Guest Posts: October 2010 Archives

Guest post: UChicago students attend global day of climate action

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Today's post comes from Caitlin Grey, a first year in the College.

This past Sunday, October 10, (10-10-10) was a big day for environmentalism. 10-10-10 was an international day of climate action organized by, with over 7,000 events registered in 188 countries, and the University of Chicago was part of this global call to action against climate change.

Around twenty students of the University of Chicago, primarily members of the Green Campus Initiative (GCI) and Students for a Just and Stable Future (SJSF), met at the Regenstein Library on Sunday to travel to Pilsen, a historically immigrant neighborhood of Chicago, to rally against the Fisk and Crawford Power Plants.

Students bussed and biked around the various blockades and detours in place for the Chicago Marathon that day to join around one hundred other environmentally-concerned Chicago residents in front of the Alivio Medical Center, a block from the coal-fired power plant that causes health problems and pollution in the area.

10.10.10 GCI SJSF.jpg
At the rally we heard speakers from various organizations including Green Peace, Physicians for Social Responsibility, the Sierra Club, and the Huffington Post, made calls to our local aldermen asking them to close down the polluting power plant, signed petitions, and added to a live art installation. We also took a picture to be featured on along with photos of thousands of other actions across the globe.
 As a first year I was thoroughly impressed by this event as my first environmental action in Chicago and found it very valuable to learn about one of the environmental problems in this city. It was inspiring to see people of all ages, races, and genders with a common interest in the health and future of communities that suffer from environmental degradation.

GCI and SJSF will continue to focus on the problem of coal in Chicago this year. Along with a few other RSOs, we'll be hosting a panel on coal on Tuesday, October 26, at 7 pm, in Harper 131. Please join us!

Guest Post: Coal Day of Action 10.10.10

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Today we have a special guest post from undergraduate student Claire Brindley.

Chicago is home to a lot of great landmarks--the John Hancock building, Wrigley Field, the Bean (or Cloud Gate, if you prefer). But the Windy City also has a couple of skyscrapers that are a little less family-friendly, the Fisk and Crawford coal-fired power plants. These edifices may not be a part of the famous skyline, but they are a serious threat to the health of Chicago's residents. Built in the 1920s, they face lenient emissions standards and are the reason that Chicago now has one of the nation's highest asthma rates. In addition to chronic illness, air pollutants from Fisk and Crawford are responsible for 500 emergency room visits and 40 premature deaths each year.

Power plant.jpg

Now is the time to clean up emissions from the old coal plants--not only for environmental reasons, but also for the health of Chicago residents. On Saturday, October 10, people from around the world will gather to support clean power in their communities and political action for sustainability as part of's Global Work Party. This will be the most widespread day of political action in history, with 6,227 events in 185 countries. Green Campus Initiative Students for a Just and Secure Future will be leading U of Cers downtown to join their fellow Chicagoans in demanding a cleaner, coal-free future. We'll be meeting in front of the Reg (1101 E 57th St) on Sunday, October 10 at 11:30am, to bike or take the CTA to the rally. If you need to borrow a bike, check out the UChicago bike share program.

If you have any questions, get in touch with Caroline Wooten at Please come out to make the call for a clean city even louder!

--Claire Brindley

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This page is a archive of entries in the Guest Posts category from October 2010.

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