Are you wanting to do something about the environment but have not been able to find the motivation? Then this opportunity may be for you! Our UUCA Climate Action Team hosts a Fun and Easy Activism session on the first Thursday of each month for people like you and me who need just a little extra push. 

Thursday, March 7, from 6:30 – 7:30 PM will be our first session open to anyone in the congregation, and we would love for you to join us! Here is the format: the session leader introduces the topic for the evening and provides suggested actions that we can take together during that meeting (such as navigating to a link and sending an email to our legislators). Once we are done, we choose an activity that sounds fun to all attendees, such as show and tell, 20 questions, two truths and a lie, etc. The whole session only takes an hour. If you are interested please email Nicole Haines.

A little back story: it was searching for ways that I could help the climate and found the gold mine that is the Climate Action Team at UUCA. Even then, I found that I was not finding motivation to act on the advocacy items that members brought to our monthly meetings. So I made a suggestion to the team about having this online gathering to help motivationally-challenged people such as myself. Nicole Haines, one of the co-leaders of the CAT, agreed to partner with me on this. After holding several successful and fun sessions since last summer, we now would like to offer this to the wider congregation.

Our topic for this first one is timely and relevant for all of us, as it is about the Okefenokee Swamp here in Georgia and a few House bills that may impact its unique ecosystem. 

But wait! Before you read on, know that you can come to our session WITHOUT DOING ANY PRE-WORK. Having said that, if you would like to see what we will be covering, here it is:

IssueTimelineActions neededLearn more
State – Okefenokee: Protect the swamp from a risky mining proposal. The proposal risks damaging this irreplaceable resource. (Okefenokee Protection Alliance)Georgia’s Environmental Protection Division (EPD) has issued draft permits for Twin Pines proposed titanium mine on Trail Ridge, the swamps hydrologic boundary. We have until APRIL 9th to comment.Take action here through the Southern Environmental Law Center.Learn more from the Okefenokee Protection Alliance.

Okefenokee draft permit  

Georgia – Okefenokee legislation HB 71: Proposed State bill to ban future mining on Trail Ridge. Bill is currently in the House Natural Resources CommitteeTell your Georgia House representative that you want this bill to advance for a vote.

Find your legislator.

Georgia Conservancy

Georgia Water Coalition

Georgia – HB370 threatens coastal marsh: Our marsh is generally owned by the state and protected by our historic Georgia Coastal Marshlands Protection Act.  This bill would enable private landowners to take title to marsh and ease the way for adverse development of environmentally sensitive areas. Bill is currently in the House Judiciary Committee.Tell your Georgia House representative that you do not want this bill to advance for a vote.

Find your legislator.

Georgia Conservancy 

This protection of the Okefenokee Swamp is also relevant on a personal level for me, as I went camping there at Stephen C Foster State Park for the first time a few weeks ago. It was beautiful. I was amazed to hear from our tour guide that before major logging in the early 1900s, there were cypress trees there that were over 1,000 years old. In fact, there was one cypress tree left still that is over 1,000 years old that we saw (pictured). It was likely not logged because it has a huge hole in the center where it was struck by lightning hundreds of years ago and survived. The park ranger said that it was like a mascot for their park, showing the resiliency of nature even in the face of seemingly insurmountable adversities. 

One last note: If you decide to just take action from the table above and skip the meeting, we would love to know that too! Drop us a line here. Hope to see you online on March 7th!

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JOURNEY WITH US: The Climate Action Team is for you because, well, the planet needs your urgent action – and we need each other as we navigate these changing times. Learn all about the group here,  and check out our minutes and take action table, our lending library and the Carbon Offset Fund. You can also request to join the Climate Action Team on Realm. Contact Jon Reese to connect to the CAT and join us for our next Zoom meeting on Monday, March 18, at 7:30 PM using this link.