Information & Guides
What is the goal of the day?
The goal is to get moving beyond fossil fuels—both symbolically by pouring into the streets in the thousands on foot, bicycle and other means of sustainable movement, and politically by bringing powerful demands to our leaders that day to move beyond fossil fuels to a 350ppm world. Mobilizing for individual and community solutions will continue to be important—but one of the main goals for Moving Planet is to demand government action, especially in places where governments stalling on climate action despite the overwhelming urgency of the science.
What will people do that day?
We encourage organizers to adapt the idea for Moving Planet to what is most appropriate and strategic locally. Possible action ideas include mass bike rides or marches, bike or walk to school/work days, a march or bike ride from a problem (e.g. coal plant) to a solution (i.e. solar plant), a mass march or bike ride to encircle a government building/deliver a petition, non-violent direct action at fossil fuel targets, and a long multi-day march or bike ride to demonstrate commitment. For more in-depth ideas visit www.moving-planet.org/ideas.
Why focus on moving away from fossil fuels?
The global fossil fuel infrastructure is a threat to our future everywhere, and a common target for our movement. It's polluting our oceans, our land, our communities, our air, and our children's lungs. It's corrupting our politics with over $600 billion in subsidies globally, and hundreds of millions in campaign contributions in the United States in the last 10 years. And looming largest, the continued burning of coal and oil is what will tip climate change into climate catastrophe - getting off fossil fuels is the number one thing we need to do to get below 350ppm. Fossil fuels connect to many issues—sustainable agriculture, transportation, and water to name a few. But please don't feel limited by this focus, and feel free to organize around the climate issue most relevant to where you are.
What are we moving towards?
To get below 350ppm, we know we need to get off fossil fuels right away, and move to a sustainable, democratically controlled, and renewably-powered future as soon as possible. All mobilizations for Moving Planet are encouraged to pick a clear and strategic demand to deliver to their local governments that day.
To read about the global demands for Moving Planet, and ideas for local demands for your action, visit www.moving-planet.org/demands
Why another global day of action?
Inspired by the democracy movements in Egypt and elsewhere this year, we're reminded that people power is stronger than the fossil fuel industry's power and can move action on climate change that has felt stalled since the UN Climate meetings in Copenhagen, 2009. Mobilizing for days of action is important for our movement for a variety of reasons--it helps get many new people involved, creates a feeling of global solidarity and momentum, and with our efforts combined, all on the same day, we can simply create a bigger impact in the media and on politicians, than if we were all to act alone.
Why the 24th of September?
For one, we wanted to join up forces with our friends at the World Carfree Network who have been promoting "car-free days" in cities around the world on 22 September for many years. Second, it's a day that works in many parts of the world: the 24th is a Saturday, and is a time when most schools around the world are in session, people are back from August vacations, and our Indian colleagues haven't yet left for theirs. Most importantly, we have found it's helpful to carve out a day on its own, when we can create our own moment and message.
Who is organizing Moving Planet?
The idea for Moving Planet came from 350.org, a global campaign and network that works with grassroots organizers in 188 countries to mobilize against climate change and for a just future. Moving Planet is a collaborative effort of many organizations, movements, and individuals. Organizations and local movements are encouraged to take this day and idea and put forward what you're able to make this day as powerful as possible around the world. For a list of all endorsing organizations, and to sign up your organization, click here.
1. Bring together a team and register your event.
First things first—it's more fun to organize together. Call up friends, leaders in your community or city, and allied organizations that you think would want to get involved. Host a first meeting to get to know everyone, give people a basic overview of the ideas behind Moving Planet, and start brainstorming. When you've got a basic idea in place, register your event on the website—this will let other people in your community find you, and give you access to all sorts of support, tools, and materials for local organizers.
2. Pick a goal and a demand.
Moving Planet is about using our collective power to call for changes to protect our climate. Think about your goals—like educating and involving a certain number of people in your community—and think about what demands you could bring to your local government, and how you might deliver the message.
3. Plan your action
Time to get to the strategy– let's figure out how you can make your voices heard through action:
- What – will people bike or march? Or move some other creative way? Think about how to incorporate the needs and interests of your city/community.
- Where – where are start and finish locations that are easily accessible to people? What symbolic locations can be incorporated into the route, such as houses of government, problems (coal plants), or solutions (wind farm)? What route is visible to the general public?
- When – when will your action begin and end?
4. Recruit, recruit, recruit!
This step may be the most important—if a lot of people show up, it will demonstrate broad public support for you cause and goal. Set a goal for how many people you'd like to see in the streets on 24 September—and create a plan for reaching 10 times that number of people, assuming only 10% of the people you contact will actually show up. Talking to schools, religious groups, community meetings, putting up posters around town, sending emails through listservs, getting a public service announcement on the local radio, and getting on community calendars are a few ways to get the word out.
5. Organize the details
Like most organizing, you'll have to deal with some logistics. Here are some key things to consider:
- Permits for your route
- Schedule and speakers if you'll hold a rally at the beginning or end
- Sound, stage and other equipment
- A safety plan to protect participants from traffic
When you have all these details together, be sure to publish the key information publicly on your local website, community calendar, and fliers—key information to include would be start and end times, locations, exciting speakers, and instructions for participants.
6. Invite your leaders
If you want to make sure your leaders hear your demands, make sure you invite them out to your event! It's important to email an invitation, and call a few days later to follow up—do it early so their schedules haven't filled up. A few ideas for engaging your leader as a part of your event are a) asking them to speak in front of the crowd about their plans on climate change (so they have to say what they are or aren't doing publicly), or b) ask them to sign a pledge to take on your demands. This can work especially well for candidates who are seeking election who may promise things now that you can hold them accountable to later.
7. Get creative
Artistic signs, colorful banners, and fun chants and songs are some of the best ways to get people excited for your action, and to send your message in a clear and positive way. Host a time to paint banners and signs before your action, and invite volunteers to come. Have some sample messages so that people don't go too off topic with their signs. (Check out this page for ideas and templates for visuals to display at your event.) Come up with some fun chants or songs for the crowd to sing as you move.
8. Invite the media and BE the media!
The media is one of our most important ways to make our voices heard. It's important to figure out early who the reporters who cover environment are at your local paper, radio station, and TV station, and try to build a relationship. A week out from your event you'll want to send a media advisory, followed by a call to make sure they've received it. On the day of you'll want to send a press release, and make another call to make sure they come out!
We also need to be the media. Capture the power of online social media to get the word out and tell the story of your organizing. Often the best way to recruit people and get your message out is to develop or use existing online communities to tell the story of your organizing and open a space for dialogue as you prepare for the big day.
9. Time to move!
On the big day, lace up your shoes or hop on your bike, and get out in the streets. Make sure you've delegated key roles for that day – individuals to liaise with the police, the media, to organize the speakers, to direct the marchers or cyclists along the planned route, etc. Make sure everyone speaking or being interviewed knows the key messages you're trying to send that day, and have fun!
10. Report Back and Keep the movement moving.
After the event, we're asking everyone to send in their photos and videos to help us create a shared story. After your media has been uploaded, take a breath, and celebrate with your team all that you've accomplished. Be sure to thank everyone who helped, and organize a follow-up meeting as soon as you can. Assess what went well, and what could have gone better so you can improve for the next action. Discuss what you have left to do to achieve your goals, and start planning your next steps for building the movement.
Materials & Downloads
Signup/Pledge Sheet to Use At Events:
Dark design (for printing on white shirts)
White Design (for printing on colored shirts)
Since design is all white, files may appear to be empty.