The Climate Justice Alliance’s Summer of Our Power launched on the Summer Solstice—June 21, 2015—in recognition of our interrelated, interdependent, and complementary relationship with Mother Earth.
In the face of climate crisis, communities on the frontlines of the impacts are also at the forefront of the struggle to create solutions that are healthy and equitable for both people and the planet—what we call a just transition.
Over the course of two months during the summer of 2015, frontline communities will undertake creative movement building projects to build interconnected local strategies and broader public awareness for a just transition away from an economy based on extraction and exploitation.
The Summer of Our Power includes CJA’s new Just Transition Fellowship program; a story-telling project designed to share narratives and uplift our solutions; and as the centerpiece a “quilt relay” in August, through which CJA will create a collective quilt that symbolizes the breadth and depth of frontline community solutions offering real hope in the face of climate devastation. The quilt relay will conclude in solidarity with gulf coast communities at the 10th Anniversary Commemoration of Hurricane Katrina.
Engage with us throughout the Summer of Our Power, Join the Conversation on our Facebook page or on Twitter — #OurPowerSummer!
Summer of Our Power News:
Ironbound Community Corporation
On August 11, the Ironbound Community Corporation (ICC) held a protest outside the Seton Hall Law School against the 2011 Energy Master Plan. The protest was part of the Summer of Our Power, and soon after Ironbound presented their quilt square as part of the relay. Ironbound Community Corporation Quilt Square via Molly Greenberg from ICC “Ironbound quilt is ready to travel! Designed with some help from our people and made by the talented Isella Ramirez!” -via Molly Greenberg, ICC Ready with our quilt square! Here we come, Detroit! @UPROSE @EMEAC @CJAOurPower #climatejustice #summerofourpower pic.twitter.com/3m0d4QKXen — ICC (@IronboundCC) August 14, 2015 via Molly Greenberg from ICC Here are some moments from the event: Our power!!! #summerofourpower #cja #OurPowerSummer pic.twitter.com/SOOM4YguqP — ICC (@IronboundCC) August 11, 2015 Thank you everyone for coming out to Energy Action Day! #summerofourpower pic.twitter.com/oww4M0iasH — ICC (@IronboundCC) August 11, 2015 Come join us at Energy Action Day! Happening
Center for Earth Energy and Democracy
“On Tuesday the Center for Earth, Energy and Democracy (CEED) participated in a community celebration in Minneapolis joining with Glendale residents and neighbors to celebrate protecting their homes from redevelopment. At a community concert with Reggae, Calypso and Latin music at Luxton Park, CEED has been working with Glendale residents to hear their stories and support strategies that protect their community from displacement in the face of privatization of 13 acres of public housing town homes. CEED’s quilt square will travel down to the Hurricane Katrina 10 year commemoration march in New Orleans, as part of the Climate Justice Alliance, connecting our local struggles to other frontline environmental justice communities around the country . CEED Quilt Square via Shalini Gupta, Executive Director of CEED The patch designed collectively by CEED and community allies incorporates elements from multiple communities around Minnesota. We recognize our community as originally Dakota land Mni Sota, and in with the medicine wheel
Communities for a Better Environment – Southern California
At a youth meeting on August 11, the southern California branches of Communities for a Better Environment (CBE) presented their quilt squares for the Summer of Our Power quilt relay. Communities for a Better Environment Southern California Quilt Square via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff Here are some moments from the event: via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA Staff via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff via Yuki Kidokoro, CJA staff CBE has branches throughout California, including in Richmond, Los Angeles and Oakland. CBE aims to empower low income communities and communities of color to achieve environmental justice on a local and global scale. Some of CBE’s strategies include community organizing, legal strategy, research, communications and media, and educating and mobilizing voters. For a wrap up of what CBE has been up to during this year’s Summer of Our
Indigenous Environmental Network
On August 8, the Indigenous Environmental Network kicked off the central tributary for the Summer of Our Power quilt relay at the 2015 Water Blessing and Healing Walk, which was organized by Fort Berthold Protectors of Water and Earth Rights (P.O.W.E.R.). IEN Quilt Patch Here are some of the flyers promoting the event: And here are some moments from the event: 2015 Ft Berthold 1st Annual Water Blessing & Healing Walk complete! Props to @IENearth & @CJAOurPower for support. pic.twitter.com/ulvCXgzWKw — Dallas Goldtooth (@g0ldtooth) August 8, 2015 2015 Ft Berthold 1st Annual Water Blessing & Healing Walk complete! Props to @IENearth & @CJAOurPower for support. pic.twitter.com/ulvCXgzWKw — Dallas Goldtooth (@g0ldtooth) August 8, 2015 @IENearth is happy to be a part of the 1st Annual Water Blessing & Healing Walk on the Mandan-Hidatsa-Arikara Nation! pic.twitter.com/ATTV8YCdDb — IndigenousEnviroNet (@IENearth) August 8, 2015 Throughout the summer, the IEN has promoted numerous indigenous-led
People Organizing to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights – People Powered Solutions
On August 8, People Organizing to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights (PODER) presented their next quilt square for the Summer of Our Power relay! “This quilt represents the community’s resistance in the midst of gentrification #allday,” said Marilyn Duran, CJA fellow with PODER. PODER Quilt Square Here are some moments from the event with PODER, APEN and CBE: #OurPower Fellows from @APEN4EJ and @CBECal present #JustTransition quilt block to PODER pic.twitter.com/b3nKpED3sx — PODERSF (@PODERSF) August 8, 2015 Celebrating #JustTransition quilt project with @APEN4EJ @CBECal #OurPower Summer pic.twitter.com/2lEYeVwQzW — PODERSF (@PODERSF) August 9, 2015 #OurPower quilt square is on its way to Los Angeles! Representing resistance against gentrification. @CJAOurPower pic.twitter.com/Ecfd2ATMLl — PODERSF (@PODERSF) August 11, 2015 PODER is a grassroots community organization working for environmental and economic justice for low income communities of color in southeast San Francisco. Here’s just a glimpse of all of the great work PODER has been doing
Summer of Our Power Quilt Relay Inspires Communities
As we stood by the banks of Lake Sakakawea , we struggled to hear the prayers of the elders over the roar of a jet plane taking off in the background. It wasn’t a plane, however, but a natural gas flare on the far side of the lake and the roar didn’t fade away into the distant. It is a noise that drones on day and night, day after day. As far as the eye can see these flares dot the beautiful landscape of the lands of the Three Affiliated Tribes: the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara people. Over 100 people gathered for the first annual Water Blessing and Healing walk. Organized by Fort Berthold Protectors of Water and Earth Rights (P.O.W.E.R), organizers Lisa Deville, family and friends from the tribes work to confront the devastating social, environmental and economic impacts of becoming a boomtown for the oil and gas industry
Asian Pacific Environmental Network and Communities for a Better Environment Quilt Event on the Western Tributary
On August 6, the Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) and Communities for a Better Environment (CBE) hosted an event to commemorate the Richmond Chevron oil refinery explosion that happened three years ago. During the commemoration, both organizations presented their patch as part of the Summer of Our Power quilt relay. APEN and CBE quilt square with square from C2C: via Asian Pacific Environmental Network on Facebook, August 7, 2015 Here are some moments from the event: Laiseng Saechao: In thinking about this quilt square, were thinking of our future @apen4ej #OurPowerSummer pic.twitter.com/TRXYn8tuUP — Megan Zpants (@meganzpants) August 7, 2015 #OurPower fellows show the #JustTransition Quilt at the Chevron fire anniv. From WA to Richmond #OurPowerSummer pic.twitter.com/qzfmIal2sF — Megan Zpants (@meganzpants) August 7, 2015 Kamsaeng, Khmu pastor: what we are fighting for now is for our children & grandchildren #OurPowerSummer #ChevronFire pic.twitter.com/onjHyuXL6p — APEN (@APEN4EJ) August 7, 2015
UPROSE kicks off the Quilt Relay Eastern Tributary
On August 6, UPROSE hosted the New York City Climate Justice Youth Summit, the largest gathering of young people of color in the US. We were honored to have the Uprose family recognize the Our Power Campaign and kick off the eastern tributary of our quilt relay at this amazing and inspiring event. Uprose Quilt Square: Presentation of the Our Power quilt square to Ironbound Community Corporation, which will keep the square moving on the relay route: Here are some highlights of the youth summit from attendees via Twitter: https://storify.com/OurPower/new-york-city-climate-justice-youth-summit They have been busy promoting it throughout the summer on social media: via UPROSE on Facebook, July 24 Here is a video of youth explaining the significance of the summit for young people of color: Here’s a trailer for the NYC Youth Summit: UPROSE is a multiracial organization that works on a variety of issues related to environmental justice and public health in
Community to Community Development kicks off Quilt Relay
The Summer of our Power relay kicked off July 1 in Bellingham, Washington with CJA partner organization Community to Community Development. At an event on Saturday, CJA national coordinator Michael Leon Guerrero spoke about just transition and the Our Power Campaign, and the group unveiled their quilt square for the It Takes Roots quilt. Quilt Patch from Community to Community Development, August 1, 2015 “Community to Community is Honored to have been chosen to kick off the Climate Justice Alliance’s Summer of Our Power Quilt Relay in the month of August, through which frontline communities will contribute a quilt square symbolizing the power of our collective just transition work,” said Franks.
Climate Justice Alliance/Our Power Campaign Solidarity Statement with Community to Community Development and Familias Unidas por la Justicia at the Launch of the Summer of Our Power Relay August 1, 2015
The Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) is excited to be celebrating the work of organizers in the communities of Bellingham and Richmond today. The Climate Justice Alliance (CJA) is a national alliance of frontline communities forging a Just Transition away from an extractive energy economy to local, linked and living economies. In 2013, CJA launched the Our Power Campaign (OPC) to unite communities living with the impacts of extractive industries around a common vision and strategy – to transition the economy in ways that reduce greenhouse gas emissions at the source, restore equity, and put decision-making in the hands of communities. In Bellingham, Community to Community Development (C2C) continues to mobilize support for the Driscoll’s boycott called by Familias Unidas por la Justicia; a 2 year old self organized independent farm worker union. C2C and community, faith and labor allies have been working for fairer wages and working conditions at Sakuma Brothers Berry farm, the largest berry grower