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!


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

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

Christmas Holiday Climate Strike

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.

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

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!

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

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: or email us at:

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, or find Climate Action Muskoka on Facebook.