Powell River and Texada Island residents came out to take part in the Global Climate March on Sunday, November 29th, joining hundreds of thousands of concerned citizens around the world marching for real change.
Former mayor Stuart Alsgard emceed the event which started at Willingdon Beach, saying, “This is a very auspicious day. More than 2,000 marches are happening world-wide in London and Paris, where the climate conference is about to begin. But also in Ashcroft, Terrace, Campbell River and here in Powell River and Texada Island.”
Mayor Dave Formosa brought his children and grandchildren to the march. While he said he was disappointed at the small turnout, he stated, “Climate change has already started, I can see it. We’ve seen record breaking hurricanes, winds, forest fires and oceans rising. Recently Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged two billion dollars towards addressing climate changes in underdeveloped countries. I hope folks wake up, climate change is a reality.”
MLA Nicholas Simons was on Texada Island marching with residents. It’s time to keep fossil fuels in the ground and mobilize just transition to 100% renewable energy.
Doug and Denise brought signs to the march, stating the sentiments of everyone in the crowd.
“We want our leaders to hear us and make commitments to addressing climate change now,” said Alysha, at 24-year-old student who had gathered with friends at Willingdon Beach prior to Sunday’s march.
“The time has come, we are nearing the 2 degree temperature rise that scientists around the world have told us will produce catastrophic changes around the globe. All of us marching today are saying we’re willing to make the changes necessary to keep our world intact.”
Tla’Amin Elder Dr. Elsie Paul, gave thanks to the Creator and led the group in prayer before the crowd of more than 60 people headed off along Willingdon Beach trail to the Cenotaph in Townsite. Ronnie, a long-time Powell River resident, is no stranger to political rallies. She joined the throng with her daughter, Tai, a member of the Let’s Talk Trash team.
Following the march, the Patricia Theatre was packed with residents for the town’s premiere viewing of “This Changes Everything,” a documentary on climate change and world-wide action by Canadian filmmaker, Naomi Klein. Viewing of the film was made possible by the combined efforts of Powell River Voices, Council of Canadians and the Sierra Club Malaspina. Emceed by environmental advocates Kay Bremner and Jack Anderson, the film was introduced by local filmmaker Jan Padgett. The crowd gave an enthusiastic round of applause for theatre owners Ann and Brian Nelson for their generosity in providing the Patricia Theatre for the viewing.
The face of the future and the reason for each individual and every government in the world to stand up and recognize the damage we are doing to the planet. We must make changes to ensure our children and grandchildren, like Caleb (9) and Derek (11), have a healthy future. After viewing the film, Derek said, “That was incredible!”