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Cross posted from Itsgettinghotinhere.org:

This Friday, the United Nations international climate negotiations will gear up again in Bonn, Germany. The meeting — and the announcements and news that will surround it — will be an important gauge of whether the international climate process still shows signs of life. Early indicators seem to suggest that there’s at least a pulse.

It’s been just over 4 months since the Copenhagen climate talks ended in confusion and disorder, failing to deliver the international climate treaty many of us had hoped (and worked) for. Copenhagen left the UN metaphorically bruised and battered (the adjectives were literal for many protesters outside the conference) and in the final hours of the talks and weeks to follow, many doubted that the international climate process would continue at all. For one particularly insightful postmortem with an emphasis on implications for the climate justice movement, click here.

In the last few weeks, the climate talks have shown a few signs of life. Continue Reading »

Getting Warmed Up

We’re officially one month into 2010 and I thought it would be good to warm up this site again in preparation for Earth Day’s 40th Anniversary. A lot has changed since I wrote this paper: Barack Obama has been elected president of the US; climate change legislation has passed the House and now seems to be mired in a vicious Senate debate; and my team of friends and I have organized another Earth Day-style day of environmental action with our campaign 350.org.

Now’s also an appropriate time to start up this blog again because I’m back in Vermont for the first extended period in a while. I’m up here with the 350.org crew for the next three weeks, assessing our work over the last year, and trying to map out our campaign for the future. Yesterday, I was back in the Middlebury library again, wandering the stacks (but stayed away from my thesis carrel … wouldn’t want a relapse into stressed out paper writing).

Off we go again!

Welcome!

Thank you for visiting the new “Earth Day 1970: Out of the Wilderness” website!

This is a site to share my undergraduate thesis on the first Earth Day in 1970. In the About section you can learn more about the project and my background. In the Table of Contents you will find an overview of the contents of the thesis, “Earth Day 1970: Out of the Wilderness.” The Intro from the thesis is copied in its entirety on this website. And the entire thesis is available for Download in PDF format. Enjoy!

A year ago today, I was in full panic mode finishing this work, my senior thesis at Middlebury College, while simultaneously working with an incredible group of friends to pull off what would become the largest environmental demonstration in a generation, Step It Up 2007. It’s hard to believe almost a year has passed.

I wanted to get this website going before this year’s Earth Day in the hopes that it would be of interest to people. Digging back into the first Earth Day proved a fascinating experience – many of the challenges that the environmental movement faces today have distinct parallels to those faced in 1970.

Of course, Earth Day’s importance extends far beyond the environmental movement. My biggest hope is that this paper will provide some useful insights for people working on today’s largest environmental challenge: the fight against global warming.

Finally, a big thanks to my father, John Henn, for encouraging me to publish this paper online. It may have taken over a year to do it, but here it is!

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