It's Time to Preheat the Oven for our First Fall Action

September 21, 2009

Get out your cameras, grab an apron, and start baking! 

The Real Food Challenge is teaming up with Slow Food to take part in's international day of action on October 24. is inviting people around the world to take action to curb climate change by submitting a photo petition to leaders before UN meetings in Copenhagen.  We're urging policymakers to recognize that levels of atmospheric carbon are dangerously high: life on Earth can be safely sustained at levels lower than 350 parts per million.  Right now, we're over 385.  We're telling leaders to set 350 ppm as the target for reducing atmospheric carbon.

The Real Food Challenge is participating in this historic day of action because curbing climate change requires international solidarity--we can't limit carbon emissions without a collective effort.  And we're highlighting that food is central to this: agriculture is a major contributor to climate change. 

To show support on your campus and demonstrate the link between climate change and agriculture, here's a suggested action that's fun AND edible:

Burnt to a Crisp: A Real Food, Slow Food, & Collaboration: Round Pies, Real Action and a Round Table.

Ever wonder why pies (or cakes, or cookies, or really most baked goods) are baked at 350 degrees instead of 450 degrees? Ever accidentally cook a pie at a temperature that's too hot? The Earth is going to be burnt to a crisp--just like a pie baked at 450 degrees--if we don't reduce the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 350ppm. 

Here's the deal:

  1. Bake. You and your student group will bake two pies (or another baked good).  You'll bake one at 350 degrees F and the other at a higher temperature (400 or 450).  We're focusing on the number 350 to show our support for policy limiting atmospheric carbon to 350ppm.
  2. Show off your baking.  Set up a table in your campus center.  Display your edible and burnt goods, and when students pass by to see what's up, tell them all about the 350 campaign and the connection between climate change and food.  Then, invite them to a follow-up round table discussion later that day or the next.  Don't forget to take pictures of your display! 
  3. Talk about it.  Invite students, professors, and community members to a round table discussion about agriculture and climate change.  There are numerous resources on the website to help with that discussion. (And there will be lots on RFC's too!)  Photograph your discussion.
  4. Submit your photos.  Send in your photos to's photo petition.  Get your message heard by policymakers around the world!
  5. Take action.  Don't stop there--funnel energy on your campus to stop global warming by fixing our broken food system.  Get a petition going to rally support behind real food on your campus.  Get students to contact administrators or policymakers.  Deliver a message to dining services demanding real food on campus.