Announcing the Ecosocialist Conference, April 20, 2013 in New York City

from the Ecosocialist Contingent

April 12, 2013

The extreme weather of 2012 and recent news that climate change is worse than previously thought have made it a front-page issue again. The Obama campaign’s silence on the issue and worldwide government paralysis have added to activists’ frustration and fueled participation in’s historic February 17th demonstration and campus fossil fuel divestment campaigns. This has also opened the door to a more radical analysis of global warming and environmental destruction.

For a radicalizing and substantial fringe of people touched by the ideas of Occupy, an ongoing economic crisis and growing ecological crisis, they recognize that it’s not enough to limit your analysis to only fossil fuel corporations (though that’s a good start) or absolve politicians based on the lobbying power of those particular companies. And if that’s the case, then we need far bigger goals than just limiting their investment opportunities with college endowments (though again, it’s a good place to start). Ecosocialists must quickly offer a more holistic explanation that centers round the operation of capitalism and therefore helps to explain why Obama isn’t our ally and why we need an entirely different society.

Everything about the world is driving people toward a socialist critique of the ecological crisis and the need to form alliances with workers to take on the system, rather than Democrats and billionaires.

To that end, the Ecosocialist Contingent is hosting the Ecosocialist Conference on Saturday, April 20, 2013 in New York City. We are looking for groups who agree with the Ecosocialist Statement to endorse, build and participate. The conference, like the February 17th action, represents a move to a more collaborationist left. We hope this conference and this network of left groups and publications grow into something visible enough to attract thousands of new activists towards socialism and powerful enough to push the climate justice movement toward revolutionary conclusions.

For more information on the Ecosocialist Contingent, check out their website here.


The Ecosocialist Conference

Saturday, April 20th 2013

Barnard College (118th & Bway), New York City

Suggested donation: $5-20, no one turned away for lack of funds. Free childcare provided upon request. Please contact to reserve or for more info.

Registration opens at 9:30am. Opening plenary at 10am followed by three workshop sessions and a closing plenary from 6-7:30pm. Post-conference dinner and drinks (unfortunately not included) immediately afterward.


Download the 11″ x 17″ conference poster (PDF)

Conference Schedule and Speakers

9:30 – 10am: REGISTRATION


10 – 11:30am: OPENING PLENARY

Why Capitalism Is Killing the Planet

Jill Stein, 2012 Green Party presidential candidate

Richard Smith, author and independent socialist


11:30am – 1pm: WORKSHOP SESSION 1

1) Agriculture and food: sustainable or profitable?

  • Fred Magdoff, Monthly Review, author
  • Brian Tokar, Institute for Social Ecology, author and activist
  • Nancy Romer, Coordinator, Brooklyn Food Coalition
  • Dianne Rocheleau, agroecologist/geographer and author

2) Fossil Fuel Divestment: Student Power in the Climate Justice Movement

  • Joe Shortsleeve, Barnard Columbia Divest
  • Hannah Forrester, ISO Columbia, Barnard Columbia Divest
  • Belinda Rodriguez, NYU Divest,

3) Free of Tar Sands and Fracking

  • Cecile Lawrence, Green Party of New York State, social justice activist, author
  • John Riddell, author, Canadian anti-tar-sands activist
  • awaiting confirmation from additional speakers


1 – 2:30pm: LUNCH


2:30 – 4pm: WORKSHOP SESSION 2

1) The Fight for Indigenous Rights

  • Brian Ward, ISO DC
  • awaiting confirmation from additional speakers

2) Race, Gender and Environment Justice

  • Heather Kangas, ISO Baltimore
  • awaiting confirmation from additional speakers

3) Lessons from Super-storm Sandy

  • Peter Rugh, journalist, environmental activist
  • Nastaran Mohit, immigrant rights activist and Occupy Sandy Health Outreach coordinator
  • awaiting confirmation from additional speakers


4:15 – 5:45pm: WORKSHOP SESSION 2

1) Natural Allies: The Labor & Climate Justice Movements

  • Jeremy Brecher environmental labor activist
  • Sean Sweeney, labor activist

2) Carbon Taxes and Market Approaches: Can Capitalism Be Sustainable?

  • Daniel Piper, Socialist Action
  • Howie Hawkins, Solidarity, the Green Party of New York State

3) Both Red and Green: A History of the Green Left

  • Richard Greeman, ecosocialist author, teacher and activist
  • Josh, Deep Green Resistance NYC



What is EcoSocialism and How Do We Get There?

  • Chris Williams, ISO NYC, author of Ecology and Socialism
  • awaiting confirmation from additional speakers


8pm – ??: Dinner and drinks to follow, location TBA

Please check back soon for updates.

To endorse and participate in conference planning, contact

Supporting Organizations



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