Fancy a walk on the beach this weekend? Care about the environment? We’ve got just the thing for you.
The Sunshine Coast Environment Council (SCEC) in collaboration with Earth Hour Australia, GetUp and Avaaz, is organising a relay that will walk the length of the Sunshine Coast to call for urgent action on climate change.
The relay is being organised as part of a global day of climate action which will see millions of people around the world participate in thousands of events on Sunday 21 September.
Starting at sunrise the relay will walk from Sunshine Beach SLSC and finish at King Beach just after sunset. Due to the early start time and our timezone the event has been identified to be the first event in the world to commence on 21 September. More than 500,000 people are expected to attend the event.
SCEC executive officer Wiebe Ter Bals said the relay is an opportunity to show the rest of the world what a beautiful place the Sunshine Coast is and that residents are serious about protecting it from the impacts of climate change.
“We’re calling on everyone in the community to come and join us for one or more stages of the relay and show the world that we truly want to be Australia’s most sustainable region,” he says.
The relay will travel along the beach from Sunshine Beach and Kings Beach and the route has been divided into 35 stages of approximately 20 minutes each. The vast majority of stages take place on the beach with three stages travelling along coastal footpath and two stages requiring canoes (to cross the Maroochy and Mooloolah rivers).
“We had a call from the Earth Hour crew three weeks ago, asking us whether we could organise a rally on the coast,” says Ter Bals. “We felt that a rally was hardly an inspiring event so we did a bit of brainstorming to come up with an event that had a more Sunshine Coast feel to it.
“We figured that one of the things that makes this region great is our beaches. They are a defining natural feature of our region, and are the place where we spend time with our friends and family. They are also a key attractor bringing millions of visitors here each year. So walking along the beach seemed a much more appropriate thing to do, than organising a rally.
“And our beaches are likely to be the first area of our region to be impacted by climate change. The wind, waves and currents that have formed our beaches over thousands of years are all driven by climate and we are likely to see the impact of changes to beach formation and erosion processes well before we see significant sea level rise.”
More details about the climate change relay, including a complete schedule and maps of individual stages, are available online from www.scec.org.au/climate-change-realy .