Midwest Power Shift Rally Intent on Getting Obama's Attention
More than 400 youth activists and other concerned citizens will rally in Cleveland on Sunday, Oct. 21, calling on President Barack Obama to reject the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, a project that has been called game over for the climate.
Dozens of the youth vote leaders attending the rally are former Obama campaign volunteers and staffers in Cleveland for the Midwest Power Shift Conference.
“Young people in Ohio, and across the Midwest are demanding President Obama reject the Keystone XL pipeline and are organizing for a clean energy economy,” said Katie McChesney, a lead organizer of the Ohio Student Environmental Coalition and Midwest Power Shift. “On Sunday we’re rallying to demand President Obama says no to Keystone XL and yes to clean energy jobs for the heartland.”
The Midwest Power Shift Conference will bring together more than 400 youth organizers and activists concerned about the environment and energy policy. Sunday’s march and rally continues a long line of action against the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline by Energy Action Coalition, including rallies at Obama fundraisers and speeches in St. Louis, Pittsburgh, Pa., Orlando, Fla., Asheville, N.C., and Detroit. Energy Action Coalition also led a camp-in before the State Department’s final public hearing on the Keystone XL pipeline, securing 45 of the first public testimonials for youth, faith, environmental and indigenous leaders speaking out against the potentially catastrophic project.
“The youth vote is demanding leadership from President Obama, and not only in critical states like Ohio. Young people across the country who fuel campaigns with volunteer hours and energy are organizing to remind President Obama of their power,” said Maura Cowley, co-director of the Energy Action Coalition. “President Obama needs us, and we need him. It’s time for him to show the leadership we demand and stand up to big oil to reject the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.”
WHO: 400+ youth vote leaders, including Whit Jones, campaign director of Energy Action Coalition, Kandi Mossett of Indigenous Environmental Network, and Katie McChesney of Ohio Student Environmental Coalition
WHAT: March and rally demanding President Obama stand up to big oil and reject the Keystone XL pipeline
WHEN: Sunday, Oct. 23, 1 p.m.
WHERE: Rally will start at the Cleveland State University Student Center (Euclid Ave and Chester Ave, on E. 21st St.), to the Free Stamp (Willard Park, Lakeside and E. 9th St.)
For more information, click here.
Energy Action Coalition is a coalition of 50 youth-led environmental and social justice groups working together to build the youth clean energy and climate movement. Working with hundreds of campus and youth groups, dozens of youth networks, and hundreds of thousands of young people, Energy Action Coalition and its partners have united a burgeoning movement behind winning local victories and coordinating on state, regional, and national levels in the United States and Canada.
At first glance, you wouldn't think avocados and almonds could harm bees; but a closer look at how these popular crops are produced reveals their potentially detrimental effect on pollinators.
Migratory beekeeping involves trucking millions of bees across the U.S. to pollinate different crops, including avocados and almonds. Timothy Paule II / Pexels / CC0<p>According to <a href="https://www.fromthegrapevine.com/israeli-kitchen/beekeeping-how-to-keep-bees" target="_blank">From the Grapevine</a>, American avocados also fully depend on bees' pollination to produce fruit, so farmers have turned to migratory beekeeping as well to fill the void left by wild populations.</p><p>U.S. farmers have become reliant upon the practice, but migratory beekeeping has been called exploitative and harmful to bees. <a href="https://www.cnn.com/2019/05/10/health/avocado-almond-vegan-partner/index.html" target="_blank">CNN</a> reported that commercial beekeeping may injure or kill bees and that transporting them to pollinate crops appears to negatively affect their health and lifespan. Because the honeybees are forced to gather pollen and nectar from a single, monoculture crop — the one they've been brought in to pollinate — they are deprived of their normal diet, which is more diverse and nourishing as it's comprised of a variety of pollens and nectars, Scientific American reported.</p><p>Scientific American added how getting shuttled from crop to crop and field to field across the country boomerangs the bees between feast and famine, especially once the blooms they were brought in to fertilize end.</p><p>Plus, the artificial mass influx of bees guarantees spreading viruses, mites and fungi between the insects as they collide in midair and crawl over each other in their hives, Scientific American reported. According to CNN, some researchers argue that this explains why so many bees die each winter, and even why entire hives suddenly die off in a phenomenon called colony collapse disorder.</p>
Avocado and almond crops depend on bees for proper pollination. FRANK MERIÑO / Pexels / CC0<p>Salazar and other Columbian beekeepers described "scooping up piles of dead bees" year after year since the avocado and citrus booms began, according to Phys.org. Many have opted to salvage what partial colonies survive and move away from agricultural areas.</p><p>The future of pollinators and the crops they help create is uncertain. According to the United Nations, nearly half of insect pollinators, particularly bees and butterflies, risk global extinction, Phys.org reported. Their decline already has cascading consequences for the economy and beyond. Roughly 1.4 billion jobs and three-quarters of all crops around the world depend on bees and other pollinators for free fertilization services worth billions of dollars, Phys.org noted. Losing wild and native bees could <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wild-bees-crop-shortage-2646849232.html" target="_self">trigger food security issues</a>.</p><p>Salazar, the beekeeper, warned Phys.org, "The bee is a bioindicator. If bees are dying, what other insects beneficial to the environment... are dying?"</p>
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