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      “System Change Not Climate Change!”
      Fire This Time Holds Critical and Dynamic Discussion in Vancouver

      By Alison Bodine

      Look around the world today and it is clear that something has got to change if human life on planet earth is going to continue. For more than two centuries capitalism has been wreaking havoc on the fragile balance between humanity and the environment. Today the question is impossible to avoid: Environment. Humanity. Capitalism. For how long can they continue to co-exist?

      On May 12, 2017 Fire This Time held a public forum in Vancouver to discuss this question and the serious challenge that climate change is posing to the humanity’s sustainability and very survival.

      After beginning the evening with films and multimedia about the reality and causes of climate change around the world, the forum featured presentations by two leading organizers in the environmental movement in Vancouver.

      Gordon August, spoke first as a Hereditary chief from Sechelt, organizer with the Fight C and Climate Convergence Coalitions and a social justice and environmental activist for nearly four decades. Gordon’s presentation was focused on the environmental and human destruction that would be caused by the construction of the Site C Dam in BC, and his passion and clarity about the necessity of ending this disastrous project came through clearly in his words.

      Following Gordon, Thomas Davies, a member of the Editorial Board of the Fire This Time newspaper, founding member of the Climate convergence coalition and a unionized pipefitter spoke. Thomas highlighted the role of the governments of the US and Canada in perpetuating the climate crisis, but he also focused on the importance of building a fight back against environmental destruction as well as the violation of indigenous rights and sovereignty. From the struggle against the Kinder Morgan pipeline here in BC, to the tar sands expansion in Alberta, to the Dakota Access Pipeline in South Dakota, Thomas reminded everyone that the climate just movement is stronger when people are united and mobilized.

      Their critical perspectives were followed by an energetic discussion that especially highlighted the necessity to maintain a consistent and dynamic movement for climate justice, no matter what government may form in British Columbia following the May 9 election.

      By the end of the forum, one important ideas was crystal clear, as capitalism continues to send us all towards environmental and human catastrophe, we have no other choice but to organize and fight back. We need to change the system, not the climate.

      Follow Alison Bodine on Twitter: @Alisoncolette

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