Take Action: Protect America’s Water and Children from Chemical Facilities

Saturday was the anniversary of the Clean Water Act. How about taking some action today!

Take Action: EPA must protect children from chemical facilities

Take Action: EPA Must Protect Children from Chemical Facilities

The statistics are staggering: One in three children in the United States attends a school within the danger zone of a hazardous chemical facility. Half of these kids (more than 10 million students) attend schools in the danger zone of more than one facility. After a massive explosion at a fertilizer plant in the town of West, Texas, last year, President Obama announced an executive order (#13650) instructing the Environmental Protection Agency to work with other government agencies to find ways to strengthen protections and prevent future disasters.

Take Action
The public comment period is closing soon, so send a note today and tell EPA Administrator McCarthy you support swift action and strong prevention requirements!

 

Take Action: Protect America's water

Take Action: Protect America’s Water

Forty years ago, two-thirds of America’s lakes, rivers and coastal waters were unsafe for fishing and swimming. Because of the Clean Water Act, that number has since been cut in half. However, one-third of our nation’s waters are still in trouble. The Obama administration has proposed a new protection to clarify which wetlands and streams in the U.S. are covered under the Clean Water Act. This proposal will finally restore protections, as originally intended, to almost all of the nation’s fresh waters — ensuring safe drinking water for 117 million Americans.

Take Action
The deadline for comments has been extended until November 14! Send a message to the EPA in support of its proposal to protect America’s streams and wetlands from dangerous pollution!

Sierra Club’s NATIONAL SUMMIT FOR A NUCLEAR FREE FUTURE, NOV. 14-17, 2014, in Washington, DC

Do you have a passion for a carbon free, nuclear free energy future? If so, the Sierra Club’s NATIONAL SUMMIT FOR A NUCLEAR FREE FUTURE, NOV. 14-17, 2014, in Washington, DC will be a great opportunity to become active and shape this movement. Register at Buy Tickets for: National Summit for a Nuclear Free Future

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The EPA is blatantly promoting nuclear power as one solution to cutting carbon. Nuclear is NO solution, and we need to push to end any campaigns to encourage more nuclear, and instead promote clean renewable technologies. Come help us plan strategies to move towards a future free of nuclear power.

Here are the event details:
WHO: Sierra Club Nuclear Free Campaign
WHAT: National Summit for a Nuclear Free Future
WHEN: Nov. 14-17, 2014
WHERE: National 4-H Youth Conference Center, 7100 Connecticut Ave., Chevy Chase, MD 20815

Questions: Susan Corbett (reindeargirl@gmail.com)

We look forward to seeing you there!

Start Date: Friday, November 14, 2014
End Date:   Monday, November 17, 2014

If you’d like to attend this event you can purchase tickets online.

Click here to RSVP.
Click here to RSVP.

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Charlotte Joins the Global Frackdown

Thanks to the great folks that spoke about the dangers of fracking Saturday at the Piedmont Natural Gas headquarters! Check out some photos from the Charlotte Global Frackdown event.

At the end of the event we shared information about some important upcoming environmental and social justice events. Click below to download a copy of the handout.

Couldn’t make the event but still want to take action? Great! Please take action to keep dirty fossil fuels in the ground and Show Solidarity on Global Frackdown Day!

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Catawba Wildflower Glen Service Outing – Nov 1st

A great opportunity to learn, experience and give back! For more information or to RSVP, contact Central Piedmont Outings Chair Linda Alley.

Join us at this Catawba Lands Conservancy preserve to help Mary Stauble, Land Stewardship Volunteer, remove invasive plants and contribute to protecting this important natural landscape.  The Wildflower Glen is one of the conservancy’s crown jewels due to its rich ecological diversity and proximity to Charlotte.

We’ll meet at the property at 9 a.m. for an orientation where we’ll learn about the history and importance of the preserve.  Then we’ll spend some time pulling out invasive plants.  Afterwards, Mary will lead us on a walk through the glen.  Mary frequently visits the Glen and she is very knowledgeable about the local flora.

Please bring work gloves, clippers (optional), water, and a hat.  The Glen is located in Northwest Charlotte.

Saturday, November 1
9:00 AM

Catawba Lands Conservancy Wildflower Glen
12001 Riverhaven Drive
Charlotte, NC

You can learn more about why and how to control non-native invasive plants here:

http://nceppc.weebly.com/

http://ncbg.unc.edu/uploads/files/ControllingBooklet.pdf

All participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a standard liability waiver.

Why Lisa Cried When Eric Dumped ALEC

Great piece by Michael Brune about why we need to stand up to ALEC!

Coming Clean: The blog of Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune

Michael Brune

October 7, 2014

Exactly 54 days after Lisa B. Nelson, the new CEO of the American Legislative Council (ALEC), started her job, Eric Schmidt, the chairman of Google, dropped the bomb: Google wanted out of its relationship with ALEC. “That was some sort of mistake,” Schmidt said on The Diane Rehm Show when a caller asked why Google was supporting the organization. “We’re trying to not do that in the future.”

It’s like breaking up via text with your girlfriend when you’re 16,” said Nelson, presumably before throwing out the mixtapes and Google hoodie Eric gave her and unfriending him on Facebook. Wait a minute, she couldn’t do that, because Facebook is also leaving ALEC. Well, then maybe she could post a picture of her trashed hoodie and mixtapes to Yahoo’s Flickr site? Nope, Yahoo’s ditching ALEC, too.

How about leaving mean reviews of Google, Flickr, and Yahoo on Yelp? Sorry, Yelp already gave ALEC the thumbs down. And before she opens Outlook to send some “actually-I’m the-one-who-broke-up-with-YOU” emails, she might recall that even Microsoft has Ctrl-Z’d its relationship with ALEC.

Any way you look at it, Lisa B. Nelson’s first 60 days on the job were, as they say, character building. But, really, she shouldn’t take it personally. It’s not her — it’s ALEC.

What is it about ALEC that has given so many Big Tech firms cold feet? For that matter, what is ALEC, exactly? It calls itself a nonpartisan organization that focuses on the principles of limited government, free markets, and federalism. Not quite. The New York Times, reporting on Google’s defection, described ALEC as “a conservative-leaning group that has urged repeal of state renewable power standards and other pro-renewable policies.” And the Times was being kind.

ALEC is actually one of the most brazen attempts to steal our democracy that corporate interests have yet conceived. The “council” is composed of representatives from corporations, along with state legislators. Corporations like Exxon Mobil and Koch Industries pay fees along with other generous financial contributions. The legislators pay nominal dues but are forced to bring their families on all-expenses-paid vacations, where they mingle with their corporate benefactors and receive “model” bills (written by the corporations for the corporations). The rested-and-relaxed lawmakers can then take these Stepford bills home and introduce them in their state houses. The only way to make this easier would be to cut out the middleman and just let the corporations pass the laws themselves.

Because this all happens at the state level, it tends to fly under the national radar. It’s also aimed dead at the heart of our absolutely critical local campaigns to develop clean energy and combat climate change.

ALEC exists solely to do the will of the corporations that bankroll it, which is how technology firms got seduced into supporting it in the first place. They hoped ALEC could help them with issues aligned with their own values, such as an open Internet.

What changed? The Climate Movement, which reared its head and roared on September 21 around the world, has made it a lot harder for some companies to keep turning a blind eye to the harm that ALEC does by undermining clean energy and funding climate denial.

Eric Schmidt was blunt: ALEC is “literally lying” about the reality of climate change, he said. “[They] are really hurting our children and our grandchildren and making the world a much worse place. And so we should not be aligned with such people.” I can see how that would be a problem for a company whose official corporate motto is still “Don’t be evil.”

“Our citizens keep marching,” said President Obama at the UN Climate Summit last month, one day after hundreds of thousands around the world mobilized to demand climate action. “We cannot pretend we do not hear them.”

That is the strength of a movement like this one. It blazes a light that makes it impossible to miss the difference between what is good and what is evil. And here’s how strong we have grown: Last week, Occidental Petroleum — an oil company! — announced it was leaving ALEC rather than be associated with its positions on climate change and EPA regulations. Other tech (and non-tech) companies that have severed ties with ALEC include Amazon, General Electric, Apple, Coca-Cola, General Motors, Bank of America, and Proctor & Gamble. Many of these companies left a few years ago after Color of Change and other grassroots organizations called out ALEC for its support of voter-suppression and “stand your ground” laws around the country.

Unfortunately, ALEC still has plenty of corporate funders who are willing to ignore the difference between what’s good and what’s evil. Perhaps Lisa Nelson shouldn’t have been so quick to toss that Google hoodie — she could have sold it on eBay!

That’s right: eBay is still supporting an organization that Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Yelp, Yahoo, and Facebook have all unfriended.

Send a message to CEO John Donahoe today and tell him that it’s about time eBay, too, opened its eyes and saw the light.

Outing: Huntington Beach State Park Car Camping and Kayaking Weekend, Nov 14-16

Spaces are limited for this great Sierra Club outing! RSVP on our Meetup site today.

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Huntington Beach State Park Car Camping and Kayaking Weekend

Nov 14 – 16 (Friday to Sunday)
Huntington Beach State Park
16148 Ocean Hwy
Murrells Inlet, SC

Huntington Beach State Park, located about twenty miles north of Georgetown, SC is a great beach state park to visit anytime of the year. The park is located right on the coast of SC, and has many amenities to offer the visitor. Camping in cooler weather, walking on the beach, and hiking the park trails without the heat and insects of warmer weather, can be a pleasant experience. This is a great park for bird watching, hiking, and biking.

Group campsite #P2 has been reserved for our tent camping weekend. This site has plenty of room for tent campers, with picnic tables, a fire ring with benches, and a modern park restroom nearby. There is a large parking lot next to the camping area. A short boardwalk leads from the parking lot to the beach. There also is a 13-mile paved bike trail which runs through the park, and into nearby neighborhoods. We will tent camp in our campsite, just pick a place and pitch your personal tent. You will also need to bring your personal camping gear to the campsite, a short walk from the parking lot.  Each participant will also be responsible for bringing their own food and snacks.  This will be a combined outing with the South Carolina Sierra Club that promises to be a lot of fun!

Weather permitting; there will be an optional kayak trip.  Tentative location is Conway Riverwalk.  Anyone wishing to go on the kayak trip needs to let me know in advance so we can get that lined up.  There will be a limited number of boats available for rent, so people who have their own canoe or kayak are encouraged to bring them.

Also, there will be an optional Low Country Boil at the campsite Saturday night.  There is a fee for this, $6,  and I need to know who is interested in advance so we can get a count.

Group size is limited to 25.  Each participant on a Sierra Club Outing has to sign a standard liability waiver.  You can view the waiver here:

https://nc2.sierraclub.org/sites/nc.sierraclub.org/files/SignInWaiver%20with%20photo%20release.pdf

COST: $5 per person/per night.  Kayak rental is an additional fee.

Please – NO PETS.

For additional information, contact our Outings Chair Linda Alley.

Spaces are limited for this great Sierra Club outing! RSVP on our Meetup site today.