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Going Really Big in 2014

Robert Friedman

Posted December 30, 2013 in Environmental Justice, Solving Global Warming

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As we approach the end of our annual trip around the sun, I’m in a reflective and thankful mood. As you’ll see in this video, a lot happened in 2013 that we can celebrate. I’m thankful for these successes, not just at NRDC, but across our movement. I can see that we’re digging in our heels for a better tomorrow.

But as we enter the new year, I’m thinking about how big we are going to go in 2014. I’m not really one for setting expectations, I think those tend to muddle reality. But 2014 feels like it will be a really big year for all of us at NRDC and in the broader environmental and social justice movement. I see more to be hopeful for now than ever before. Entering this new year, we have momentum.

50,000 people rallied for action on climate change and against Keystone XL in DC in Feb. 2013. Photo courtesy, National Nurses United

I’m a pragmatic dreamer, leaning more towards the latter end of that statement. In many ways, I need to be. The state of our environment can be a challenging subject and we have much work to do. We need to keep dreaming of the tomorrow that we want, until it becomes a reality.

There are many examples of this tomorrow just beginning to emerge today. I look at our Fracking Community Defense Campaign, where we’re working to win local bans and moratoria for communities that are fighting fracking. I look at the growing energy of the international fossil fuel divestment movement, which is building local community and campus power to facilitate real change. I look at the Obama administration’s announcement that it will be enacting federal carbon pollution standards that will protect our air and climate, for which we need to hold them accountable. I look at communities fighting (and winning!) on the frontlines against fossil fuel extraction from Fort McMurray, Alberta, to Northeastern Pennsylvania. And I see our environmental community just beginning to understand that to win, we must build bridges with our brothers and sisters from other social justice movements and causes. Our communities and our families are under assault. In 2014, let’s ignite a broader, more inclusive movement to fight back.

2014 is the time to go bigger than we ever have before. See you out there.

How do you plan on going big for your community and the environment in 2014. Let me know in the comments.

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George MrazekJan 1 2014 09:00 PM

Keep up the good work. My son, a professional filmmaker, and I have become deeply involved in work on a new film aimed at building awareness of species and habitats at risk. It is a component in the 2014 Project Passenger Pigeon.

It's called "From Billions to None," and is focused on capitalizing on the 2014 centenary of the "impossible" extinction of the Passenger Pigeon, a human-caused extinction undoubtedly known to you, which went from one of the largest avian species in No. America to zero in less than three decades. We've been in crowdfunding for the film on the Indegogo website with a goal of $65,000. This first fundraising phase raised $32,000; we're now in our final funding phase with our own website--
( ) shooting for the balance to enable completing the film at the high level intended (we are now at just over $40,000).

We thought you and your colleagues would find this film project of specific interest— you can view a preview of the film from a link at the website.

Best regards,

George Mrazek, From Billions to None

Robert FriedmanJan 2 2014 09:27 AM

Thanks, George. This looks like a tremendous project, good luck with your fundraising effort! I'm excited to see the final product, the story of the passenger pigeon is a very important cautionary tale.

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