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Weekly Climate Strikes Begin in Gravenhurst

Update January 23, 2020

Exciting news! Weekly climate strikes are now happening in Gravenhurst, starting tomorrow! Friday January 24, from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm at the Post Office, which is at the corner of Muskoka Rd. N. and Bay.

Bring a sign if you can. If not, we can find you one. Come out and meet new friends who are as concerned as you Bring a friend or family member.

If you’re not free this Friday, we will be there every Friday from now on, same time, same location!


Weekly Bracebridge Climate Strikes Continue

Also, congrats to the Bracebridge team, which is coming up on its 18th weekly climate strike since September!

Find us at Memorial Park every Friday from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm as well.

We hope you can join us!

Climate striking in Bracebridge

Recommended Read of the Week

Sustainable Severn Sound, seven area municipalities, one of which is Georgian Bay Township, has developed the area’s first Local Climate Change Action Plan (LCCAP). View/Download PDF

Climate strikers Judy and David in front of Climate Action Muskoka banner in Bracebridge.

This is the closest municipal overview and plan in this region (correct me if I’m wrong on this, please!) and provides a good snapshot.

Sustainable Severn Sound says its objective is to educate communities and municipalities on climate change and ways we can reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, the use of fossil fuels, lower our energy consumption, and adapt to our changing climate.


Inspirational Quote of the Week

“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
~ Martin Luther King Jr.


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Invitation to Participate in Climate Action Muskoka

For Immediate Release
January 20, 2020

MUSKOKA — The group Climate Action Muskoka (CAM) is inviting everyone in Muskoka concerned about climate change to get involved.

Inspired by student climate demonstrators in Muskoka and worldwide this past September, CAM is an inclusive, non-partisan group of Muskoka-based citizens with a shared commitment to working together to face the climate crisis.

The group’s broad mandate is to provide community support and work with municipalities to build a more resilient community as Muskoka transitions to a post-carbon future. The group will hold its 18th weekly climate strike in Bracebridge this Friday to raise awareness of the urgency of the issue.

Earlier this month an informal steering committee of about 24 CAM participants held its second meeting to get more specific about what urgent climate action in Muskoka might look like.

Attendees at our January 12 meeting.
Attendees at our January meeting.

“The scope of this crisis can feel overwhelming, and it’s so easy to just tune it out or to worry in isolation,” said Sue McKenzie of Gravenhurst. “But having been at these climate strikes, and seeing the expertise and the momentum in the room at our meetings, it’s clear to me that there’s a whole lot we can do. It’s truly heartening.”

The group plans to approach the District of Muskoka and its six Towns and Townships to support the push for a Climate Emergency declaration. More than a symbolic gesture, a Climate Emergency declaration is a formal acknowledgement of the seriousness of the climate crisis. It includes a commitment by the community to invest in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and to prioritize community resiliency while doing so. As of October, more than 460 municipal, provincial, and territorial governments across Canada have declared a Climate Emergency.

The group has agreed to form sub-committees to set additional goals and plan actions in the following areas:

  • Waste
  • Transportation
  • Food Security
  • Building
  • Water
  • Communications
  • Developing presentations to area councils
  • Gathering community endorsements for the Climate Emergency declaration

If you are interested in working with the group in one or more of these areas or just want further information, please email us at: climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com. State in the subject line which
committee you are interested in.

CAM’s regular Fridays For Future climate strikes continue at Bracebridge Memorial Park from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm on Fridays. The group is expanding the weekly strikes to Gravenhurst starting this Friday, January 24th at the Post Office from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. Other Muskoka communities are to follow.

Visit us online at www.climateactionmuskoka.org. We’re also on Facebook and Instagram @climateactionmuskoka.

-30-

Sue McKenzie | lensue@hotmail.com | 647-884-1531
Tamsen Tillson | tamsentillson@gmail.com | 705-645-5225

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Weekly Climate Strikes begin in Gravenhurst

Let’s do this! In addition to Bracebridge, we’re going to start weekly climate strikes in Gravenhurst, starting this Friday! #climatestrike #gravenhurst #climateactionmuskoka

Climate Action Muskoka is expanding its weekly Fridays For Future Climate Strikes (#FFF) to Gravenhurst starting this Friday, Jan 24th, 2020, from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm at the Post Office, located at the intersection of Muskoka Rd. N. and Bay Street.

Bring a sign if you can. If not, we can find you one. Come out and meet new friends who are as concerned as you! Bring a friend or family member! Sue and Len will be there every Friday from now on, same time, same location! If you want further info, please contact her directly. If you don’t have her email, reach her through us at climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com.

Please carpool if you can.

And if you’d like to start up another weekly climate strike in Muskoka, you can coordinate through us.

#actnow #strongertogether

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Update, January 16, 2020

This is a reminder that we are climate striking tomorrow, Friday January 17, 11:30am to 12:30pm at Memorial Park in Bracebridge. We hope you can join us! Dress warmly! #fridaysforfuture


Objectives & Sub-Committees, Oh My!

Group that gathered for January 12 meeting

Do we call ourselves a steering committee? A lot of expertise and passion in the room on January 12, as this group sat down to talk about the shape we’d like to see Climate Action Muskoka take. So much to do, and Muskoka, we know this community is up for the challenge. We’re creating sub-committees. We’re developing our short- and long-term objectives. We’re working toward weekly climate strikes in other Muskoka communities. United in our mission to work together to face climate change. Contact us for meeting notes. ❤️ 🤘 #climateactionmuskoka. #drawdown #climateaction #resilience #recovery #Muskoka


Muskoka Drawdown — The Radio Show

Organizer Tamsen Tillson (speaking of myself in the third person) was approached by Jeff Carter of Hunters Bay Radio to put together a monthly 22-minute radio show about climate activism on behalf of Climate Action Muskoka.

We’re planning to call it Muskoka Drawdown. Based on the Project Drawdown premise and applying it to Muskoka, it will be a solutions-based exploration of what is being done, who is doing it and how we can all work together to reverse global warming in Muskoka.

I’ll be looking for lots of help! If you are on this mission personally and/or professionally, or you know of someone else who is, and especially if you have radio experience, please contact me. Launch date to be confirmed. Please stay tuned…


Recommended Read

How to Stop Freaking Out and Tackle Climate Change: A five-step plan to deal with the stress and become part of the solution. From the New York Times.


Remember: We Climate Strike Every Friday

Rome wasn’t built in a day. We climate strike at Memorial Park in Bracebridge every Friday from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. All are welcome. If you don’t have a sign, we’ll try to find you one. (If you’re making one, “Honk for Climate Action” has been very popular with passers-by!) Bring your family and friends. We hope to see you there!

Carpooling

If you live outside of Bracebridge, please consider carpooling. You can either post on the Climate Action Muskoka Facebook page, or email us at climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com and we’ll see about making some introductions.

Climate Strike Gravenhurst, Huntsville, Dorset….?

All it takes to start a weekly climate strike is for a few passionate people to agree to come together and, as Nike says, Just Do It. If you are from another town in Muskoka and would like to help organize and support a weekly climate strike closer to home, let’s talk! Again, Facebook or email, or heck, face-to-face any Friday.


Inspirational Quote of the Week

“What great thing would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?” ~Robert H. Schuller

Honk for hope!

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CAM Update — January 9, 2020

Hi everyone, This is a reminder that we are climate striking tomorrow, Friday January 10, 11:30am to 12:30pm at Memorial Park in Bracebridge. We hope you can join us!

Carpooling

If you live outside of Bracebridge, please consider carpooling. You can either post on the Climate Action Muskoka Facebook group, or email us at climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com.

Climate Strike Gravenhurst, Huntsville, Dorset….?

All it takes to start a weekly climate strike is for a few passionate people to agree to come together and, as Nike says, Just Do It. If you are from another town in Muskoka and would like to help organize and support a weekly climate strike closer to home, let’s talk! Again, Facebook or email, or heck, face-to-face any Friday.

Recommended Read of the Week

Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming. This book is not about stopping global warming. It’s about reversing it.

Audacious, comprehensive and accessible, this explanation and ranking of the top 100 solutions to reverse climate change is a must-read. You can get it at the Bracebridge Library (though not at the moment as yours truly has it out). There is also a Drawdown website, which is up-to-date. (The book was published in 2017.)

Remember: We Climate Strike Every Friday

Rome wasn’t built in a day. We climate strike at Memorial Park in Bracebridge every Friday from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm. All are welcome. If you don’t have a sign, we’ll try to find you one. (If you’re making one, “Honk for Climate Action” has been very popular with passers-by!) Bring your family and friends. We hope to see you there!

Inspirational Quote of the Week

“We convince with our presence.” – Walt Whitman

Young climate striker in Bracebridge

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Christmas Holiday Climate Strike

Hi everyone, we hope you had a wonderful Christmas. This is a reminder that we are indeed climate striking today: 11:30am to 12:30pm at Memorial Park in Bracebridge.

Off work for the Christmas holiday? Come on out!

If you are one of the many concerned about climate change who have been unable to climate strike because of work, the Christmas holidays are a prime opportunity to join us.

Come and get your family engaged in climate action, or, take some thoughtful time away from the holiday craziness to meet with some like-minded people.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. We climate strike at Memorial Park in Bracebridge every Friday from 11:30 am to 12:30 pm; and that includes next Friday, January 3rd. Bring your signs. Bring your family and friends. We hope to see you there!

Recommended Read of the Week

The False Promise of Green Housing: One designer is challenging the conventional wisdom about environmentally friendly construction. ~ By Viviane Fairbank. From The Walrus, November 2019.

This is a paradigm-shifter on the building industry and features the work and insights of Chris Magwood , who recently presented at Muskoka Watershed Council; and Melinda Zytaruk of Fourth Pig Worker Co-op , (Local! Part of this group!)

Inspirational Quote of the Week

“Do your little bit of good where you are; it’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” – Desmond Tutu

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How November 29 Climate Strike in Muskoka Went

Thank you to everyone who was able to come out to the Global—Muskoka—Climate Strike on Friday November 29 at Memorial Park in Bracebridge. Very moving speeches and music, including from 12-yo-activist Cailan Punnewaert, Aaron Rusak of the Muskoka Conservancy, BMLSS student organizer Kelsey Smith, plus an incredible original song by Bet Smith. Thank you to Tom Cowan for hosting and providing the inspiring playlist. (Lots of Spirit of the West…RIP John Mann!)

We were so pleased that Bracebridge Town Councillor Andrew Struthers was able to attend and tell us a bit about some of the great things Muskoka Watershed Council has been doing to prepare for, adapt to and to fight climate change. We’re looking forward to speaking further and supporting that good work.

Regarding numbers: my count was between 60 and 70, though fewer did the actual march down and up Manitoba. More than that passed through and offered their support though, as the 109 additional signatures added to the provincial petition and 99 signatures on the federal petition indicates. (Climate Action Parry Sound, we’ll get those back to you.)

We are back to our regular climate strike routine, every Friday from 11:30 to 12:30 with one IMPORTANT CHANGE. Please note that we’re now meeting at MEMORIAL PARK in Bracebridge. See you tomorrow!

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Citizens Discuss Climate with Newly-Elected MP Scott Aitchison

Citizens concerned about the urgent need for action on the climate crisis presented a petition to newly-elected Parry Sound-Muskoka MP Scott Aitchison on Tuesday, November 26.

The petition, signed by over 500 Parry Sound-Muskoka constituents, calls for him to work with other parties to begin an immediate transition off fossil fuels with well-paid jobs and leaving no one behind. It calls for a Green New Deal, which basically means decarbonization of the economy. The petition was originally directed to all the federal candidates in Parry Sound-Muskoka.

The group had a very productive conversation with Aitchison about climate action and ways that the federal level of government can collaborate and support municipalities in the transition off fossil fuels. Aitchison expressed his interest in climate action and the need to strengthen federal action on this front.

Len Ring of Gravenhurst expressed his concern that all levels of government did not seem to grasp the urgency of the need for action, citing examples of fires in Australia and California, floods in Europe and the huge one-day loss (11 billion tons) of Greenland ice in August.

“We need to hold the temperature rise to 1.5C as stated by the UN’s IPCC report,” said Ring, “rather than our current trajectory of 3.2C.”

“With each new release of information from the UN, the situation becomes more dire and governments are not taking any kind of action that will meet this catastrophe,” said Janet Libke of Bala. “As a grandmother, I find this particularly disturbing and anxiety
causing.”

Sue McKenzie of Gravenhurst discussed the need for long-term funding support for municipalities to help decarbonize local infrastructure, as well as legislation requiring that all spending fits with a low-carbon future. She suggested the need for larger federal subsidies for E-vehicles and support for recharging infrastructure.

Judy Lewis of Huntsville wanted to see increased support for tree-planting programs.

Climate Action Muskoka founder Tamsen Tillson encouraged Aitchison to support and collaborate with the local group and offered the group’s support for anything he wants to do to help the climate.

For further information and to get involved in Climate Action Muskoka, find us on Facebook or our website: www.climateactionmuskoka.org or email us at:
climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com

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Climate Strike in Muskoka on November 29

November 20, 2019 — Climate Action Muskoka is calling on all Muskoka citizens to come together at a Global Climate Strike rally and march on Friday, November 29, 2019, from 11:30 am to 1:00 pm at Memorial Park in Bracebridge. 

It’s part of Global Strike 4 Future, in which millions of demonstrators worldwide will be calling on individuals and all levels of government to work together to take urgent action to tackle the defining issue of our time—climate change.

Grassroots momentum to combat climate change has grown in recent months, led by young Swedish activist, Greta Thunberg.

“Kids used to worry about what they were going to be when they grew up,” says 12-year-old local climate activist, Cailan Punnewaert. “Now the worry is ‘Will we have a world to grow up in?’”

BMLSS student Kelsey Smith, one of the organizers of the school-wide walkout in September, is encouraging her classmates to “make a day of it” and participate in the November 29 strike. November 29 is a Board Holiday.

“I do feel like everyone should come out and support this cause,” says Smith, “We are a small town, but every town and every idea can make a change.”

“We have to do much more, and we have to do it faster,” says Tamsen Tillson of Climate Action Muskoka. “Individuals, business owners and every level of government have to join this fight.”

Similar marches are happening in Parry Sound, and the Bracebridge rally is being supported by other groups for whom climate activism is front and centre such as Muskoka Power of Many. Those unable to attend the Bracebridge demonstration in person are encouraged to put up signs on their homes or their places of work and to gather in their neighbourhoods to spread awareness of the need for urgent action.

Canada, whose per-capita emissions are more than double the average of the G20 nations, is not on track to meet its own Paris Accord targets, targets which many scientists say are too weak. Earlier this month 11,000 scientists declared a climate emergency.

A group of concerned residents has been participating in weekly climate strikes in Bracebridge since September 27, when they came out to join the students of BMLSS.

For more information: email Climate Action Muskoka at climateactionmuskoka@gmail.com, or find Climate Action Muskoka on Facebook.