Earth Day is Saturday, April 22, and communities around the globe will be gathering to participate in a March for Science.
On Maui, the University of Hawaii’s Student Ohana for Sustainability (SOS) club will be hosting the march, beginning at the UH Maui College campus at 9am, and following a route up and down Queen Ka`ahumanu Avenue.
“It is really exciting to have the opportunity to be apart of a nationwide movement, to take a stand for science,” said Alicia Rittenberry, President of the SOS Club and a Junior in the Sustainable Science Management, Bachelor of Applied Science program at UHMC.
The marches are a part of an initiative by the March for Science program (MarchforScience.com), which hopes to raise awareness about the diminishing support for the scientific community, and increasing attacks on scientific fact and science-based policies.
The March for Science website lists budget cuts, censorship of researchers, disappearing datasets, and threats to dismantle government agencies as some of the issues the community is facing today.
“The March for Science champions robustly funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. We unite as a diverse, nonpartisan group to call for science that upholds the common good and for political leaders and policymakers to enact evidence based policies in the public interest,” the March for Science website states.
The March for Science Maui expects over 500 attendees. Children are welcomed, and pets should be limited to service animals only. Those who wish to volunteer can sign up on the March for Science – Maui Facebook event page.
“To march on Maui gives us an opportunity to represent the amazing scientists that are conducting research, in Hawaii, as well as invite the public to show their support for how science serves the common good,” added Rittenberry. “We can all take a stand for science, and everyone is invited to participate.”
In addition to March for Science, the week following Earth Day, on April 29, another important global march will be taking place: The People’s Climate March, a initiative by 350.org.
During the week between these two marches, Maui Huliau Foundation, a local nonprofit dedicated to promoting environmental literacy and leadership among Maui’s youth, will be hosting film showings in partnership with Maui Climate Action Network (CAN). Some of the films will include Leonardo DiCaprio’s Before the Flood as well as Maui Huliau Foundation student films. More information on these events can be found at the maui Climate Action Network Facebook page.
For those who can’t attend, they are encouraged to use the hashtag #MauiClimateMarch on social media.
Photo courtesy March For Science Twitter page