Episode 37 Recycling, Republicans, Bisexuals, and People’s Climate Day of Action

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Climate Stew host, Peterson Toscano

Climate Stew host, Peterson Toscano

In connection with the People’s Climate Movement Day of Action, we release this very special episode of Climate Stew. We are talking about climate action. No just simply recycling and changing lightbulbs. We look at how to change political will. Our news report is GOOD NEWS. Seems some Republicans are ready to act to address climate change. They even issued a resolution to voice a Conservative approach to Climate Change. I speak to Elizabeth Jeremiah, a Conservative, Republican, preacher woman from down South about the Gibson Resolution.

Marvin Bloom, who LOVES recycling, reveals how his partner, Tristan, bursted his pretty little recycling bubble. He then gives us concrete ideas of how we can address climate change. We also get a radio transmission from the year 2165 that looks back at how we successfully addressed climate change in our day–this time with the aid of a group of bisexuals.

Climate Stew is available on iTunes, Stitcher, SoundCloud, or Listen here on our site. We also have a special Facebook Group for people who want to discuss upcoming episodes and delve deeper into the issues. We want to hear your ideas. Peterson tweets about climate change, LGBTQ concerns, faith, and lots of weird stuff, so feel free to follow and jump into the conversation. And don’t forget to share Climate Stew with your friends. Peterson is also taking off to Norway, Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico. Check out his schedule here.

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See a short video about the Citizens Climate Lobby proposal for pricing pollution. A GREAT idea!

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Open

Welcome to this very special edition of Climate Stew. I am Peterson Toscano. Of course I don’t know when you are hearing me, but this episode airs on October 14th, 2015 a day when people all over North America are gathering for the People’s Climate Movement Day of Action. This is the follow up to last year’s massive People’s Climate March.

Likely you are already engaged in some sort of climate action. Hopefully after listening to this program you will have even more ideas of how you can play your part and make a difference. What gives me hope? I am seeing collective action taking place. Groups are forming on all sides. Each day another person gets on board. It is like we are part of a massive sleeper cell and one by one we are activated for service.

In today’s episode Marvin Bloom breaks it down for us and talks recycling. But if you ever heard Marvin before, you can predict he is going to off-road it and bring his own unique way of looking at the practice. Listeners will be happy to know that Timothy Meadows is back from the future with a report about a bisexual approach to climate change. But first to start us off Elizabeth Jeremiah joins me for the news:

News: The Gibson Resolutions–Republicans Addressing Climate Change

Republican member of Congress member, is concerned about climate change.

Republican member of Congress member, is concerned about climate change.

Our climate news story is about Republicans and climate action. I know most news stories you hear about Republicans are about climate denial and climate inaction. But there is a move afoot by Republican lawmakers to change all that. Back in Episode 27 we told you that Republican US congressman Carlos Curbelo from Florida voiced his concerns about sea-level rise and expressed a commitment to find common ground to address the causes of climate change—namely pollution. Now Curbelo along with 10 fellow Republicans just issued a resolution to address climate change. Led by Representative Chris Gibson, a Republican from Update New York, members of the US congress from six states signaled their concern about climate change. They also expressed their willingness to seek solutions to curb pollution and protect citizens and the US economy.

The resolution draws on Conservative values in a call to climate action. It is worth sharing some of the key points with you. And helping me with this is Elizabeth Jeremiah.

Hello Elizabeth, how are you?

Yes, this is Elizabeth Jeremiah from the Elizabeth Jeremiah Global Worldwide Ministries in Jesus. I am blessed that God has given me this opportunity. Ok Peterson, let’s see what these so-called Republicans are resolving. How about you read them out and I’ll comment.

OK. here goes:
# 1-Whereas it is a conservative principle to protect, conserve, and be good stewards of our environment, responsibly plan for all market factors, and base our policy decisions in science and quantifiable facts on the ground;

Well, yes, I agree if they also include the Word of God. Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and light unto my path. And yes, I agree with the stewardship part. We are just sojourners here. No one likes messy renters.

Republicans resolve to do something about climate change.

Republicans resolve to do something about climate change.

Next point: Whereas prudent, fact-based stewardship of our economy and our environment is a critical responsibility for all Americans in order to ensure that we preserve our great Nation for future generations;

Oh, I understand, this is a provision to ward against generational curses that will plague our children and our children’s children’s children. I suggest they also pray a hedge of protection.

Uh, next point. Whereas there has been a marked increase in extreme weather events across the United States, including more frequent heat waves, extreme precipitation, wildfires, and water scarcity;

Like that drought in California, Oh my avocado, and the drought in Guatemala, where I have friends who are missionaries and they tell me how the people there are suffering.

Whereas this has had noticeable, negative impacts that are expected to worsen in every region of the United States and its territories, including, longer and hotter heat waves, more severe storms, worsening flood and drought cycles, growing invasive species and insect problems, threatened native plant and wildlife populations, rising sea levels, and, when combined with a lack of proper forest management, increased wildfire risk;

Flooding in NYC during Superstorm Sandy

Flooding in NYC during Superstorm Sandy

It is the Plagues of Egypt all over again! Apparently I had been misinformed about this. I now understand that these extreme weather events and judgements have nothing to do with the increased legal activities of the homosexual. I believe this not because you are telling me or what the scientists have to say.. I know this now because The hip young new pastor at my church, Pastor Lance, who has the anointing and who looks like he is 12 years old and is a wonderful man of God actually preached on the wild notion that all this mess is a result of the out of control fossil fuel lifestyle. IN other words, pollution. You can hear it for yourself in his sermon on the YouTube. It’s called. They done poisoned the well.

Thanks, I’ll look into it.

#6 Whereas, if left unaddressed, the consequences of a changing climate have the potential to adversely impact all Americans, hitting vulnerable populations hardest, harming productivity in key economic sectors such as construction, agriculture, and tourism, saddling future generations with costly economic and environmental burdens, and imposing additional costs on State and Federal budgets that will further add to the long-term fiscal challenges that we face as a Nation;

Strange though how they don’t mention how these consequences will affect the church of God which is under attack by liberal secular humanists who hate our freedoms in Christ. I bet they are going to propose lifting our sacred tax exempt status in order to foot the bill for all this. .
So what do they propose to do about it?

1 Resolved, That the House of Representatives commits to working constructively, using our tradition of American ingenuity, innovation, and exceptionalism, (exceptionalism: Oh yes, that’s because according to the Bible and Ronald Reagan we are a city set on a hill) to create and support economically viable, and broadly supported private and public solutions to study and address the causes and effects of measured changes to our global and regional climates, including efforts to balance human activities that have been found to have an impact. (Like the SUV parade they hold every year at the Warrior of God Men’s Prayer Conference. Those boys will even have to shut down their petroleum fountain show.)

Yeah I’m not sure what that is. But I do like the resolution. Elizabeth. It’s well worded and sounds like good news because if we are going to see robust action to address our climate crisis, we need all hands on deck, particularly Republicans. Right? It’s Good News.

Now Peterson don’t be culturally appropriating the phrase “Good News” which is a registered trademark of the Gospel of John.”

Well I think it is a good idea. So to the listener, if you live in the US in a Republican congressional district, I urge you to call or email your member of congress today and urge your representative to sign onto the Gibson Resolution. The more pressure we put on lawmakers, the more likely they will act.

Any final words Elizabeth?
I will let God have the final word: In 2 Chronicles 7:14 the Almighty God proclaims. If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Thank you Elizabeth. And we will keep track on further Republican climate action. Stay tuned.

MAIN section: Marvin does recycling

632bda36942a24501c042d1a0778f4f49131f558fc32020f3d21b0131e213c5fHi everyone, this is Marvin, Marvin Bloom from the Long Island chapter of the Citizens Climate Brigade. I don’t know about you, but I LOVE recycling. Amazing, almost a spiritual practice for me. I have all my different bins to separate the plastic bottles from the cans and the glass. I even like the sound of the word bins. Right? I also separate newspaper from glossy magazines and tie them together with twine. It’s like wrapping a Christmas present for Mother Earth. It feels so good.. And I don’t know about you but I’m a rinser. I mean who wants to send the recycling people gooky sticky smelly bottles and cans. No I rinse everything, which I know is a waste of water, let it air dry, and put everything in its proper place. Then twice a month I put it all out of the curb and poof, magic. I come home and it’s gone sent to a center somewhere in recycling land to get transformed into who knows what. Yeah, I love recycling.

STill i have to be honest with you. Ready for this. Turns out recycling is a total waste of time. I know it sounds terrible. It’s the sacred cow of the environmentalist movement. IT is that outward sign that we send ourselves and others that we are serious about making the world a better place. But are we? Really?

My partner, Tristan, has this annoying habit of looking at the facts. Not too long ago he burst my pretty little recycling bubble. He said, Baby, which I know is his way of softening me up for some bad news. Baby, I know you think you are making a huge dent in reducing fossil fuel pollution, but recycling as a form of climate action? That’s like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. And he’s right. Jerk. Not that recycling is a bad thing. It is the moral thing to do along with everything else we can and should do to reduce our personal contributions to pollution. But we’re kidding ourselves.

IMG_0702No seriously, listen to this;
I’m full of gas. My life is completely infused with greenhouse gases. No matter how I try to untether myself from the system—oh and I try—I’m an untetherer. I use public transit, although it is smelly and annoying. I buy carbon offsets when I fly to Miami to visit my parents, who by the way are retired and can come up and visit me for a change. I practically kill myself changing all the lightbulbs in our apartment the high ceilings. I hang dry clothes all over our living room as per Tristian’s suggestion, which doesn’t even work. I end up smelling like a mold factory. And whenever I’m with Tristian we always walk and bike which to me sounds dangerous. I mean people fall down. I do all that and more. I am like the queer poster child of conservation and I’m not even an environmentalist.—still I am responsible for over 13 tons of gas. Why? because I live in the USA. And I’m one of the good Americans.

According to the World Bank, the average American is responsible for 17.6 tons of carbon pollution each year. And what is the average for people outside of the USA? 5 tons of carbon pollution per year. Why is this?

Well, I leave my apartment and walk on public roads and sidewalks soaked in fossil fuels. The streets in my Long Island town are lit, cleaned, and maintained thanks to the power of greenhouse gases. I walk into my local grocery store, which for some reason stockpiles tofu but can’t seem to get in any Bubblebee smoked trout. I walk into that store, one that relies on fossil fuels for light, heat, air conditioning, and for refrigerating the products shipped in by planes and trucks. I can literally go an entire day never driving and never turning on the stove. I could shut off the hot water heater, unplug all my appliances, and never turn on a light. I could avoid the Internet and the data stored in the cloud, which is somewhere in silicon valley heaven in Steve Job’s butt . I could live like Peterson’s Amish Mennonite neighbors, a life of simplicity off the grid, hand pumping water from a well, eating only the vegetables I grow, looking like a Little Jewish princess on the prairie, and still I live and benefit from a country that runs on greenhouse gases.

Bec-Young_solsticepcm_detailListen people, We fantasize that if everyone just did their part, we could make a serious dent in curbing fossil fuel pollution. Well, we have tried that tactic since the 1970s; it’s not working any better than racial justice in this country. Guilting people into action, shaming them or appealing to their better selves is wasting time and simply does not work.

And why should I the individual consumer make all the hard choices? Sure I am responsible for my actions, but I have virtually no control over the fossil fuel lifestyle that runs my town and this country. OMG I am starting to sound like Bernie Sanders. He says good things but I can’t listen to him. His voice is so annoying.

So are we helpless victims here? Should we give up? Absolutely not. We have work to do.

You see while recycling makes me feel like a million bucks, it doesn’t do anything to address climate change. Because climate change is not an environmental issue—it is a policy issue. The government has to change the policy of how we get our energy from the top down, not from my little lowly apartment in Long Island New York.

And what is the best policy to make this happen? Raise the price. Make these energy companies pay for the privilege to pollute. Keep it in the ground or pay a fee to dig it up. So that is why I am doubling my efforts to talk to lawmakers, to write letters to the editor. Oh and I need to design a teeshirt that says Beep Recycling—give me a carbon tax. Or something like that. No the action we need is collective action, a movement where we demand our government do something to help us get all this gas out of our systems.

Of course Tristan my partner, says we should boycott our local supermarkets until they stop selling meat altogether , but he has his own healthy vegan tofu loving lifestyle agenda he is trying to shove down my throat, but that’s another story.

That Day in Climate History: Bisexual approach to climate change?

@p2son A bisexual approach to climate action might be not seeing solutions in terms of binary choices. 😉

— Ashley Wilcox (@ashleymwilcox) September 28, 2015

I am Timothy Meadows. It is Monday, October 14th in the year 2165 and time for That Day in Climate history. 150 years ago today groups of people, large and small gathered throughout North America for the People’s Climate Movement Day of Action. In addition to protests, teach-ins, demonstrations, and massive public art projects, many discussions took place that led to creative and powerful climate action.

What is a bisexual response to climate change

What is a bisexual response to climate change?

One such discussion occurred in the little town of Sunbury, Pennsylvania. A small gathering of friends and family spent the day discussing climate change. One question led to an idea that led to an organization that led to effective climate action.

Unable to attend the gathering, writer James Fenimore popped in via videoconferencing. He asked a strange and provocative question: What is a bisexual response to climate change? He explained that as someone attracted to people of all genders he did not view the world in simple binary terms. So much climate action falls on a binary—liberal /conservative, pro-business/anti-capitalism, etc. A bisexual approach to climate action might be not seeing solutions in terms of binary choices.

This question, What is a bisexual response to climate change? inspired Marin Toscano, one of the people present that day. She later wrote about it in an academic paper. A student in Tomsø Norway, Anna Jørgenson, read the paper, shared it with friends, and then founded the group Bifile for en bedre jord or Bisexuals for a Better World.

This group broke away from the notion of polar opposites and focused instead on shared values and shared experiences. Bifile for en bedre jord created a successful discussion model that they first used in Norway and then throughout Europe and North America. This discussion approach helped bridge the gaps between groups that struggled to work together. It assisted individuals and groups in breaking away from a set of presupposed beliefs based on identities to instead embrace more complex ways of viewing the world and climate action. Coalitions formed that worked towards justice-minded market-driven approaches to reducing pollution. Groups successfully lobbied governments to enact fact-based initiatives that operated on harm-reduction models when considering the many different types of energy available. Real changes occurred. We benefit from those changes today. A question asked of a small group in a rural village echoed around the world. It contributed to bringing about climate action. On this day in 2165, we remember that day in climate history.

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Closing

Dylan-Miner_paddlePCM_thumbSo climate action. Today in Sunbury, PA we are having a House Party. We are talking coffee, tea, chocolate, refugees, human rights, environmental justice and much more. We are writing letters to members of congress imploring them to act. The one idea I continue to remind you about is the elegant proposal to put a fee on carbon. Like Marvin said earlier: Raise the price. Make these energy companies pay for the privilege to pollute.

Added to that we can to take the money that is collected and give it to households. They will then have more money in their pockets to face the inevitable rise in energy prices, foods and goods. To me climate action needs to also address the issues of the poor and working class and not simply reduce pollution. Learn more about this proposal from Citizens Climate Lobby. at CitizensClimateLobby.org

check our show notes, where you will also find links to the Gibson Resolution, facts about recycling, and more. Visit climate stew.com And tell your friends about this cheeky climate change program that continually reminds listeners that there is hope and we each have a role on this new planet.

Special thanks to James Femmer, Ashley Wilcox, Lissa Skitolsky, Keisha McKenzie, Loraine Hutchins, Susi Wyss, Adri Norris, Marin Toscano, Ryan tristan Champman, oh, and Joe G who I know for a fact dutifully recycles every episode of Climate Stew.

50 episodes available. A new episode about every 13 days averaging 17 mins duration .