California Earth Democracy Spring TourPublished on January, 53 2013
Dear California WILPF Branches and Members,
Coming out of the Women’s Congress for Future Generations in Moab this past summer, we four WILPF members are enthusiastic about bringing the idea of Guardianship of Future Generations and the Precautionary Principle to all our California members and branches. To that end, we’re scheduling a California tour, between March 22 World, Water Day, and April 22, Earth Day. This is an invitation to your branch or to a local cluster of WILPFers to host an event, which would include other local allies, at which we would like to co-facilitate the discussion of these seminal ideas with the local sponsoring organizations and participants at the gathering.
We can visit you on March 22/23, April 5/6, April 12/13, April 19/20—or any dates in between. For the convenience of branches and members in organizing, we could consider dates a bit before or after March 22 and April 20.
What we’re bringing is a total package interconnecting environmental, legal, social and economic justice issues—so likely co-sponsors and other participants will be local groups concerned with these issues, uniting the community in responding to our urgent problems using these inspiring tools and ideas.
Discussion would focus on your particular local issue involving local people. Our role would be to help you explore how to utilize these ideas of Guardianship and the Precautionary Principle and to implement them locally.
To liven up the discussion and add a dimension of awareness and hope, we can engage in some activities designed by Joanna Macy. We will also interweave 350.org’s “Do The Math” campaign about the urgency of dealing with climate change and how to develop local divestment from companies involved in fossil fuels.
Here in California, many communities are or will soon be dealing with fracking for oil and natural gas. The Precautionary Principle states that a local government has to be assured that a product or an activity is safe before approving its use; if such a local ordinance were in effect, it would give us a tool for protecting our natural commons. The Science and Environmental Health Network has worked with Harvard Law School for two years to produce templates for local ordinances that local governments could use in considering how to protect our land, water, air, minerals and environment for future generations. More generally, we all know we’re responsible for how we pass the world on to future generations. They’re our descendants—we owe it to them! But it’s also for us—it’s how we can protect our health and the health of our surroundings, now.
We’re excited; these inspiring ideas offer great hope and possibility for effective action. A growing international interest in these principles has been building for decades; actually, some cities and countries are already starting to implement these ideas.
We recommend that the best format for this program would be a Friday evening and about four hours Saturday morning, but we could also adapt it to a whole day’s program, or even just a few hours of presentation and discussion. We want to accommodate to your needs; we could put on a simple event on the weekday or night of your regular Branch meeting. We’re flexible and want to respond to whatever day and time is best for you.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with responses to this announcement and questions.
We look forward to hearing from you right away so we can start to plan together!
This is a great way to start the New Year!!!
Jean Hays, Nancy Price, Mathilde Rand, and Randa Solick for the WILPF Earth Democracy Committee
P.S.: Please open the attached draft to read about a bold plan for a National Commission and a United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Future Generations as well as local action.
Image credit: By artist Ann Altman from Silverton, Oregon, www.annaltman.com