On February 7th, thousands of people are expected to take part in The March for Real Climate Leadership: Our Water, Our Health, Our California. The march, organized by a broad coalition of environmental groups across California, demands that Governor Brown take real action against fracking.
Californians Against Fracking, one of the event organizers, states, “If Jerry Brown wants to be a real climate leader he must stop enabling the biggest climate polluter by yanking his support of oil refinery expansion, blocking dangerous bomb trains, and putting a ban on fracking and other forms of dangerous and toxic fossil fuel extraction.”
Advocates claim that Californians are threatened by fracking in numerous ways, including exposure to toxins for those living near drilling sites, potentially explosive trains carrying crude oil through populated areas, air and groundwater pollution, and increases in overall methane emissions.
Hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, involves injecting water and chemicals deep underground to break up rock and release oil and gas. It is an extremely water intensive practice, using hundreds of thousands to millions of gallons of water to frack a single well. It utilizes a mixture of chemicals, many of which are toxic or are known to cause human health problems. The practice also produces large amounts of waste water that must then be disposed of. The wastewater contains harmful components such as high salt content, naturally occurring radioactive material, and heavy metals such as arsenic. Recently in Kern County, waste water from at least nine fracking wells containing high levels of arsenic, thallium, and nitrates was injected into high quality water aquifers making the water unsuitable for drinking or irrigation.
The March for Real Climate Leadership website: http://www.marchforclimateleadership.org, states, “The California climate movement is showing up in force on Governor Jerry Brown’s doorstep, to let him know he is not a climate leader if he continues to allow fracking to expand in California. Amidst the worst drought in California history, expanding fracking and shipping in tar sands and oil from the Bakken shale, is not climate leadership, it’s more of the same.”
February’s planned march follows a similar one that took place in New York last fall where an estimated 311,000 people participated, including former Vice President Al Gore, secretary general of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, who presided over the United Nations climate summit meeting, and Mayor Bill de Blasio, who recently announced that he was committing the city to an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gases by 2050.
The Yolano Climate Action, a local organization whose purpose is to bring together groups and individuals concerned by the climate crisis, is organizing ways for Yolo County residents to participate in the march, which will begin at 11:30, in Oakland at Frank Ogawa/Oscar Grant Plaza.
Cool Davis Board Member Lynne Nittler states, “As a climate activist, I need to surround myself periodically with hundreds of other like-minded individuals who care enough about our obligation to the future of this imperiled planet and the life on it to devote their time to slowing climate change. I attend marches like the March 7th anti-fracking march not just to communicate to our governor that many of us want him to ban fracking, but also to remind myself that a movement is steadily building, swelling in numbers and growing wiser in strategy even as the urgency of action increases.”
On Saturday, January 31 a stencil/poster making party will take place from 10:15-11:30 in the Blanchard Room of the Davis Library. All are welcome and encouraged to bring any of the following: a white board, poster board or cardboard, colored felt markers and your verbal cleverness and artistic talents. Some white boards, exacto knives, scissors, rulers, felt markers, chalk, stencils (Stencils Against Fracking has teamed up with the March for Real Climate Leadership and has designed a limited-edition stencil for use to encourage communities to come to the march) will be provided.
The group is also helping to coordinate bus and train transportation to the event.
Three buses leaving from Sacramento will pick up passengers in Davis at the Ikeda Park-n-Ride at 8:30 a.m.. They will arrive in Oakland with enough time for people to get food and use bathroom and return to Davis approx 7:30. Bus tickets range $15, with a few available for $3 for those who need them. You can get more info and buy your ticket here: www.eventjoy.com/e/bus-to-oakland-climate-march-sac–davis-825128
Travel by Amtrak: There are multiple trains leaving Davis and arriving at Jack London Square. The Amtrak station is about a mile walk to Frank Ogawa/Oscar Grant Plaza, where the rally begins and is about a 15 minute walk from Laney College, where the rally is to end. Roundtrip fare is $54. Senior fare is $50 roundtrip. Many Davisites are planning on taking the train that departs Davis at 9:30 and arrives to Jack London Square at 11:06. For a full list of train schedules visit the CoolDavis Website: http://www.cooldavis.org/2015/01/15/feb-7th-march-for-climate-leadership-in-oakland/
For more information about the event, or to learn ways you can get involved contact: firstname.lastname@example.org