The next meeting of the Hamilton 350 Committee is this coming Wednesday, May 15 at 7 pm and we have confirmed the Environment Hamilton offices at 22 Wilson as the location. A major agenda item will be the holding a public meeting in Hamilton on a Green New Deal for Canada in response to the call issued by dozens of organizations from across the country including 350.org. The public meeting is currently set for Friday May 24 at 7 pm in rooms 192-193 of Hamilton City Hall.
Climate Emergency next steps:
The city staff report on implementing the climate emergency declaration is expected in June, but there are further steps that you should urge councillors to take now. These include:
If you have input and advice to the city on specific actions you think Hamilton should take to slash local greenhouse gas emissions and/or drawdown carbon from the atmosphere, please share this with Hamilton 350 committee to coordinate and strengthen these actions.
Further support for climate emergency declarations includes a call for an Ontario declaration made by the official opposition party in the legislature. See details at https://www.nationalobserver.com/2019/05/09/news/ontario-ndp-wants-declare-climate-emergency-doug-ford-wont-let-them
A student climate strike in Hamilton is set for Friday at 2 pm outside City Hall. Please try to support it, but let the students take the lead.
The next Hamilton 350 meeting is on Wednesday, April 17 at 7 pm at the offices of Environment Hamilton.
Many of you have contacted your city councillor and/or the mayor to support their declaration of a climate emergency. If you haven’t yet acted, there is still time to act. Please let Scott know what you have done at email@example.com. We know these messages are having a positive effect. If you have already acted, continue to try to build a relationship with one or more of our local councillors. Some of us had a good meeting today with city staff at their invitation to provide our ideas for implementation of the climate emergency resolution. We’ll have a full report at the next 350 meeting.
Climate Change Town Hall on Sunday, April 14 at 2 pm in Dundas Baptist Church at 201 Governor's Road with Dr Dianne Saxe, just fired Environmental Commissioner of Ontario.
Film screening of *Directly Affected* by Hamiltonian Zack Embree on Saturday, April 27 -- the meet-and-greet with the director starts at 7pm and the film starts at 7:30pm at East Plains United Church, 375 Plains Road East, Burlington.
A talk by J. Romm, the author of Climate Change: What Everybody Needs to Know on Saturday, May 4th at 7pm at East Plains United Church, 375 Plains Road East, Burlington.
Also see below for Extinction Rebellion plans for Hamilton over the next ten days:
XR International Rebellion starts on April 15th and we are keen to see how this unfolds on a global scale, across the 45 countries where Extinction Rebellion has significant presence.
We hope you will join the actions in Hamilton, where the following has been planned so far;
On April 15th we kick off the week by meeting up in front of city hall at 4PM to hand over a thank you card to our mayor and city council for declaring a climate emergency and to remind them of the joined effort that lies ahead to deal with our climate crisis.
After that, at roughly 5PM we will take our banners and flags for a friendly and fun walk around the block, with a stop including a die in and singing by Jackson Square.
Please come out for this family friendly event, to spread the message of climate emergency and need for action across our amazing city.
Costumes, signs and music are components that are more than welcome! Consider dressing up as the thing you are afraid of loosing (bees, bugs, polar bears, flowers, etc.) or those who are part of the problem ( big oil, politicians, TD bank, etc). Let your imagination flow! The more noticeable the better!
Hope to see as many as you as possible join this event and meet your community.
If you are interested in participating in the die in or choire part, please respond to this email to coordinate further.
Meeting on Saturday 13th for event coordination and info. Wentworth room at Hamilton Central Library
April 13th-22nd; Artists for Climate Action (AFCA)
Coordinated by our incredible Neil Woodley, this is a phenomenal art show with more than 40 uber-talented artist, all gathered at The Spice Factory.
Please make sure you go there at least once! Free admission and open every day until 5pm.
April 15th-19th; The Talk
Headed for Extinction and What to Do About It -The Talk, is given every day of the week at noon at the Spice Factory. Come by in your lunch hour and bring friends and colleagues!
April 20th; Four Bridges: Banner Drop and Climate March
Our sisters and brothers in Toronto are having this event on the Saturday 20th, 2pm-5pm Please consider coming out to support them as well.
For more details https://www.facebook.com/events/331844997677100/
If you would like to carpool or join us on the train on the day, respond to this email as well and we will coordinate.
We need to continue to build on the achievement of getting the city to declare a climate emergency. The mayor’s motion approved 10-0 at the Board of Health on March 18 sparked a 70 minute discussion at the city council meeting last Wednesday night and still won a 16-0 approval. There also continuing media coverage of the declaration including commentary today by Spectator columnist Andrew Dreschel.
Emails and phone calls to the mayor and councillors from 350 and XR supporters, as well as the presence of climate supporters at the council meeting certainly drove much of the debate on Wednesday night. That shows your interventions counted, and that more emails and calls to councillors will help even more. If you haven’t acted – do so now! If you have – continue to communicate with and build a direct relationship with one or more of our local elected officials. This is just the beginning!
Much of the council commentary was defensive – loudly proclaiming that the city has been doing lots on climate change for a long time. That illustrated one of the widespread confusions among some councillors. Most of that “action” has been responding to the effects of climate change; very little has been done to try and prevent it by reducing local emissions. We need to keep speaking to that confusion where it appears to exist. And we need to keep praising those councillors who seem to understand and strongly support city action to reduce emissions at least in line with the IPCC recommendations.
There is also a rump of councillors at this point who appear determined to prevent the city from spending any money to fight climate change, and perhaps even one or two who aren’t sure what climate change is. But the resolution is approved, and questions directed to city staff at the meeting indicate they are thinking about what implementation will require, and that it will affect the city budget.
Video of Wednesday night’s meeting is at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKpamZ5tYWA. The climate debate starts 50 minutes into the meeting and goes to just past the two hour mark. Here are the start times for each. Check out what your councillor said. Also listen to the comments of staff half way through, and the mayor’s summary comments. What should we do next?
Staff Mike Zegarac 1:34:25
Staff Paul Johnson 1:28:15
Ontario Environmental Commissioner Dianne Saxe (just fired by Doug Ford) and a very good communicator on climate change (bring your friends) is the guest of Environment Hamilton on Monday, April 8 at 7 pm in the Hamilton room of the Central Library (55 York Boulevard)
XR Hamilton encourages you to support their delegation this coming Thursday night (April 4) to the Hamilton Conservation Authority board - 838 Mineral Springs Rd, Ancaster 7-8 pm. Regular monthly meeting, public welcome. Ian Graham presenting on Climate Change early in the agenda. Purpose is to enlist active support from HCA for the City's Declaration of Climate Emergency.
The following is a letter by Hamilton 350 member Don McLean published in the Hamilton Spectator on January 12, 2019, in response to the article "Rally in support of BC First Nations Pipeline Protest," that appeared in the January 9 edition of the paper.
How did Canada get into such a position? Our governments send a militarized RCMP to arrest indigenous residents in the wilderness of northern British Columbia. They do this to support construction of a 760 kilometre pipeline running the full width of the province that will wreak environmental havoc on largely pristine lands.
The pipeline is being built to carry natural gas destined for foreign markets. The gas is being obtained by fracking - an industrial process that intentionally pollutes both surface and ground water. The surface waters are first contaminated with chemicals and other materials, and then pumped into the earth where they permanently contaminate ground water. The pumping is hard enough to often trigger earthquakes because the companies want to fracture underground formations to ‘release’ fossil oil and gas so they can extract and sell it.
The outcome of this intentional water pollution is also pollute the air by burning the oil and gas even though the world’s scientists have repeatedly warned this will further destabilize earth's climate and worsen already devastating extreme weather damages.
Why isn’t the RCMP sent to arrest the frackers and the pipeline builders? It is their profit-driven activities which clearly damage the public good, not the brave people trying to stop this madness.
[The following is a post by Hamilton 350 member Ute Schmid Jones that she originally put on Facebook.]
As COP 24 continues to unfold in Poland, more than 40 climate activists gathered in #Hamont in front of the office of Member of Parliament for Hamilton-West-Ancaster-Dundas to reinforce the pressure on our Federal Government to act with #GlobalResponsibility on our national commitment to reduce our carbon emissions.
The rally, was to coincide with Filomena Tassi's scheduled meeting with a local climate advisory committee, in order to put media pressure on the MP. Unfortunately the meeting was cancelled earlier this week and so the activists were not given a public statement on the outcome of that consultation and meeting.
Each rally participant was instead encouraged to fill out a "visitor" information document that described their reason for "visiting the MP's Office". It is hoped that not only will Tassi read each submitted document, but that she will also respond to each in a timely matter. It is after all, the eve of an election year, and these Canadians are making it clear that they want to see their locally elected representatives step up on #climateaction.
Thank you to each community member who came out to stand in the cold today. Thank you to those who spoke at the microphone with passion... you inspire me. Thank you to those who drove by our rally and honked in solidarity.
This series of photos opens with a video introduction by Don McLean, the current chair of Hamilton 350 and concludes with some words from Grant Linney, the current chair of Hamilton Blue Dot. We will continue to demand better from our elected representatives.
In response to the COP 24 meeting of global governments to improve the Paris Climate Accord, Hamilton residents will rally on Friday afternoon outside the offices of MP Filomena Tassi, federal Minister of Seniors.
See below for the poster for our action on December 7!
“Claim the Climate” march of 65,000 in Brussels marks start of COP 24 http://www.digitaljournal.com/news/world/big-brussels-climate-march-marks-cop24-start/article/538135;
Large AP article also in Hamilton Spectator on Monday on COP 24 https://www.pressreader.com/canada/the-peterborough-examiner/20181203/281672551012449
UK Guardian coverage of COP 24 says world is “on the verge of climate catastrophe” and “has probably staggered beyond a crucial point of no return https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/dec/02/world-verge-climate-catastophe
David Attenborough tells COP 24 that the "collapse of our civilizations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizons" if no urgent action is taken against global warming. https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/david-attenborough-us-climate-change-warning-1.4930189 Also coverage in the Spectator at https://www.thespec.com/news-story/9064501-un-chief-climate-change-is-most-important-issue-we-face-/
CBC story on opening of COP 24 calls it “the most important UN meeting on global warming since the landmark 2015 Paris deal to shift away from fossil fuels” https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/climate-change-talks-katowice-poland-paris-accord-1.4929385
World at a crossroads says BBC story on COP 24 and notes unprecedented call from former UN presidents https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-46398057
On the eve of the COP 24 conference, the European Union is calling for carbon net zero by 2050 for its 28 member states https://www.dw.com/en/eu-aims-to-be-climate-neutral-by-2050/a-46493187
Oxfam says COP 24 decisions are life and death https://reliefweb.int/report/world/cop24-governments-face-life-and-death-decisions-says-oxfam;
United Nations explains the critical significance of COP 24 and what needs to be achieved https://news.un.org/en/story/2018/11/1026851;
Join us at 2:30pm on Friday, December 7 outside the office of Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas Liberal MP Filomena Tassi (1636 Main West, Hamilton, Ontario) for a rally to pressure the Liberals to take real, meaningful action on the climate crisis.
The struggle for climate justice seems like nothing but a series of crucial moments these days...but nonetheless, early December is a crucial period for putting pressure on the federal government.
* December 3 - 15 is the first international review of the Paris Accord since the release of the grave UN climate reports earlier this year
* December 7 marks Prime Minister Trudeau's meeting with provincial premiers on carbon taxation
* December 7 also marks a scheduled meeting of Filomena Tassi with her climate advisory committee, which will report to the rally on their conversations with her that day
We need serious action on climate NOW!
This event is organized by Hamilton 350. You can be in touch with us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out our website at www.hamilton350.org. And you can find the event page on Facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/events/602198283548745/.
For the last couple of years, Hamilton 350 has been active on a variety of campaigns -- for instance, our campaign last year against the expansion of Enbridge's Line 10 tarsands pipeline, which runs through rural Hamilton. The image below is from a reading of the Dr. Seuss book The Lorax that we did at one of their construction sites in autumn of 2017.
Despite all of our hard work, however, we have not done a good job of using our website to communicate what we're up to and how Hamiltonians can get involved. As part of a broader process of shifting our activities over the fall of 2018, we have committed to expanding our online presence. We hope that this website can become a hub for local climate information. We want this to include highlighting local climate-related events and actions, as well as publishing both pointers to good climate content published elsewhere and our own original content by group members and the group as a whole. We will also be continuing our regular updates via our email list -- subscribe here -- and Facebook page, and our long-dormant Twitter account is now up and running again.
This is still a work in progress, but we're off to a good start. Please check back soon!
Dundas Centennial Park and the bloomin’ cherry trees from Japan! After a 3 hour kayak cleanup along Spencer Creek and the Cootes’ West Pond and Canal.
Earlier dates in April, including a wild ride down Spencer Creek during the spring freshet–no time (or skill!) to stop and pluck detritus from the banks!
Why so much garbage, week after week? Mainly, an attitude adopted by many and society in general–there is no monetary value in “the commons”, so it ain’t my problem.
Other causes, in my opinion:
The fact of so much garbage in our waterways, making its way from our farms fields, roadways, pathways, streets–everywhere–is systemic of the malaise of our society. We know what the problems are, but we can’t seem to be able to change our “system”, mostly because our governance systems are now beholden to corporate influence–the same corporate system created by politicians a 100 years ago! And these “entities” that the courts have declared are “people” have no obligation to consider the “commons” as an “externality” that must be factored in to their bottom line, while they can dissolve themselves whenever they face these costs (requiring the “public” to pay the clean up tab of their bankruptcy)–in fact, their only obligation is to their shareholders and their “bottom line”.
It is a mixed up system, and we need to fix it.
Blog Post Courtesy of Neal Bonnor. For more posts like this, visit https://cleaningbykayak.wordpress.com/!