Sunday, August 3, 2008

Who we are

Every hour, the sun beams as much energy at the earth as humanity collectively uses in a year­. All we have to do is harness it. Clean, affordable, renewable and sustainable energy such as solar, wind, geothermal and marine power exist all around us. We don’t need dirty, dangerous, expensive energy like oil, gas and nuclear when we have the knowledge, ability and means necessary to build a better world. A better world is necessary - a better world is possible. In fact, a better world is coming. Combining the best ideas of our best thinkers and working together, we can and must inspire our government to enact policies which are just and ensure a sustainable world.

We know that people in areas such as the Arctic, Bangladesh, Darfur, the Sahel, Tuvalu, the Maldives, the Amazon, parts of China and many others are already suffering the impacts of climate change. Canada is repeatedly called upon to meet its commitments, demonstrate leadership in this crisis and to act promptly and progressively to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Global warming must be kept as far below 2° Celsius as possible in order to prevent catastrophic consequences – this means developed countries such as Canada must reduce greenhouse gas emissions 25 to 40% (from 1990 levels) by 2020.

Canada must have a credible plan to meet this 2020 goal. That plan exists, in many forms, but our government has been quite busy tilting at windmills instead of building them. Our taxes subsidize dirty energy while our policies prevent us from getting our energy through clean, renewable and sustainable sources. Al Gore has challenged his nation to commit to producing 100% of its electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources within 10 years. It’s time to challenge our leaders to commit to similar goals. It’s time our government worked toward facilitating Bangladesh and other developing nations in shifting to alternative energies. And it’s time Canada played a leadership role in influencing other G8 nations to embrace clean energy.

This October 4 to 20, a group of like-minded people will walk with friends from Toronto to Ottawa to collect and deliver climate change solutions. Please join us in re-imagining our world. We will visit many towns and meet many friends along the way in places such as Pickering, Darlington, Oshawa, Port Hope, Cobourg, Trenton, Belleville, Napanee, Kingston, Godfrey, Sharbot Lake, Perth, Carleton Place and many others. Come out at the beginning of the walk, the end, somewhere in between or for the whole thing - come share your clean, green solutions with us in a letter or a picture and we'll deliver them to our government in Ottawa on October 20th.

Together we can inspire our government to implement clean, affordable, renewable and sustainable solutions and to create green jobs, but we have to be many and we have to make ourselves heard. It’s our government. We elected them. Please join us in demanding green energy now - share your vision of the best solutions, or what you or people in your community are already doing to make the shift away from oil.

October 4 to 20 - Rain or Shine – we’ll walk for sunshine. Please take a few minutes to join us in this effort.

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