Hello! Long time eh? It seems that only massive direct actions or some huge summit gets me motivated to write a blog! This time the around I am not in Poland, Chiapas or Germany but in our nation’s very own capital! There is such an amazing buzz right now around the now 11,000 strong youth climate convergence this Friday and the culminating Capitol Climate Action shutting down the dirty coal plant powering Congress.  Read more info about the CCA below!

Life has been really amazing. January 2009 was one of the best months ever and definitely a solid start to an incredible new year.  All refined sugars eliminated from my diet since NYE. Biking 6 miles a day to transport to and from work. Yoga 4 times a week.  A magical home in Noe Valley with three beautiful, young, vibrant woman and one loving, sweetest ever pup, Bella.  And of course, my dreamy, phenomenal partner, Pete, who I am so in love with and blessed to be with.  He is moving to Esalen in a month, along the splendid Big Sur coast.  It will be a positive move for him but a bit far for us.   I am hoping we may live in the same community before long though because I miss him too much.

We’ve been in DC for a week with all of our wonderful Greenpeace students, recruiting at campuses in the area for Power Shift. We hit the 10,000 registrant goal today! Yeya, building the movement baby. Today we switched gears a bit and spent the entire day prepping for Power Shift and the Capitol Coal Action, getting legal breifings, Non-Violent Trainings, and spent hours in the Greenpeace warehouse with 50 people making all the props for CCA! 200 multi-colored flags with beautiful symbols  and words of Justice, Security, Change, Power and Community. Check out the photo below for visual! It was so incredible to see an assembly  line of 50 people: sewing machines, stenciling, spray paint, painting, hanging to dry, cutting bamboo, making into flags, tracing banners, painting them, drinking beer, music blasting, and hey we’re having a good time though freezing!

Time Magazine was out here filming as they are doing a big piece on the CCA. That was one of two times I was on camera today.  I went to Glut, a local collective co-op, not-for profit gem of a grocery store nearby, and Discovery Channel’s Green Channel was producing a show on co-ops and local food. They asked me to be an extra, and I agreed. They filmed Carling and me buying lentils, quinoa, and kidney beans, my favorites! We were interviewed and filmed for about 20 minutes, very  funny how the universe works. Just three nights ago I cried for 2 whole hours about the meat industry and processing my guilt for having shopped for 13 people at Giant grocery, feeding into the industrial monster of corporate dairy, excessive food transportation, animal cruelty, and not supporting local agriculture.  I realized that I needed to do more in my life to address this passion, and then 3 days later I’m being interviewed by Discovery on why I love local food and co-ops. Synchronicity! They’ll probably cut us because I sounded nervous and dumb, but at least I was excited and enthusiastic!

All weekend I’ll be at Power Shift training, attending workshops, hearing Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Bill McKibben, Wendell Barry, lead NASA Scientist James Hansen, Al Gore, Vandana Shiva, and bands like the Roots! It’s gonna be epic.

2,500+ to Join Biggest Climate Civil Disobedience in U.S. History
Scientists, Celebrities, Citizens from 40+ States to Risk Arrest for the Climate at Capitol Power Plant

WASHINGTON— The Capitol Climate Action Coalition announced today that more than 2,500 people have registered to participate in the March 2 Capitol Power Plant protest, ensuring that it will be the largest act of peaceful civil disobedience on global warming

in the country’s history.

In attendance, and willing to risk arrest, will be former coal miners, ministers, mothers, students, and climate activists from Arizona to Appalachia who have united to demand bold and far-reaching action on the climate and energy crises. Also attending will be leaders from the scientific and environmental community, such as Dr. James Hansen, Bill McKibben, Wendell Berry, Gus Speth, Vandana Shiva, former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson, as well as Grammy winner Kathy Mattea and actress Daryl Hannah. More than 90 advocacy groups across the nation have endorsed the action.

This is a critical year for strong U.S. leadership on climate and energy, with a major domestic policy debate around the corner and a deadline for international action set for the Copenhagen UN climate talks in December. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has cautioned that the United States and other industrialized countries need to reduce their global warming pollution by 25 – 40 % below 1990 levels by 2020 to avoid the worst impacts of severe climate change.

Leading climate scientist Dr. James Hansen, who will join the protest and is willing to get arrested, has testified before Congress that the world must begin phasing out coal immediately to avoid the worst impacts of global warming, including severe economic impacts. The climate crisis, if left unaddressed, is projected to put a serious billion drag on the U.S. economy by 2025.

“This is just the moment to up the ante,” said Bill McKibben, professor and founder of 350.org. “”Barack Obama–an organizer himself–has asked us all to give him the political backing he needs to make the change that science requires. When civil disobedience works, it demonstrates a willingness to bear a certain amount of pain for a larger end — a way to say, ‘coal is bad enough that I’m willing to get arrested.’”

The Capitol Power Plant, which is owned by Congress, burns coal to heat and cool numerous buildings on Capitol Hill, and has become a powerful symbol of coal’s stranglehold on the environment and public health. Coal is the country’s biggest source of global warming pollution. In addition, burning coal cuts short at least 24,000 lives in the U.S. annually, inflicts severe damage to the landscape and water supplies, and jeopardizes the lives of miners.

“It’s way past time for civil disobedience to stop mountaintop removal and other coal abuses and to move quickly toward clean, renewable energy sources,” said Judy Bonds, co-director of Coal River Mountain Watch of West Virginia, which works to stop mountaintop removal and rebuild sustainable communities. “For over a century, our Appalachian people and communities have been crushed, flooded and poisoned as a result of the country’s dangerous and outdated reliance on coal.”

There are clean and safe alternatives to coal, like wind and solar power, which will create at least 5 million jobs and help curb global warming. A recent University of Massachusetts study found investing in clean energy projects like wind power and mass transit creates three-to-four times more jobs than the same expenditure on the coal industry. The wind power sector has grown to employ more Americans than coal mining as demand for clean energy has jumped over the past decade. Investing in wind and solar power would create 2.8 times as many jobs as the same investment in coal; mass transit and conservation would create 3.8 times as many jobs as coal.

“As Indigenous Peoples of the Black Mesa region we have come to DC to stand in solidarity with many other communities affected by coal mining and with all those who object to the continued dependence on coal,” said Enei Begaye, Co-Director of the Black Mesa Water Coalition. “It is of the utmost importance for people throughout the country to take action. We must demand a national energy policy without coal.”