Hello Fletcher!

Well, today was my very first day at COP-15 AND it was my 26th birthday!  Being at COP was quite an amazing birthday present!  From the moment I landed in the Copenhagen airport, the excitement and energy for a fair global climate deal was in the air.  The metro is covered in ads from companies (Vestas) and environmental groups (Oceana, WWF) calling for a strong treaty.  The center has a massive wind turbine outside, and the delivery company DHL has helped to make the conference carbon neutral.

I’m here with a youth organization called SustainUS. (And yes, technically 26 is still considered youth by the UN!) Our group brought 30 out of the 500 American youth here at COP. We’re here to tell the country delegates and the world that young Americans want a fair, global deal that follows the science – targets of 350 parts per million.    We need serious climate action from developed and developing countries alike.

Our delegation has been having meetings with the US State Department officials and yesterday everyone met with EPA leader, Lisa Jackson!  We also witnessed the history being made by the delegation from Tuvalu that disrupted the session today calling for a new legal agreement, because following Kyoto’s model is simply not good enough to save their island nation.  http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/dec/09/copenhagen-tuvalu-protocol-split

We made some headlines of our own, too! Today was our first grassroots action, and boy was it fun.  We crashed a meeting of the climate denier group, Americans For Prosperity. In a well-hidden location, a group of about 5 or 6 old white men met to broadcast their anti-climate change opinions by tele-conference across the US.  They were claiming that  clean energy proponents are trying to “destroy our freedom in the name of an ideology.” They were claiming that climate change is turning out to be the biggest hoax in American history, and that a cap and trade system would “suppress American productivity and prosperity.”

We couldn’t sit around and listen to that, so we jumped up and took over the event. The group of 30-40 youth from around the US gave the real American opinion, and chanted “Americans for prosperity are Americans for Clean Energy!”  and “Clean energy makes jobs.”  To see a quick clip, check out a great climate blog: http://itsgettinghotinhere.org/ and my group’s blog:  http://sustainus.org/ .

So, needless to say, it was an incredibly memorable birthday!  And, it’s just the beginning. I’ll be here for the rest of the 2 week conference, and will be sure to keep you all posted on the excitement!
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Odette

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