Next Week’s Earth Day Encourages Action

The 2021 Earth Day Plan: Three Days of Climate Action

APRIL 20

“Earth Day 2021 begins with a global youth climate summit led by Earth Uprising, in collaboration with My Future My Voice, OneMillionOfUs and hundreds of youth climate activists.

The global youth summit will consist of panels, speeches, discussions, and special messages with today’s youth climate activists including Greta Thunberg, Alexandria Villaseñor, and Licypriya Kangujam.

In the evening on April 20, the Hip Hop Caucus and its partners will present the “We Shall Breathe” virtual summit. This digital event will examine climate and environmental justice, connecting the climate crisis to issues of pollution, poverty, police brutality, and the pandemic, all within a racial justice framework.”

We love this emphasis on youth, and we invite any children’s art with an Earth Day theme for our blog next week, submitted to Lucy or Catherine by April 20, 2021.

APRIL 21

“Education International will lead the “Teach for the Planet: Global Education Summit.”

The multilingual virtual summit will span several time zones and feature prominent activists from every continent, focused on the crucial role that educators play in combating climate change and why we need transformative climate education now. ”

APRIL 22 | EARTH DAY

“Parallel to the Biden Administration’s global climate summit, EARTHDAY.ORG will have its second Earth Day Live digital event, right here. The global show begins at 12 PM Eastern Time.

Workshops, panel discussions, and special performances will focus on Restore Our Earth™ — we’ll cover natural processes, emerging green technologies, and innovative thinking that can restore the world’s ecosystems.

More topics will include:

  • Climate and environmental literacy
  • Climate restoration technologies
  • Reforestation efforts
  • Regenerative agriculture
  • Equity and environmental justice
  • Citizen science
  • Cleanups, and more.

World climate leaders, grassroots activists, nonprofit innovators, thought leaders, industry leaders, artists, musicians, influencers, and the leaders of tomorrow will come to push us towards a better world.”

Go to Earthday.org to see what is happening in your neighbourhood or maybe try plogging (see below)

One Tree Planted Celebrates Earth Month

One Tree Planted emailed us The Ultimate List of 39 Things to Do Outside for Earth Month. The first suggestion on the list is consider planting a tree. We invite you to check out all their suggestions.

Ideas For Mobilizing Your Local Government

Maybe you might want to research what you can do on a local level. Check out David Suzuki’s recent article titled “What You Can Do-Your Voice at the Table Guide to Mobilizing Local Government Climate Action.”

https://bit.ly/2Qr8vYS

Maybe writing a letter to your member of congress is something you might want to consider. We have drafted a letter in our blog A Letter to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change January 14, 2021. Another consideration is receiving regular emails from the David Suzuki Foundation as they frequently have letters drafted that simply need a signature. Suzuki states that having only 3.5% of the population supporting an action on climate change is enough to make a political difference.

Bill Gates Youtube Interview Virtually at University Of Toronto

Catherine and Lucy both learned a great deal listening to this hour long YouTube interview with Bill Gates about his book “How To Avoid a Climate Disaster: The Solutions We Have and the Breakthroughs We Need”. Here is the link.

https://bit.ly/3smBUk9

14 People Mapping Canada’s Path to Net-Zero Emissions-Can They Do It?

“It’s a tall order, to say the least: take 14 people and ask them to figure out how Canada can meet its net-zero emissions targets by 2050. That’s the job of the new Net-Zero Advisory Body, which was established as part of Bill C-12, the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act. It includes leaders from environmental organizations, the Assembly of First Nations, cleantech, finance, climate science, industry, labour and more.”

“Some of the people on the body are Dan Wicklum, CEO of the Transition Accelerator; Catherine Abreu, executive director of Climate Action Network Canada; Assembly of First Nations Yukon regional Chief Kluane Adamek; and Hassan Yussuff, president of the Canadian Labour Congress.”

“According to the Government of Canada website, the group “will provide advice to the government and consult with Canadians on the most efficient and effective ways to reach this goal.””

“But not everyone is confident the panel can succeed. That includes Corinne Le Quéré, a Canadian climate scientist and member of the U.K.’s Climate Change Committee, which has played a pivotal role in reducing Great Britain’s emissions by almost half since 1990 and now roughly three per cent a year. In an interview with CBC Radio’s WHAT ON EARTH, Le Quéré points out that Canada has repeatedly failed to meet its climate targets, and remains one of the few wealthy countries where emissions continue to rise.”

“Advisory committees are essential, she argues, because policymakers are so focused on the near term that more distant goals end up on the back burner. For example, if we want to decarbonize transport by 2030, she said, we need to immediately start producing cars differently, installing infrastructure and planning for the increased electric demand.”

“The problem is, Canada’s new advisory body doesn’t have those kinds of near-term targets, she said. “It’s too slow. There are a lot of good mechanisms, but the urgency of the action is just not there,” said La Quéré. What’s more, she said, the panel is too closely tied to the government. “In order for these committees to have a real voice in society, they need to be far enough from government to not be enmeshed in the day-to-day decisions, but close enough to actually understand what can work in the Canadian policy process.””

“Dan Wicklum, co-chair of the Net-Zero Advisory Body, said its objectives are clear and that the transparency of the work they do will mean that Canadians can hold the government to account. “I think what we do want is to put in place strong, independent, transparent structures that are well resourced to give the best advice possible to the government so that they can make decisions,” he said. “And we feel we’ve got that body in place.””

“Le Quéré is calling on the government and Parliament to revisit the law that sparked the advisory panel in order to “strengthen the independence of this committee, give it resources, make sure it’s there for its expertise and inject a sense of urgency in it.” She said, “Unless you do that, we could wait another 10 years — and Canada’s track record is not very good.”” (See article by Rachel Sanders and Jennifer Van Evra at CBC – https://bit.ly/3dleXcW)

Canadian Companies Pledging Net Zero Carbon Emissions and By When

  • Blackberry 2021
  • CIBC 2024
  • Canada Goose 2025
  • Stantec 2030
  • Telus 2030
  • Indigo Books and Music 2035
  • Air Canada 2030 (absolute targets of 20% GHG net reductions from flights and 30% from ground operations)
  • Cenovus Energy 2050
  • Enbridge 2050
  • Kirkland Lake Gold 2050
  • RBC 2050
  • TD 2050
  • BMO 2050
  • Scotia Bank 2050

(See Globe and Mail article at – https://tgam.ca/2P0WngY)

A recent article we read indicates that not all businesses use the same parameters to calculate how they will get to net zero carbon emissions, and this is a topic to be discussed at the next Global Climate conference in November. Also it will be interesting to see what happens to the Air Canada pledge now that it is owned 20% by the Canadian Government.

What is Plogging?

Lucy learned a new word this week. She came across it twice in her research- plogging. Plogging is the act of picking up garbage while jogging. It gives you a full workout while cleaning up Mother Earth. Maybe if you like to jog, or even walk, you might bring along a garbage bag and gloves and consider cleaning up the garbage along the way, even if just once on or around Earth Day. It seems that there is more garbage along the road this spring than usual! When Lucy was in elementary school in the 1960s she recalls two pollution concerns, garbage along the road and acid rain in the Great Lakes. It is encouraging to see that acid rain in the Great Lakes is not longer the issue it once was because we removed phosphorous from our laundry detergent, and as a result citizens are now swimming in Lake Ontario, proof that we can make lasting improvements to our world. We have to continue to closely monitor what happens around those lakes because there are a lot of industries and farms around them.

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