Green Hot American Summer

Late July brings a wave of climate demonstrations.

Emma Foehringer Merchant

Hundreds gather with lanterns on a beach in Sydney to spell out '350' and celebrate the Global Day of Climate Action in 2012 (Courtesy of

As the temperature rises, so do we.” That’s the slogan behind climate organization’s new campaign to turn up the heat on the fossil fuel industry. The group is focusing on the hottest stretch of the summer — the last two weeks in July — to stage mass protests against both dirty energy companies and the Obama administration’s broken promises for environmental action.

While 350​.org applauded Obama’s June 25 guarantee to halt the Keystone XL pipeline if it would significantly increase pollution, the organization called Obama’s climate plan “[not] nearly ambitious enough.”

In May, the amount of carbon in the atmosphere exceeded 400 global parts per million. 350​.org aims to lower the atmospheric carbon to below 350 parts per million — the upper threshold of what many scientists cite as safe for the planet.

To that end,’s Summer Heat” campaign will stage 11 demonstrations throughout the United States. Beginning July 19, a weeklong March for our Grandchildren” will travel from Camp David to the White House, imploring the president to push for environmental policy change. In the last weeks of July, volunteers in Nebraska will raise a solar barn and wind turbine in the proposed path of Keystone XL as a challenge to fossil fuel companies.

Visit join​sum​mer​heat​.org for more information. 

Emma Foehringer Merchant is a summer 2013 editorial intern.
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