Quantcast

Climate Activist on Day 29 of Hunger Strike

Climate

Oil Change International

By Andy Rowell

Earlier this month, 350.org founder Bill McKibben, wrote about the new movement of fossil fuel resistance that was spreading around the world.

This resistance is needed now more than ever, as global temperatures edge towards the 400 parts per million (ppm) mark for the first time in millions of years, something that is seriously worrying scientists. “It looks like the world is going to blow through the 400 ppm level without losing a beat,” argues Scripps Institution of Oceanography scientist, Ralph Keeling.

One person who is part of this resistance is a young American activist Brian Eister, who has worked with John Kerry’s presidential campaign, League of Conservation Voters, Green Party, Public Citizen and was involved in the Occupy Movement.

But now he has put his body on the line for climate change. He is on day 29 of a planned 30 day hunger strike. For nearly the last month, all he has consumed is water, salt and potassium.

Eister is currently camped outside the American Petroleum Institute (API) in Washington, DC, the oil industry’s most powerful lobby group.

He is trying to raise awareness about climate change. “I am on hunger strike,” Eister writes, “because I can think of no action which could adequately express the urgency of humanity’s present situation. There are more than a few trends which, left unchecked, are likely to make life impossibly difficult for future generations.”

He argues that, “Given the urgency of what is coming, every one of our lives should, first and foremost, be dedicated to preventing this coming catastrophe.”

Over the weekend, Eister gave an interview as to why he is taking what many would argue is radical action. His anger is channeled towards those in power: politicians, the press and of course the oil industry itself.

“There are the policymakers, who treat this issue as though we had all the time in the world to fix it. They already know better,” he argues. “There are members of the press, who bury stories about the impending ruination of the world’s economy by global warming on page 13 of the newspaper, while consistently placing stories about members of congress wrangling over budgets on front page. They already know better.”

Perhaps saddest of all, he says: “there are educated, intelligent people who surely love their children working for groups like the American Petroleum Institute and Americans for Clean Coal Electricity. They already know better.”

The lobbyists at the API do know better, but like the tobacco barons before them, they are trying to still spin a web of denial and deception over the science and urgency of climate change.

As the world hurtles towards 400 ppm, the window for meaningful action on climate is rapidly closing. But, as Eister says, politicians, the press and the oil industry, all know better but carry on as if nothing is the problem.

If President Obama is to start listening to people like Eister, one first small step would be to cancel the Keystone XL pipeline. But that would only be the first small step of true meaningful action.

Eister argues, “In our minds, we imagine that somehow, someway, this problem will be solved: how, after all, could a world full of responsible adults allow all of our children’s lives, and their children’s lives, to be ruined?"

Visit EcoWatch’s CLIMATE CHANGE page for more related news on this topic.

——–

Click here to tell Congress to Expedite Renewable Energy.

 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

By Naveena Sadasivam

It was early in the morning last Thursday, and Jonathan Butler was standing on the Fred Hartman Bridge, helping 11 fellow Greenpeace activists rappel down and suspend themselves over the Houston Ship Channel. The protesters dangled in the air most of the day, shutting down a part of one of the country's largest ports for oil.

Read More Show Less
We already have a realistic solution in the Green New Deal—we just lack the political will. JARED RODRIGUEZ / TRUTHOUT

By C.J. Polychroniou

Climate change is by far the most serious crisis facing the world today. At stake is the future of civilization as we know it. Yet, both public awareness and government action lag way behind what's needed to avert a climate change catastrophe. In the interview below, Noam Chomsky and Robert Pollin discuss the challenges ahead and what needs to be done.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
FDA

Food manufacturer General Mills issued a voluntary recall of more than 600,000 pounds, or about 120,000 bags, of Gold Medal Unbleached All Purpose Flour this week after a sample tested positive for a bacteria strain known to cause illness.

Read More Show Less
Imelda flooded highway 69 North in Houston Thursday. Thomas B. Shea / Getty Images

Two have died and at least 1,000 had to be rescued as Tropical Storm Imelda brought extreme flooding to the Houston area Thursday, only two years after the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, the Associated Press reported Friday.

Read More Show Less
Aerial assessment of Hurricane Sandy damage in Connecticut. Dannel Malloy / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Extreme weather events supercharged by climate change in 2012 led to nearly 1,000 more deaths, more than 20,000 additional hospitalizations, and cost the U.S. healthcare system $10 billion, a new report finds.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Giant sequoia trees at Sequoia National Park, California. lucky-photographer / iStock / Getty Images Plus

A Bay Area conservation group struck a deal to buy and to protect the world's largest remaining privately owned sequoia forest for $15.6 million. Now it needs to raise the money, according to CNN.

Read More Show Less
This aerial view shows the Ogasayama Sports Park Ecopa Stadium, one of the venues for 2019 Rugby World Cup. MARTIN BUREAU / AFP / Getty Images

The Rugby World Cup starts Friday in Japan where Pacific Island teams from Samoa, Fiji and Tonga will face off against teams from industrialized nations. However, a new report from a UK-based NGO says that when the teams gather for the opening ceremony on Friday night and listen to the theme song "World In Union," the hypocrisy of climate injustice will take center stage.

Read More Show Less
Vera_Petrunina / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Wudan Yan

In June, New York Times journalist Andy Newman wrote an article titled, "If seeing the world helps ruin it, should we stay home?" In it, he raised the question of whether or not travel by plane, boat, or car—all of which contribute to climate change, rising sea levels, and melting glaciers—might pose a moral challenge to the responsibility that each of us has to not exacerbate the already catastrophic consequences of climate change. The premise of Newman's piece rests on his assertion that traveling "somewhere far away… is the biggest single action a private citizen can take to worsen climate change."

Read More Show Less