A Dark and Dirty Iceberg

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The Dan River coal ash spill, while the third largest in U.S. history, represents just the tip of a dark and dirty iceberg.

National media coverage from the L.A. Times to the Washington Post to the Rachel Maddow Show has pointed out the all too cozy relationship between Duke Energy, NC DENR, and Governor Pat McCrory. A Federal investigation into possible criminal charges and continued reports of illegal discharges from coal ash dumps has been a reminder that Duke Energy has its priorities wrong. And now a major shareholder revolt from some of the largest investors is calling for a separate investigation into the spill and even a vote against the re-election of four directors because they “have failed to fulfill their obligations of risk oversight as members of a committee overseeing health, safety, and environmental compliance at the company”.

The Dan River coal ash spill has reminded us that Duke has too many outdated, dirty coal plants threatening our air, water and public health. It has brought to greater public light the fact that decades of illegal coal ash pollution has taken a toll on all of us and our rivers, lakes and streams. It has brought together diverse groups of citizens pointing out that low-income communities have paid too high a price for Duke Energy’s coal ash waste, paying with contaminated drinking water and pollution.

For shareholders, customers and North Carolina residents, the next steps are clear. Duke must clean up toxic coal ash everywhere. Without real action, Duke’s legacy in NC will be covered in coal ash. Duke must set a clear plan to phase out more of its coal-fired power plants across the state, starting with the Asheville plant. Duke must support, not crush solar power – that means recognizing the value of solar and supporting small solar businesses in NC.
Customers should not be forced to foot the bill for Duke Energy’s coal ash problem. The company and its shareholders should have to pay the cost for decades of illegal pollution. All North Carolinians deserve real action from Duke Energy that doesn’t move the problem from one place to another. The best way to deal with coal ash long term is to phase out coal in North Carolina and lead the South with clean energy solutions.

It’s time to remind Duke Energy and the company’s shareholders that the nation’s largest utility company has failed us. It’s time to let our local and state elected officials, NC DENR, and the NC Utilities Commission know that we want to move beyond coal in North Carolina and shift boldly to solar power, wind energy and the full suite of clean energy solutions that create jobs while protecting our people, our health and our environment.

That’s why we need your voice and presence to be heard. Between now and the start of the 2014 Legislative Short Session, May14, we need in-district meetings with state elected officials calling for strong coal ash regulations. On April 30th we need you and clergy from across the state to come to Charlotte on the eve of the Duke Energy shareholder meeting in a Light the Path Forward gathering, a candlelight vigil to remember the impacts of coal ash. And we need your signs and voices to be heard at the May 1st Duke Shareholder meeting rally and press conference where hundreds of concerned citizens from across the Duke service area will gather.

North Carolina needs an energy company we can be proud of and shareholders need a company they can be proud of. Right now, Duke Energy fails on both counts. Join us as we work to move beyond coal in North Carolina and shift boldly to solar power, wind energy and the full suite of clean energy solutions that create jobs while protecting our people, our health and our environment.

Make plans to join us and invite your friends, neighbors, and clergy.

Light the path forward: Candlelight vigil to remember the impacts of coal ash
Wednesday, April 30th, the eve of the Duke Energy annual shareholder meeting
7:30 to 8:30 PM
New Duke Energy Headquarters, 550 South Tryon St, Charlotte, NC
Facebook Event: Light the path forward
Clergy, Lay Leaders, and People of Faith – A Call to “Light the Path Forward”

Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting Rally and Press Conference
Thursday, May 1st
8:30 AM arrive and set up for 9:00 AM rally and press conference
Former Duke Energy headquarters, 526 South Church St, Charlotte, NC (location of shareholder meeting)
Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting – April 30 Candlelight Vigil, May 1 Rally

 

This Earth Day, go solar and save!

NC First in Solar Barn

This Earth Day, celebrate solar!

Join Solarize Charlotte!

Join Solarize Charlotte and get a free solar analysis for your home. 

44 years ago, millions of people across the US stood up to corporate polluters and apathetic leaders by organizing their communities to protect the environment — the first-ever Earth Day.

Today Earth Day continues to remind us that the solutions to environmental problems aren’t always in the hands of lawmakers. Environmental solutions can be in our cities, our neighborhoods, and our own homes.

That’s why we are so excited to tell you about Solarize Charlotte — a new grassroots program that will bring clean, renewable solar energy to homes in Mecklenburg, Union, Cabarrus, and Gaston Counties.

Right now Solarize Charlotte is offering a free solar analysis to residents in the Charlotte area interested in installing solar panels on their homes.

Sign up for a free solar analysis with Solarize Charlotte now to learn how to power your home with the sun! Celebrate this Earth Day by bringing solar energy to your home.

Switching to solar power is a big, bold move. And Solarize Charlotte was started by a coalition of over 20 organizations — including Greenpeace and the Sierra Club — to make it as simple and affordable as possible.

The program connects homeowners with a lower-cost local North Carolina solar installer — simplifying the financing and installation process. It also uses group discounts and tax incentives to make rooftop solar even more affordable for anyone who wants to reduce their electricity bill and carbon footprint at the same time.

Solarize programs have already boosted solar energy usage and cut electricity bills in other North Carolina cities, including Durham, Asheville, and Carrboro. Now it’s time for Charlotte to shine.

Take a step towards a clean energy future in your own home by signing up for Solarize Charlotte today and receive a free solar analysis!

Earth Day reminds us that we still have plenty to do to protect our planet — including switching from dirty energy to clean, renewable energy sources.

And Solarize Charlotte is a big step in the right direction. Solar is good for everyone. So let’s get going and solarize!

Happy Earth Day,

Monica Embrey, Greenpeace Charlotte Field Organizer

Bill Gupton, Sierra Club Field Organizer

David Robinson, Group Chair, Sierra Club Central Piedmont Group

PS. Aren’t able to join Solarize right now, but still want to help Charlotte go solar? Spread the word by liking Solarize Charlotte on Facebook and forwarding this email to family and friends!

Become a Solarize Charlotte Champion – April 24th Training

Solarize Charlotte Single

I would like to invite Sierra Club members and supporters to a training next Thursday, April 24th from 6:30-8:00pm in the Greenpeace office (E 15th St and N Davidson). Our focus in the training will be preparing Solarize Charlotte Champions to do presentations and tabling for groups and events. You do not have to expert skills or knowledge about solar energy , just a passion for growing solar energy in Charlotte! We’ll make sure that you have the facts and skills that you need.

If you have connections to neighborhood associations, religious, social, or community groups, then I’d encourage you to start reaching out to them about hosting a short presentation for Solarize Charlotte during their regular meeting times for May, June, or July.

I am honored to be working with such a dedicated and passionate group of people to increase access to solar power in North Carolina.

For Solar,

Hanna Mitchell

Solar Project Assistant

PS. Our Solarize Charlotte website is LIVE at www.cleanerischeaper.com

 

NC Sierra Club Footnotes Online – April 2014

North Carolina Chapter Sierra Club

Dear Friends,

Celebration logo.JPG

As Earth Day approaches, we encourage you to celebrate North Carolina’s natural treasures by visiting one our state’s protected wilderness areas.  You don’t hear about it every day, but North Carolina has no less than twelve wilderness areas protecting 111,419 acres,  as well as five wilderness study areas that conserve an additional 25,816 acres.

It took many years and the hard work of countless volunteers to secure wilderness designation for these efforts.  Thanks to their efforts, in 2014, we can now celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act of 1964 and the North Carolina WIlderness Act of 1984!

Please enjoy this edition of Footnotes that focuses on wilderness.  We hope it does justice to the history and provides inspiration for you to get outdoors and explore, enjoy, and protect these wild places! As John Muir once said, “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”

And there’s more than just wilderness covered below, so read on for information about coal ash events, a television series focusing on climate change, outings galore, and more!

Cheers,

Your staff at the NC Sierra Club

 

Celebrate Wilderness In NC!

As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act of 1964 and the 30th anniversary of the North Carolina Wilderness Act of 1984, the Wilderness Committee invites you to participate in the upcoming special Anniversary Year Wilderness events.

  • Save the DateJune 12, 5:30 – 8:00 pm – NC Wilderness Act 30th Anniversary Celebration – Raleigh, NC – Tickets available soon via OurWildNC.org.
  • Explore Our Wild NC Challenge – Participants who visit all 12 wilderness areas and 5 wilderness study areas in the state will receive a checklist of all of the areas and a ‘Wilderness Explorer’ patch as they begin the challenge. Click here for details.
  • Featured Wilderness Outing: Hawksbill and Table Rock Day Hike in the Linville Gorge Wilderness – Saturday, May 3 -  With pristine views of  Linville Gorge, Table Rock, Shortoff Mt. and Lake James, this is a hike worth joining.  Only a few spots are left.  Sign up today!

 

Volunteers Connecting Kids to Wilderness

In an age when children seem tethered to electronic devices and screens, the Chapter’s Wilderness Committee is hoping to put something young people’s hands, a bandana.  The committee received a grant to produce up to 600 bandannas to distribute to children across the state.  If you are wondering how a bandanna can help connect children to wilderness, well, then you likely haven’t seen the design yet.

Wilderness bandana project small.jpg

 

Designed by Avery Locklear, a volunteer from the Foothills group, and Jody Cedzidlo of Pittsboro, the bandanna’s creators hope to educate children about how our state’s wilderness came to be protected and encourage then to explore nature.

Volunteers worked together last Sunday to screen print the first round of bandannas that will be given away at the Celebration of the MIlitary Child Outdoors near Camp Onslow Beach on April 26.  Special thanks to Nancy Card, Kelly Mieszkalski, Pat Carstensen, Chris Bard, Miriam Chicurel-Bayard and Dustin Chicurel-Bayard for screen-printing the first run of this limited edition product.

Click here for more pictures of the mess made and the fun had during the screen-printing session.

 

Linville Gorge Wilderness

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the North Carolina Wilderness Act, each month we will highlight a wilderness area or a piece of history about how these areas became protected.  This month, we celebrate the Linville Gorge Wilderness.

Linville Gorge was first recognized as a “wild area” in 1951 by the Chief of the U.S. Forest Service.  John D. Rockefeller funded its early protection, then the area was officially designated as wilderness by the US Wilderness Act of 1964. The NC Wilderness Act of 1984 added 3,400 acres, bringing the total to 11,786 acres today. The gorge, which is often called the “Grand Canyon of North Carolina” is located in Burke County, about 14 miles northwest of Morganton, NC. It was named in honor of the early explorer, William Linville, who along with his son, John, was scalped by Cherokee Indians in 1766; but many of the area’s attributes are named from Cherokee legends too.

The wilderness boasts more than 20 hiking trails, 2,800 acres of roadless area, and, because the steep terrain prohibited clearcutting, acres of virgin forests can be still be enjoyed. Elevations range from 1,300 feet at the river to 4,120 atop Gingercake Mountain. Other outstanding features include Wiseman’s View, Table Rock and Hawksbill Mountain.

Linville Gorge Wilderness is a favorite area for backpackers and rock climbers.  Fishermen come hoping to hook brown, brook or rainbow trout from the Linville River rushing along the toe of the gorge.  The area is also popular to wildlife including black bear, timber rattlers and peregrine falcons.

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And in case you missed it, Linville Gorge Wilderness is the host of this month’s featured wilderness outing on May 3!  Click here to claim one of the few remaining spots!

If you want to plan your own trip to Linville Gorge, here’s a link to the forest service page on the wilderness area.  You can also click here for a map that will help you explore the Gorge!

 

Coal Ash & You

We wish we could take all of April to celebrating wilderness areas, but our other important work continues!.  Surely you haven’t forgotten that nearly 40,000 tons of toxic coal ash burst into the Dan River this February.  The Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal team is making sure that Duke stockholders haven’t forgotten either.

There are two events coming up where you can participate and show your desire to have the Dan River, and all of the toxic coal ash pits in our state cleaned up!  The events are listed below, but these aren’t the only chances you will have to speak up on the matter.  When the legislature reconvenes next month, your legislators need to hear from you.

Email our lead organizer, Zak Keith, at zachary.keith@sierraclub.org if you want to be a part of the Volunteer Lobby Corp that will work to push our legislators to act on cleaning up these toxic coal pits all across our state.

Then, join us to hold Duke Energy accountable!

 

April 30 – 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. – Candlelight Vigil to Remember the Impacts of Coal Ash – Charlotte, NC

Clergy from across the state to come to Charlotte on the eve of the Duke Energy shareholder meeting in a Light the Path Forward gathering, a candlelight vigil to remember the impacts of coal ash. Click here to RSVP on Facebook!

Location: New Duke Energy Headquarters, 550 South Tryon St., Charlotte, NC (map)

May 19:00 a.m. – Rally at Duke Energy Shareholders Meeting – Charlotte, NC

As shareholders of the country’s largest utility gather in Charlotte, concerned citizens with rally outside, demonstrating the public’s desire to move away from dirty energy and to embrace existing clean energy solutions.

Location: Old Duke Energy Headquarters, 526 S. Church St., Charlotte, NC (map)

Living Dangerously

Highland Viewing party.jpg

Hundreds gather at Highland Brewery in Asheville for the premiere of the Years of Living Dangerously.

On Sunday, April 13, the Asheville Beyond Coal campaign rolled out the green carpet and welcomed around 300 activists, artists, local elected officials, business owners and clergy to watch the first episode of Years of Living Dangerously, Showtime’s new documentary on climate change.

Several local elected officials also made an appearance, including State Representative Joe Sam Queen, City Council Member Gwen Wisler, and County Commissioner Brownie Newman who recently championed a resolution setting carbon reduction goals for Buncombe County.

Event hosts took the opportunity to highlight the connection between carbon emissions and climate change, and the rapidly growing campaign to retire the Asheville coal plant. Attendants signed petitions, signed up to come to the Duke Energy shareholders’ meeting, and joined the online conversation by tweeting at Duke Energy and posting on Facebook.

The Asheville Beyond Coal campaign will be featured as part of the “Preacher’s Daughter” episode that will be airing in early May.  Click here to watch WLOS’s news coverage of the event!

 

Upcoming Events

April 17 – 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. – U.S. Forest Service Discussion on Wilderness and Special Designated Areas – Asheville, NC

The public can give input on their favorite forest views, as well as how the U.S. Forest Service manages wilderness, specially designated areas and scenic views at this meeting. This public session is the latest in the three-phase, multi-year process of revising the Nantahala and Pisgah National Forests Management Plan.

The plan is expected to be completed by 2016, and will guide management of Nantahala and Pisgah forests on how to manage for timber, wildlife, water, recreation and other uses, for the next 15 years.

Nantahala and Pisgah are two of four national forests in North Carolina, covering more than 1 million acres of the Western North Carolina mountains. Pisgah and Nantahala are among the most visited national forests in the nation, with more than 6 million visitors a year.

The April 17 meeting will focus on:

  • Identification and inventory of areas that may be suitable for inclusion in the National Wilderness Preservation System.
  • The process for identifying special designated areas.
  • The Scenery Management System.

The six wilderness areas and five wilderness study areas being discussed make up about 9 percent of the Nantahala and Pisgah national forests.  Those include the Joyce Kilmer-Slickrock, Southern Nantahala and Ellicott Rock wildernesses in Nantahala National Forest, and Shining Rock, Middle Prong and Linville Gorge in Pisgah National Forest.

For more information on the plan, or to comment, visit www.fs.usda.gov/goto/nfsnc/nprevision

To participate in the wilderness and/or designated areas discussion, RSVP to NCPlanRevision@fs.fed.us by Thursday.

Location: Crowne Plaza Resort, 1 Resort Drive, Asheville, NC (map)

 

April 25 -  2nd Annual Sustainability Summit: The Planet, People, Economy, & Community – Wilson, NC

This event is presented by Wilson Community College, Upper Coastal Plain Council of Governments, NC Sierra Club Medoc Chapter, and the Wilson Sustainable Community Council.

With a comprehensive agenda, and less than 100 tickets remaining, this year’s summit is surely going to be a hot event!  Don’t miss your chance to be a part of the 2nd Annual Sustainability Summit. Click here to get your ticket today!

 

May 3-4 – Sierra Club Outings Leader Training – Sesquicentennial State Park, Columbia, SC

If you want to be a new Sierra Club Outings Leader, or if you want to renew or expand your current training, this training is for you!!!

Training will cover:

  • OLT101 – Basic outdoor leadership training and a requirement for all Sierra Club Outings Leaders that must be renewed every 4 years.
  • OLT201  – Advanced outdoor leadership training,  recommended for all leaders and required for any Outings Leader who wants to lead Level 2 outings (outings that are overnight and away from cars).
  • Watercraft Safety – Recommended for anyone who wants to lead canoe/kayak outings.
  • CPR/First Aid – Basic first aid is required for all Sierra Club Outings leaders and must be renewed every 4 years.

Open to all current Sierra Club members. Click here to sign up!

For more information, contact: Kelly Mieszkalski, North Carolina Chapter Outings Chair, (919) 624-2225 or kellymieszkalski@yahoo.com

 

Upcoming Outings

April 19- Grandfather Mountain Photography Workshop – Grandfather Mountain

Join the Sierra Club Foothills Group’s own award-winning 19-year old nature photographer, Avery Locklear, for a free outdoor photography workshop along the scenic Profile Trail at Grandfather Mountain State Park.  Ms. Locklear, who also serves as Vice Chair for the Foothills Group, will be sharing her expertise for capturing the mountainous landscapes and the rare flowers of springtime at Grandfather Mountain. Be sure to check out Avery’s nature and wildlife photography on her website: http://www.averylocklearphotography.com

This photo hike and workshop is open to photographers of all ages and is family-friendly. Bring a camera of any kind, a tripod if you have one, water, and lunch. Because the weather at Grandfather Mountain can vary a great deal, dress in layers and be sure to include a  wind-resistant outer layer. Advance registration is required; the event will be limited to 15 participants. To register, please contact Vance Parker by April 15, 2014 at vance@vparkerlaw.com or at (336) 768-0481 before 10:00 p.m.

 

April 19 – Devil’s Courthouse to Flat Laurel Creek Trail – Asheville area

This 6 mile hike offers some beautiful vistas in addition to the panoramic view from Devil’s Courthouse. Hiker’s will learn about the ravens which congregate on the rock outcrops along the trail, and learn to identify them. The Mountains to Sea section is rather rugged, with intermittent tree roots and 10″ steps/rocks. Makes good footwear essential, and may be hiking poles as well.

The group will do a loop from Black Balsam parking area to MST going to Devil’s Courthouse, then return via Little Sam Knob trail, which connects to the Flat Laurel Creek trail. From Devil’s Courthouse, there is view of mountains across two state lines if visibility is good. Meet in Asheville at 10:00 am and return around 5:30 p.m.

This hike is for experienced hikers only. RSVP to hike leader Lisa McWherter at lisamcw2@gmail.com or 828-713-4994.

 

April 19 – Discovering “The Poor Man’s Tarpon:” Shad Fishing on the Neuse River – Raleigh area

Learn about our native shad species, their habits and habitat, and enjoy an afternoon of shad fishing on the banks of the Neuse River. Called “the poor man’s tarpon” for their breaching, leaping, and tail-walking acrobatic performances, Shad fish are spawned in inland rivers and tributary creeks, migrate to the ocean to mature, and then return up river to spawn in their native streams. Our NC shad are sporty and historically important, a natural wonder right here at home, and a conservation success story.

Please note, this outing will be held on the Neuse River anywhere from Milburnie dam to Goldsboro, depending on where the latest fishing report indicates the shad are. Location will be announced before the outing. Most likely location Milburnie Dam.

Group size is limited to 6 people and participants need to have valid fishing license, rod and reel, and other items.  Click here to RSVP or for more information: http://www.meetup.com/Sierra-Club-Capital-Group/

 

April 26- Discover Mountain Biking Adventure in the Great Smokey Mountains – Bryson City area

Join the Sierra Club and the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC), the Southeas’’s premiere outdoor adventure outfitter, for a big day of mountain biking in the Smoky Mountains.This full day instructional activity is a great introduction to the sport of mountain biking.  Get correctly fitted on your mountain bike and outfitted with the proper gear.  Then head up to the Flint Ridge trail system to learn the basic skills needed to enjoy the sport of mountain biking.  You will learn the basics in proper riding position, cornering, braking, shifting and riding skills.  After lunch you will head to Tsali National Recreation Area, the “Southeast’s mountain biking mecca”, to test out your newly acquired skills by riding one of 4 different loops.  This course emphasizes the sport of mountain biking, and enjoying the scenery and camaraderie of riding.  Please see:  http://www.noc.com/noccom/adventures/biking/mountain-biking/

The cost for this program, which includes one of NOC’s sturdy Specialized mountain bikes adjusted to the rider, a helmet, instruction, and a full day of riding is $119 per person.  The charge for participants with their own mountain bike is $79/person.  Camping will be available at Turkey Creek Campground near Tsali National Recreation Area on Friday night April 25th and Saturday night April 26th for $10/person plus $4/vehicle.  Guests may remain in the area Sunday for more mountain biking, hiking, whitewater rafting, or zip lining conducted on their own.

This outing will be limited to 15 people with registration closing on April 12th, 2014.  Please register in advance of this date with Vance Parker, at e-mail vance@vparkerlaw.com or by telephone before 10:00 p.m. at 336-768-0481.

 

April 26- Beginner Backpacking in Uwharrie National Forest – Montgomery County

Join Sierrans to test your beginner backpacking skills in the little known Uwharrie National Forest, less than 2 hours from the Triangle. Then group will cover about 12 miles over 2 days using the Uwharrie Trail and Dutchman’s Creek Trail..

Those who can will meet in Raleigh at 8:00 am for caravanning to the Wood Run Trailhead, where the group will set out on foot down the Uwharrie Trail. Participants will backpack approximately 6 miles on Saturday and set up camp along Big Island Creek. Sunday morning the will pack up and continue back to the trailhead on the Dutchman’s Creek Trail, about 6 miles.

 Group size for this trip is limited to 5 tents/15 people due to space restrictions of campsite. Please contact trip leaders at rezeli@bellsouth.net or 919-971-3788 for more information.

 

May 3 – Hawksbill and Table Rock Day Hike in the Linville Gorge Wilderness – Morganton area

This is the featured wilderness outing mentioned in the section above.  Please click here for more information or to RSVP.

Want to know the latest? Join us on Facebook or Twitter!

Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting – April 30 Candlelight Vigil, May 1 Rally

Following the Dan River coal ash spill, citizens rallied to deliver thousands of petition signatures to Duke Energy calling for them to clean up their coal ash. Watch the short video to see scenes from that day.

Now we need your voice and your presence to send the Duke Energy leadership and major shareholders an even stronger and louder message. Organizations and individuals from across the Duke Energy Carolinas service area will gather for two powerful displays of our call for change. Please RSVP to let us know if you are attending the events and/or would like to help with outreach and turn out.

Light the Path Forward: Candlelight Vigil to Remember the Impacts of Coal Ash

Wednesday, April 30th, the eve of the Duke Energy annual shareholder meeting
7:30 to 8:30 PM
New Duke Energy Headquarters, 550 South Tryon St, Charlotte, NC

Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting Rally and Press Conference

Thursday, May 1st
8:30 AM arrive and set up for 9:00 AM rally and press conference
Former Duke Energy headquarters, 526 South Church St, Charlotte, NC (location of shareholder meeting)

Download and share the 2014 Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting Flyer!

2014 Duke Shareholder Meeting Flyer2014 Duke Energy Shareholder Meeting Flyer

Please RSVP to let us know if you are attending the events and/or would like to help with outreach and turn out.

 

 

 

Clergy, Lay Leaders, and People of Faith – A Call to “Light the Path Forward”

Light the path forward:

Candlelight vigil to remember the impacts of coal ash

Two Candles

Wednesday, April 30th, the eve of the Duke Energy annual shareholder meeting
7:30 to 8:30 PM
New Duke Energy Headquarters, 550 South Tryon St, Charlotte, NC
Map

Facebook: Light the Path Forward

RSVP

Faith traditions around the world have a rich heritage of preserving and protecting the environment and speaking out on environmental justice issues (see below). That’s why we need clergy, lay leaders, and people of faith to join us and send Duke Energy, their Board of Directors, and major shareholders a message calling for a new path forward. This is an opportunity to speak out and show our solidarity on three key issues:

Climate Disruption – The recent IPCC report “Climate Change 2014 Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability” and the NBC news “Our Year of Extremes: Did Climate Change Just Hit Home?” illustrate how communities are suffering the impact of climate disruption. Changing the business practices of Duke Energy, the largest investor owned utility in the world, will send a strong message that we have a moral obligation to act on climate change.

Coal Ash Clean Up – Clergy and lay leaders have a responsibility as stewards of our environment to speak out to preserve and protect our air, water, lands and the health of our communities. Duke Energy must take immediate action to stop their coal ash pollution, remove the coal ash from our drinking water supplies, store the dry coal ash in properly designed and monitored lined containments that do not place extra burdens on low income and communities of color.

Cost of Coal Ash Clean Up – Duke CEO Lynn Good has gone on record as saying that rate payers will be charged for coal ash clean up in North Carolina. Duke Energy has profited for years from avoiding dealing with safe, long term storage of coal ash. We need the faith community to speak out about the potential impact on seniors, those on fixed income, the un/underemployed, and businesses and schools in our communities.

Make plans to join us and to help announce this gathering. Please RSVP to Bill Gupton or for questions and more information.

Faith, the Environment, and Environmental Justice

Catholic Church

“The vocation of being a “protector,” however, is not just something involving us Christians alone; it also has a prior dimension which is simply human, involving everyone. It means protecting all creation, the beauty of the created world, as the Book of Genesis tells us and as Saint Francis of Assisi showed us. It means respecting each of God’s creatures and respecting the environment in which we live”

~ Pope Francis, [ Homily of Pope Francis, 19 March 2013.]

Islam

Allah, in His Wisdom, appointed humans, the creatures that He has conferred with the faculty of reason and with free will, to be His vice regents on earth. And while Allah has invited people to partake of the fruits of the earth for their rightful nourishment and enjoyment, He has also directed them not to waste that which Allah has provided for him—for He loveth not wasters.

~ Hyder Ihsan Mahasneh, biologist and Islamic scholar, [Faiths and Ecology: Islamic Faith Statement]

Judaism

‘Therefore choose life, that you and your descendants may live’ (Deuteronomy 30:20). Humankind has solemn obligation to improve the world for future generations. Minimizing climate change requires us to learn how to live within the ecological limits of the earth so that we will not compromise the ecological or economic security of those who come after us.”,

~ Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, [Confronting the Challenge of Climate Change, 06/1998]

Buddhism

The scientific consensus is overwhelming: human activity is triggering environmental breakdown on a planetary scale… Collectively, we are violating the first precept—“do not harm living beings”—on the largest possible scale. And we cannot foresee the biological consequences for human life when so many species that invisibly contribute to our own well-being vanish from the planet…

~ The Dalai Lama, [The Time to Act is Now: A Buddhist Declaration on Climate Change]

Unitarian Universalist Association

“As Unitarian Universalists, we are called by our seventh Principle to affirm and promote “respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.”

~ 2006 Statement of Conscience, [Threat of Global Warming/Climate Change, 2006]

Other Christian Traditions

Southern Baptist Conference

[A Southern Baptist Declaration on the Environment and Climate Change]

Evangelical Christianity

[Climate Change: An Evangelical Call to Action]

Episcopal Church

[Unnumbered Resolution: The Episcopal Church commits to Climate Justice for all God’s People and all God’s Creation, July 2012]

National Association of Evangelicals

[Loving the Least of These: Addressing a Changing Environment (pdf), 2011]

Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

[Carbon Neutral Resolution, 2008]

Christian Reformed Church

[Our World Belongs to God: A Contemporary Testimony in 2008]

Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

[Environment Caring for Creation: Vision, Hope, and Justice, 08/28/1993]

United Church of Christ

[A Resolution on Climate Change,2007]

United Methodist Church

[ Issues: Climate Justice]

Source: FCNL: http://fcnl.org/issues/energy/faith_statements_climate/

 

 

Solarize Charlotte Kick-Off Meeting – April 15, 6:30 PM

Solarize Charlotte Single

Solarize Charlotte Kick-Off Meeting

Tuesday, April 15, 2014
6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Area 15
514 E 15th St, Charlotte, NC
(map)

We have exciting news about renewable energy! This spring and summer we will be building broad and diverse support for rooftop solar by “Solarizing” Charlotte.

Please join us to learn more about the program and how to get involved in outreach. This is an evening you don’t want to miss!

“Solarize” is a Department of Energy-endorsed program that is designed to increase access to distributed solar by removing historic barriers to solar–including cost and hassle. This time-limited opportunity uses grassroots networks, bulk purchasing discounts, and tax incentives to provide home owners in Mecklenburg, Gaston, Union and Cabarrus Counties with cleaner and cheaper energy options.

We believe that solar is for everyone and we want Solarize Charlotte to be a strong and diverse effort. A critical component of the program is an intentional outreach and education drive to get the word out about Solarize.

Together we can bring Solar to Charlotte.

 

Host a Gasland Part II house party – Keep NC Frack Free

Sierra Club - Explore, enjoy and protect the planet

Dear Friends,

Sign up to host a Gasland Part II house party!

Host a Gasland Part 2 house party!

Host a Gasland Part II house party!

If you haven’t seen Gasland Part II yet, now is your chance.

Filmmaker Josh Fox picks up where he left off in Gasland Part I and examines the long-term impacts of fracking, including reports of poisoned water, earthquakes and even neurological damage. He takes this camera abroad to share the experiences of Australians whose lives have been irreparably changed because of fracking.

The U.S. is at a fork in the road: invest in clean, renewable energy or continue to rely on “all of the above”– meaning more fracking all across our communities and public lands. With millions of acres of land in jeopardy, it’s up to activists like you to tell President Obama to keep those dirty fuels in the ground to protect our climate, our public lands and our communities.

You can help by hosting a house party. Invite your friends and family to screen Gasland Part II, and give everyone the opportunity to show their support for protecting our communities, our climate and our public lands from fracking.

As a host, you would:

  • Pick the date for your house party between April 28 and May 9 and register your party online.
  • Invite your friends, family, and neighbors.
  • Encourage your guests to get involved by taking action.

All house party hosts within the U.S. (excluding Puerto Rico) will receive a free copy of Gasland Part II. We have a limited number of copies, so sign up early! A downloadable house party guide will be provided, too.

Register your Gasland Part II House Party today!

Thanks for all that you do to protect our environment,

Deb Nardone
Director, Keeping Dirty Fuels in the Ground Initiative
Sierra Club

P.S. If you have friends or family who would be interested in hosting their own house party, please share this email with them

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Take Action: Oppose Dirty Energy, Support Clean Energy

Speak out today!

Take Action: Stop a Flood of Natural Gas Exports Take Action: Stop a Flood of Natural Gas ExportsLegislation has been introduced in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives that would rubberstamp exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the U.S. without any review or protections in place for the American public and our environment. This would essentially open the floodgates for natural gas exports, leading to more hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) here at home and more climate-disrupting pollution.

Take Action
Tell your senators and representative to oppose legislation that would rubberstamp liquefied natural gas exports!


Take Action: Tell the Senate to Protect Clean Energy Jobs Take Action: Tell the Senate to Protect Clean Energy Jobs

Last week, the Senate Finance committee moved to extend a package of critical clean energy tax credits, including the production tax credit for wind. We need the Senate to vote on this package immediately to ensure that clean, cheap, American-made clean energy continues to grow.

Take Action
Please tell your senators to bring the EXPIRE Act to the floor and vote yes.