Art and Climate Change
Chapter Chair Update - September 2021

Susan Eastwood

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” ~ Albert Camus

 

Greetings!

 

I hope you are getting outside to enjoy our beautiful New England Fall colors. Sierra Club Connecticut has trained several new Outings Leaders and our first Outing will be on October 16, 11:00am to 1:00pm, at Gay City State Park in Hebron, CT. Sign up and join us for a relaxing hike in this lovely and historic state park.

 

Get ready for a week of climate-related events in the last week of this month, as we wrap up our Climate Awareness Campaign and gear up for the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 26) meetings in Glasgow. On October 27 at noon, we will kick off a trilogy of webinars on plastic pollution, from its petroleum origins to the trash bin and beyond (Check our Events & Outings for more information on this event coming soon).

 

Save the date of October 30 for the week’s climax event, End Environmental Racism: A Climate Emergency March and Rally. Join us to protest state inaction on the climate crisis and demand an end to fossil fuel expansion and environmental racism!

 

Watch for more events and details on our Facebook page and website.

 

Do you wonder how to motivate people to act on climate change?

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Recently, I've been exploring ways to use the arts, widely defined, to tell the story of climate change in a way that may reach more people. There is a wealth of talent expressing love and concern for our planet in creative ways, whether photography, painting, fiction, poetry, theater, or song. 

A recent example, from close to home, is a book of collected poems by 60 Connecticut poets, Waking Up to the Earth: Connecticut Poets in a Time of Global Climate Crisis (Margaret Gibson, editor, 2021, Grayson Books, West Hartford). Gibson, our Connecticut State Poet Laureate, has been promoting and organizing poetry readings about climate change, resulting in this volume of poems. You can also check out “September”, a poem in our newsletter this month.

Many books and films use the beauty of nature to send a message about the risks of the climate crisis. Sir David Attenborough’s documentaries, like the 2020 A Life on Our Planet, are some of the best. If you like a little armchair travel and adventure with your nature, I think you’d enjoy reading The Wild Places (or anything else) by Robert Macfarlane.

 

Like nature, art can enrich our lives and teach us to appreciate our world. The arts can connect people to nature and bring in new people to our efforts to save our environment and public health. I invite you to send ideas on how to energize our climate advocacy with art, and to submit your own work, reviews, or recommendations to the Quinnehtukqut! 

 

See you outside,

Susan

Susan Eastwood is Chapter Chair of Sierra Club Connecticut.