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Plans This March for Mass Civil Disobedience Against Dirty Coal

Plans This March for Mass Civil Disobedience Against Dirty Coal

On the Dec. 16 Democracy Now radio show, Bill McKibbon announced plans for a massive non-violent civil disobedience action against dirty coal. They’re targetting the power plant that runs the Capitol. I can’t believe it almost slipped by me! I was listening to Amy Goodman interview a couple climate change activists about the recent international conference on global warming in Poland when she abruptly changed topics and asked McKibbon about the civil disobedience. I had to rewind and listen to it again. Turns out the action is planned for March 2, 2009, at the coal plant that powers the capitol. I’m pysched to see what they do!

Here’s what Bill McKibbon said on Democracy Now:
On March 2nd, a bunch of us will be organizing the first big mass civil disobedience in this country around coal outside the coal-fired power plant that powers the nation’s capital. Wendell Berry and I just sent out a letter—the Kentucky farmer and writer—asking people, please, to come for this first big event. You can find more information at the Rainforest Action Network website, or just Google “civil disobedience March 2nd Washington.

This is an exciting time for the environmental movement. Sure, it’s a great sign that so many people are trying live sustainably, but we can’t let that distract us from confronting the really big polluters like the coal industry. Inefficient lightbulbs and poorly insulated houses are simply not the bulk of the problem. If we’re going to take global warming seriously we need to look at the industries that are pumping out the most greenhouse gases.

It’s daunting to think that over half of all of U.S. power comes from coal powered plants, but organizations such as Rainforest Action Network, Greenpeace, Rising Tide and Powershift have been an inspiration in the past couple years. There’s been a huge upshot in organizing around global warming, with a bunch of awesome, successful campaigns. Activists have been able to pressure banks to pull investments in coal operations in Appalachia, there were two exciting sit-ins at a Boston branches of Bank of America, as well as marches and rallies in hundreds of American cities. And don’t forget about those crazy people who went swimming in the frigid Lake Washington this winter.

Now we have a plan for one of the largest mass civil disobediences to happen in the United States as part of an environmental campaign. This movement is on the up and up.

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Image from Flickr, via CreativeCommons.org

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16 comments

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3:39PM PST on Dec 15, 2012

Thank you.

3:38PM PST on Dec 15, 2012

Thank you.

3:49PM PST on Dec 31, 2008

THANK PRESIDENT ELECT OBAMA FOR FUNDING SUPPORT FOR GLOBAL WARMMING

4:54AM PST on Dec 31, 2008

change the way to use the coal, using the clean coal mechanisms to avoid the pollution or otherwise switch to alternative energy sources there is only one option using clean coal for coal or quit it no one has the right to play with the lives of other human beings with pumping the pollution

5:37PM PST on Dec 30, 2008

WHEN ARE GOVERNMENTS GOING TO STOP ALL THE SCAREMONGERING ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING.
ITS JUST ANOTHER EXCUSE TO RIP US OFF
WHY DONT THEY JUST SAY ITS A THING CALLED EVOLUTION.ITS BEEN GOING ON FOR THOUSANDS OF YEARS.
WE HAVE HAD THE ICE AGE THE STONE AGE THE IRON AGE AND MANY MORE
THE THING THAT MUST BE MAKING A DIFFERENCE TO THE ATMOSPHERE IS ALL THE SCRAP METAL THEY HAVE LEFT FLOATING IN ORBIT

12:38AM PST on Dec 25, 2008

Kingston Coal mine Tennessee just gave us even more reason to stop this distructive practice. Say a prayer for those who lost their homes due to coal sludge plowing theim down. For those who have been told the water can't be toxic till the toxi analiss is back and for those who are now worried about their health. For the mom down the river who hasn't heard of the disaster yet and is fixing he childs bottle with tap water from the river the kingston sludge just poured into. The wet ash contains concentrated amounts of mercury, arsenic and benzine. Say a prayer for all those who will be in the winds path when the sludg dries and turns to dust. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/25/us/25sludge.html?_r=1&hp sign the petition and pass it on. http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/lets-go-clean-coal-yeah-baby-more-kingston-mine-gifts-to-the-people-and-environment

12:37AM PST on Dec 25, 2008

Kingston Coal mine Tennessee just gave us even more reason to stop this distructive practice. Say a prayer for those who lost their homes due to coal sludge plowing theim down. For those who have been told the water can't be toxic till the toxi analiss is back and for those who are now worried about their health. For the mom down the river who hasn't heard of the disaster yet and is fixing he childs bottle with tap water from the river the kingston sludge just poured into. The wet ash contains concentrated amounts of mercury, arsenic and benzine. Say a prayer for all those who will be in the winds path when the sludg dries and turns to dust. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/12/25/us/25sludge.html?_r=1&hp sign the petition and pass it on. http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/lets-go-clean-coal-yeah-baby-more-kingston-mine-gifts-to-the-people-and-environment

9:42AM PST on Dec 22, 2008

I'm not sure how factual the claim about the unused Nevada land can be used to power the entire country, but I'd like to research it. One thing I do think for sure is that there is a lot that can be done already and nothing is being done.

Although sharing and discussing on this site has helped greatly.

A friend of mine is so caught up in these issues that she is literally "mad" and moody all the time. But she told me that the best way to help is educating everyone about issues, and she taught me a lot. (She actually started on me by giving me a [Plant a Tree] kit. ;) )

Then I read about someone who at first tries to pick up litter everywhere he went, and realized how pointless that was and got really discouraged. Then I think he was said to start planting trees here and there, but nature has its own ways and he didn't want to plant trees since he didn't know how to balance the ecosystem, which is what Nature is trying to do. (Hence the mess, Nature is trying to heal and balance what we've been doing.)

In any case, he also came to the conclusion that education was best. He spent a lot of time in nature and became a teacher. A "gentle" teacher of nature.

9:34AM PST on Dec 22, 2008

I like the term "civilian proactiveness." Why should we be named "disobedient" because we are in the right and coal plant industries aren't? Plus, the coal plant industry isn't making it easy to "obey." (Why should we have to "obey..." we're not supposed to be trained as circus animals [nor should animals... but that's another issue isn't it?]).

I'm not keen on "clean coal" either. I read that the sun alone could power the country. In Nevada, there is a large area of unused land where someone (the govt.) can build solar generators. According to the source, the whole country could be powered. People wouldn't have to divy up thousands of dollars we they don't have to install a solar power energy unit.

Indigenous people lived quite well without having to use "dirty coal." Along with technology and solar and wind resources, the means we already have, don't we?

Thanks Drew and Denise for just saying it, that there is no such thing as clean coal. (I love polite bluntness. ;) )

The coal industry as well as the large corps are short sighted. I don't understand why they don't see that in the long run *their* families and children are going to suffer from health issues. I don't understand why the coal industry and the large corps don't understand that in order to live they need to *eat.* *Food.* That's *healthy*. Unhealthy soil doesn't produce healthy food. Surely they must know that paper money doesn't taste or digest very well, no matter what recipe you have for it.

1:12PM PST on Dec 20, 2008

Woo! Nice to see America standing up against the mega-corps - but I agree, there's no such thing as 'clean coal'. Coal's as dirty as it's colour, and that's the way it'll stay. *shrug*

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