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September 30, 2011

Minnesota Moving Planet: Bikes and Fossil Fuels

Last Saturday, September 24, Sierra Club joined MN350 to hold Moving Planet, the annual, international day of climate action on the State Capitol Lawn. Around 2:00pm, over 40 vendors and exhibitors set up their tents and tables to advocate for and support solutions to move beyond fossil fuels.

Soon after, more than 200 bikers arrived from a Mass Ride, which started at Father Hennepin Park and the Stone Arch Bridge, in support of the cleanest form of transportation and energy – pedal power!  Their 13-mile ride to the Capitol is evidence of resilience and liberation from reliance on fossil fuels.
Next, an Interfaith Procession arrived with more than 150 marchers, stating that taking action on climate change is a moral imperative.  Their picket signs and banners were in protest of crude oil and poor emission regulations, advocating for earthly compassion and divine consideration for our environment.
A program of enthusiastic and inspirational speakers followed, including representatives from the Minnesota Department of Health, Minneapolis Foundation, local Universities, Fresh Energy, and several others. Amid the speakers, musicians including the “Get your Green” team from the High School for Recording Arts would chime in to call for clean air and climate solutions.
Attendees had the opportunity to take action by signing the MN350 petition asking President Obama to take bold action to support the EPA’s work to set air, water, and climate standards that protect our environment and safeguard people’s health.

In addition to President Obama’s message, Sierra Club booth visitors also signed petitions to Governor Dayton supporting solar energy and green jobs, as well as petitions for bike lanes on Central Avenue in Minneapolis.  Some even got pictures as our Giant Inhaler!

Other activities included kite making and flying, arts and crafts in the form of drawing, coloring, and painting, frisbee, and yoga! 

With over 1000 attendees, Minnesota represented the Global Day of Action in style.  Nearly 180 countries participated in this year’s Moving Planet day of action, with more than 2000 actions across the globe and nearly 700 US cities joining in to move beyond fossil fuels.  It was a beautiful day for movement!

-- Sierra Club North Star Chapter (Minnesota)

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