Collective Action

There is power in numbers. Climate Legacy’s network members are making change in their communities, focusing on grassroots initiatives that most affect them. Groups across the country are organizing to make sure their concerns about climate change are heard.

Spotlight on: Lynn Ovenden and Citizens’ Climate Lobby

Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) National Capital Region chapter has long been fighting for a carbon pricing system in Canada. Since the federal government’s system was upheld in the Supreme Court, they have lobbied MPs for effective legislation to ensure future governments reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Support for carbon pricing has definitely grown,” said Lynn Ovenden, a current volunteer and previously leader of the Ottawa chapter.  

CCL members on Parliament Hill

  “We decided this spring in CCL Canada to have an online conference that would be focussed on lobbying our provincial representatives,” said Lynn. “Each [chapter] invited our local MPPs to attend the conference and then we split into breakout groups to have conversations with our local reps.”  

CCL Canada also had a spring conference called “Beyond Carbon Pricing” and had a National Farmer’s Union rep come to talk about how carbon pricing can work better for farmers. There was also a panel on the importance of basic income.

“[Basic income] has become an important issue. For people who are struggling day to day, it’s really hard for them to think of reducing carbon emissions. So, we think basic income would be a very helpful thing for many reasons across the country.”  

For Lynn, these kinds of conversations are exactly why she enjoys being part of CCL.  

“I’ve been a quasi-private environmentalist for decades,” said Lynn. “So, I was already a big sympathizer of all the environmental groups that have been trying to raise concerns about climate change for the last 30 years.”  

Lynn would send money to these organizations regularly but wasn’t involved in any group in particular.  

“I wasn’t talking about it,” said Lynn, referring to climate change. “My family thought I was sort of fringe and it was not what they really wanted to talk about. Joining a group like CCL and going to chapter meetings, I found that hugely supportive, being able to talk to people who care every bit as much as I do.” 

Conversation and finding common ground are two of the larger concepts that CCL encourages. As Lynn says, it’s about building support and looking for spaces of progress.  

“I want the society right around me, all the businesses in my town, I want all of us all onside for the environment, to be working together. There is a set of values associated with the organization that are very respectful of everybody, including those who disagree with us.”  

“On the homepage of CCL Canada’s website now is a slogan that says ‘our solution to climate change? Democracy’. Let’s make sure we have it.” 

CCL Canada’s April 2021 conference “Creating a Balanced Future”
Want to use your voice for climate action? Here’s some ideas from Citizens’ Climate Lobby

Use Your Voice for Climate Action with an Organization Near You

“Our vision is a green, equitable, and just world where our children and grandchildren grow up safe and healthy.”

—Matt Price, For Our Kids Coordinator 

  • Grandmothers Act to Save the Planet (GASP) is a grassroots, non-partisan group of grandmothers and grand ‘others’ in the Halton/Hamilton region who care deeply about the world our descendants will inherit. We join with young people and our grandchildren to amplify their voices in the fight for our planet. Live in the GTA? Join the GASP movement .
  • Live in the Matawatchan area? Join the Living Green team! Living Green shares information on ecological issues through discussion and films, and we have begun a series of presentations by local artists whose works feature environmental themes. Contact Ken Birkett for more information joandken@xplornet.ca
  • Live in Peterborough? The Peterborough Alliance for Climate Action (PACA) organizes demonstrations and events to inspire awareness and action on climate change. Email: info.PtboPACA@gmail.com to get involved in PACA’s campaigns 
PACA members taking part in a 2018 Act to Save the Planet event