On Monday we hosted our first Occupy Boston Community Gathering. It included a recap of our work over the past 6 months, ideas for the future, and a brief talk about carbon fee and dividend by Erik Thorkildsen. If you want to know more about fee and dividend, tune in to obr.fm tonight at 6:00 to hear Gary Rucinski from Climate Citizen’s Lobby explain how it could reduce national emissions while benefiting the most economically vulnerable*.
The Community Gathering was a joint event co-hosted by fellow Occupiers that had set up a debrief for Occupy MBTA’s Camp Charlie. The debrief kicked off a discussion of the positives, and the “deltas” (things people want to change) and helped continue discussions about what Occupy MBTA can do to organize even more successful actions in the future. Take away message: Occupy MBTA is still very much active. So is the broader community: Carmen’s Union, CLU, and others are gathering to launch the Green Justice Coalition’s Campaign, Public Transit-Public Good, with a rally on the state house steps, at 11am on May 16th.
While we are on the subject of public transportation, new research (to be published this June) shows a positive correlation between the time people spend in their cars and obesity. It dovetails a study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine in 2010 that not only found an association between reduced BMI and use of light rail transit, but also an association between lower BMI and “positive perceptions of one’s neighborhood”. Something to think about on the environmental justice front.
Finally, as reports emerge showing that April 2012 concludes the warmest 12 month period in our nation’s history, people in Cambridge are gathering tonight in the Cambridge Public Library, from 5:00 – 8:30pm, to have a discussion on “The True Cost of Energy: Coal”. This will include local academics and activists, as well as a screening of The Last Mountain. The latter is a film exploring the use but also the extraction of this controversial fuel. (Talk about things that might impact a positive perception of one’s neighborhood!)
We’ll have a table set up there, so stop by!
* If you tune in to hear Gary tonight, stay tuned to hear a rebroadcast of Grace Ross on FSU (Free School University)