Blog Archive

Thursday, December 22, 2022

A 2023 Enviro Show


Greetings Earthlings. Another year, another chance to protect the Earth from those who would abuse Her. There are many ways to do that, most legal, some not so much. Journalist and podcaster Leah Sottile joins us to discuss Earth Liberation Front and other direct action groups in her podcast Burn Wild. [UPDATE: Interview HERE] As always, we will also visit with this week's Fool-on-the-Hill (maybe the Fool of the Year too?), come up with an Enviro Show Quote of the Year, remind anyone who has been off planet for awhile that "It's the Climate Crisis, Stupid!",  throw in a bit of Xmas cheer and more, but first it's time for.........Revenge of the Critters! Another habitat infringement issue, this time with......Reindeer!

This week's Fool-on-the-Hill hasn't even arrived yet newly elected Repugnican George Santos (Repug- NY) has already been outed as a fraud and a liar. According to the NY Times: "Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, the marquee Wall Street firms on Santos’ campaign biography, told The New York Times they had no record of his ever working there. Officials at Baruch College, which Santos has said he graduated from in 2010, could find no record of anyone matching his name and date of birth graduating that year. There was also little evidence that his animal rescue group, Friends of Pets United, was, as Santos claimed, a tax-exempt organization: The Internal Revenue Service could locate no record of a registered charity with that name."  Welcome to the Party, George! 

And now, something completely different: Our Fool-of-the-Year!



We're quite sure neither of the fools above agree when we inform them "It's the Climate Crisis, Stupid!" but those of us who believe science instead of business-as-usual will never stop trying to clue them in. Here's a headline that should shock them if they weren't so brainwashed: "Giant Methane Leak Tops List of Worst US Climate Disasters in 2022". The Equitrans fracked gas storage well in rural Pennsylvania is the culprit. Are we surprised? Nah!  We don't wish to mess with your Holidaze but you should be aware "global demand for chocolate, not least during the holiday season, has devoured tropical forests where cocoa trees grow." The New York Times' Climate Forward story  cites one example, "According to Trase, which tracks the impact of global commodities on forests, Ivory Coast, the world’s largest cocoa exporter, has lost most of its tropical forests in the last half century. Between 2000 and 2019 alone, 2.4 million hectares of forest were cleared to make room for cocoa plantations." Sorry, revelers but the good news is "You can learn how chocolate makers compare with each other on efforts to address deforestation, farmer incomes and the use of child labor by checking out the Chocolate Scorecard, compiled by advocates and academics."

In The Enviro Show Echo Chamber we find that "Roughly 190 nations, aiming to halt a dangerous decline in biodiversity, agreed [at the COP Biodiversity summit] to preserve 30 percent of the planet’s land and seas. The United States is not officially a participant." The Times tells us: "The agreement comes as biodiversity is declining worldwide at rates never seen before in human history. Researchers have projected that a million plants and animals are at risk of extinction, many within decades. The last extinction event of that magnitude was the one that killed off the dinosaurs 65 million years ago." Care for more bad news to start off the New Year? "With its latest leak of nearly 600,000 gallons in northern Kansas, the sprawling Keystone pipeline system has now spilled more crude oil in the United States than any other pipeline, according to a new analysis by Bloomberg." Perhaps some Enviro Show fans are under the impression high profile groups like The Nature Conservancy are out there making things better? Sorry, some of us think TNC stands for The Nature Conspiracy. Finally, we were very pleased to hear that Maura Healey has tapped a true tree champion, Melissa Hoffer, to be her Climate Chief, a new Cabinet-level position in the Healey Administration. If you don't know who Melissa is, take a look at this video from a presentation that she organized a couple of years ago when she worked in the AG's Office. Also, featuring Melissa is this Enviro Show interview from the same time period.  These two recordings will give you a good sense of who Melissa Hoffer is and explain why we are very excited to know that she will be leading the effort to address the climate emergency in this new Administration.


Now it is time for an Enviro Show Quote of the Year. This one wasn't spoken this past year BUT it certainly is one to remember in the coming years:

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” 

—Albert Einstein 

Time for the last Good Riddance Biomass Baker Countdown Timer of 2022

After Glen tears Baker a new one we move on to our conversation with Leah and then it's on to The Bus Stop Billboard:

Saturday January 7, 1pm-3pm over zoom. First Massachusetts Youth Climate Coalition (MYCC) Summit. A network of over 30 youth-led organizations across the state with 10 adult supporting organizations. Founded in February 2020, we are committed to centering the voices of Massachusetts’s young people in the climate movement. With our upcoming summit we hope to engage potential and existing MYCC members in interactive and educational conversations and workshops. Go HERE
Wednesday, January 11, 12 to 1pm.  Elders Climate Action Mass Virtual Rally.
We are calling on all climate activists, legislators, and Gov. Healey and her climate team to join a VIRTUAL STATEWIDE RALLY to: Welcome Governor Healey and her new climate team. Acknowledge the hard work of all who contributed to the passage of two climate bills in the last legislative session. Make clear our call for the rapid implementation of the ambitious climate agenda set forth in the bills and the Clean Energy and Climate Plans. 
Contact for details:   Rally link HERE.


Wednesday, January 11, 6:30pm.  Fix the Grid Campaign Launch on on Zoom!  Join us to get oriented to the campaign strategy, meet others involved in the effort, and then dig in on state-specific plans with fellow advocates from your state. Register here and pass along the word!

Saturday and Sunday January, 14-15, all day. The NOFA winter conference is part in-person, part-online. The fee is sliding scale, $90 to $250 with some scholarships; keynote $15; annual meeting N/C. All workshops on Saturday are hybrid and on Sunday are online only. The workshop schedule is here: . They are again using the Whova platform and app.

Thursday January 19, 7:00pm-8:30pm: No Coal No Gas Meets Clamshell Alliance! (Zoom)  Join our monthly No Coal No Gas call to chat with organizers from the Clamshell Alliance about their work! RSVP Here.
Monday, January 23rd at 6:30pm on Zoom. Mythbusting your rising electric bill: who's getting your money?"  With the help of experts across the region, we'll be digging in on where the money we pay goes, why bills are going up so much this winter, what our grid operator ISO-NE has to do with all of it, and where we go from here to achieve a more affordable, more accessible, and more accountable electric system.REGISTER HERE! 

January 26, 11am. Boston Fee Party on Thursday, next to the Boston Children's Museum. Right now, our state leaders have no representation on the Board of Directors for ISO-NE - it's a black box of decision-making that is keeping us hooked on fossil fuels. That over-dependence on fracked gas is what has put us in the situation this winter with skyrocketing electric bills. We can't afford more delays in the transition to clean energy! We're calling on Maura Healey to be a leader in pushing for key governance reforms: no rate elevation without representation!  RSVP here and invite your friends!

Friday January 27 Deadline Comment at Action Alert! We need you to tell the USDA that releasing dangerous, unproven and unmonitored GE trees into our forests is a Massive, Irreversible Risk.The wild American Chestnut is Already Rebounding!  We don’t need the irreversible risks of genetically engineered Chestnut trees!  Background info HERE.



February 15, 10:00am & 5pm. Virtual Public hearings on 310 CMR 7.74 Reducing CO2 Emissions from Electricity Generating Facilities. On January 4, 2022, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection filed proposed regulation amendments to 310 CMR 7.74 Reducing CO2 Emissions from Electricity Generating Facilities. The proposed amendments address CO2 emissions attributable to the production of useful net thermal energy by facilities regulated under 310 CMR 7.74.   Go HERE.



That's it for 2022 folks, see you next year and don't forget to.....LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER! 



Thursday, December 08, 2022

Yet Another Winter Solstice Enviro Show

Greetings Earthlings. Happy Winter Solstice. Remember when it usually snowed around the time of Winter Solstice? Now it just seems to rain (we'll see if Mother Nature does something about that by the time this show's run is coming to a close). Whatever the case, Independent journalist, Erica Gies joins us to remind everyone "Water Always Wins"which is to say Water Rules! [UPDATE: Interview HERE] As always we will also bring you along to meet this week's Fool-on-the-Hill and to see if we are Abidin' or Backslidin' with Biden these days. That and more but first it's time for......Revenge of the Critters! Giant python in the pool! 

Rep. Bruce Westerman, (Repug-Ark.) is Congress' only forester so, of course, he will probably lead the House Natural Resources Committee in the next Repugnican Congress. He said he's "always run into opposition from certain more radical environmental groups who don't ever want to cut down a tree." But he said healthy forest management is the key to preventing the types of fires that have been raging in California and billowing massive amounts of carbon into the atmosphere. We're not sure which radical groups "don't ever want to cut down a tree" but we've heard plenty about "healthy forest management" from those who want to cut down far too many trees. Westerman just wants to plant more trees, never mind the ones already capturing CO2 emissions. Maybe he wants us to rake up the leaves in the forest too? 

In the Enviro Show Echo Chamber we want to echo ourselves with this golden oldie from one of our past Winter Solstice shows. So, breakout the hot chocolate, sit back and relax for a blast from the past with Angela McCluskey ! We  also echo Trees as a Public Good Network's letter to Gov. Elect Maura Healey, congratulating her on her electoral victory and reminding her of the campaign promise calling for a one-year moratorium on logging on public lands while a scientific study is undertaken. Would you and/or your group like to sign-on? Go HERE.  

We guess we don't have to tell Frosty the Snowman that "It's the Climate Crisis, Stupid!" but surely somebody (like say Ivanka?) should tell His Malignancy the Former Mad King.  It's no surprise he is still "ridiculing efforts to reduce planet-warming emissions from oil and gas production, which scientists say is necessary to avoid the worst impacts of climate change." But, like one Dem functionary said recently, "Trump is clearly past his expiration date" and will be pretty much history by 2024 if not eating bad food in some lockup for years to come. Let's "act locally/think globally" now: On the local level Sunrise Amherst demanded the town sustain climate action and racial equity priorities in the Town Manager’s goals and denounced a  suggestion by Councilor Hanneke to disregard large sections of these fundamental priorities.
We wish they had also stepped up for the "Merry Maple" as well but.....Go Kids! On to the global with this headline: "Climate migration is about to explode. Cities will bear the brunt.
Surprise! Finally, haven't you always wanted to know who the worst climate polluters in the country are? Look HERE.

Time for the Biomass Baker Good Riddance Countdown Timer....

After Glen is done with his bi-weekly roast of the Gov we should checkout the Pre

Sadly, we find it difficult to be Abidin' with Biden when he does Backslidin' like this "As many as 100 million acres of BLM land may qualify for some level of protection that approximates wilderness and qualifies for 30-by-30 [status] But nearly two years after Biden took office, many conservationists worry that the agency, historically tied to industry and hobbled by [His Malignancy], is moving too slowly" to achieve Biden's ambitious goal to conserve 30% of U.S. land and water by 2030. Then there's this: "Biden Administration Quietly Approves Huge Oil Export Project Despite Climate Rhetoric". Ouch!

Let's move on to our Enviro show Quote of the Week, shall we?

Thousands have lived without love, not one without water.” — W. H. Auden

After our conversation about water with Erica we head over to the Bus Stop Billboard:

Saturday December 17, 11:00 AM – 11:30pm. Winter Solstice Bonfire & Holiday Bazaar. Welcome to our annual Holiday Artisan Craft Bazaar, and Winter Solstice Bonfire, which will be lit at sunset on Saturday, a massive bonfire on the upper field at the Montague Retreat Center. Doors will open at 11am on Saturday. The Bazaar is free and donations are accepted for the bonfire. After the fire burns down enjoy a rousing set by Tender Spot, followed by a closing journey down to our roots with a Winter Solstice meditation with live music. Food will be available by Vibesman's Jerk Shack. Bring a chair and a drum if you like for the bonfire. This event has a suggested sliding scale donation of  $5-$30 per adult. Pay what you can and come regardless. The event is sponsored by the Heartbeat Collective, Inc. a 501c3, Healing and Expressive ARTists for Balance, Ecology, Awareness and Transformation. If you are interested in helping set up for the event or build the bonfire, send a personal message to Jason, your host. Outdoor tree decorating and Edible Ornament Making. Join us at 3 PM a the up the hill in the apple orchard for an outdoor tree decorating ceremony to offer gifts and appreciation to the local birds and other creatures that make our winter beautiful with their year round residency. Bring your own edible or nature made ornaments or come early to the MRC and join the group to string oranges, popcorn, cranberries and edible ornaments. Fun for all ages!

Tuesday, Dec. 21, at 7:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Heavy rain or snow will cancel the gatherings. The public is invited to observe sunrise and sunset on the day of the Winter Solstice among the standing stones of the UMass Amherst Sunwheel. At the hour-long gatherings, UMass Amherst astronomers will discuss the astronomical cause of the solstice. They will explain the seasonal positions of Earth, the sun and moon, and the design of the Sunwheel and other calendar sites around the world. Go HERE.   

Happy Solstice and remember to.....what?   LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER!