July Featured Climate Actions

This is the fourth of a continuing series of monthly “Climate Actions of the Month”, brought to you by the USNF Climate Action Group (CAG). It is a way to provide focus and build a spirit of collective action as we each do what we can to tackle climate change. Each monthly bundle of actions touches on 4 levels: personal, community, state/national/global, and educational. Our website will be coming soon and will offer resources to support the monthly actions. To learn more about the CAG contact Molly Hale at hellomolly@comcast.net or 585-0791.


1. Personal: If you own a house or business in Northampton, check out the website solarizenorthampton.com and sign up for a personal home or business evaluation with Real Goods Solar. The deadline to sign up is Sept. 30. If you have thought that you can’t afford solar, you may be surprised. Typical payback for owning your own system takes only 5 years, but the solar panels keep generating electricity for at least 25-30 years.

If you live outside of Northampton, contact an independent local solar installer about getting a PV system. Currently available rebates and low prices on the hardware make this a really good time to get PV, whether through Solarize or another program.

And if you haven’t already done so, contact the Center for Ecological Technology for a free Mass Energy audit: laura.biddulph@cetonline.org This is a requirement prior to installation of a solar system through Solarize Northampton.

 

2. Community: Volunteer to help Solarize Northampton by tabling or hosting an informational house party for neighbors. Contact solarizenorthampton@gmail.com to help.

 

3. State/National/Global: Participate in the“Summer Heat” mass mobilization of non-violent direct action organized by 350.org and taking place at sites across the country. Our region’s action will be in Somerset, MA to shut down the Brayton Point Coal Plant, the largest fossil fuel plant between Maryland and Maine. The action takes place on Sunday July 28, with training on July 27. Learn more and sign up at http://joinsummerheat.org/

 

4. Inform yourself: The Summer 2013 issue of UU World magazinehas 3 articles related to climate change. Links to these articles are below. Read them and initiate conversations with others in our congregation.

 

“Adaptation and Defiance” http://www.uuworld.org/ideas/articles/285901.shtml

“Fossil Fuel Divestment is Moral, Strategic” http://www.uuworld.org/ideas/articles/285524.shtml

“Fossil Fuel Divestment is Not the Answer” http://www.uuworld.org/ideas/articles/285525.shtml

 

Fracking and Public Health

“Fracking doesn’t sound like something the earth, or any community, or any language would wish upon itself. What is it exactly? Fracking is a technique that involves the injection of enormous volumes of water and chemicals underground at very high pressure in order to create fractures in underlying shale rock formations in order to extract the natural gas below the surface. Fracking is rapidly expanding all across the U.S. and Canada. It is touted by big corporations as a practical solution to energy needs. Citizen groups oppose fracking because of its huge water use, its high carbon emissions, its impacts on human health, the disruption it causes to wildlife, and the peril it poses to groundwater and local drinking water. They are insisting that people’s health and the environment are non-negotiable. And, that this widespread and dangerous practice of fracking be stopped.”

Check out Sandra on Alternative Radio recorded March 4, 2013: http://www.alternativeradio.org/products/stes001

Sandra Steingraber is a biologist, writer and environmental health expert. She is from a distinguished line of women ecologists such as Rachel Carson and Lois Gibbs, who have alerted lawmakers and the public to the real cost of toxic trespassing. She is the author of Living Downstream: An Ecologist Looks at Cancer and the Environment. She is a leading voice opposing fracking.

 

 

 

 

June Featured Climate Actions

This is the third of a continuing series of monthly “Climate Actions of the Month”, brought to you by the USNF Climate Action Group (CAG). It is a way to provide focus and build a spirit of collective action as we each do what we can to tackle climate change. Each monthly bundle of actions touches on 4 levels: personal, community, state/national/global, and educational. Our website will be coming soon and will offer resources to support the monthly actions. To learn more about the CAG contact Molly Hale at hellomolly@comcast.net or 585-0791.

 

1. Personal: If you have a vegetable garden, focus on keeping it mulched, watered, and tended consistently this season. If you don’t, try growing vegetables in containers such as 5 gallon buckets. Here’s one website with details on how to do this: http://containergardening.about.com/od/vegetablesandherbs/tp/5-Tips-For-Growing-Tomatoes-In-Containers.htm

2. Community: Plant fruit trees with other neighbors. Many fruit trees require more than one plant in order to pollinate. Why not plan with your neighbors to coordinate planting trees that will pollinate with each other? Local garden centers can advise on the best varieties for our region and how to get started.

3. State/National/Global: Support Ed Markey for U.S. senator. Mark your calendar to vote in the Special Election on June 25. Markey is a far better candidate in terms of climate change, by supporting the Kyoto protocol, voting against the Keystone Pipeline and leading the congressional investigation into the BP oil spill. To volunteer or contribute to his campaign, visit http://www.edmarkey.com/. His opponent, Gomez, supports the Keystone pipeline and on his official website seems to favor business over meaningful climate actions.

4. Inform yourself: Plan a movie night with friends or neighbors to watch a documentary about climate change. It’s important to keep reminding ourselves of why dealing with climate change is so urgent. Some possibilities are Six Degrees Could Change the World by National Geographic and available from our local library system, Do the Math by 350.org, available on YouTube, and Chasing Ice, available from Netflix.

 

 

May Featured Climate Actions

This is the second of a continuing series of monthly “Climate Actions of the Month”, brought to you by the USNF Climate Action Group (CAG). It is a way to provide encouragement and build a spirit of collective effectiveness as we each do what we can to tackle climate change. Each monthly bundle of actions touches on 4 levels: personal, community, state/national/global, and educational. Our website will be coming soon and will offer resources to support the monthly actions. To learn more about the CAG contact Molly Hale at hellomolly@comcast.net or 585-0791.

 

1. Personal:Make a personal pledge tohang your laundry to dry whenever possible. On average 5.8% of U.S. residential energy use is from using clothes dryers. Laundry lines, umbrella-style outdoor drying racks, or wooden racks for indoors or outdoors are some of the many options, all available at your favorite local hardware store. A great source of info and support including FAQs about wrinkles, stiff clothes and drying in winter is http://www.laundrylist.org

2. Community: Attend a meeting of a local climate action group. The USNF Climate Action Group meets after the 2nd service on 1st and 3rd Sundays: this month May 5 in the Sam Hill Room and May 19 in the Parlor. The local group Climate Action Now is meeting Sunday, May 19 at ARISE, 4pm-6pm, 467 State St, Springfield. Their website is http://dev.climateactionnowma.org/

3. State/National/Global: Donate money to a group actively campaigning against climate change. Some choices:

350.org http://350.org/about

National Resources Defense Council http://www.nrdc.org/globalwarming/

Friends of the Earth http://www.foe.org/

The Sierra Club http://www.sierraclub.org/

Greenpeace http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/

4. Inform yourself: The July 2, 2012 issue of Rolling Stone magazine contains a pivotal article by Bill McKibben titled, “Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math”. In it he clearly lays out the argument of why much of the fossil fuel resources now considered available by fossil fuel companies must stay in the ground if we are to avoid a severely compromised future climate. The article is also online at http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/global-warmings-terrifying-new-math-20120719

 

 

 

Entering a Resource-Shock World

Michael Klare has published what should be a must read for everyone because everyone needs to know what is happening here.  What it is, is starting to be clear (sorry Buffalo Springfield):

Entering A Resource-Shock World

Michael Klare is a professor of peace and world security studies at Hampshire College

[quote]Michael Klare looks into the future with sharper eyes than almost anyone else around. Pay Attention![/quote]

Bill McKibben

Do the Math – The Movie

Not In My Back Yard

nimby

Can you image a leak like the one in Arkansas along the Connecticut River in Vermont?  Well, if Exxon/Mobile has it’s way, we could very well have such an event.  This is the same company that owns the leaking pipeline in Mayflower, Arkansas.

How about a no-fly zone over a spill or threatening to arrest reporters… check out:

14 Things You Need to Know About the Horrifying Arkansas Oil Spill

What You Can Do

can-protesters

Make your voice heard, start a conversation… you know so many people are aware of the impact of climate change now and are fed up with our do nothing government.  BUT, is our do nothing government doing what the 1% want them to do because the rest of us are silent?  Well, be idle no more, be part of the 99%, speak of for yourself and join in on the conversation.

We have more power together than we do alone, so come join us! All are welcome and the more diversity, the better.

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Democratic Candidates Debate

markey-lynch-debate

Election Day is only a couple of weeks away and we need to let the candidates for the Senate, Ed Markey and Stephen Lynch, both know that the Keystone XL Pipeline is not supported by the majority of voters.  This is an opportunity to voice our opinions against drone strikes, student debt, campaign spending and show positive support for democracy as it should be.  Outside groups are pouring money into this race and showing up to this debate is one way to counter act that travesty of democracy.

This is the special election to fill John Kerry’s seat and this debate to be held in Springfield at the Paramount Theater on April 18 at 7pm will be well attended.

Bring your signs, there will be plenty of press coverage and Climate Action Now MA will be there alone with our friends from many other activist groups in the valley as well as 350.org, 350ma.org and moveon.org.

 

Exxon/Mobil’s Portland to Montreal Pipeline and Arkansas

Exxon pipeline oil spill in Arkansas Image: Greenpeace

Old pipes fail and the Portland to Montreal pipeline crosses some of the most beautiful landscape nature has to offer.  Just image a spill like the one in Arkansas happening where the pipe crosses the Connecticut River… an important read from Scientific American:

Does Tar Sand Oil Increase the Risk of Pipeline Spills?

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