By Gary Piazzon
They are everywhere: lobbying their representatives, participating in UU Voices presentations in Olympia, introducing Governor Inslee and other prominent officials, presenting to the Seattle City Council and of course, planting trees. It is just getting started! These children mean business.
We hosted our first Plant for the Planet academy on Whidbey Island Saturday, 3/28/15 and it was a great time. We certified 15 Climate Justice Ambassadors who join 300 in the USA and 340,000 worldwide. This international, UN sponsored program is just getting started in the US. Like most other aspects pertinent to this über issue we in the USA have been late adopters. Boo on us.
The children had an exciting day. They learned about the Climate/Ocean crisis, climate justice, how to speak in public, provide positive feedback to their peers and work together. The weather was wonderful. We planted 11 Garry Oaks in the luscious, dark chocolate earth, found lots of worms, a gorgeous garter snake, the bones of a deer, and petted the resident baby goats. We even celebrated a birthday! We now have the nucleus for a club and will be meeting monthly to strategize how best to get our message to the community and for another academy in the Fall.
You can see images of the event on the CREATe and Climate Change for Families websites.
The goals of PFTP are to:
- Certify 1 million ambassadors
- Plant 1 trillion trees
- Keep fossil fuels in the ground
- Promote global justice and equality
Why so many trees? Trees absorb CO2. Scientists at NASA have determined this is the number of trees needed to stabilize the climate. A trillion trees may seem like a lot. It amounts to 150 per person on the planet. Huge, but that is where we are. Even that is insufficient to get where we need to be. We must also decrease CO2 pollution by 6% per year. Economists agree that the best way to do that is to tax polluters, i.e. the coal, oil and natural gas industries and provide that money to people so they can make wise choices. So, let’s all “Stop Talking and Start Planting!” and get our legislators to pass a carbon tax like those that make the economies of Germany and British Columbia so strong.
Planet for the Planet Seattle Explained:
The inspiring back story: Now We Children Save the World
Presentation to the Seattle City Council- PFTP (begins at about at about 45:00) http://www.seattlechannel.org/mayor-and-council/city-council/city-council-all-videos-index?videoid=x21710
Images from the Academy Saturday 10/25/14 with the Mayor Ed Murray:
Introducing Governor Inslee:
Piazzon, G. (2015). Plant for the Planet Stepping Up. Retrieved from http://www.nwuujn.org/view/article/551ee5e50cf24df50709ffc3