Step It Up this weekend: take part in “the first nationwide do-it-yourself mass protest”

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In an inspired display of web-fueled activism, six recent college grads have organized the first ever day of national action on climate change. Dubbed the Step It Up campaign, the event is actually a sort of do-it-yourself mass protest, which has snowballed to encompass 1,333 events in all 50 states taking place this Saturday, April 14.

The campaign has a concrete and laudable goal: to promote passage of legislation that would cut carbon emissions 80% by 2050.

Getting involved couldn’t be easier. Just go to the web site and find the event occurring closest to you. Feeling fired up? Start your own event. Step It Up provides the tools and information you’ll need to put your town on the climate change map.

Those six kids have been working under the helpful guidance of environmental guru Bill McKibben. McKibben has been charting the progress of the campaign for the past twelve weeks over at Grist. He will also be appearing at the massive Sea of People rally in downtown Manhattan. After the rally, waves of participants will march a course that defines the “projected eastern and western 10-foot waterlines that may one day redefine lower Manhattan.” Hopefully I’ll see you there.

(Hat tip to reader Jon Warnow.)

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  1. Anonymous - April 11, 2007

    This is a joke. Most of these activities are nothing more than feel-good rallies. If you want people to take action, why not have activities where people actually do something besides complain? Out of the maybe 40-50 activities in my area, maybe a half dozen, if that, are something that might have an impact.
    How about a “trade your SUV for a hybrid day” or “replace your old furnace with a more efficent one day”? Or maybe have demonstrations on how to install a personal wind power unit? The reality is that the people who are attending these rallies will probably show up in their SUVs or gas powered cars to show support for a cause they theoretically support (who doesn’t support planet earth?), but don’t want to personally make any changes for.

  2. Adam Stein - April 11, 2007

    We’re certainly all for personal conservation, but personal conservation alone clearly isn’t going to be enough to address global warming. Congressional action is needed as well. That’s why mass demonstrations and the attendant media coverage are useful and important.

  3. Martha - April 11, 2007

    In response to Anonymous I say… I cannot speak for others, but as far as I am concerned, every day I try to do something for the planet. I drive an economy car (I cannot afford a hybrid yet); I plan my errands so that I maximize the gas usage; I recycle everything, including fruits and vegetables scraps which I put in the compost pile; I got rid of the grass in my yard and planted natives only, reducing the usage of water and providing food and shelter to wild birds; I am very conscious of the impact my actions have on this earth and I try hard to make it positive. So make sure you understand that plenty of people support planet earth and are willing to make changes.

  4. valerie - April 11, 2007

    In response to Anonymous,…A demonstration on how to install a personal wind power unit? What a fantastic idea! I’m going to look into that. Think of the turn out!

  5. NWF Volunteer - April 11, 2007

    I co-organized a Step It Up event. We have a Congressman who has a terrible voting record on environmental issues and I think it is important to let him know his constituents care about global warming. That’s why we giving attendees the option of signing a petition to him to go along with the picture he will get from the Step It Up event itself.
    Our event is going to include tips on how people can fight global warming in their daily lives; in fact, the Step It Up campaign has a downloadable flier with several such tips. Many of the people I have talked to already follow many of these suggestions and are eager to do more. The great thing about getting these people together in one place is that they can give each other new ideas on how to fight global warming in our daily lives.

  6. Nicole H - April 11, 2007

    I am attending the Step It Up event in my area and am excited to be a part of a group calling out to get the attention of local government. I think events like this are VERY much important in ALL issues that are a due a response from the government. I think its a proactive step outside of the personal ones MANY of us make on a daily basis.Peace.

  7. Alyssa - April 11, 2007

    In response to Anonymous… Every little bit helps. I agree we need to be productive but even just educating one person will help.