Youth Action on Climate - October 18, 2006

Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, de la Coalition Canadienne des Jeunes pour le Climat

Sign the youth declaration and find out more at
Register your event (even at the planning stage) ASAP[email protected] and [email protected]

Signez la déclaration jeunesse et apprenez en plus à
Faîtes connaître votre événement dès que possible[email protected] et [email protected]

Background: The New "Green Plan"

After much build-up, the Government's plan on the climate will do very little to reduce GHG emissions or to address human- induced global climate change. Instead it will focus on air pollution and smog – neither of which will stop the arctic from melting, forest fires from increasing, droughts from becoming more frequent or give us much of a shot to meet an exceed our commitments under the Kyoto protocol – which is still far below where most scientists say we need to be to advert global collapse (30% reduction of 1990 levels by 2020, and an 80% reduction of 1990 levels by 2050). The Government has said that they will begin a new consultation process possibly for over a year to determine their next step. Our future can't wait and neither can we!

The governments plan will be released on Tuesday, October 17th and we are calling for actions everywhere on Wednesday, October 18th.

Why the Youth Voice is Critical

Young people have one of the most legitimate voices to speak out on the growing climate crisis because it is our future that is at stake. The planet doesn't have time for voluntary commitments, or more long-term consultations – we need bold reductions and binding commitments today. We must meet and exceed our commitments under the Kyoto Protocol not ignore them otherwise we won't have much of a future.

Fortunately, it's not too late to turn the tide in Canada but we need your voice and body to do it. Below are a few ideas for ways to take action, feel free to do any or all of them as many times as you like! There are also resources at the end to help you get your message out to the broader public. Please get out there, sound your voice, and be sure to let us know when you do because by collecting our voices we can show the world that we are the next global movement and we want our world back!!!!

* If you aren't young don't worry, we still need you, you can still organize and you can still fight to ensure the next generation has a future.

What Can I Do?

Organize an action of any magnitude for Wednesday, October 18th.

Actions can be big or small. For your viewing pleasure we have included 6 suggestions below.

If you can do anything to respond to the legislation on October 18th please email [email protected] and [email protected] with the following:
  1. Contact Name
  2. Phone Number
  3. Email address
  4. Location of Action
  5. Brief Description of your Action.

Action Ideas


  1. Organize a funeral. (Resources and Steps below).
  2. Deliver flowers or balloons. Get a few folks together for a local flower or balloon delivery. (On the day of action just dress in black, get some locally grown flowers or black balloons and deliver them to your local MP(s). When you give them the flowers, say a little eulogy or just "these are for you because the plan on the climate is really just a bunch of hot air."
  3. Send in your condolences - send MPs pictures of the things that we are losing because they failed to act on climate change by fax or email.
  4. Put up climate posters – available for download at
  5. "Like dialing 911 and being put on hold"
  6. Put ads in your local papers (death announcements section) about the death of R. Climat ;)
  7. Donate funds to the Calgary group so they can deliver all kinds of bouquets to the Prime Minister at his home riding office.


Why this action:
A funeral action is great because the message is clear and it is fairly hard for the press to take it out of context. By failing to act on climate change the Government is killing our future. Failing to make binding commitments that exceed our international obligations means the death of the Arctic, means the death of the climate, and means the death of the only international climate agreement we have (the Kyoto Protocol).

A funeral also has a lot of different roles, so it's very inclusive and allows everyone to use their talents. People can hum/sing/play instruments, make a coffin, give a speech, organize volunteers or carry a candle.

What you need:
This action can be done with varying degrees of preparation, depending on time and your group's resources.

  • If you don't have much time, then a few candles and some grim looking people can put on a pretty good show.
  • If you do have time, a coffin, some crosses, and enlisting the help of friendly clergy definitely add to the action.

You can even make up your own order of service (e.g. order of service attached), which can stand in for a fact sheet for the press and other onlookers, and also adds to the visual component of the action. Getting people in the community to do eulogies (short speeches - "I remember when we had a climate...") is also fun, and will give the press the opportunity to interview people affected by the government policy in question.

What do you need to do?

  1. Get materials together- If you don't have much time just dress in suits, take some candles and hold a mournful vigil outside your MP's office. More time - make a tombstone out of cardboard, have a funeral-style pamphlet, and organize some tearful speeches and songs. A lot of time - get/make a coffin (theatre supply stores have these), have some pallbearers and do all the above. Mega time - get a hearse, have a procession of bicycles to your MP's office and do all the above.
  2. Get people - you don't need many. Three people makes a good vigil and remember there are funerals happening all across Canada so you are not alone. If you have lots of people then just think of roles you traditionally see at funerals and fill those (someone to sit people, master of ceremonies, eulogy readers, singers, pole barriers...). Take photos and send them in to [email protected]
  3. Send a press release - send this out to your local press with event time and place. Send these details to [email protected] and [email protected] so we can add them to the national release. If you feel comfortable, call the press in the morning to pitch your event. (If you need press contacts or need someone to talk you through the pitch just ask - [email protected]).

Funerals are easy but very effective. Please start organizing today so we can really respond to Government's plan.

Can't organize a funeral? If you have email or fax access but can't do a funeral simply fax or email your condolences to any MP you want.

Who we are

The Canadian Youth Climate Coalition is a united front of youth from across Canada tackling the biggest challenge of our generation, the emerging climate crisis. In the absence of significant action by industry and government, we will make climate destabilization a priority that all Canadians need to address. Acting locally, provincially, federally, and internationally, we combine our forces to organize actions, influence government and implement concrete solutions. Working in schools and communities from coast to coast to coast, we are calling for and building a just and prosperous transition to the new Canada we all need to see.

What we want in a plan...

For the sake of this and all future generations, the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition needs a Green Plan to include:

  • Deep emission reductions that meet and exceed our international obligations, and the implementation of renewable energy strategies;
  • The elimination of fossil fuel subsidies;
  • A comprehensive adaptation strategy for those communities already affected by climate change that incorporates and acknowledges the requirements of Indigenous communities;
  • Reform to our curriculum to properly educate youth from kindergarten to post-secondary on the impacts of, and solutions to, climate change;
  • Official positions for youth in directing Canada's climate change policies.