Call to action: Tell the Dept. of the Interior to say NO to Lease Sale 193 for drilling in the Arctic

[This was originally posted on my Facebook Page on November 7, 2014]

What can you do TODAY to fight climate change?

Calling all fellow warriors, soldiers, and tribesmen in the fight against those who continually choose to do our planet harm. As many of you know, today begins the official public comment period on the US Department of the Interior (DOI) study regarding the safety and feasibility of offering a Lease Sale (number 193) for oil drilling in the Chukchi Sea in the Arctic.

As I explained in previous posts, there are two “avenues” for public comment. The first involves very technical and specific comments about the feasibility of drilling for oil in the Arctic. Those comments should specifically reference aspects of the 260 page supplemental environmental impact statement (which is linked in my Notes section to the left of this Page). Those comments should be made at http://www.regulations.gov and I will write about that in a separate post.

The other way of adding your voice about this lunatic idea of drilling in the Arctic is through direct contact with key players. Upon phone calls with the Alaskan field office involved in this endeavor, it became clear to me that just sending the regulations.gov portal comments such as, “Don’t drill in the Arctic because of global warming, ” or “I’m afraid of climate change and don’t want Beluga whales hurt,” etc. would have little impact. The only thing that they can “use” and work with are technical shortcomings; however, in this day and age of social media, the public has quite a lot of potential contact with decision makers who often choose to avail themselves of this technology. The DOI has certainly done that. According to their website, the have 8 active social media sites. Indeed, when looking at their rate of interactions on these sites, it is obvious that they enjoy being active in that manner. Therefore, my intent is to mobilize along all social media platforms that the Department of the Interior uses. So far, I’ve got 4 out of 8 potential platforms (Facebook, Instagram and they have 2 relevant Twitter accounts) started. Considering that I only actually know how to use one (Facebook), I think I’m batting about 500 (out of a potential 1,000).

The comment period is 45 days long and ends on December 22nd. The social platform comments and the meme I created are going to be directed at the Secretary of the Interior (Sally Jewell) as she is the one who ultimately decides whether to approve the Lease Sale. Now, keep in the back of your mind that Congress CAN ultimately get involved if they want, I think. But we’re not going to go down that dark alley yet. In addition to Secretary Jewell, I’ve also “tagged” various Alaskan politicians and Barack Obama. What we really need to do is get celebrities, groups or people with a large social media presence to repost or retweet or re-“something” and tag the appropriate people and/or group to insure that the message is heard loud and clear.

This is a medium where children, the elderly, non-English speakers, literally ANYONE can repost and potentially make a difference. In other words, we need to get the word out to groups, our children and/or grandchildren, teachers…think really BIG because if we don’t inundate the DOI, they won’t notice a blip on their social media screen. The good news is that this does not (initially) need any help or participation from Congress (which would mean we’d be dead in the water). The other good news that, by the looks of it and for whatever reason, the DOI and lots of government officials like to post and interact a LOT on social media. Makes you wonder when they actually get any work done. The bad news is that I don’t have all these media platforms figured out by a long shot. They each have their own unique interfaces and limitations. So, this is going to be a test case.

And keep in mind that whatever group (Friends of the Earth, Earthjustice, Greenpeace, 350.org, etc.) has ANYTHING going on in this campaign, we should join and help. It doesn’t matter who advocates to stop this lunatic plan. There is no competition, there are no potential big shots or “winners” here – except potentially the Arctic. I cannot emphasize strongly enough that we are all on the same side. It doesn’t matter who has the winning idea, or the most popular movement – if there is going to be a future for our planet, we all need to work together, and to build upon each others successes and learn from each other’s failures. If not, we’re done for, to be honest.

Saturation and inundation are the KEY. So, that means that if you can use whichever and as many social media sites as you prefer or feel comfortable with and do it as many times as you can..daily, weekly, whatever, that would be great.

This doesn’t have to be reposting the “meme” I have made. I created that photo primarily so that anyone can quickly and easily get involved without having to wade into the morass of studies, debates and reports. Your message to the Department of the Interior can just be writing a comment and posting it on one of their social media platforms, or you can attach a different photo – whatever you want, but remember that they’ll notice it more if it seems like a “campaign” and, since they’re just human, the more “eye catching” the better. I realize that I may be missing some part of the explanation here, so please ask any questions in this comment section. I will outline the steps for each social media platform in a separate post above so the information doesn’t get lost for you to find. Keep in mind that I haven’t figured out Flickr, Tumblr or Google+ yet.

If you can “tag” or get any person in any country and in any industry to pay attention to what you’re doing and join this effort, that would be great. Let’s keep our eye on the ball. The goal is to send a LOUD and CLEAR message from ALL directions that drilling for oil in the Arctic is UNACCEPTABLE. It is dangerous to every living thing on earth.

And so, for today, pick your social media weapon of choice and LET THEM HAVE IT. A complete listing of DOI’s social media sites and account names will be on my website: schatziesearthproject.com