In Begles, France, near the city of Bordeaux, a new organization is taking root, and it involves strategic French climate policy, 350 bicycles, and a lot of delicious food.

Early on in the 350 project we received an email from Jean Sireyjol. He had just picked up one of Bill McKibben’s pieces in The Nation, an American magazine, and agreed with the scientific assessment of James Hansen and our work promoting it. His global warming work was also just developing, and a little bit of mutual reinforcement seemed fun and appropriate.

The organization is called TACA (in French – Taxe Au Carbone ajouté or TAxe CArbone), which, as it turns out in French, also phonetially means ‘you just have to.’ Their work has two legs – promoting the individual goal of living more sustainably, and promoting the societal goal of implementing a carbon tax in France to drive the investment we need in a new fossil fuel-free system. In March, when we first got in touch, TACA was in the throes of organization development – working on the website, doing the first announcements of their project, but they took the time to support our early efforts as well, gathering the founders of TACA for a very French artistic interpretation of 350 (note the wine).

And now, as they are preparing for their first large-scale event, we want to get the word out far and wide. On November 23 at noon, on the Plaine des Sports in Begles, TACA will celebrate food as only they can with a picnic, but it will be a picnic sans carbone! Taking carbon out of the equation, they’re encouraging people to walk or ride to the event any way they can. And in connection with the 350 campaign, the picnickers will take a photo with 350 bicycles on which they arrived.

A wonderful afternoon in the French countryside, and a powerful political statement about what we need to deal with climate change – all sans carbone. Bon chance, Jean and TACA, and we’ll look forward to the report after November 23!


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