Earth Day 2015 45th Anniversary2015 - Earth Day’s 45th anniversary - could be the most exciting year in environmental history. The year in which economic growth and sustainability join hands.
The year in which world leaders finally pass a binding climate change treaty. The year in which citizens and organizations divest from fossil fuels and put their money into renewable energy solutions. These are tough issues but we know what’s at stake is the future of our planet and the survival of life on earth. On Earth Day we need you to take a stand so that together, we can show the world a new direction. It’s our turn to lead. So our world leaders can follow by example.
In 2015, let’s redefine what progress looks like. It’s Our Turn to Lead.
One billion people still live on less than $1.25 per day. One of the biggest controversies over a treaty has been the issue that developing countries don’t want to give up economic growth no matter the environmental cost, since the US and other developed countries got to pollute their way to the top.
Those most affected by climate change are low-income or marginalized populations. The Pacific Island nation of Kiribati, for example – one of the poorest places on Earth — was the first country to declare its land uninhabitable due to sea level rise from climate change, and has asked for help in evacuating its population. Even more people will fall into poverty and food will become more scarce if we don’t stop our misuse of the planet.
Eradicating global poverty is possible but only in a world where all countries commit to a low carbon future. We’ve got the technology. All we need is the will. Sustainability can be the answer to development, the only answer.
Grassroots Making a Difference
Over 400,000 people came together this past September in NYC for the biggest climate march of all time. Their call for action from the city streets reverberated around the world. They rallied for their leaders to recognize the catastrophic implications of climate change.
Their call did not fall on deaf ears. As Obama said in his speech at the NYC Climate Summit that week, “We cannot pretend we cannot hear them. We must answer their call.” Let’s make 2015 the year when our world leaders pay attention and answer our call.
Time for a Treaty
Over the past 20 years, there have been a series of failed attempts to create an effective international treaty on climate change mitigation. In 1997, the first major international agreement was passed, The Kyoto Protocol. The US—one of the top polluters—didn’t ratify. Since then, many Summits and many efforts to come to agreement—Rio, Copenhagen—have ended in a flop. (see more)- But Paris must be it! Governmental, business, and non-profit leaders must come to an agreement that will cut our emissions and limit our warming to 2°C.
Let’s make 2015 the year when our leaders pass a historic binding, global climate treaty.