[Posted on behalf of Franky Navarrette on – 9/16/14]…
The conversation of whether or not global climate change is anthropogenic, of human cause, has long since past, but our actions have not yet caught up. As extreme weather events ravage our cities, threaten our resources, and disproportionately effect those already most vulnerable to social issues, I ask you this: Who will save us from such a global disaster?
Each of us already know the answer, but so many fail to rise to the occasion and act upon it. I wish I could tell you that riding my bike to school and composting will solve this problem, but that is simply false. Change starts in our hands–this is a movement and it takes us all.
The Fossil Fuel Industry is strangling progress; progress means loss of profits and it is an industry that time after time has proven to us that profit is always above people. Before we can even talk about sea levels rising, let us remember how many indigenous people have lost their water rights to Peabody Coal, how many low-income folks are forced to drink contaminated water with no chance of reprimands due to Fracking, mining, Tar Sands or any other extraction industry. Let us not forget that these people have been facing these issues long before the words “Climate Change” were ever even uttered. This is a Climate Change issue, this is a social justice issue and what we are doing here today is Climate Justice.
What our campaign does, along side hundreds across the country is engage our community in direct action as a means to a just transition. A transition toward a fossil free future, a future of justice, a future worth fighting for. We do so by asking upon the University of Colorado to remove investments from fossil fuel industry– an act that begins to dissolve this mega industry, move toward renewables and restore power to students of whom the University should and will listen to. We use a model of community organizing and escalatory tactics.
We are Fossil Free CU. We act here, in our own community, leveraging our power as students to create direct change
and return power to people– where it belongs. We act in solidarity with over 300 universities and hundreds of passionate community members across the country. We act in solidarity with indigenous groups, environmentalist groups, social justice
organizations, residents of the most affected communities, and countless others.
The answer to when was yesterday. This is no longer purely an environmentalist movement; this is an intersectional movement where each and every single person on this planet has a stake in the game. Those of us who exist in societies built around the fossil fuel industry, such as the United States, and those with the most privilege have the greatest responsibility to take action.
So here we are, and this is only the beginning. Let this march be our Catalyst. I stand here today to ask you to join me in a global movement, within each of our communities, and as global citizens, we are the hands driving the transition.
It’s all hands on deck. This is a call to action.