Blog Archive

Friday, April 19, 2019

The Back to the Biomess Enviro Show

Greetings Earthlings. Perhaps you recall back in those days of yesteryear we used to refer to large-scale wood biomass as the Biomess, yes? That's 'cuz it truly is a mess and this week we are going to focus on it like a solar-powered laser with Laura Haight, U.S. Policy Director for the Partnership for Policy Integrity.  Regular Enviro Show listeners already know how the Gov and his Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) are busy promoting dirty biomass as "renewable energy" but guess what? There's more! We'll get into all that presently, as well as take you to visit this week's Fool-on-the-Hill and to poke fun at His Malignancy The Mad King and his enablers. All that and more, but first it's time for..........Revenge of the Critters! Another poacher discovers jungle justice.....the hard way. 

This week's Fool-on-the-Hill is Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL 6th District) who apparently is on the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis for some reason. During a recent hearing the fool pointed out, “The fundamental principle in addressing these issues is that you have to fundamentally define the problem,” Palmer said. “If you don’t properly define the problem, then the solutions you come up with are generally going to be off the mark.” We thought the problem was pretty well defined but he went on to disparaged climate science's  “emphasis on anthropomorphic impact.” You know, like Polar Bears constantly talking about needing more ice......right? 

On to the reactionary MAGA zombies and their perceived King! It's official, the Repugnican Senate confirmed David Bernhardt, a former oil lobbyist, as The Mad King's Interior Secretary in a 56-41 vote. Three Democrats — West Virginia’s Joe Manchin, New Mexico’s Martin Heinrich, and Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema, (all coal states btw), crossed party lines to vote in Bernhardt’s favor, along with Angus King, an Independent from Maine who may suffer from those long Maine winters; maybe he has coal shipped in from Arizona? Wait, did we mention Bernhardt is already being investigated by his own department's watchdog group? Stay tuned for Bernhardt's first damage reports as Secretary of the Interior. Opps!, our bad, he's already doing damage! Bernhardt pushed a December 2017 legal opinion declaring the 1918 Migratory Bird Treaty Act applies only when companies kill birds intentionally. O, like a Purdue songbird processing plant? Wait......what? Earlier this month His Malignancy signed two executive orders that would put oil pipelines on the fast track to success. These royal decrees are not to be confused with his presidential permit we reported on last time that was aimed at allowing TransCanada to sidestep the courts. And this: Ol' Aesop said “A man is known by the company he keeps” and that truly applies to The Mad King; witness his bromance with the fascist Bolsonaro of Brazil, a presidential climate criminal presently engaged with destroying the Amazon Rainforest. Not-so-great minds think alike! Finally this from The Trust for Public Lands: "Just last month, [His Malignancy] signed legislation to permanently reauthorize America’s best conservation program—the Land and Water Conservation Fund. However, just one day before, the Administration quietly proposed to virtually eliminate the Fund in next year’s federal budget".  Get it?

Did we mention It's the Climate Crisis, Stupid!? Sorry, but it is and "What will you say to your grandchildren?" That's a screed we all should read calling for "Deep Transformation". Last time we talked about a natural solution to climate disaster, you know like protecting and preserving forests, right? Here's another piece by George Monbiot that goes into more detail about Rewilding. Time to go to a show! This is your Must See for April.   Now this:
Bill H. 853 - amends Massachusetts’ Alternative Portfolio Standard (APS) by removing subsidies for wood-burning heating systems. The APS provides incentives for a wide range of renewable heating technologies, including solar hot water, air source heat pumps and ground source heat pumps. Wood boilers generate more greenhouse gas emissions, fine particulates (PM 2.5) and other dangerous air pollutants than oil or gas furnaces, yet they are currently eligible for generous clean energy subsidies through the APS and other rate-payer funded programs. H.853 will protect our forests, our climate, and our health by removing subsidies for wood-burning and directing them instead toward truly clean renewable heating options that don’t pollute our environment.  Sponsored by Representative Denise Provost 617-722-2263.  Call giving your support and call your State Rep as well! 

After our discussion with Laura we move over to the Bus Stop Billboard:

 Friday May 3,  10:30 to 11:30am. Massachusetts Youth Climate Strike! Franklin: Greenfield Town Hall, Hampden: Springfield District Court, Hampshire: Northampton City Hall. As part of the global movement, youth from across Massachusetts will be striking on May 3rd to fight for our futures & demand that our lawmakers put an end to climate change. If you care about our future, please consider joining us! Go to: 

Saturday May 4, 2 to 3:30pm. Sunrise Amherst Green New Deal Town Hall. Amherst Regional High School (Amherst, Massachusetts),21 Mattoon St, Amherst, MA. We will elevate the stories of people who stand to benefit from the Green New Deal and help everyone understand that the GND isn't about taking away cows or cars; it's about building things up and investing in the American people. We will begin by talking about the impacts of climate change and economic inequality, discuss who is responsible for the crisis, then discuss the Green New Deal -- what’s in it and what it means for our lives and our society, and close out with discussing what it will take to see the Green New Deal into law. This event will be led by young people from Amherst College and Amherst High School

Monday May 6, 6:45 to 8:15pm. Worcester Green New Deal Town Hall. YWCA Board Room• 1 Salem St, Worcester, MA 01608. Join us at this Town Hall to hear leaders in our community share about how the Green New Deal is the biggest opportunity of our lifetime to invest in the American people, and what that looks like for us. Contact Info: Cloude ( or Richard Schultz (

 Monday May 6, 7 to 9pm.  Vandana Shiva : Northeast Earth Journey. First Churches, 129 Main Street, Northampton, MA. Free admittance to anyone 18 years old or younger. Go to: 

Thursday, May 9, 8:00am-12:00pm.  Pioneer Valley Smart Growth Summit –Gateway City Arts, 92 Race Street, Holyoke. Join us for a summit about how cities and towns in the Pioneer Valley can build stronger communities today in the face of the challenges posed by climate change and inequality. We’ll look at the built (and unbuilt) environment, including land-use and housing, climate adaptation, transportation, public health, and economic development. How can we break down silos to tackle complexity? How can we create a more nurturing and resilient community at the local and regional scale? Use this link to register for the event. View more about the event on Facebook here.

Thursday May 16, 1:00 – 3:00 pm. DOER Hearing on  Biomass Rule Changing. URGENT! Many of us in the clean energy advocacy community are concerned that the proposed changes to these Massachusetts regulations amount to loosening of the definitions for qualifying biomass, and other weakening of restrictions, that will be environmentally detrimental. UMass Amherst Olver Design Building, Room 162, 551 North Pleasant Street Amherst, MA 01003 

 Saturday May 18, 1 to 3:30pm. Day of Remembrance. Join a circle of friends to commemorate the 343rd anniversary of the Great Falls Massacre on May 19, 1676. Native and non-Native people are invited to share. Rain or shine. Good weather, it will take place outdoors in the back of the center. Otherwise, in the Great Hall.  Go to:  

That's all folks! Remember to listen to your Mother, OK?

Monday, April 08, 2019

The 2019 Everyday is Earth Day Enviro Show

Greetings Earthlings. Earth Day is coming up and while everyday is E-Day on this show we thought we'd focus on some specific events coming up here the Valley. We are pleased to say our home base, Northampton is going all out for the planet this year. The April 22 Green New Earth Day event post on Facebook notes "Beginning in front of First Churches let's dance to the music of: Stephen Katz, Climate Healing Band, Radio Free Earth and the Expandable Brass Band, Let's be moved by: Been Around, Still Around Flash Mob Dancers, MuZen Theater Giant Puppets and Ritual Theater...and more!"  Starting at 5pm. will be a People's March from First Churches to Northampton High School where a Green New Deal Forum run by the Environmental Club of Northampton will feature a video of a community reading of a Green New Deal document and a panel with Mayor Narkewicz, U.S. Congressman Jim McGovern, State Senator Jo Comerford and Representative Lindsay Sabadosa moderated by the Northampton High School Environmental Club. Saraphina Foreman of the Valley Sunrise Movement returns to the show to tell us about the event along with Lila Lofving. Also, Beth Fairservis of MuZen will  be joining us to talk about the theatrical parts of the event. The Enviro Show is, of course, a willing co-sponsor of this important event, as are our friends at the Wendell State Forest Alliance and others. We'll get into all that and naturally, we'll also take you to poke fun at the Fool-on-the-Hill as well as His Malignancy The Mad King and his enablers, but first it's time for..........Revenge of the Critters! Grab some popcorn and settle down for a seemingly never ending series of stupid humans getting what for from the Animal Kingdom. WARNING: by the time it's over you may start contemplating some sort of zen remove.

This week's Fool-on-the-Hill, Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) earned more than his share of unwanted attention on Facebook recently (unless he actually likes that sort of thing) when he stood up before the U.S. Senate and said: “Climate change is an engineering problem – not social engineering, but the real kind. It’s a challenge of creativity, ingenuity, and technological invention. And problems of human imagination are not solved by more laws, but by more humans! More people mean bigger markets for innovation. More babies mean more forward-looking adults – the sort we need to tackle long-term, large scale problems.” More babies/Utah.....there it is!

On to The Mad King! His Malignancy was probably not happy to read "Climate change group scrapped by Trump reassembles to issue warning" but given he doesn't read maybe his enablers kept it from him?  Also, The Mad King signed a Royal a presidential permit to jump-start construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline late last month. The permit authorizes TransCanada to "construct, connect, operate, and maintain" dirty oil pipeline facilities between the U.S. and Canada. Send in the lawyers.....again. Can Agent Orange do more to please Big Oil? Of course! How about his administration launching its plan for letting oil and gas producers self-report air pollution violations to EPA. What could possibly be worse?  Maybe having the nuke industry regulate their own safety! That should go well. You may recall our previous mention of His Malignancy's siege wall threatening a Butterfly sanctuary down on the border? Why be content with trashing B-fly habitat when you can trash entire wildlife sanctuaries! Watch the video, but maybe bring along some of those foam rocks 'cuz you won't be pleased. And,  His Malignancy may have disregard for most lifeforms, but  McClatchy’s Michael Wilner spoke to two people close to Trump’s 2020 campaign and got confirmation from a Trump campaign spokesperson that the campaign is “gathering research for an aggressive defense of the president’s climate change record.” Say what??
-->We began this segment with a bit of good news so let's close it with this: "In 2017, just months after then-President Obama had protected 98 percent of the Arctic and key sensitive ecosystems in the Atlantic from the threat of oil and gas drilling, [His Malignancy] issued an executive order reversing that decision. Earth Justice's team of legal experts went to work challenging this and won in court late in March. See? Good news!

OK, no offense but in case you haven't heard....It's the Climate Crisis, Stupid! Here's a sensible approach to confronting the Climate Crisis, one we've been going on about here on the show for.....ever! "A natural solution to the climate disaster" put forward by George Monbiot and some familiar names, all very welcome we are sure. So, rather than admit it exists or do anything about it, rightwingers are fast at work making it illegal to organize over climate chaos, even if you're not involved in an actual action you might be a "riotbooster"! We guess that means us so please save us a seat in the reeducation camps. Finally, here's two of those dreaded feedback loops the UNIPCC warned us about: "Worsening Algae Blooms Could Significantly Increase Global Methane Emissions".  

After we talk with our studio full of guests hopefully we'll have time for the Bus Stop Billboard:

Tuesday, April 16, 2019 at 7 – 9pm. Reading Climate Change & Consciousness.  Deb Koffman's Art Space, 137 Front St, Housatonic, MA. d.o. will be reading his new climate poem!  Readings selected for participation in the April 16 event will also be eligible for publication in a Spring 2019 special edition of the online magazine Fired Up! Creative Expression for Challenging Times, edited by Jennifer Browdy and Jana Laiz.

Wednesday  April 17, TBA. Extinction Rebellion Boston begins its non-violent uprising against the long-standing criminal inaction on our planet's ecological breakdown. Because of these crimes against humanity, we will gather at the site of the Boston Massacre at noon and demand truth from media sites in downtown Boston. We are the ones we've been waiting for. With love and rage, XR Boston. Go HERE.

Friday April 19, 11am to 2pm.   Youth Led Climate Strike!  Statehouse, Beacon Hill, Boston MA. Meet at 11am in front of the State House to fight for our future! Entirely youth-led protest for students from Massachusetts and the greater New England area!. Go to:

Saturday April 20, 1 to 4pm. Greenfield Earth Day Events, Vision of Greenfield Pollinator Corridor, and Trip report: Ireland’s Pollinator Plan. John Zon Community Center, 35 Pleasant St., Greenfield, MA. Go to: 

Sunday, April 21, 2019 at 3 – 5pm. Screening of "The Lost Forests of New England" at Gateway City Arts92 Race St, Holyoke, MA. In celebration of Earth Day, come enjoy a film showing of "The Lost Forests of New England: Conserving Our Remnant Old-Growth Forests." Following the 1-hour screening, there will be a Q&A featuring Bob Leverett, Ray Asselin, and botanist Jared Lockwood, hosted by Lee Halasz, Kestrel's TerraCorps Regional Conservation Coordinator. Come for Brunch at The Bistro at Gateway City Arts prior to the Film!

Monday April 22, 2 to 8pm. Green New Earth Day Dance, March and Forum. First Churches of Northampton, MA, 129 Main St, Northampton, MA. A Call: Energize your passion for healing the Earth and helping her children by dancing, marching, and learning about the GREEN NEW DEAL!  Join with MuZen Theater's giant puppets, Cellist, Stephen Katz, The Climate Action Band, Berkshire Bateria, and more! Followed by a March For Climate Action to the Forum for A Green New Deal at Northampton High School. For Our Children And Our Grandchildren And Their Children And Their Children’s, Children’s, Children’s, Children! Go to:

Monday April 22, 7:30 to 9pm. The New Green Deal. On Earth Day, join the Amherst College Democrats and Amherst College Office of Environmental Sustainability to hear from New Consensus Policy Director Rhiana Gunn-Wright! Gunn-Wright has been called "the architect of the Green New Deal" and will be speaking about the process of creating what many say is the boldest and most progressive piece of climate legislation in American history. This event is free and open to the public. Johnson Chapel, Amherst College, Amherst, MA.

 Friday, April 26, 12 – 12:45pm. Arbor Day Celebration by the Greenfield Post Office, Main Street, Greenfield, MA. Roll up your sleeves and help plant a shade tree, hear the official Arbor Day Proclamation, and learn how you can get a tree planted in your front yard or tree belt for free. Take home free tree-related stickers, note pads, fun temporary tattoos and other give-aways!

Saturday April 27, 9am to 12pm. Earth Month Celebration. Walnut Street Farm, 200 Walnut Street, Springfield, MA. Farm work, planting, educational activities, art, music, fun! 

Saturday April 27, 10am to 4pm. Amherst Sustainability Festival. Amherst Town Common. Join us for a day of family fun and education! Information on sustainable practices, resources and products for sustainable homecare, as well as live entertainment, face painting, live demonstrations and MORE. There’s something for everyone. More details to come! Questions? Contact Stephanie Ciccarello at

Saturday April 27, All Day. Local Environmental Action Conference. Worcester, MA.  Some big challenges we’re facing are climate change. Pollution from landfills and incinerators. Environmental racism and discrimination against working class folks. Toxic water coming out of kitchen taps and school water fountains. Lack of political will to leave the fossil fuel industry behind. We’re up against some big problems, and we know we can’t face them all alone. That’s why hundreds of activists across our region come together every year for Local Environmental Action—to build a movement where we’re all working together to bring about a better future. Register HERE for the Local Environmental Action conference on Saturday, April 27 in Worcester, MA.

OK, we are done here, but remember to Listen To Your Mother!