This Saturday will be a monumental day for environmental awareness in Columbia and across the globe.
In conjunction with the worldwide “Live Earth” celebration, the Columbia Climate Change Coalition will cosponsor “Local ‘Live Earth’” in Peace Park on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., promoting sustainable living and environmental consciousness.
“Live Earth” is a 24-hour concert series designed to prompt global unity and action toward resolving the global climate crisis. The celebration will take place in eight cities — New York, London, Johannesburg, Shanghai, Tokyo, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro and Hamburg — on seven continents and is led by the Alliance for Climate Protection and the Climate Group. Live coverage of the global events will be broadcast via television on NBC and the Internet.
Columbia’s festivities will feature live music from local musicians, informational speakers and booths. There will also be interactive demonstrations and exhibits from environmental organizations, including MU Extension Housing and Environmental Design, Missourians for Safe Energy and Missouri Renewable Energy. Streaming video of the global events will be shown in Peace Park.
The primary goal of the event is to show the value of using alternative transportation, such as bicycles, and renewable energy as part of a daily routine, said Monta Welch, coordinator for the event and a Columbia Climate Coalition member.
“We will be showing folks how to save money while helping the environment,” Welch said. “We’re really committed to bringing lots of groups together on the issue and educating people on the issue.”
The Coalition, which has been in operation for six months, believes that instead of taking the time to argue over the culprit for the world’s environmental plight, action needs to be taken towards a solution. Through petitions for action on climate change and events such as “Live Earth,” the Coalition has taken it upon itself to initiate local action.
“There isn’t an area of our lives that (this issue) doesn’t touch, and there isn’t a person that it doesn’t touch,” Welch said. “We all just need to acknowledge that, and we need to realize that we have an opportunity here to put down some of our smaller, more petty issues and work together. It’s not only for the common good, but it’s also absolutely necessary. At some point we’re going to realize that it isn’t a choice.”
While response to the organization and its message is difficult to measure, Welch said the Coalition is confident it is making an impact, as the nearly 3,000 signatures on its climate petitions attest. The Coalition hopes to continue to grow in both size and the impact it has in creating a more sustainable world for future generations.
“We think big with our group,” Welch said. “No limits.”