FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 21, 2009
Carla Perez, Movement Generation Justice & Ecology Project: 510-649-1475
Ananda Lee Tan, Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives: 415-374-0615
On site cell: Maya Face, Rising Tide North America: 413-695-2249
TODAY: 11:00AM SENATOR BOXER’S SF OFFICE AND CHEVRON’S DOWNTOWN OFFICE
U. S. CLIMATE POLICY SLAMMED
BY MOBILIZATION FOR CLIMATE JUSTICE PROTEST
CLIMATE ACTIVISTS DECLARE THAT CHEVRON AND OTHER CLIMATE POLLUTERS HAVE NO BUSINESS DICTATING CLIMATE POLICY
San Francisco, CA – A broad coalition of organizations from up and down the west coast will arrive in force today to deliver a strong message to US lawmakers and polluting corporations that are decimating our prospects of meaningful climate solutions.
The protest rally starts at 11:00am TODAY at the San Francisco office of Senator Barbara Boxer (1700 Montgomery St., SF), chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee that will be presenting a Climate and Energy Bill currently in Congress by the end of the week. The protest will then move to Chevron Oil Corporation’s downtown San Francisco office (345 California St.). The colorful action caps a weekend-long gathering of the Mobilization for Climate Justice, consisting of more than thirty-five environmental and social justice organizations, and representing communities from across the country and around the world. Speakers at the rally included Dr. Henry Clarke of the West County Toxics Coalition and Antonia Juhasz of Global Exchange.
The Mobilization for Climate Justice says that corporations have no place dictating climate policy for the nation or the world – policies that now only serve to increase corporate profits, greenhouse gas emissions and toxic pollution in the backyards of working class and people of color communities across the U.S. The Coalition says the only way we will have durable solutions to the climate crisis is if voices of frontline communities are heard, rather than corporate polluters like Chevron.
“If Congress wants to protect the public interest, they would never consider adopting the current climate bill (the American Clean Energy & Security Act) that was written by big oil and energy corporations in the first place”, said Carla Pérez of the Movement Generation Justice & Ecology project, “Cap and Trade legislation coupled with direct subsidies to oil, coal, nuclear, bio-fuels and incinerator industries will only serve to add hundreds of toxic smokestacks in our backyards.”
“Chevron is one of the wealthiest entities on the planet–only 36 countries had GDP’s larger than Chevron’s 2008 revenues,” said Antonia Juhasz, Director of the Chevron Program at Global Exchange, “yet Chevron is evading its responsibility to reduce its own climate footprint. Moreover, Chevron’s colorful advertising aside, less than 3% of Chevron total capital and exploratory expenditures in 2008 were on clean energy alternatives.”
A goal of the Mobilization is to build a grassroots Climate Justice movement and force corporate domination out of climate policy arenas – in both the U.S. and at the UN climate talks this December in Copenhagen. “It’s time for the people to step up, take control of our air and force the Greenhouse Gangstas to step down,” emphasized Leonard Webster, a community organizer and native of North Richmond. “We can’t afford to lose our mothers to toxic pollution. The corporations are getting their wealth off of poor people’s health.”
“The North Richmond community is on the frontline of Chevron’s chemical assault. We have experienced a lifetime of chemical exposure, asthma, cancer and death. These are human rights violations,” said Henry Clarke, Executive Director of the West County Toxics Coalition.
In the U.S., petroleum accounts for more than 40 % of total CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion (the burning of fuels, including coal, oil, and natural gas to produce energy and to power vehicles) – more than any other fuel.