaintops and coral reefs, deserts and glaciers to bring light to the number 350ppm, the number of parts per million of carbon dioxide many scientist feel is a safe upper limit for the atmosphere. The challenge is to get our national and international leaders to take up 350 as a number for negotiations when a new climate treaty is written in December in Denmark.
Rhode Island held several events for the day of action. Lectures and celebrations were held in South County, Newport and Providence. The Neighborhood Energy Challenge was kicked off for Aquidneck Island and Jamestown, with over 80 people in attendance including senate president Paiva-Weed and Newport Mayor Jeanne Marie Napolitano. Lectures were held at the First Unitarian Church in Providence, followed by a rally at Waterplace Park. We displayed tape marking the future sea level in waterplace park to highlight the flooding risk for downtown Providence. Members of the Watson Institute for International Studies spoke about the issues that are facing African countries due to changes in climate. It was an inspiring and hopeful day.