Published by Angus on 21 Jun 2010 at 03:55 pm
Just two months before the Deepwater Horizon Disaster, Floridian restaurateur Dave Rauschkolb launched his fight against off shore drilling, rallying over 10,000 Floridians to join hands on beaches from Jacksonville to Miami Beach and Key West to Pensacola, drawing lines in the sand to oppose offshore drilling. Little did he know that the first “Hands Across the Sand” would serve as a template for the Saturday, June 26, global day of action, when at 12 noon local time, people will convene on beaches around the world in solidarity with the Gulf Coast states to demand an end to off shore drilling.
Guest Post By Dave Rauschkolb
It is my greatest hope that when Americans stand hand-to-hand on beaches on June 26 the message is loud and clear: NO to Offshore Oil Drilling, YES to Clean Energy. No industry should be allowed to place the coastal economy of our coastlines, oceans, marine wildlife and the fishing industries at risk. The oil companies have had their way in the Gulf for too long. You know, when I finally saw Who Killed the Electric Car, it became so patently obvious that the oil companies for so long now have been spending exorbitant amounts of money to keep us addicted to oil. The only way this will stop is if Americans wake up, stand up together and force their hand.
We have to make our leaders understand we will not stand idly by until they change their energy policy. I was really knocked back on my heels last October when the Florida House of Representatives passed a bill in favor of lifting the ban on off shore three miles from any beach in Florida. I’d been saying that it was really time for us to draw a line in the sand. I meant it metaphorically, but when a local politician, David Pleat, began urging Floridians to take action to influence what was happening in Florida, I got the idea of actually engaging Floridians in forming lines across our state’s sands. Last February, over 80 beaches in Florida and 10,000 individuals organized and participated in “Hands Across the Sand.” And that was before the Deepwater Horizon crisis.
June 26 is an opportunity for a paradigm shift. A shift that says we will hold any company accountable for the devastating effects of oil drilling. That what the citizens of America have to say IS important! I frankly don’t believe the oil companies will ever stop in the Gulf, but enough is enough. Yes, the focus should be on BP but we can’t just make BP the scapegoat because this goes way beyond BP. The entire offshore oil industry is under indictment. Using 1970s technology to stop a 2010 accident they never planned for is unacceptable. Any industry that can avoid the controlling hand of American government shouldn’t be allowed to do business. We are all working towards the day when oil will become the alternative energy instead of the other way around.
Visit Hands Across the Sand to locate or organize an event at a beach near you. The website provides interactive maps of states and nations as well as a resource toolkit of downloadable banners, posters, logos, press releases and t-shirts. Scroll down the main page for a complete list of sponsors and partners.
What to do at a Hands Event
- STEP 1 Go to the beach at 11 AM in your time zone for one hour, rain or shine.
- STEP 2 Join hands for 15 minutes at 12:00 forming lines in the sand against oil drilling in our coastal waters.
- STEP 3 Leave only your footprints.
Tips of the Day
- Use only approved beach accesses and parking.
- Create as long a line or as many lines as you wish.
- Be courteous and respectful to those who disagree with your view.
- Please steer clear of bird nesting areas.
- …enjoy yourself, it’s the beach!
As of today, beaches in Norway, the UK, Canada, Malaysia, India, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Stonetown, and the Dominican Republic are participating. Hands Across the Sand is sponsored by such climate action organizations as Defenders of Wildlife, 350.org, Greenpeace, Surfrider Foundation, Audubon Society, Moveon.org, and 1Sky, and is rapidly morphing into the largest global gathering in support of clean energy in history (visit the homepage for a complete list of the project partners and sponsors).
For those of you in the SF Bay Area consider going to Hands Across the Sand at Crissy Field
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