Tag Archives: Climate March

Riding the Climate Train

Coast to Coast for Climate Action

By Linda Currie, Event Manager, Green Sangha

Wearing a shirt of her own design, Linda Currie prepares to board the Climate Train in Emeryville.  Photo:  Kristopher Skinner/Bay Area News Group

Wearing a shirt of her own design, Linda Currie prepares to board the Climate Train in Emeryville. Photo: Kristopher Skinner/Bay Area News Group

On September 15, I boarded the People’s Climate Train in Emeryville, California, along with about 125 others, including Green Sangha member Trish Clifford. We were headed for the People’s Climate March in NYC on September 21, a monumental gathering of more than 400,000 citizens in advance of the United Nations Climate Summit. As we traversed the country, greeted by colorful sign-waving supporters in Reno, Denver, Salt Lake City, and Chicago, our numbers grew to more than 200. We rolled through beautiful mountain ranges, rivers and plains, sometimes having to stop for freight cars filled with coal or oil, reminders of our purpose.

The Climate Train was organized by local Buddhists and the Center for Biological Diversity as a less carbon-intensive way to bring engaged people from the west to the east coast, and to provide opportunities to prepare for the march ahead.

On the surface, we were a disconnected, motley crew, ranging from 18 to 80 years old, all colors and so many walks of life: indigenous peoples, nuns, ministers, teachers, students, social justice advocates, environmental leaders, union members, and business owners. Over the long hours we connected and talked with each other, participating in dozens of workshops on issues such as divestment, tar sands, non-violent direct action, faith leaders’ response to climate change, and rights of nature.

By the time we arrived at Penn Station in NYC, we had formed unexpected bonds and become allies, ready to march together to protect what we love, our planet. One of the Green Sangha principles says, “Throughout the universe, One Body revealed.” I felt this so deeply in my heart every day on this journey:  “Of course we love the planet.  It is us!”

View from aboveThe People’s Climate March in New York City was huge, colorful, diverse, completely peaceful. The sense of quiet power was palpable in the air. At 12:58 pm, silence rolled back from the front through the crowd like the jet stream, connecting us all in two minutes of quiet. At 1 pm, cell phones led a wave-like roar back through the rows of marchers:  a symbolic call to awakening.  The march continued for several miles, ending without aplomb with a large gathering of food and music. Then, people dispersed in every direction, going back to the places and lives they had come from, knowing that something important had just taken place.

When I first awakened to the climate crisis, I vowed to do everything in my power to make a difference. At that time, our children were young and my husband and I were both busy working parents. I had no idea how I could personally have an effect, but I let myself be guided. Green Sangha was one of the organizations I found that has guided and sustained me on my path, providing grounding for all my actions, from those early days until now. Getting on the People’s Climate Train and marching were just more natural and powerful steps I could take to do my part.

Editor’s note: Have you participated in a Low Carbon Diet group? This is an easy and fun way to make real, measurable, and lasting reductions in your carbon use. Groups are forming in Marin County, for five sessions of neighborly gatherings (meeting weekly or biweekly). Participating households have already reduced their carbon emissions by 2.2 million pounds per year.  More info here: Resilient Neighborhoods.

March for climate, clean up the coast, listen and awake!

Environmental action this weekend!

1.  Coastal Cleanup Day is the largest volunteer service event of the year, with events up and down California. Green Sangha members will gather at McNear’s Beach in San Rafael, and Emeryville in the East Bay.  Details are here.

CLIMATE TRAIN/METRO2.  People’s Climate March.  In NYC, Oakland, Tucson, and around the country, hundreds of thousands are coming together to demonstrate for climate sanity.  Two days later, world leaders gather to consider climate action; they will be informed and inspired by our presence!

Linda Curriepictured here, boarded Amtrak in Emeryville on Mon Sep 15, on her way to join hundreds of thousands in NYC, rallying two days before a gathering of world leaders.  Photo: Kristopher Skinner, Bay Area News Group

Sanjen Miedzinski will march in New York City, as will other Green Sangha members.  You can join the world’s largest demonstration for climate protection! NYC info here. If you can’t make the trip to New York, come to the companion demonstration the next day in Oakland at Lake Merritt, 2-5 pm. In Tucson, there are workshops all day on Sep 20, with a rally and electric vehicle celebration on Sep 21: Tucson climate events.

Then, in October:

Thu Oct 9.  SYNBIO: a close look at an emerging new technology.  Speakers include Mark Squire, co-owner of Good Earth Natural Foods and Green Sangha Advisory Council member.  7-9 pm at the Mill Valley Community Center, Cascade Room, 180 Camino Alto, Mill Valley.  More info on Synbio.

Pumpkin madonnaSun Oct 12 is our seasonal day of Inner & Outer Restoration at Green Gulch.  Organic farm lunch, fresh air in the fields, tea, and meditation, noon to 6 pm.  This event takes the place of our regular monthly retreats in Marin & the East Bay.  Carpooling recommended, and reservations required:  linda@greensangha.org.

Wed Oct 22.  Clean Energy:  Why we must have it, how it can be done.  A Green Chautauqua discussion with Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club.  Co-sponsored by Sustainable Fairfax, Green Sangha, and more.  First Presbyterian Church, San Anselmo, 7:30-9:00 pm.  More info here.