Fossil Fools Day Speech
On April 1st, Fossil Fools Day, around 40 youth rallied at Concordia and staged a mock oil spill and die-in at McGill to highlight the destructive nature of the fossil fuel industry’s actions. This is the speech that was delivered during the die-in, to remind the McGill Board of Governors that we are all affected by fossil fuel extraction and climate change.
BREAKING NEWS: There has been an oil spill at McSpill University! Fossil Fuel Fred’s newest pipeline, cutting right across McSpill’s Y-intersection, has just burst! Hundreds of gallons of oil are pouring down campus! This is the eighth oil spill this week, but the first ever on a university campus. It remains to be seen how students will cope with the effects of this spill. Will Flood Girl make her return? Where will they hold OAP?
Fossil Fuel Fred, as the CEO of the company that owns this pipeline, what do you have to say for yourself?
It feels good to be back. Back on the campus whose endowment helps fund my five-star vacations and fine dining. This oil spill here is no problem, we’ll clean it up and go back to business as usual. What do you expect me to do? Stop riding around in my drop-top Ferrari? Invest in clean energy and community building? C’mon, I’m here for you. We’ll just get a big vacuum and buy a couple hundred gallons of Dawn dish soap and this here pipeline will be good as new.
McGill, don’t be a fool! It’s time to stop funding Fossil Fuel Fred and the destruction of our future! It’s time to stop putting our money into companies that do this to our environment. Alberta alone has had an average of 2 crude oil spills every day for the past 37 years. It might not be happening on our campus, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t affected. People are dying because of these corporations.
Today, we gather here to remember:
the hundreds of thousands of people who die every year from climate-related causes
the people who are on the front lines of climate change
the countless injustices perpetuated by the fossil fuel industry
Today we remember:
the Aboriginal peoples whose health and livelihoods are being endangered by fossil fuel extraction
the ecosystems that are being destroyed to make way for fossil fuel infrastructure
that today’s youth will have to live with the consequences of our actions
that climate change is the moral challenge of our generation
Today we remember:
that we have the ability to respond to this crisis,
that the very existence of future generations is imperilled by today’s inaction,
that we need to take bold action today, for a safe tomorrow,
McGill and Concordia’s role as a leader and moral compass in times of uncertainty
Today we remember that despite enormous community support, McGill rejected our calls to divest from fossil fuels, citing “insufficient evidence of social injury”. Today, we remember all of this, and we’re here to remind you that we are all directly affected by the destruction caused by the fossil fuel industry. That is why we are still here, and we can not, we will not, leave. Again, we call on the McGill Board of Governors to listen to the community that they are supposed to serve. We call on the board to stop tarring our reputation, stop tarring our planet, stop tarring our community. We call on the board to stop investing in fossil fuels, and start investing in our future!