The following comes to us from Lauren Shuster, a 1Sky organizer in NY. -- Luis
My name is Lauren Schuster and I am the 1Sky organizer and environmental campaign coordinator with the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG). NYPIRG is New York State’s largest social justice organization with offices at 21 college campuses across the state. We have a long history of working on environmental issues at the City and State level and we’re very excited to partner with 1Sky and join the fight against global warming on the federal level.
Residents of the Coal River Valley, accompanied by supporters from across Appalachia, took a stand this morning against the impending destruction of their mountain in the name of coal. Five activists with Climate Ground Zero and Mountain Justice chained themselves to an excavator and a bulldozer at the Massey operation near Pettus, West Virginia.
This is a guest post by Juan Reynosa, a 1Sky Organizer in New Mexico, who was just featured in The Nation--check out the article here! Below is a short post by Juan introducing himself and his work.--Andrew
It’s been a tumultuous year. From witnessing ongoing war to fighting climate change to the nation’s economic decline, we’ve all had to endure many struggles this year. Yet despite all of these ongoing battles it’s good to try and maintain a positive frame of mind. That’s definitely the mind state I’ve tried to keep throughout the year, because I know that many people like me are working to make a change in our world.
Coal River Mountain, one of the last mountains left intact in the Coal River Valley of West Virginia, is once again in danger (h/t to It's Getting Hot in Here):
This just in from the Coal River Mountain Wind Project –
the thousands of emails and calls you sent in September temporarily
saved Coal River Mountain from Massey’s explosives for almost two
months, but today the outlook just started to look a lot worse. We need
you to call Governor Manchin at 1-888-438-2731 and remind him that
thousands of people across America are watching West Virginia–and
waiting for Governor Manchin to choose long term prosperity and clean
energy over mountaintop removal and Massey Energy’s profits.
Minnesota received great news Monday when Governor Tim Pawlenty unveiled a green jobs plan to spur economic development while preserving our environment and tackling global warming. The new program, dubbed the “Green Jobs Investment Initiative” includes tax exemptions and credits for businesses that create green jobs, credits specifically for small-scale green businesses, incentives for innovation in the green tech sectors, and monitoring of state energy usage and emission levels.
Last Saturday was a historic day, as thousands of Americans supported Green Jobs Now by attending nearly 700 events in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Meanwhile, tens of thousands have also signed the "I'm Ready" petition, and the Green Jobs Now team is receiving more signatures in the mail every day. We know that many 1Sky folks participated in these events and even took the lead in organizing them, so from all of us here at 1Sky, thank you!
Here's a video montage of an event held in Anacostia, Washington, DC, produced by our new film fellow Mónica Pinzón :
As many of you already know, the Green Jobs Now National Day of Action was a huge success! There were over 660 events in all 50 states, including an event at my school, Whitman College, in Walla Walla, Washington. Not only did this rally start the green jobs dialogue throughout the campus and the city, but it personally inspired me.
Green Jobs Now is only hours away. I can feel the excitement in the air! Here in Washington DC we're helping with art supplies and tents for the event in Southeast Washington organized by Nydria Humphries. and can't wait to see DC council members and others rally the crowd!
While we ramp up for our actions, I think it's important to contextualize what we're working for. We are collectively calling for an economic transformation that would create jobs for low income and communities of color along with others. And within both of those communities, women have the most to gain.
Massey Energy has not yet begun blasting apart a Raleigh County mountain that environmental groups hope to preserve for a wind-power project, state officials said Wednesday.
Department of Environmental Protection officials said that any blasting at Massey's Bee Tree Surface Mine would not be allowed until the company obtains the rest of the required permit approvals. DEP inspectors visited the site Wednesday to confirm that blasting did not start, as environmental groups had feared that it might.
Grassroots opposition to Massey's plan has been impressive. We hear from our friends at Coal River Wind that West Va.'s governor has received nearly 2,500 emails and hundreds of calls since Tuesday morning. This is only a temporary reprieve though, not a permanent solution. If you haven't already, visit Coal River Wind's website and learn what you can do to save Coal River Mountain.