Climate March Proposal to San Diego

On Tuesday, November 18, Club President, Derek Casady presented the following proposal to lead its Climate Action March Team::

I, Derek  Casady, former journalist (L.A. Times, Psychology Today) legislative aide (Sen. Jim Mills, senate president pro tempore), natural food store owner & operator and President of the La Jolla Democratic Club and my wife,  Nancy Casady, General Manager of Ocean Beach People’ Organic Food Co-op (owned by 12,000 families, employing 115 people and grossing $14 million) and Jerry Brown appointee to the California Food and Agriculture Board,  both of whom co- founded the Beach Area Free Clinic which served 20,000 persons in its first year,  are proposing to be a stand for a climate action march team to conduct regular street marches in San Diego aimed at inspiring other marches around the country to get  President Obama to declare a national emergency and a  World War II type mobilization to get our country off of fossil fuels and onto renewable energy.  At October’s Praxis Peace Institute symposium in San Francisco, Mark Z. Jacobson, director of Stanford’s Atmosphere Energy Program and professor of civil and environmental engineering, outlined a computer modeling program to convert the U.S. energy system to renewables using 6 million workers, approximately 4 million of which would come from the coal, oil and gas industries which must be phased out.
To organize these marches we will talk with community groups like the County Council of Democratic Clubs, People’s Climate Lobby, the Labor Council,  NAACP, Urban League, Chicano Business Association and other ethnic groups, the League of Women Voters, the University Club and University Women, National Organization of Women, Planned Parenthood, Peace and Justice Coalition and all of the groups that San Diego 350 already works with and get them to understand the urgency of the situation and that nonviolent direct action is the only avenue left to concerned citizens in light of the fact that our oligarchy form of government is not being responsive to the climate threat.
We believe that thousands of San Diegans are looking for a way to express their climate concerns and Sunday afternoon marches are a good avenue for this.  As these marches increase in numbers through outreach,  repetition and media coverage SanDiego 350 will be advanced.
We believe the marches will build the movement by giving people a fun and empowering way to see that they are not alone in their concerns.
We will achieve widespread print and electronic media coverage through concrete demands and through the use  of climate experts such as Drew Lucas and Kiefer Forsch, Scripps Institute of Oceanography scientists, who can both educate and inspire a crowd and stand up to media cynics who lack the facts on the climate crisis.  Drew has done research in every one of the world’s oceans.
This project will be coalition building and  ideally will become a Movement of Movements,  Including Women, Immigration, Indigenous People, Students, Youths, Prisoners, Food, and African Americans.
This project definitely has a local focus.  Our goal is for 30,000 San Diegans to be in the streets to meet Naomi Klein’s goal of 3% of the population.  By doing this we think the rest of the nation will want to follow suit.
Various speakers at the Praxis symposium told us that President Obama is waiting for us to get into the streets so he can say that climate action is what the people want.
We think thousands of new marchers will help strengthen the SD 350 organization though we must share the power and credit in a very real way with  all organizations who get involved .  Climate marching has to be for everyone.
As for equipment and materials needed, SD 350 knows  what is needed and as far as resources are concerned all kinds of new groups need to be contributing resources as they take on their share of the burden.
Incidentally, Tom Hayden made a stirring speech at the California State Democratic Party’s Environmental  Caucus Friday night saying the Democratic Party now must become the Climate Justice Party.  And he was clear that climate justice and economic justice are inextricably linked.
As to the carbon footprint of the project we think it will  be really exciting to promote biking and public transportation as ways for people to travel to the marches and bike and transit friendly starts and finishes will be carefully considered.  Bikes and electric vehicles will be recruited to lead the marches.  As will solar and wind workers and contractors.
Nancy and I know we can’t do this alone. Nobody can, not San Diego 350,  not the city, the state or our country.  Ultimately the whole world must cooperate and that is the good news about climate disruption;  we may get the world cooperating instead of fighting.
Even as we contemplate further climate action Scripps oceanographers are in the Antarctic checking out the West Antarctic ice sheet.   Great ice shelves are holding the ice back from going into the ocean.  If those shelves fail, the oceans rise an estimated 3 meters. That means an ocean rise of 9 feet. Meanwhile,  CO2 in the atmosphere lasts about a thousand years.  So we have already set a lot of our climate future.   We don’t have a lot of time, folks.  Power accedes nothing without a demand.   It never has and it never will.   A good  thing we can all do is to keep on marching.  Thank you.