On six continents, in over 75 percent of the world’s countries, people came out en masse yesterday to attend over 2,000 events to demonstrate the power of renewable energy to combat global climate change. As apart of the ‘Moving Planet’ campaign organized by 350.org, activists created a giant human-windmill in Paris, gave out bike lessons in Buenos Aires, practiced evacuation measure in the Pacific island of Tuvalu imperiled by rising sea levels, and marched in Cape Town for a strong agreement at the next UN climate meeting hosted in Durban, South Africa.
“The planet has been stuck for too long with governments doing nothing about the biggest problem we’ve ever faced,” said Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org. “This is the day when people will get the earth moving, rolling towards the solutions we need.”
Many events took on a local flavor. In Sydney activists flew kites calling for the government to put a price on carbon, an issue that the current Australian administration supports but has seen fierce opposition. In the US many activists spoke out against the Keystone XL pipeline that would bring tar sands oil down from Canada to Texas; oil from the tar sands releases significantly more carbon than more conventional sources. In India, ten thousand citizens protested the proposed construction of 80 new coal fired power plants. However, all the events were pushing for societal rejection of fossil fuel power with aggressive pursuit toward renewable and clean energy.