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Newsletter – Dec 18, 2014

 

 

New 350 Massachusetts  Statewide Campaigns Chosen and Fight to Stop KXL Heats Up  

Table of Contents

Climate Action Open House, ‘Cowspiracy’ screening – Dec 19

Polar Bear Debates Banker at Lively Northampton Keystone XL Rally

Keystone XL Nonviolent Direct Action Training – Jan 3

350.org Planning Next Steps to Defeat KXL

Join our working groups to fight new fossil fuel infrastructure 

350 Massachusetts Members Choose Three State Wide Campaigns for 2015 and Beyond!

New York State Bans Fracking of Gas

New Gas Pipelines = Lower Electricity Costs? It’s Not That Simple

 Climate Justice Coalition Gears Up in Springfield  

Grief, Resistance and Joy

Solidarity moment

Article of the Week

Get Connected with 350MA

Climate Action To-Do List


This Friday: Join Us for Our First Climate Action Open House

An open, just and sustainable world begins at home.

On Friday, December 19, Tim Holcomb opens his house at 59 Grantwood Drive, Amherst, to share a vegetarian potluck dinner, exchange ideas and learning and view the new documentary film: 

COWSPIRACY- THE SUSTAINABILITY SECRET is a groundbreaking feature-length environmental documentary following intrepid filmmaker Kip Andersen as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it.

Animal agriculture is the leading cause of deforestation, water consumption and pollution, is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the transportation industry, and is a primary driver of rainforest destruction, species extinction, habitat loss, topsoil erosion, ocean “dead zones,” and virtually every other environmental ill. Yet it goes on, almost entirely unchallenged.

 

For more info contact Tim Holcomb at timholcomb55@gmail.com413-530-3233 


Successful Rally in Northampton to Stop the Keystone XL Pipeline!

On Saturday, December 13, Climate Action NOW! held an Emergency Rally to Stop the Keystone XL in downtown Northampton. Co-sponsored by ten other groups, the action drew about 75 people to the corner of Main and King Streets where pots were banged, chants were chanted, songs were sung and a polar bear debated a corrupt banker about the benefits and harms of the pipeline which, if built, would carry tar sands oil from Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico for refining and export. Read the rest of Marty Nathan’s great synopsis here.

And check out the Hampshire Gazette article here.

Photos Rene Theberge copyright 2014


We need your help to stop the Keystone XL Pipeline. Please join us on Saturday, January 3rd!

That is the day we will gather to prepare for our Keystone Pipeline Non-Violent Direct Action (NVDA). We’ll do the Action in Springfield at the TD Bank sometime between mid-January and March. It will be timed so it happens the same day 97,000 others take action – as part of the national Keystone Pledge of Resistance.

WHO SHOULD COME: Everyone who wants to participate in the Action,either by blocking TD Bank or supporting those who do.  LOCATION: Springfield. We’re working to get the site now.

HOW TO GET UPDATES: We’ve created a Google Group so that we can easily update the list of interested people. We’ll be using this Group to send updates on local actions tied to the national Keystone Pledge of Resistance. If you’d like to be on the Google Group, please email Dave Roitman at droitman1@verizon.net. (Please note, that’s droitman1, not droitman.) Also let Dave know if you can help make phone calls to connect with other folks who want to participate. PS: We’ll also have a Facebook page soon. Read some of the background info for this action here.

350.org Planning Next Steps to Defeat KXL

Be on the lookout for a plan from 350.org on next steps in the struggle to defeat KXL! Climate Action NOW! members will be part of a national video chat hosted by 350.org to be held tonight, Dec. 18th at 8 PM Eastern time.

To join the chat, just go here when the time comes and press play 350.org/kxlplan


350 Massachusetts Members Choose Three State Wide Campaigns for 2015 and Beyond!

Collaborating across the state enhances our power and helps us build solidarity. It is a powerful way to get our voices heard. After many weeks of work, and lots of input from 350 Mass members across the state the results are finally here!

Our 2015 campaigns are:

1) Towards a Fossil Fuel Free and Renewable Massachusetts: No New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure

We will work to oppose new fossil fuel infrastructure, especially the Kinder Morgan pipeline, the Salem gas plant, the Spectra pipeline expansion, and Access Northeast. In addition, we will promote renewables, energy efficiency, conservation, and fixing of gas leaks as ways to reduce or eliminate the need for fossil fuel-based energy.

2) Divestment from Fossil Fuels:

 We will work to divest the Massachusetts pension fund from fossil fuels.

3) Carbon Tax: 

We will work to pass a carbon tax in Massachusetts.

Thanks to all of you for the time and care you put into this democratic campaign selection process! For more information about each campaign, or to get involved please contact Susan Theberge at susantheberge@comcast.net


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Are you interested in joining in one of our two working groups to fight the Kinder Morgan Fracked Gas Pipeline? 

We need boots on the ground to make sure KM never gets to break ground.

Towards a Fossil Fuel Free and Renewable Massachusetts: No New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure

Help to oppose new fossil fuel infrastructure, especially the Kinder Morgan pipeline In addition, we will promote renewables, energy efficiency, conservation, and fixing of gas leaks as ways to reduce or eliminate the need for fossil fuel-based energy. To join the local contingent of this statewide campaign please contact Irvine Sobelman – mirvinea@gmail.com and/or Jenny Daniell at jennyadaniell@gmail.com 

Working group to get an Amherst Town Meeting Resolution against the pipline:

Pitch in to help get a resolution passed in Amherst. Contact Rudy Perkins if you can lend a hand. 

Have you heard the amazing news about New York State banning the fracking of gas?   Although we may grow weary and discouraged at times we know how high the stakes are and it is always great to be reminded of the power of large grassroots movements of people who unite across differences to fight together for common goals. Read this article and rejoice!  

Cuomo to Ban Fracking in New York State, Citing Health Risks

NY Times
Dec 17, 2014

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s administration announced on Wednesday that it would ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State because of concerns over health risks, ending years of uncertainty over the controversial method of natural gas extraction.

State officials concluded that fracking, as the method is known, could contaminate the air and water and pose inestimable dangers to public health. Read more here.

Also check out this article from Better Future Project’s Director Craig Altemose about the price of gas: Huffington Post 

Dec 11, 2014  New Gas Pipelines = Lower Electricity Costs? It’s Not That Simple

The nation’s biggest fossil fuel giants want to you to believe that they can help. Kinder Morgan, one of the country’s biggest oil and gas companies, has proposed a brand-new pipeline to bring gas from upstate New York. Spectra Energy, another massive fossil fuel conglomerate, is hoping to expand an existing gas pipeline that runs from New Jersey to Massachusetts.

But the simple equation offered by fossil fuel companies – more gas pipelines equals lower electricity prices – is sleight of hand, not sound policy. The proposed pipelines will not be ready until 2018 at the earliest (see here and here), so they will not have any impact on this winter’s electricity bills (or next winter’s, or the following winter’s). And new gas pipelines simply do not make sense as a long-term answer to our energy woes. Read the rest here.


Springfield Climate Justice Coalition Gearing Up Campaign for Climate Action Plan for Springfield: Request for assistance

The Springfield Climate Justice Coalition is actively seeking people from throughout Western Massachusetts to help with important tasks including information gathering, creating educational materials and media work. If you live or work in Springfield we need your help with outreach. Please contact susantheberge@comcast.net if you have questions and/or can volunteer some time.

 

 

Grief, resistance, and joy

Margaret Bullit-Jonas
Dec 15, 2014

‘…On a Wednesday night in the city of Springfield, Massachusetts, a diverse group of concerned citizens – Hispanic and white, wealthy and low-income – meets to strategize how best to implement and fund a climate action plan for the city. The leaders of this effort – Arise for Social Justice, the North End Organizing Network and Climate Action NOW – have organized the Springfield Climate Justice Coalition. Back in October we held a march through the city’s streets, gathered 200 people for a rally on the steps of City Hall, and rejoiced when the City Council unanimously passed a resolution to adopt a Climate Justice Plan for the city and to establish a staff position to carry it out. Now comes the hard work of building a grassroots base to ensure that the mayor, Dominic J. Sarno, implements the resolution. Over pizza and oranges we exchange ideas, jot notes on newsprint, and start to divvy up tasks.’ Read more here.


Solidarity Moment

Activists occupying Senator Sheldon Whitehouse’s office

Folks in Rhode Island and DC were occupying the offices of Senator Sheldon Whitehouse on Tuesday to ask him drops his support of Spectra’s fracked-gas pipeline expansion. At 7pm, a group of 15 police officers cleared the office.

Senator Whitehouse, a supposed “climate champion”, supports the biggest fossil fuel project in his home state, Spectra’s fracked-gas pipeline expansion. He even wrote a letter to FERC asking them to expedite review of the project. Real climate champions don’t support fracked-gas pipelines – they fight to stop them.

 
Check out the FANG Facebook page and ‘like’ them! They also have a pledge to #StopSpectra and an Action Fund.
 

Article of the Week

Good News About Global Warming?

Robert Meeropol
Dec. 12, 2014

Until last week the consensus among climate scientists was that it takes about 30 years for the full climatic warming of carbon emissions to take effect. That meant that today we are only experiencing the total impact of carbon emissions generated before 1985 and additional warming will continue until 2044 no matter what we do. Turns out that the 30-year delay was based on scientists’ informed guesswork rather than quantitative studies.

NPR reported last week that “[f]or the first time” a study by two scientists at the Carnegie Institution for Science “evaluated how long it takes to feel the maximum warming effect caused by a single carbon emission.” The study indicated that it only takes 10, not 30 years. Read the rest here.


Get Connected!

Just can’t get enough climate news and events? Climate Action Now is part of a wonderful statewide organization, 350 Massachusetts, that puts out a fantastic weekly newsletter of their own. The newsletter covers all sorts of great campaigns from all over the state. Click here to sign up!


This week’s Climate Action To-Do List

 Join one of our working groups

– Keystone Pledge of Resistance (email Dave Roitman at droitman1@verizon.net)

-Towards a Fossil Fuel Free and Renewable Massachusetts: No New Fossil Fuel Infrastructure (email Irvine Sobelman mirvinea@gmail.com and/or Jenny Daniell jennyadaniell@gmail.com)

– Springfield Climate Justice Group (email Susan Theberge susantheberge@comcast.net) 

– Divestment (email adele.franks@gmail.com)

– Amherst Pipeline Resolution (email rudyperkins@yahoo.com)

Enjoy the beauty of this season with friends, family and nature.  We will not be publishing our newsletter on Thursday, December 25th and we will not be holding our regularly scheduled fourth Monday of the month meeting in December.  We will return refreshed and ready to for a new year of action, learning, solidarity and grassroots engagement in our fight for a liveable world. Heartfelt thanks to all of you for the many ways in which you each contribute to this life affirming movement.


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Climate Action Now is a local, volunteer, grassroots Western Massachusetts organization, and also functions as the regional node of the statewide organization 350 Massachusetts.