Wednesday, October 21, 2009
On Oct. 24, people from around the Columbia Gorge will gather to form a human "350" as part of the largest global day of climate action in human history.
The event, to be held in the Hood River News parking lot -- one of more than 3,000 rallies in more than 160 nations -- is coordinated by "350.org" to urge world leaders to take fast and effective action on global warming.
This is the first global campaign ever organized around a scientific data point: 350 parts per million CO2 is the safe upper limit for the atmosphere according to the latest scientific data.
Attendees are encouraged to wear green to symbolize their concern for the health of the planet.
At the same time as community members gather in Hood River, people in every corner of the world will be taking similar action, from climbers with 350 banners high on the melting slopes of Mount Everest to government officials in the Maldive Islands holding an underwater cabinet meeting to demand action on climate change before their nation disappears.
Founded by author and environmentalist Bill McKibben, "350.org" is the first large-scale grassroots global campaign against climate change. Its supporters include leading scientists, the governments of 89 countries, and a huge variety of environmental, health, development and religious NGOs.
All agree that current atmospheric levels of co2 -- 390 parts per million -- are causing damage to the planet and to its most vulnerable people, and that government action at the Copenhagen climate conference is required to bring the earth's carbon level swiftly down.