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 350.org)

As the tem­per­a­ture ris­es, so do we.” That’s the slo­gan behind cli­mate orga­ni­za­tion 350.org’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, 350.org’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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