Moving Planet CT Brainstorm Notes – Send 5 favorites by Friday 6/24

Moving Planet brainstormers: great to see you last night. Thanks for a fun, thoughtful, creative brainstorm session, with lots of good ideas and lots of ways to move forward.

As promised, here are my notes from the meeting (below). We agreed that each of us will pick 5 of our favorite ideas or themes, make a list of outcomes we’d like to see from the 9/24 event, and give suggestions for organizations or people to reach out to. That last point is especially important — we’ll need to assemble a solid team of organizers to pull off a statewide action like this, and so we need to continue to identify people with the energy and vision for this kind of work.

Please send me an email directly with your favorite ideas/themes, outcomes and suggestions for outreach by Friday 6/24 at 4pm. I’ll compile those and send them back out along with suggested times for our next meeting.

A few resources I mentioned:

Notes from the Elm City Cycling brainstorm meeting on 6/20
Notes from the Boston Moving Planet brainstorm meeting, for reference (attached)
Moving Planet CT Interest Form for organizers and supporters. Please fill this out if you’d like to stay involved – this will help us stay in touch and understand what you’d like to be involved in.

I’ll be in touch again on Saturday. As always, write or call if you’d like to chat about this, have questions, etc.


Justin Haaheim
CT Regional Coordinator,


6/22/11 Moving Planet CT Community brainstorm

6pm-8pm at The Grove, 71 Orange St New Haven CT
hosted by Act New Haven (

People (name, hometown, something we don’t know about you, what gets/motivates you about climate and this kind of work?)
Terry, arkansas, worried about “cataclysm”
Moses Boone, used to be a dancer, motivated by MP and chance for people to do things collectively.
Chris, born on air force base in arkansas, just angry
Melinda, has husband and two children, likes bringing people together, not sure what the best thing, likes bikes
Ian Skoggard, born in long island, part canadian, CT Conf of United Church of Christ – trying to get them more active. Called to be in relationship with the earth.
Nate Bixby, born in small town in iowa, lived on coast of maine, lived in prince edward island canada, dad was UCC minister. motivated by: collective opportunity, opps for wholeness. what makes all of it whole? crisis is here.
Jon Gorham, quaker, young daughters. has had 7 near death experiences – doesn’t want climate to be the thing that does him in. moved by quaker principles SPICES simplicity peace integrity community equality spiritual-witness.
Justin Haaheim, minnesota, sprained ankle playing ultimate frisbee, dc capitol climate action — realizing we’ve got to take this on and do this ourselves
Paul Brunner, vice chair of sierra club,
Alissa Israel, fairfield, friends with Bob, secretly would love to be a hairdresser
Bob Wall, first got involved with Nate Bixby in new haven, works with CEF, organized step it up, organized
Emily Freed,
Aaron Goode, part of act new haven, nh bioregional group, ECC, CT green expo (w bob), EJN, caddied in a golf tournament on monday.
Coleen, work for peace jam, doing a big cycling tour in september from CT to RI, across NE. Working with 350 folks.

Agree on agenda, ground rules and brainstorming rules
Background on 350 and Moving Planet
Background on Act New Haven, 350 in CT, what 350 is asking of us
Brainstorming, focusing on ideas for 9/24, ideas for the lead-up to the day, ideas for who should be involved, and ideas for followup afterwards
Next Steps
Next Meeting Date

JG – new haven friends has planned an awakening the dreamer event on 9/24 at 1pm.
NB – we should reach out to Social Web CT (julia gooch)

BW staged event in multiple places, relay, olympic torch
IS engage our politicians, launch a bill
NB highlighting and supporting our state govt is already doing. how can we get the most out of the bills already passed. we have a shot at #2 spot behind CA.
JH highlight and support local groups
JG press – get coverage up to and after the event. people need to see this.
MT promote what happened in SB 1.
NB politicians need the thanks and public support for doing a good thing.
IS work on turnout.
PB engage and educate people about clean energy task forces.
BW 103 towns have made a commitment to clean energy.
NB OUTREACH – to all those task forces. celebrate them
BW irony is that Esty and Malloy are not talking about “climate change”. we have to be cautious about getting that buy in from the top. what are they willing to say.
JH do we talk about climate and peak oil, or do we talk about resilient communities?
MB we need to talk about center if we want people involved
IS we should think about two audiences: people that will come, and people that will see it.
TH resilient communities, individual solutions are really important. tangible. riding a bike is a hell of a lot more real.
JG 350 has a 2 page PDF on science, politics, solutions. Jon Gorham has designed boxes. Lots don’t know what 350 is. put something in their hands — have them make it.
NB how do we make this magnetic? peripheral or central – we don’t know that yet. How do we magnetize people to what the world could be. Has to be positive in some way.
CS Issue isn’t with new people that don’t know about 350. It’s with the people that know and don’t turn out. Lots of people in local env groups who don’t come out. Priority is getting those people.
CS is conflict the vehicle? we’re up against big, powerful forces. governor is hiding about climate change. when are we going to fight?
JG 350 has – you can chain yourself up. we need civil disobedience.
IS we have to decide where we are in that range.
NB possible and maybe necessary to do both. good to have multiple prongs/legs. what if we say that we are actually going to create something new in the state infrastructure. Or we’ll create jobs that reduce carbon. Good comeback to “you guys are just protesting”.
MT dave brauer – sierra. good to have people working on different ends of the extreme/conservative spectrum. good to have sierra club AND greenpeace. Good to have options, but we shouldn’t hide what we’re talking about. Claim “a day to get away from fossil fuels”.
TH if we want a better city, we need bike lanes on whitney ave.
MT there’s progress being made by ECC, but there are also big setbacks.
JH ECC has a good reputation. still gets pushed around.
MT rt 34 downtown crossing is a big opportunity. City DOES want this to happen.
JG people that live in the suburbs – people are upset that it’s tricky to ride bike into town.

Question: How do we get OUR people to turn out? Who do we reach out to?
NB ask heads of organizations
BW bring in the faith organizations.
CS it’s a logic question. if this is a problem, how has your behavior changed? Get a pledge that people actually sign on to.
JH let’s highlight what’s already going on.
A talked in fairfield about closing off part of the road, make it walkable for the afternoon. get 50 cities from across the state to close off their downtowns. Police could make bike routes on the bigger streets. Rain plan is tricky.
IS close off chapel street!
EF if it rains, everyone goes into the stores.
NB make new haven a SLOW CITY for the day. make a huge celebration out of it. Would love to see a mayoral debate on that day. what IS your stance on 34?
CS Melinda mentioned MTR. Riding walking down the new haven green for 36 hours straight.
JH SLOW CITY is really attractive. our messaging could be subtle.
MB get the business people in the city involved. If someone comes in with their bike helmet, get a discount.
NB we could get behind the scenes encouragement from the New Haven chamber of commerce. could we get onboard with them? would they differentiate themselves? NH is one of the oldest chambers in the country.

MT ECC has had a tough time getting nh chamber involved.
NB present it in terms of job creation.

CS what about a car free friday? like meatless mondays. get mayor behind it.

JH like victory gardens. what if we could get mayors across the state to call for a carbon free saturday.
MT us conf of mayors came out against both wars
PB carpooling. have businesses encourage carpooling. incentives. leave on friday early. if you spend x number of days carpooling, companies do something to reward employees.

Question: What could we do tangibly/physically?
CS do bike tours like ECC does. Do tours of EJ areas. Good stuff going on.
JH do a tour of the new haven green map.
MB do something like a walk-a-thon, bike-a-thon. do it leading up so we have some funds.
JH (funds available)
MB we’ve got to engage students in schools.
sound school, barnard, common ground
EF solar youth and common ground sponsored rock to rock.
talk to joel.
JH what if we leverage rock to rock — make this like rock to rock II.
NB keeps coming back to crafting invitation. how do you get organizations to call their people out. How do we get a push from CWA to say “this is THE event to come out to this year.”
MB likes healthy competition. bike-a-thon. have prizes. whoever gets the most people out.
NB like rock to rock. or polar plunge. some sort of competition.
JH auctions, competition, music,
NB important to get name out. play into people’s response habits. get them to pay attention.

Question: What would that look like?
C get local bike shops involved? Have them promote it. Raise some money?
EF how long would it take to bike across CT?
JH what if we had a bike ride form westport to springfield? have events along the way? slow towns in every city
C do a series of loops. that way people end up back in their own town.
C what’s the outcome we’re trying to achieve?

JH setting up concrete goals is important. get mayors to sign up. or get 100 new people on bikes?
NB what do we do with this afterwards?
NB bring attention to green businesses along the canal trail. Important to have something to point to — this event did X. That’s great!
C find how much carbon is being emitted in each community you’re riding through. Do a comparison with bikes? Or reduced cars?
NB combine it with a commercial day/event. coupon for percent off
C bike shops might do a discount.
NB social web CT behind carrot
JH carrot mob

Coming back from small groups, here’s what we discussed:
PB talked about slow city idea — what would that actually look like? milford has oyster festival. close down whole downtown area. could we do that on 9/24.
PB how could a city be SLOW? milford has a tree society? do a tree tour. do historical tours.
A do walking and biking tour leaving from each neighborhood – bikers could end up in closed off section of downtown.
NB just had an image of a quilt or a puzzle — nobody knows what the puzzle looks like until everyone gets there.
BW promotional opportunities. Green Expo. Tour des farms is 8/20. Green expo leads up.
JH how cool would it be to have 50 cities doing SLOW cities? to have everyone talking about this? MAIN STREAM.

NB put down bike sharrows.
C measuring carbon from motorized vehicles during high traffic times. contrast with our biking.
TH could also include public transportation
PB possible outcomes: make it easier for businesses to have their people working from home. make it easier for some amount of people to work from home.
A do we have to be insured? if our groups sponsor an event, how does insurance work? (great question!)

BW we should think about how individuals can reduce their emissions. Come up with a list of all things we could do to reduce emissions.

Everyone agrees to send 5 favorites, and some outcomes they’d like to see from 9/24

BW everyone should send suggestions for orgs and organizers.

Dates for our next meeting:
not monday
wednesday is good.
weeknights are better than weekends.

Boston Moving Planet 1st meeting report.pdf

Leave a Comment