Some 200 residents gathered at the Italian Canadian Club on Thursday to talk climate change and what they can do to stop it, as part of the Green New Deal town hall.
The event was moderated by Kearney Coupland, who is pursuing a PhD where she is looking at climate change’s impact on small island states.
Coupland told The Post that “we’re in a moment of transformation” where the public can make the choice to participate in change and make decisions.
“I want people to walk out of here feeling like the conversation is happening and that the anxiety they’re feeling about the situation we’re in is not an individual anxiety.”
After Coupland spoke to the urgency of climate change and enacting the solutions to stop it, there was an interactive part to the evening where Marva Wisdom led groups broken up by tables in an interactive session where individuals were encouraged to come up with ideas for solutions to tackle climate change.
The ideas brought forward by students, political leaders and others will be taken to a non-partisan organization that aims to bring attention to climate issues ahead of the federal election this fall.
Each table was tasked with prioritizing two ideas for Canada to either to cease — under a red line – or an idea to encourage movement on — placed under a green line.
Organizers told The Post ahead of the event they “aim to begin to unite a diverse movement, develop a shared vision of a livable future and push political leaders to act” — noting that climate change will be a critical issue in the upcoming federal election as parties fight over policy in the House of Commons.
The town hall comes from a movement inspired by the Le Pacte that launched in Quebec, a climate action pledge that has gathered over 270,000 signatures. It calls on Canadians from coast-to-coast to “define a plan for a safe, just and prosperous future.”
Le Pacte was inspired by the Green New Deal introduced by left-leaning Democrats in the United States Congress that outlined a general blueprint for shifting U.S. reliability away from fossil fuel reliance and towards environmentally-friendly, renewable infrastructure.
“Like the Green New Deal in the U.S., we are guided by the same science, Jennison told The Post, explaining that “we are all facing the same timeline and the same issue of inaction from all levels of government” in both Washington and Ottawa.
At the Italian Canadian Club, Jennison said she wants people to walk away from the meeting “feeling connected” with the community around them, united in the fight against climate change.
Several individuals that attended told The Post that they saw this as an important step forward, adding that their ideas actually being sent to political leaders made them feel heard and their ideas validated.