Inspiring Anti-Frack rally in ALBANY, June 17, 2013
How inspiring to once again be part of a crowd of about 2,000 people (as reported by the Wall Street Journal) loudly telling Governor Cuomo that we stand against fracking for natural gas in NYS. About 116 people came from the Syracuse area, including some from the Iroquois Group of the Sierra Club.
We gathered in a park in front of the Capitol on a lovely, sunny day (interrupted briefly by a storm, after many of us were safely on our bus). We also marched around the Capitol and received enthusiastic honks from some passing vehicles.
Among the speakers were Lois Gibbs (of Love Canal fame), former Congressman Maurice Hinchey, biologist and author Sandra Steingraber, actor Debra Winger, singer Natalie Merchant, Arun Gandhi (grandson of Mahatma Gandhi), and Mark Jacobson. Jacobson told how a study he and others recently produced shows that NYS can be powered by wind, water and sun 80% to 90% by 2030 and 100% by 2050. Jessica Azulay of AGREE (Alliance for a Green Economy) said that we must move away from nuclear energy as well as fossil fuels; she gave specific suggestions on how each of us can embrace solar. Merchant led us in songs, including “We Don’t Need Your Millions, Mister.”
Many imaginative signs and banners spoke to our message. As a vegan, one of my favorites was “If You Want Natural Gas, Eat Beans. Don’t Frack Up Mother Earth!” There was also someone dressed as Elmo- praising renewable – and a woman with blue skin and clothes representing pure water. New Yorkers Against Fracking was the main organizer of the event. They have fashioned a coalition of hundreds of organizations, including businesses and religious institutions.
Linda is Conservation Chair of the Iroquois Group of the Sierra Club. Contact her at (315)488-2140 (8 a.m. – 10 p.m.) or LDESTEFANO3@twcny.rr.com. This article was translated by Rob English.