On October 7th 350.org released the following press release about it’s new campaign to get the next US president to attend the U.N. Climate Meetings in Poland. I would encourage you to watch the video, read the press release and then sign the petition.
Bill McKibben and 350.org Launch New Climate Test for Candidates: International Campaign Mobilizes Thousands to Pressure McCain and Obama
Reminding the presidential candidates that there’s an even bigger meltdown underway than the one on Wall Street, global warming activists today launched a drive to urge John McCain and Barack Obama to pledge that they’ll travel to Poland even before they’re inaugurated to reassure the rest of the world that America plans to resume active participation in the international fight to stabilize the climate.
People around the world today began emailing and sending video invitations to the two presidential candidates, asking that they attend the U.N. Climate Meetings in Poland scheduled for early December. “We’ll get the first big sign of whether the candidates are really serious about global warming by their willingness to take early action like this,” said Bill McKibben, environmental author and co-founder of 350.org, an international group of climate activists. “Last week, just as the nation’s finances were collapsing, word came that carbon dioxide output had grown by record amounts–we need immediate action on this crisis too.”
A wide variety of environmental and human rights groups around the world, including Greenpeace, Avaaz.org, 1Sky, Grist, and more are participating in the email-invitation campaign. College students and recent graduates have built a website with an interactive globe that allows people to see where invitations are coming from, and even to send personalized invitations by
video using cellphone cameras.
“We’ve had invitations streaming in from India, from Australia, from China, and from across the U.S.,” said Jon Warnow, web strategist for the project. “People around the world know that much of their future–in some cases their very survival–may hinge on the outcome of the U.S.elections.”
The invitations urge the two leaders not only to travel to Poland if elected, but also to endorse a strong package of measures to cut carbon emissions so that the atmospheric concentration of CO2 will eventually drop from its current 387 parts per million (ppm) back to 350, a number that scientists have deemed as the maximum safe level.
We must return to 350 ppm, NASA climatologist James Hansen wrote earlier this year, “if humanity wishes to preserve a planet similar to that on which civilization developed and to which life on Earth is adapted.” The email invitations echo a request for U.S. participation that came earlier this year from the the United Nations’ top climate diplomat, Yvo de Boer, who said “I’m talking about the president or vice president coming to the high-level segment, giving a vision statement of where he or she personally wants to go on this topic, and then getting back in Air Force One and going away.”
“Think how the world would react to that kind of dramatic U.S. re-engagement with the global warming issue,” said McKibben. “After eight years of refusing to help, we could suddenly reenergize this global process.”
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350.org unites an international grassroots climate campaign behind a common call to action. 350 is the safe upper limit of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in parts per million. Lead by author Bill McKibben and a staff of young organizers from around the world, 350.org partners with over 100 organizations to push for a strong international climate treaty that meets the 350 ppm target.
To see the interactive globe, click here