What if our governments treated the climate crisis like a real crisis? What if we mobilized public resources to fight the climate crisis with the full recognition that our lives and society depend on it? How can we organize enough political power to drive this kind of action?
These are the ideas that we discussed at our recent webinar featuring Seth Klein, author of A Good War, Mobilizing Canada for the Climate Emergency, Hannah Gelderman from Climate Justice Edmonton, and Rebecca Keetch from Green Jobs Oshawa.
Seth Klein shared some key steps governments must take to really act like the climate is in crisis: spend what it takes to get the job done, create new economic tools and structures to drive transformation, make climate action mandatory rather than voluntary, and tell the truth about the crisis.
Hannah Gelderman shared some approaches used by Climate Justice Edmonton to engage people in Alberta in discussion and action towards a Green New Deal in Alberta. Rebecca Keetch shared Green Jobs Oshawa’s vision for nationalizing manufacturing so that we can produce things based on social need, not corporate greed.
This panel of speakers linked high-level ideas about the types of transformation we need to create in Canada with grassroots-level work to organize the power needed to drive that change. As the speakers shared at the talk, the public is generally supportive of the transformations proposed by a just recovery and Green New Deal, but our governments still lack the political will to take bold action.
A real challenge for our movements is to organize our power so we can push governments towards that action. The Council of Canadians is working to support communities in developing and carrying out locally rooted campaigns for climate justice through our Green New Deal Communities project so we can build the grassroots power to drive change starting from the ground up.