People Are Starting To Get This Climate Change Thing

Thanks to everyone who made the Missoula People’s Climate March a success on September 9. More than 250 people showed up to listen to speeches and march. Tim Spangler posted some photos and articles on our website here:

http://www.350montana.org/2018/09/11/missoula-peoples-climate-march-09-09-2018/

Excuse me for stating the obvious, but climate change is very different from other crises. It seems so far away. But right now is crunch time. It’s time for people to get involved.

We’re seeing the outer edges of the changes with Montana’s megafires, our dying rivers and streams, and the troubles beginning to affect agriculture. Speaking of which, one member of 350 Montana’s action committee, syndicated “Flash in the Pan” writer Ari LeVaux, was nominated by the Association of Food Journalists for a national award for his article for the Weather Channel on beer and the struggles of Montana’s “golden triangle,” the barley-growing area between Great Falls and Helena. The article is here:

https://features.weather.com/us-climate-change/montana/

Yes, it’s crunch time. Because greenhouse gases stay and accumulate in our atmosphere for decades, the worst of climate change only our kids and grandkids will experience what the scientists are predicting. That disconnect between what we see now and what’s coming is difficult for most people.

“Hey, it’s just the weather. We’ve always had variations.”

But the amount of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere is the highest in 600,000 years, and, like a heat lamp left on in the corner of the room, the heat is accumulating in a sinister way.

So here are four ways you can get involved and do something about it.

1. Tonight, September 24, at 7 p.m., at the Equinox affordable housing complex on the corner of Russell and West Broadway, Missoula Rises is sponsoring a discussion on direct action. What does it mean? What makes it work and how do we get there? Is a strike the same thing as a die-in? Do we need numbers and if so, how do we get there? Local activists, including a 350 Montana speaker, will take a stab at some of these questions and then take part in smaller discussions to apply these lessons here at home.

2. On Tuesday, October 9, 7 p.m., in the second floor ball room at the Union Hall, 208 East Main, 350 Montana is hosting Brian Henning from 350 Spokane to talk about a far-reaching “fossil free” ordinance passed by the Spokane City Council that commits Spokane residents to a 100 percent renewable energy system by 2030. Can Missoula adopt a similar resolution? Is Missoula ready? Here’s an article about the Spokane city council’s vote:

http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2018/aug/20/spokane-city-council-adopts-law-calling-for-2030-a/

3. Montana Faith and Climate Action is sponsoring a number of speakers, including internationally known Christian fundamentalist and atmospheric scientist, Katherine Hayhoe, at a two-day symposium on the moral imperatives of climate change called “Tools for Collaboration Between Montana’s Faith Leaders and Scientists on Behalf of the Future of Our Climate.” The conference gets underway on Friday afternoon, October 12, at 4 p.m. at the Emerson Center for the Arts & Culture, 111 South Grand Avenue in Bozeman. It goes until 5 p.m. on Saturday. For more information and to register, go here:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/faith-science-climate-action-conference-2018-tickets-44777631100?aff=es2

4. 350 Montana’s action committee meets on Monday, September 15, 5:30 p.m., in the second-floor ballroom at the Union Hall, 208 East Main in Missoula. Expect discussion on our response to NorthWestern Energy’s new, 20-year procurement plan (the billion-dollar spending plan for new fossil fuel electrical generators that no one has even heard about). Also, how you can comment on cryptocurrency and its tremendous drain on our power system. And, some surprises.