Archive for April, 2016

WildChildsGreetings Earthlings. “What are the wastelands and how do they transform into the wild?” Walken Shweigert, Artistic Director of Children of the Wild asks that and Gus Ganley, one of those Wild Children, returns to the show to talk about their Wastelands Project, an experimental folk opera investigating the seven stages of grief in a time of violent political and environmental unraveling. It’s not all gloom and doom, like this show. On this, the 30th anniversary of Chernobyl, the worst nuclear power disaster to date the concept of the wastelands is all the more sobering. But wait! we have somewhat humorous moments awaiting you in our Enviro Show Echo Chamber or when we take you to meet our Fool-on-the-Hill, right? And how about this: Revenge of the Critters! Deer for dinner (No, it’s not what you think).

We have Broken News! In case you were still hibernating in some den recently you’ve probably already heard that Kinder Morgan’s fracked gas pipedream targeting WMass has been suspended. If you read their cleverly worded…..make that corporatespeak press release [pdf] you’ll see they left the door open to plague us with their bullshit in the future, but for now it’s time to pat our collective selves on the back for all our efforts and…..PARTY! This Broken News is a two-fer: We also just learned that “In an amazing victory for our forests, waterways and communities, New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation has formally denied the water quality certification as required by the Clean Water Act for the proposed Constitution Pipeline.” However, all these fossil fools have taken a page from Freddie Krueger and could easily be baaaaack! To which we say: bring it on fools!

It saddens us to say Our Fools-on-the-Hill  this week are also our favorite Massachusetts senators, Markey & Warren who foolishly voted for the laughably titled “Energy Policy ‘Modernization Act’ ”. This sorry planet-trashing act (which may contain a few good things) brings us all that much closer to a….dare we say, green flag? for exports of fracked LNG, the promotion of biomass clearcutting and reportedly “limits state and local controls that can impede pipeline development, and applies eminent domain for ‘economic development’ ” as well as ““It is the sense of Congress that all Federal authorizations required for a project or facility should be issued by not later than the date that is 90 days after the date on which an application is considered to be complete by the Commission.”  (among other things not so modern). We ask Enviro Show listeners to go HERE and have a word with our senators gone astray. Soooo, as over 150 nations sign-off on the Paris Climate Agreement on Earth Day the U.S. Senate agrees to trash the planet the day before. USA! USA?

In The Enviro Show Echo Chamber we can’t seem to get away from the….umm…blowback? surrounding that Methane blowout at Porter Ranch on the Other Coast. Now we learn that a looming methane threat exists in the Great Lakes region (where the Children are headed!). Michigan has a total natural gas storage capacity of 1,079 billion cubic feet, the most of any state!  James Clift, policy director for the Michigan Environmental Council, said the safety of underground natural gas storage is just starting to become an issue. “We have a lot of storage and we have a lot of clay pipes we are distributing natural gas through. The other question is, are we contributing more methane to the climate change issue than we should be?”  Ya’ think? We have a Blog Action Bonus for you. Time to rein in the U.S. Market for Endangered Wildlife.

How about a Quote of the Week? “I believe alien life is quite common in the universe, although intelligent life is less so. Some say it has yet to appear on planet Earth.” — Stephen Hawking

We have a lot of E-Valley-uation to get through this week. Let’s start with our Valley free Radio Spring Fun Drive, OK? This is where YOU show your support for the show and the folks who bring it to you.  We’re counting on you to do your part. Then we have a follow-up from our last show about the mishandling of our state lands, especially here in WMass. One of our guests last time, Michael Kellett, released this item recently: Plans to Cut State Forests Could Worsen Climate Change and the State Budget. We signed on to that one (surprise!) and the Greenfield Recorder reported on it. Also, remember the show we did on the plight of the Shortnose Sturgeon in the CT River? Now there’s an activist Facebook page on that. Check it out HERE.  And this: We received a disturbing email from Sara Moffett at Clean Water Action the other day with this headline: “Two Out of Three Food Cans Tested Have Toxic BPA in the Linings, New Report Says – Five of Six Cans From Hadley Walmart Tested Positive for BPA” The message directed us to this page. Canned food is pretty much 20th century but hey, do we really need BPA? Finally, about that proposed fracked gas pipeline the Son of Enron’s trying to ram through WMass? The MA State Senate Committee on Global Warming & Climate Change is holding a hearing on May 3 on Beacon Hill, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Massachusetts Statehouse in Room 428 to FINALLY connect the dots from fracked gas to our Global Warming Solutions Act and the Commonwealth’s energy future. All we can say is….ALL OUT! 

It’s time to Meet the New Boss once again and once again it’s his Interior Secretary, Sally Jewell who comes into question (isn’t there a place for this person somewhere in the exterior??). As we come upon the 6th anniversary of the infamous BP oil platform catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, an f’ing disaster that should never have happened and the results of which are worse than previously thought, it seems the Obama Administration’s  oversight is…well….kind of out of sight? “The [new] rule says that they have three more years to set up real-time monitoring [of oil-well safety by onshore personnel],” Liz Birnbaum, former director of the Minerals Management Service told Grist. “Which is just insane.” Insane like still pumping oil out of the planet in the midst of the Climate Crisis? What’s that saying about what to do when you find yourself in a hole?

 

After our conversation with Gus we drag you over to the Bus Stop Billboard:

 

Saturday, May 7, 11am – 11pm. (Rain date: Sunday, May 8, 2016) Climate Action and Sustainability Fair, Shire City Sanctuary, 40 Melville St, Pittsfield. LIVING THE CHANGE is a major celebration of the growing community and positive momentum of Berkshire County’s climate action network, 350Mass Berkshires, and environmental organizations, activists, sustainable businesses, individuals, and volunteers who work to address the planetary challenge of climate change. For more information, contact livingthechangeberkshires@gmail.com or call 413-329-3514

 

Saturday, May 7, 3-7pm. Cleaner, Greener, More Just Earth Care Fair at Mt. Toby Meetinghouse, 194 Long Plain Road, Leverett, MA. Drawing upon the multitude of Middle Connecticut River Valley talent, of grassroots, non-profit and commercial entities dedicated to co-creating a more just and thus greener, cleaner, and healthier future for all beings, the Earth Care Fair is a “celebration of creative, persistent moral imagination to mitigate climate change in the Middle Connecticut River Valley and beyond”. It is a family-friendly event and all are welcome!  d.o. will be reading from his book “Bad Atmosphere“! Tom Neilson & Lynn Waldron will be performing! Ellen Moyer, Ph.D., P.E. is doing an important talk there called, Forests: Our Best Allies in Fixing the Climate Problem”. Contact: Beth Adams <eadams333@gmail.com>; (413) 522-7505 
Saturday, May 14, All Day. Break Free From Fossil Fuels! We will gather in Albany knowing that, whether we are planning on taking direct action or rallying in support, to “Keep it in the Ground” and protect our communities we are going to have to step out of our comfort zones to take on a fossil fuel industry that does not have our interests in mind. On May 14th our action will be centered on taking direct action to stop the bomb trains, imbued with hope and in solidarity with frontline communities from extraction to refinery. By acting together we will be safe, respectful and powerful. There will be ample room for those to participate without risking arrest, so all are truly welcome. Go to: www.albany2016.org/

Saturday, May 21, 9 AM – 5pm. Non-violence Training. Friends Meeting House Leverett MA. This training is necessary for anyone considering participating in a Sugar Shack Alliance action that could involve arrest. To register, please contact Carole Horowitz, horowitz.carole@gmail.com

 

Saturday,. May 21, 9:00am. to 5:00pm. Green-Rainbow Party Convention 2016 Green-Rainbow Party Rising. Go Green in 2016. First Unitarian Church, 90 Main Street, Worcester. Details on Workshops at THIS LINK. For info go to: http://www.green-rainbow.org/

 

Monday, May 23, 7pm – 9pm. Climate Action Now General Meeting in AMHERST. Everyone is welcome! To change everything, we need everyone! Unitarian Universalist Society, 121 N Pleasant St, Amherst, MA 01004, United States (map). Whether you’re a seasoned activist or a concerned citizen who wants to find out more about actions being taken in our area, we would love to have you join us. Go to: climateactionnowma.org

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Tuesdays & Fridays!   Please plan to routinely picket Kinder Morgan’s North St office at 137 North Street ( near the corner of North St. and Depot St. Park at McKay St., off Depot St) in Pittsfield at Noon on Fridays and at Berkshire Gas, 115 Cheshire Rd, Pittsfield, MA on Tuesdays noon-1pm. weather permitting.  Contact Jan Bradley 413-684-3732 for updates & more information.

 

Wednesdays! Winchester, NH No Pipeline Visibility Vigils are every week at the Town Hall corner 4:30 to 5:30. Corner of route 10 and 119. Time change in November 4-5. Just over the border from Northfield, MA.

 

Thursdays, 3pm – 4pm. Weekly Stop the Pipeline vigil at Town Hall, Northfield, MA. Weekly protest about proposed compresser station site on Gulf Road in Northfield every Thursday. Contact Hattie for more info 978-790-3074

 

Saturdays! Northfield 8:30 AM Downtown Stop the Pipeline Vigil in front of Town Hall. We had alot of traffic honking of horns, thumbs up and waving. Come on by next week and chat. Northfield Gas Pipeline Group.

 

That pretty much does it for us…..for now. There’s just one more thing: Remember to listen to your Mother, OK?

 

 

fracking
Kinder Morgan Statement on Northeast Direct Energy project
As a result of inadequate capacity commitments from prospective customers, Kinder Morgan, Inc., (NYSE: KMI) and its subsidiary, Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company (TGP), have suspended further work and expenditures on the Northeast Energy Direct (NED) project.
In July 2015, KMI’s board announced that it had authorized TGP to proceed with the project’s “market path” segment from Wright, New York, to Dracut, Massachusetts, a $3.3 billion investment designed to help alleviate New England’s uniquely high natural gas and electricity costs caused by severely limited natural gas transportation capacity currently serving the region.
The board’s initial approval was based on existing contractual commitments at the time by local gas distribution companies (LDCs) to purchase natural gas from the project, as well as expected commitments from additional LDCs, electric distribution companies (EDCs), and other market participants in New England. Unfortunately, despite working for more than two years and expending substantial shareholder resources, TGP did not receive the additional commitments it expected. As a result, there are currently neither sufficient volumes, nor a reasonable expectation of securing them, to proceed with the project as it is currently configured.
The insufficient contracted capacity is due to several factors.  They include the fact that the New England states have not yet established regulatory procedures to facilitate binding EDC commitments, that the process in each state for establishing such procedures is open-ended, and that the ultimate success of those processes is not assured.
In addition, innovations in production have resulted in a low-price environment that, while good for consumers, has made it difficult for producers to make new long term commitments.  Further, current market conditions and counter-party financial instability have called into question TGP’s ability to secure incremental supply for the project. Given these market conditions, continuing to develop the project is not an acceptable use of shareholder funds.
TGP has operated in New England for more than 60 years and remains committed to meeting the critical need for constructing additional natural gas infrastructure in the region. Although we have suspended work and further expenditures on the NED project, TGP will continue to work with customers to explore alternative solutions to address their needs, particularly local distribution companies that are unable to fully serve consumers and businesses in their areas because of the lack of access to abundant, low-cost domestic natural gas.
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moretreesGreetings Earthlings. Are you ready for a Berkshire National Pellet Plantation Forest right here in Western Massachusetts? There’ll be plenty of wood pellets for everyone! That will be important given that there’s a scheme afloat to put pellet burners into any public school or public building near you. Sorry there won’t be as many trees or critters as we’re used to but hey, it’s renewable energy, right? Actually, not so much, not in this age of climate chaos! Janet Sinclair of the Mohawk Trail Woodlands Partnership joins us to talk trees & sleaze.  In addition we hear from Michael Kellett from Restore on this and other sorry ideas from the Massachusetts DCR. Also a call from our roving reporter Tom Neilson as well as visits to the Fool-on-the-Hill and into The Enviro Show Echo Chamber, but first it’s time for………Revenge of the Critters. When cows attack!

Our Fool-on-the-Hill once again rewinds to those days of yesteryear when Hil was on the Hill (sorry, we can’t resist). Now, sadly, $hillary Clinton is running for president of Corporate America and folks like Bill McKibben are attempting to get her to green up.  How’s that working out for you? This woman does more pivots than a 42nd Street subway turnstile, except when she’s outright lying about her record. Old-school Liberals would do well to focus less on a Woman-in-the-Whitehouse at this critical moment (Liz Warren will be there soon enough) and more on ridding us of the very real threat of the rise of fascism here in the “Land of the Free”. O, while we’re at it guess who has come out and Unequivocally called for shutting down the leaky old Indian Point nukes just outside of New York City? That would be Hillary’s challenger, Sen. Bernie Sanders, OK? And her position on nukes? Well…….let’s say sketchy.

In The Enviro Show Echo Chamber we return to Porter Ranch and the horrendous methane blowout that seemed to go on forever. The fossil fools at Southern California Gas Company had said they would somehow offset the environmental damage (nice trick, SoCal!) but are now trying to walk that back. This in the wake of SoCal’s parent corp, Sempra’s board cutting CEO Debra Reed’s pay by $130,000 — while at the same time awarding her a bonus of $3.17 million! “It brings her total compensation for 2015 to $16.1 million, meaning that her executive penalty for presiding over an elemental corporate fiasco comes to about eight tenths of 1% of her pay”, according to reports. Now, perhaps to distract understandably angry Californians, state officials are warning of possible blackouts this summer due to the loss of gas reserves at Porter Ranch! Say what? Why are we thinking Enron here?? The U.S. is awash with f’ing fracked gas. Get some at bargain prices if you need it CA! Stop trying to distract your people from all the mismanagement and climate crimes!  Time to go to the movies again! We were psyched at the FERC Doesn’t Work rally in Albany. Finally this: Possums take out dangerous ticks!  Save the possums!!

 

Our Enviro Show Quote of the Week calls for a trip in the Wayback Machine:

Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.”   ~John Muir 

 

Time to Meet the New Boss and his out-of-control Secretary of Energy, Ernest Moniz who will be in Boston April 15 for a public meeting on the Quadrennial Energy Review. As we’ve reported in the past, this guy is the A #1 Obama Administration stooge for fracking and LNG exports. Anyway, like the notice says: “The Quadrennial Energy Review Task Force will hold a public stakeholder meeting April 15 at 9:30 a.m. at the Marriott Long Wharf, Salons DEFL. The Marriott Long Wharf is located at 296 State Street, Boston, Massachusetts. Doors open at 9:00 a.m.” so you’ll probably want to get there early to…um….greet him, yes?

 

We have Breaking News! Remember our coverage of that lawsuit by kids about their future being trashed by climate chaos? They just had a victory! Read all about it! HERE. And this: More than 90 Massachusetts lawmakers sign letter opposing ratepayer financing of proposed fracked gas pipelines!

 

In our E-Valley-uation Chamber we find scores of students at UMass occupying the Administration Building in response to a certain lack of divestment in fossil fuels. See them HERE! Send them kudos, too (maybe some coffee too?).

 

After our conversation with our guests we take you over to the Bus Stop Billboard: 

 

 

Wednesday, April 20, 7-9 p.m. “The Wisdom to Survive: Climate Change, Capitalism and Community.” Film screening and discussion examines the challenges climate change poses and highlights meaningful action that can be taken by individuals and communities. Floor 26.\, UMass Library. Contact: Madeleine Charney.

 

Apr 22 at 6pm. to Apr 24 at 5pm. Ringling Protest. Ringling Circus is heading back to the DCU Center, 50 Foster St., Worcester, MA and we will be more than ready! Please join our peaceful, educational protests against circus cruelty. Go to: www.facebook.com/events/449657425229550/  Email: info@circusprotest.com

 

Saturday, April 23, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Rain or shine. Troubled Waters Picnic: A Shortnose Sturgeon Walk, Talk and Lunch at the Rock Dam. Join shortnose sturgeon expert and author Dr. Boyd Kynard and environmental journalist Karl Meyer for a visit to the Rock Dam in Turners Falls.  The Rock Dam is a geological gem–as well as the only documented natural spawning site for the endangered shortnose sturgeon in the Connecticut River ecosystem. Kynard will cover shortnose sturgeon life history and biology; Meyer covers the natural and human history of this spectacular site. No pre-registration required. Wear sturdy shoes; bring lunch if you wish. Directions: Cross the 11th St. Bridge in Turners Falls; at first stop sign turn left down G Street.  Meet at public lot at end of G Street, just before the entrance sign for the US Conte Fish Lab.

 

April 23rd and April 24th at 2pm. “Unless” / The Lorax at the Hampshire College Farm Center. The show is an ensemble-based theatrical exploration of Seuss’s original story. It’s a traveling show that takes place on the Hampshire Farm. It’s family-friendly and very politically charged, of course. Entry fee is free.It’s an opportunity to be immersed in art for a traveling performance about the emotional impacts of climate change and our interconnection. Go to: theloraxhampshire.wordpress.com/ People can contact the ensemble at theloraxspring16@gmail.com with any questions/concerns/comments.

 

Saturday, April 23, 7 -10pm. Pipeline Boogie! Dance-dance-dance to the sax-fueled rock-&-roll of Trailer Park, a Valley favorite band! Chow down on pizza, salad, and vegan chili from Hillside Organic Catering. $20 (or more!) requested donation benefits the Town of Montague’s Intervention at the Mass. DPU, challenging a Berkshire Gas contract to buy into the Kinder Morgan NED pipeline. Montague Retreat Center: North Leverett Road & West Chestnut Hill Road, Montague, MA. Go to: www.facebook.com/events/1714746215475520/

 

Monday, April  25, 7 to 9pm. Climate Action Now Monthly Gathering. Working together to build an inclusive, unstoppable movement for climate justice! Unitarian Society of Northampton and Florence, Main Street, Northampton. Go to: climateactionnowma.org/

 

Tuesday, April 26, 6:30 – 8pm. Springfield’s Climate Action & Resiliency Plan. Arise for Social Justice is proud to host our first live panel with perspectives from community, city, and state leaders to discuss the development of Springfield’s Climate Action and Resiliency Plan and the future of the environmental justice movement! Focus Springfield Community TV, 1200 Main St, Springfield, Massachusetts. LIVE on local Springfield Channel 12 and online anywhere @ livestream.com/FocusSpringfield

 

Friday,April 29th 5pm, Saturday, April 30th 5pm & Sunday, May 1st 1pm.  The Wastelands takes audiences and performers on a journey guided by visual, musical, and kinesthetic poetry through places that have been abused and abandoned by industry. By viscerally engaging with sites of particular ecological grief, The Wastelands hopes to expose the many faces of our cultural grief: misogyny, white supremacy, queer-phobia, settler-privilege, etc. The performance runs 75min with a reception and dialogue to follow. All performances are free and open to the public (though we always pass the hat after the show), and meet ADA standards of accessibility. We recommend wearing good walking shoes and other protective gear for rain and sun, as necessary. Meet at 384 Dwight St., Holyoke, MA. Go to: www.childrenofthewild.org/

 

May 3 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m./Rally at 11:30am! MA Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change plans to hold an oversight hearing on the proposed Northeast Energy Direct natural gas pipeline project and the state’s clean energy future.at the Massachusetts Statehouse in Room 428. For bus or carpool info email: susantheberge@icloud.com

 

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Tuesdays & Fridays!   Please plan to routinely picket Kinder Morgan’s North St office at 137 North Street ( near the corner of North St. and Depot St. Park at McKay St., off Depot St) in Pittsfield at Noon on Fridays and at Berkshire Gas, 115 Cheshire Rd, Pittsfield, MA on Tuesdays noon-1pm. weather permitting.  Contact Jan Bradley 413-684-3732 for updates & more information.

 

Wednesdays! Winchester, NH No Pipeline Visibility Vigils are every week at the Town Hall corner 4:30 to 5:30. Corner of route 10 and 119. Time change in November 4-5. Just over the border from Northfield, MA.

 

Thursdays, 3pm – 4pm. Weekly Stop the Pipeline vigil at Town Hall, Northfield, MA. Weekly protest about proposed compresser station site on Gulf Road in Northfield every Thursday. Contact Hattie for more info 978-790-3074

 

Saturdays! Northfield 8:30 AM Downtown Stop the Pipeline Vigil in front of Town Hall. We had alot of traffic honking of horns, thumbs up and waving. Come on by next week and chat. Northfield Gas Pipeline Group.

 

OK, our work is done here…for the moment. Remember to listen to your Mother, OK?