Climate Justice is the work we do to confront the climate crisis. While Washington State is a small proportion of the world population and economy, there are actions we can take to show leadership in solving the climate crisis. Some of the major issues we confront are listed in the menu item “Our Work.” Recent changes in the state’s action on climate can be seen in the news items posted below. Also, follow current legislative activity that we are tracking at our Carbon Pollution Accountability page in the legislative advocacy section.
Climate change affects all of us, but its consequences are not distributed equally. Climate impacts exacerbate existing inequities in society, whether they are related to poverty, gender, race or ethnicity, ability, or other factors. The slow-onset impacts of climate change are displacing communities and having severe impacts on human rights — the right to health, food security, water and sanitation, life, religious expression, and culture, among others.
Often, grassroots, frontline communities have the best and most appropriate solutions to these challenges. At the same time, these communities receive the smallest share of funding and are sidelined by state and international decision makers.
With the magnitude of the oncoming climate crisis, it's no longer sufficient to have a single token environmental question that 2020 candidates get to brush off with a soundbite. We need the 2020 candidates and DNC to commit to an entire debate on environmental policies.
BY ANNETTE CARY
APRIL 14, 2019 11:48 AM, UPDATED APRIL 14, 2019 12:10 PM
Criticism of speeding up a study looking at removing the Lower Snake River dams smells like an attempt to undermine the study’s validity, says Tri-Cities Congressman Dan Newhouse.
In October 2018 President Trump required that a new environmental study on management of the Columbia and Snake rivers hydro system be completed a year sooner than previously planned.
The study now is scheduled to be completed in September 2020, before Trump’s current term of office ends. A decision on how to best operate the hydro system is expected to be made based on the study .
Trump ordered the shortened schedule as part of an initiative to streamline regulatory processes for water projects in the West.
In 2016, a federal judge in Portland overturned a 2014 management plan for the dams, finding it did too little to protect salmon runs, and ordered a new management plan, called a biological opinion, or BiOp, be adopted by September 2021.
The environmental study being done for the new BiOp includes the option of tearing down Ice Harbor, Lower Monumental, Little Goose and Lower Granite dams in Eastern Washington.
Read more here.
APR 12, 2019 at 7:08 AM
Caroline Chamberlain Gomez, KUOW
Lummi tribal members released one live chinook salmon into the Salish Sea on Wednesday as a spiritual offering to J17, an orca matriarch who has been ailing.
. . .
The tribe wants all the southern resident orcas to fare well, but there’s one in particular they are worried about. J17, also known as Princess Angeline, has recently shown signs of emaciation.
Scientists say she may not survive the summer. Lawrence Solomon, tribal secretary of the Lummi Nation, led the morning with the Lummi National Anthem.
Read more here.
Preventing and cleaning up toxic pollution is critical to the health of Washington’s people, salmon, and Southern Resident orcas. Now is the moment to urge state senators by April 13th to fully fund the program that cleans up thousands of contaminated sites statewide — including 12 sites on Bellingham’s waterfront and four in the Blaine Marina area.
UU Young Adults for Climate Justice Theologies of Place Zine
Calling all young adult artists and writers!! The UU Young Adults for Climate Justice is seeking written and 2D-art submissions for a self-published zine examining the threads among place, spirituality and climate justice.
Promise to Protect Training April 27,28 (Seattle WA): Get Ready for Next Anti-Tar Sands Pipeline Campaign
The training will cover multicultural competence for partnering with people in Lakota territory, a power analysis of the fossil fuel industry, and direct action as a strategic tool. The tour is coming to 10 cities beginning in March and going through May. Construction could begin in June (though delays are likely). The training will cover multicultural competence for partnering with people in Lakota territory, a power analysis of the fossil fuel industry, and direct action as a strategic tool. The tour is coming to Seattle on April 27 and 28, 2019. see https://nokxlpromise.org/train
Saturday, May 11, 2019. Sign-in 9:00 am; Program 9:30 am - 12:15 pm
Mercer Island Community Center, 8236 SE 24th St, Mercer Island, WA 98040
Coffee, tea, and breakfast snacks provided.
RSVP at http://peopleforclimateaction.org/summit-ii/
Learn how Portland reduced their greenhouse gas emissions while their population grew. They created a detailed Climate Action Plan: our cities can too. Come hear inspiring climate planner Susan Anderson describe how the City of Portland and Multnomah County brought greenhouse gas reductions from goal to reality. Cities are important, because they account for 70% of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. Our local cities have set goals in the King County-Cities Climate Collaboration (K4C). But we aren’t meeting our goals. Let's see what we can learn from Portland’s Climate Action Plan.
People for Climate Action members organized and paid for this event. Many other climate-focused groups are helping promote it. Thank you!
When: Thursday, April 11, 10am-3pm
Where: United Churches of Olympia, Social Hall 110 11th Ave SE, Olympia, WA
The day will start with trainings and workshops, followed by a rally, and ending at the legislative building where we will demand that our legislators vote for climate action. Come and enjoy great food, conversation, and advocacy as we come together to fight for climate action. When you RSVP, please make sure to list that you are part of the Carbon Washington Group and email our Advocacy Coordinator, Katsi@carbonwa.org to confirm.
Can’t make it to the event but still want to take action? Support us by sharing the Facebook event and submitting a letter to your elected official telling them who you are and why you support bold, equitable action on climate.
Interested in speaking at the rally? Let us know on the RSVP form! Because this event aims to center the voices of individuals on the frontlines of climate change, we especially want young speakers from Indigenous communities, communities of color, low-income families, or who identify as part of the LGBTQ community.
TWO-STEP TAKE ACTION:
Step 1: No LNG outreach to Tacoma City CouncilWe are trying to get 500 people to send a message to the City of Tacoma demanding that the City complete a new project impact statement (referred to as an SEIS) for the safety of our people, lands and waters. Here’s why:
- With the recent court ruling against Tacoma on LNG safety records and the news of the Wash. State Attorney General calling out LNG as pure fiction we are urging community members to reach out to the City of Tacoma to complete a new SEIS analysis for the following reasons
- The scope of the project has changed significantly and the changes warrant further analysis to ensure the safety of our community. See that attached document to understand the details of 7 specific changes. 7 Changes to the LNG Project Scope.
Step 2: Tell Puget Sound Clean Air Agency NO!Then when you've finished that, contact Puget Sound Clean Air Agency and ask them to deny the permit! Get more info here.
Write Here! Write Now! Tell US Senators to Act on Climate
UU Ministry for Earth (UUMFE) is partnering with UUs for Social Justice (UUSJ) for a “Write Here! Write Now!” letter-writing advocacy campaign during Spring For Change: A Season of Sacred Activism. This year the campaign focus will be to tell our U.S. Senators that urgent action is needed to address the climate crisis. With the introduction of the Green New Deal resolutions and carbon pricing legislation, there is new energy and growing public support for addressing comprehensive climate policy issues. We want to urge our Senators to take action NOW!
Letters must be received by May 9th. More information and instructions.
The House and the Senate passed HB 1257, a smorgasbord of building efficiency provisions that require buildings in Washington state to meet increasing building efficiency standards, provide chargers for electric cars, and encourage utilities to offer renewable natural gas to customers. Building efficiency is one of the remaining issues to be addressed in reducing carbon emissions; other bills such as 5116 address electricity and 1110 addresses transportation.
The Washington State House of Representatives Capital Budget Committee released its capital budget, which includes $42 million in the Clean Energy Transition Fund (Clean Energy Fund IV). Unfortunately, the Senate budget, SB 5134 omits much of this funding. The Senate Ways and Means Committee has approved the budget and forwarded it to the Rules Committee. You can take action by clicking on 5134 and clicking "Comment on this Bill." You can learn which items are affected by reviewing a list of the items omitted or reduced, which can be found here. The information below was provided by the Clean Tech Alliance, and is reproduced with their permission.
The House appropriations are provided solely for projects that provide a benefit to the public through development, demonstration, and deployment of clean energy technologies that save energy and reduce energy costs, reduce harmful air emissions, or increase energy independence for the state. Priority must be given to projects that benefit vulnerable populations, including tribes and communities with high environmental or energy burden.
Salmon People: Northwest Native Opposition to Genetically Engineered Fish Film Screening and Discussion
What are the risks from genetically engineered fish to the people and environments of the Pacific Northwest?
We tackled this question head-on with our short film Salmon People. Town Hall Seattle and Community Alliance for Global Justice (CAGJ) join to screen this powerful new film and call together a panel of indigenous and advocacy perspectives—all key activists working on Northwest Native food sovereignty and justice in the Pacific Northwest.
Four climate bills have been introduced, passed committees and passed at least one chamber of the Washington State Legislature. They involve “Clean Energy” (100% renewables for electricity), electrification of transportation (incentives for electric vehicles), “Clean Fuels” (reduced fossil fuels in fuels), and hydrofluorocarbons (highly potent greenhouse gases). The"Clean Energy" bill, the hydrofluorocarbons bill and the electrification of transportation bill have passed the legislature but the clean fuels bill has strong opposition.
Since Puget Sound Resident Orca Mother Tahlequah carried her deceased calf for 17 days, a message of urgency about the dire conditions faced by her pod, Backbone Campaign has mobilized banners, light projections, and eight Human Orca Murals across the State. Our hope is to double that number by June 1st. If you want to create this in your community, let us know. Upcoming Orca Murals are planned for Wenatchee, Spokane, Olympic Peninsula, Bainbridge Island, and more! WATCH a short video of the Orca Mural in Astoria, Oregon.
The House has passed, and the Senate Committee on Environment, Energy & Technology recommended passage of HB 1110 but unfortunately the Transportation Committee is holding it up. The bill has deadlines for establishing rules on emissions from transportation fuels and the Transportation Committee has concerns about its effects on transportation funding. It is likely to die if the session ends soon. You can take action on this bill by clicking on the link above, and click on “Comment on this Bill.” The comment link will take you to a page that requests your address and email information, a button where you can indicate support, oppose or neutral. You need to make a comment but it can be short – “please support the bill.”
The House and Senate have passed ESHB 1578 and it is likely to be sent to the governor soon. This bill specifies permit requirements for oil tankers, requires tug escorts, assesses threats of oil tankers to Orcas and other wildlife in straits. It passed the House 70-28 and the Senate by 32-13.
ESHB 1112 passed the House and Senate. It would phase out use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) over the next five years, as follows:
- January 1, 2020, for propellants, foam blowing agents such as polyurethane or spray foam, and supermarket systems, stand-alone systems, remote condensing units, and vending machines;
- January 1, 2021, for refrigerated food processing and dispensing equipment, compact residential consumer refrigeration products, polystyrene extruded boardstock and billet, and rigid polyurethane low-pressure two component spray foam;
- January 1, 2022, for residential consumer refrigeration products, except compact and built-in residential consumer refrigeration products;
- January 1,2023, for built-in consumer refrigeration products and cold storage warehouses; and
- January 1, 2024, for centrifugal chillers and positive displacement chillers.
Oil companies, big polluters, and the GOP members of Congress in their pockets are doing everything they can to smear the Green New Deal and deny the devastating effects of climate change in order to protect their bottom lines. But a grassroots movement, led by youth activists from the Sunrise Movement, is fighting back and ready to make climate and the Green New Deal a centerpiece issue for the new Congress and in the 2020 election—including holding a nationwide student walkout this Friday to support action on the climate crisis.
There is no time to waste. Join MoveOn in showing your support for the Green New Deal by ordering your "Earth Can't Wait" sticker now, placing it somewhere visible, and sharing the message with your family and friends.
Thanks for all you do.
Scientists and policymakers have long known that black and Hispanic Americans tend to live in neighborhoods with more pollution of all kinds, than white Americans. And because pollution exposure can cause a range of health problems, this inequity could be a driver of unequal health outcomes across the U.S.
A study published Monday in the journal PNAS adds a new twist to the pollution problem by looking at consumption . . .
Read more here . . .