Save the Date: Global Climate Strike Sept. 20-27. It’s not climate change, it’s a climate emergency. The UUA is partnering with 350.org, Extinction Rebellion (XR), Sunrise Movement and others who have answered Greta Thuberg’s call with youth from around the planet to join the Global Climate Strike with a huge kick off on Sept. 20th and various actions throughout the week. Only our governments have the power to stop the fossil-fuel economy. Leaders of this movement, who have studied social movements that have led to real change, estimate that when 3.5% of the population is willing to strike or risk arrest or participate in ongoing protest that governments will respond. Our UUA Organizing Strategy Team will be sending out a Create Climate Justice alert next week with a sign up for UUs and listings of events. If you are not already subscribed,sign up here and check Create Climate Justice.
Strikes are already planned for Burien, Kirkland and Seattle's University District, with more coming. To find nearby events and times
Olympia climate activists from several organizations and members of the Olympia Coalition to Abolish Nuclear Weapons are working with three powerful speakers to put together a retreat that addresses the intersectionality of climate and nuclear issues. Save the date, November 16th, 2019/More information to come. Register here.
The Sierra Club, in conjunction with the youth group Sunrise Movement, has organized national action on the Green New Deal, which has also been endorsed by the UUA (see below). Sierra Club leaders are hosting debate watching parties, where people interested in pressuring the Democratic National Committee to approve a climate debate are being recruited. Sierra Club leaders are also organizing constituent visits, with members of Congress during the August recess, to discuss the Green New Deal. The club has organized a coach-activist network which will help prepare activists understand and promote the Green New Deal. For more information, click on https://www.sierraclub.org/resist/growing-green-new-deal-mobilization
Advancing Economic and Climate Justice as a Moral Issue, Building a Movement for a “Green New Deal”, September 15-17, 2019, Washington DC
Advocacy Conference on Environmental Justice, Class and Race by UUs for Just Economic Community, UU Ministry for Earth and UUSJ
"We have twelve years!" The Green New Deal has spurred debate on the need for bold actions that make big differences. Carbon pricing is being debated. 156 Million Americans have pledged to keep the Paris Climate Agreement Commitments. Jack Ma says the U.S. wasted $14 trillion in wars rather than infrastructure among other investments. Communities of color wonder why they often pay the costs first, and deepest, but rarely get to voice their concerns.
How can we as UUs be in solidarity and fellowship? Learn how climate change is an economic justice issue with intersectional dimensions of race, ethnicity and class running throughout. Let us talk about how disproportionately at risk and impacted communities tend to be coastal communities, the poor, people of color and first nations communities.
When: Sunday, Sept. 15, 11:15 AM through Tuesday, Sept. 17, 4:00 PM
Where: Washington, DC
Beginning in Portland with the Juliana v US appeals court hearing on June 4th, I have been on a speaking tour visiting UU congregations with Levi Draheim, the youngest plaintiff in the Juliana v US lawsuit and a Florida UU, and Leonard Higgins, the "valve turner" and UU Ministry for Earth Board Member. After two weeks of touring through Oregon and Washington, we made our way to Spokane, Washington, where UUMFE had a phenomenal General Assembly experience.
Read more about our journey in the following four blog posts:
Speaking Tour Update #1 - The Juliana v US hearing & rally in Portland
Speaking Tour Update #2 - A Whale of a Time in Oregon
Speaking Tour Update #3 - Winding Through Washington
Climate Justice highlights from GA 2019
UUs have been giving generously throughout this tour and at GA, and we are now just $2,330 away from reaching the $10K fundraising goal.
There are just 2 days left to reach this goal --- the campaign ends on Thursday, July 4, 10:55 pm Eastern.
UUs are working in a myriad of ways to create a Just Transition through community organizing and advocacy for implementing bold, just climate policies at all levels. Here are some highlights for this Create Climate Justice priority area:
Backbone Campaign is honored to co-host two screenings of the highly anticipated Dammed to Extinction - in Seattle this Friday (June 7) and on Vashon Island next Tuesday (June 11).
We are also co-sponsoring two more Human Orca Murals next weekend, bringing our total of Human Murals up to 13 since Tahlequah carried her deceased baby across the Salish Sea, so we would witness what is happening to the Southern Resident pod and the dire conditions of their habitat. If you'll be in Gig Harbor or Bainbridge Island this Saturday, show up in black and stand up for the orca! Info is at the links below.
Dammed to Extinction Film Screening, June 7th, Seattle
Dammed to Extinction Film Screening, June 11th, Vashon Island
About the Film: Directed by eastern Washington native Michael Peterson, "Dammed to Extinction" chronicles the plight of the endangered Southern Resident orcas who depend on Chinook salmon for food, including Columbia Basin salmon runs especially in winter/spring.
The film features interviews with scientists and experts across the Northwest, from the Salish Sea to the mountain rivers of Idaho, who make the case for removing four aging dams on the lower Snake River to bring back many thousands of chinook salmon to thousands of miles of pristine rivers in the Snake River basin, providing much-needed food for orcas. Currently, all runs of Snake River salmon and steelhead are listed as threatened and endangered. This year's adult returns are predicted to be the lowest in decades.
Backbone now has lights and gear in 33 cities! Join our next Solidarity Brigade Network Call to hear about actions in your area, Thursday, June 20th, 5pm.
We recently trained up the Kitsap Solidarity Brigade and they quickly organized a three point action - light projection on one end of the county, an LED banner on another end, and a freeway banner at another entrance, all during the evening commute.
Our Builder's Guild meets each Wednesday in our Vashon Island Warehouse to build props, assemble LED light panels and banners, and prep imagery to be shared across the US. Currently, the Team is working on a kaleidoscope of monarch butterflies to show solidarity with immigrants, and a life size inflatable of Orca Mother Tahlequah and her calf. If you're in the area, stop by any Wednesday, 11-6. Shoot us an email for directions - firstname.lastname@example.org. No skills necessary! We have snacks available. The third Wednesday of the month we hold a Volunteer Appreciation Dinner so we'd be honored if you join us Wed, June 19th at 5:30.
Backbone props are used just about every day in some part of the country. Whether it's to bring attention to the urgent need to shut down the child prison in Homestead Florida or light projection on the Venezuelan Embassy in DC to protect it from a State Dept coup, or activists in Houston working to keep their communities safe from toxic explosions, Backbone is happy to deploy our light projectionists or lend gear to protect what you love. Click HERE to see some of our Spring actions. Borrow an image or LED banner by reserving one HERE.
Solutionary Rail is about using existing US railroads to get our society “on track” for clean transportation and renewable energy. We feel it may be the best chance we have for significantly curbing carbon emissions and ushering in a just and sustainable future.
Last month, we brought the Solutionary Rail concept to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway shareholder meeting in Omaha. (Berkshire Hathaway owns BNSF, the largest US railroad company as well as Berkshire Hathaway Energy.) Just after deploying Backbone's signature creative activism tools outside the meeting, Bill (Solutionary Rail Project Lead) was selected via lottery to ask the 1st question from the floor of Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger.
Bill asked if the Solutionary Rail team could meet with them to discuss our proposal for a public-private partnership to electrify their railroads and open corridors for a clean energy future. Mr. Buffett’s reply was evasive and rambling, but he did say that we were “free to speak with Carl Ice,” the new head of BNSF. Then, Buffett’s partner Charlie Munger chimed in. Gloriously, Mr. Munger stated that, “The questioner is on the side of the angels. Electrification is bound to happen sooner or later… I think Greg will decide when.”
WOW! We couldn’t have imagined better words of blessing. The “Greg” Mr. Munger referred to is Greg Abel, President and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Energy and a likely successor to lead Berkshire Hathaway. We are working with our volunteer team of organizers and technicians to strategically follow up on Buffett's invitation.
Learn more about Solutionary Rail by watching this 3 minute video.
Make a tax-deductible contribution to Solutionary Rail HERE.
Dina Gilio-Whitaker Talks About "As Long as Grass Grows: The Indigenous Fight for Environmental Justice, from Colonization to Standing Rock"-Listen to the Webinar
Governor James Inslee signed all of the following climate bills May 7:
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.
"The Most Unethical Decision Ever Made in the History of the World,"
a Talk by Bruce Knotts Saturday, March 16, 7:00 pm
Seattle Mennonite Church
3120 NE 125th Street
Seattle, WA 98125
Bruce Knotts, Director of the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office, made this observation about the Conference of Parties (COP) of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change which he attended in December, 2018:
An IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) report stated that the Paris goal of limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius was insufficient to protect the planet and that we need to keep global warming to less than 1.5 degrees Celsius. This report has been rejected [during the COP] by the United States, Saudi Arabia and Russia, the three largest producers of oil. As Al Gore said today, they care more for their bottom line than for the future of the planet. It is probably the most unethical decision ever made in the history of the world.
Born and raised in southern California, Bruce earned a B.A. in history from Pepperdine University and a master's degree in international education from the Monterey Institute of International Studies. He volunteered with the Peace Corps in Ethiopia and later worked in Saudi Arabia and Somalia before he joined the Department of State as a U.S. diplomate in 1984. After retiring from the Foreign Service, he joined the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office as its director in 2008. The UU-UNO promotes the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all, as reflected in the United Nations Charter.
The Unitarian Universalist United Nations Office promotes the goal of world community with peace, liberty, and justice for all, as reflected in the United Nations Charter.
The Climate Action Team at
University Unitarian Church
Proclamation of Support for Truth and Reconciliation in Washington StateThere is an emerging and compelling desire to acknowledge the events of the past so that we can work towards a stronger and healthier future. The truth telling and reconciliation process is a sincere acknowledgement of the injustices and harms experienced by Indigenous peoples in Washington State and the need for continued healing. This is a profound commitment to establishing new relationships embedded in mutual recognition and respect that will forge a brighter future. The truth of our common experiences will help set our spirits free and pave the way to reconciliation. 1 Read more here and sign the petition.
US REBELLION DAYThe US Extinction Rebellion begins on January 26th through a nationwide day of nonviolent civil disobedience and protest. Extinction Rebellion is an international movement dedicated to raising the alarm about the dire threat of climate change and using mass nonviolent civil disobedience to force governments to take action. Sign up here to be part of a Light Projection crew or to hold a banner on this Day of Act