Fossil Fools Day: Environmental Activists Target Big “Greens” For Link to Corporate Polluters

Fossil ‘Fools Day Protests Set for 30 Cities; Target Coal, Oil, Natural Gas and Big
Banks

SAN FRANCISCO—More than 30 cities throughout North America have organized
demonstrations against the fossil fuel industry, corporate banks and big
environmental organizations for April 1’st national Fossil ‘Fools’ Day.
Demonstrations are being coordinated by Rising Tide North America , which has also
launched an online campaign targeting “Big Green” groups that have taken money from
the worst corporate polluters. Key targets of the campaign include Conservation
International, National Wildlife Federation and Environmental Defense.

The National Day of Action – organized by Rising Tide North America, Mountain
Justice, a coalition of Canadian climate activists and others – will feature
clownish parades, flyering, subversive advertising, creative street theater, and
non-violent direct actions targeting the coal, oil, natural gas and banking sectors.
Cities where actions will take place include Asheville, Boulder, Chicago, Edmonton,
New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Ottawa, Salt Lake City, San Francisco,
Seattle, Toronto and Washington D.C.  Corporations targeted will include Chevron,
JPMorgan Chase, NW Natural Gas, Pepco and Shell.

“Extractive industries are holding our climate and our communities’ hostage,” said
Lacy MacAuley, an organizer of the Washington D.C. actions. “I am participating in
this Day of Action to tell fossil fools, like JPMorgan Chase and Pepco, that their
destructive investments are threatening our homes, our communities, and our
climate.”

In conjunction with protests across the country, Rising Tide North America is
launching an online campaign targeting environmental NGOs criticized for taking
donations from some of the worst corporate polluters.  Groups like the National
Wildlife Federation, Conservation International, Environmental Defense, and the
Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) are being accused of allowing their
financial and political relationships with Corporate America to compromise their
positions on climate change. Beginning in the 1980’s, the National Wildlife
Federation pioneered fundraising strategies based on taking money from polluters
like Shell and BP in exchange for forestalling real critiques of the companies
behavior.  This practice has become systemic amongst the Big “Green” groups and
Thursday’s online action will demand an end to it.

“In Dec. 2009, we received a wakeup call in Copenhagen where the world’s governments
failed to enact effective climate legislation and many large players in the
environmental movement were neutralized by decades of compromise and corruption,”
said Matt Wilkerson of Rising Tide North America. “A grassroots movement of
environmental justice groups, climate justice groups, Indigenous peoples, frontline
communities and energized activist networks are mobilizing to counter the influence
of industry and their proxies in big environmental NGOs over policy and public
opinion.”

In the past decade, climate change and climate justice have gone from issues
discussed amongst scientists and policy experts to being the impetus for a growing
international movement that has stopped dozens of proposed coal fired power plants,
directly challenged entrenched interests in the Canadian tar sands and Appalachian
mining industry and worked in solidarity with frontline communities.  After
Copenhagen, the grassroots climate movement will shift its attention from
negotiations and compromise to more frontline and anti-corporate struggles.

Fossil Fools Day began in 2004 with coordinated actions across the United States and
Canada.  Events are held in many cities around the world. These events oppose energy
derived from fossil fuels, promote education about alternative sources of energy,
and encourage support for climate justice, sustainable communities, corporate
responsibility and a clean renewable energy future.
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Rising Tide North America recently released a new publication called “The Climate
Movement is Dead: Long Live the Climate Movement” critiquing the relationship
between the green groups and Corporate America.

For more information, visit fossilfoolsday.org

Rising Tide North America is an all-volunteer decentralized network with over 50
local chapters and contacts throughout Canada, Mexico and the United States
challenging the root causes of climate change.

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