Earthstock ‘97

Student activists from throughout the east coast
have organized a major environmental conference, “Earthstock
‘97,” that will be held in New Brunswick, New Jersey, on
April 4-6. An impressive roster of speakers and bands are expected,
including Sierra Club President Adam Werbach and Physicians For
Social Responsibility founder Helen Caldicott. The voice of the
“Wonder Years” television series, Daniel Stearn, will
also speak about the media and corporate responsibility.

“I am so glad to see the major student environmental
groups working together on an issue,” said Rick Taketa, who
is director of Free The Planet!, the organization behind the conference.
“Participants should get a lot out of the workshops and networking
sessions that we have planned.”

Over the last several months, the leaders of the
student chapter of New Jersey Public Interest Research Groups
(PIRG), the directors of Free The Planet!, and Sierra Student
Coalition, have dedicated hours and dollars to making this event
happen. Proceeds from the conference will benefit Free The Planet!,
whose goal is to link student activists around the United States
in a functional network.

“This could be the most important gathering
of our generation,” said Alexander Lee ‘97, the Middlebury
College student who developed the concept for Earthstock. “It
could be the Woodstock of the 1990s. The main goal is for everybody
to help build unity among high school and college students who
are interested in preserving the creation, and have fun at the
same time.”

Adam Werbach, the 24 year old president of the Sierra
Club, will greet the crowd and Rick Taketa will also deliver a
short speech.

The other speakers will focus on Free The Planet!’s
five central campaigns. Dr. Helen Caldicott, the 1996 recipient
of the Nobel Prize for Peace, will speak on the failures of nuclear
power and the importance of using and developing renewable sources
of energy. Ed Rush, of the Citizens’ Coalition Against Hazardous
Waste, will speak about dioxins and the other dangerous chemicals
penetrating our communities. Roger Featherstone, from Defenders
of Wildlife, will speak about the Endangered Species Act. Bill
McKibben, author of the best-selling The End of Nature, will speak
about saving public lands, global warming, and his more recent
book, Hope, Human and Wild. Daniel Stearn will lecture
on “Corporate Welfare.”

Music will include a set by Cosy Sheridan, winner
of the 1992 Telluride Folk Festival and a popular Vermont student
band called One Fell Swoop. There will be a multi-media presentation
by Lou Gold.

For more information about how to register, please
call Sage Rockermann or Kim Mowery at 401-861-6012 or send an
e-mail to