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Burlington joins nation to urge congress to 'step it up'

BURLINGTON Citizens around the nation concerned about the effects of global warming rallied together on Saturday, April 14 to urge Congress to cut carbon emissions by 80 percent by 2050. While more than 1,300 organized efforts to spread the word against global warming occurred nationwide last weekend, Burlington held several events of its own. The events are part of the Step it Up campaign, the largest day of citizen action focusing on global warming in our nations history. Vermonts own Step It Up organizer, Bill McKibben, said of the day, The groundswell of support for this effort is incredible. This is truly a viral grassroots movement, organized mainly through word of mouth, email outreach among friends, and the online community. The enormous participation in todays movement is a wake-up call to legislators from across the country. Their constituents are urgently demanding that America get on the path towards reducing carbon emissions before it is too late. On Saturday morning, over thirty people gathered on the steps of the College Street Congregational Church in Burlington to participate in one of the many many rallies and actions in the city, state and country for Step It Up part of a National Day of Climate Change. The participants at the College Street church urged passers by to cut carbon emissions and stop vehicle idling. Organizing the church event was Aubrey Choquette. Elsewhere in Burlington, another memorable, eco-friendly event included a day of service projects, groups spreading the word about various efforts already underway to cut carbon emissions, including the Way to Go Commuter Challenge, and culminated with roughly 450 citizens who gathered on the shores of Lake Champlain with featured speaker Senator Bernie Sanders, who inspired the large crowd. All of the efforts in Burlington and throughout Vermont truly stepped up the pressure to create change and come up with real solutions to combat climate change. For more information about these events and ones taking place nationwide, please visit the Step It Up campaign website: www.stepitup2007.org

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