Afternoon keynote Mark Jacobson of Stanford University lifted everyone’s spirits with his showcase of new green technology and a report on the countries that are committed to switching to 100% renewable energy. Mark was kind enough to share his PowerPoint presentation. Here are examples of advances in carbon-free transportation and solar thermal complexes with battery storage that can save energy for up to 15 hours.
What lessons can we draw from three decades of struggles to address the existential threat of climate disruption? What do our failures reveal about the flaws of our political system and the economic nihilism of the fossil fuel industry? What strategies are most likely to lead to greater success to save our species from itself? Bill McKibben is perhaps our nation’s most influential environmental activist as well as one of our most brilliant thinkers and authors. The co-founder of 350.org, the first planet-wide, grassroots climate change movement, Bill wrote The End of Nature (1989), the first general audience book that warned the country about climate change.
The visionary goal of Project Drawdown, founded by Paul Hawken, is to actually reverse global warming by drawing carbon out of the atmosphere back down to pre-industrial levels. All the practices and technologies documented in Paul’s best-selling Drawdown book are already commonly available, economically viable, and scientifically valid. The true power of Drawdown is its holistic nature. Doing what’s right for the climate means doing the right thing across the board and will also create abundant, meaningful jobs and a vibrant green economy. For over 30 years, Paul has been at the forefront of transformative solutions for people and planet, including his highly influential books The Ecology of Commerce, Natural Capitalism and Blessed Unrest.
We are living through the most dangerous challenge to free government in the U.S. anyone of us alive has encountered. Like a house with crumbling foundations, American democracy is suffering from decades of deferred maintenance. The challenge of repairing and updating our institutions would be difficult enough, but we obviously do not live in “normal times.” The pace of change is faster, threats bigger, risks global, and the time to forestall the worst is very short. David Orr, one of the nation’s most lucid and influential thought leaders, draws from his forthcoming book, Democracy Unchained: Politics as if All People Matter, to consider what we must do to return to the better angels of our collective nature and turn the ship around. What happens next is up to us.
Democracy is in crisis, and one central reason is the transformation of the media landscape resulting from the collapse of the economic model for news. From where will truth-seeking, fact-based, trustworthy journalism come as we rebuild our democracy? How do we overcome the hyper-capitalist algorithm devouring the free press? Monika Bauerlein is the groundbreaking CEO and former Co-Editor of Mother Jones, which since 1976 has stood among the world’s premier progressive investigative journalism news organizations.
New Consensus is a leading-edge non-profit policy “think tank” working behind the scenes supplying research and detailed policy proposals for the Green New Deal to its leading political advocates, such as Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasion Cortez. Demond Drummer, New Consensus’ co-founder and Executive Director, well known in Chicago as a highly effective activist whose notable projects include CoderSpace, a computer science learning lab where students develop leadership skills, and a community-driven effort to reclaim city-owned vacant lots, is one of the true intellectual architects of the Green New Deal. He will draw from the history of FDR’s WWII mobilization, the moonshot of the 1960s and the Civil Rights Movement to explain the critical importance of the Green New Deal as the next chapter of the American story.
In her book “Abundant Earth,” Eileen Crist sounds the alarm that nature requires protection on an enormous scale in order to redress the extinction and climate crisis. National and state politicians have proposed various frameworks for ways to redirect the human experiment toward a more sustainable and equitable existence on Earth. These frameworks have been dubbed “Green New Deal” a nod to a series of programs, public work projects, financial reforms, and regulations called the New Deal enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the United States between 1933 and 1939 to aid in recovering from the Great Depression.
The Green New Deal proposals have common themes in their calls for declaring climate change an emergency, moving to 100% renewable energy, creating new jobs for carbon industry employees, investing in regenerative agriculture, investment in research and development for innovations in energy storage and deep decarbonization, and conserving wilderness lands.
What many local residents don’t realize is that the Green New Deal is already underway here on the Central Coast. Our afternoon workshops will showcase this movement, the successes so far, what still needs to be done and how you can be a part of it.
With an eye to the old maxim “Think Globally, Act Locally” you will also learn how to support efforts to make the Green New Deal and national and global movement.
Coffee and breakfast provided through a generous donation by SLO Food Coop.
Thanks to TableShare Ware, Central Coast Bioneers will be a zero waste event. Fore more information, visit their booth at the conference or check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Table-Ware-Share-Free-Lending-361191904645797/