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December Newsletter

Invasion: A film about the Unist'ot'en struggle for self-determination

2020 may be the most consequential year ever, in a historical moment when our years are all strikingly consequential. We’re excited about the possibilities it presents locally and nationally, and gearing up to fulfill them as best we can. But meanwhile, there’s more good learning and good work in this one, and a little time for reflection too.

INVASION

A day’s drive north of Seattle a major struggle over pipelines and land rights has been unfolding for over a decade. In this era of “reconciliation” indigenous land is still being taken at gunpoint. INVASION is a new (18 minute) film about the Unist’ot’en Camp, Gidimt’en checkpoint and the larger Wet’suwet’en Nation standing up to the Canadian government and fossil fuel corporations who continue colonial violence against indigenous people.

Free film screening and panel discussion. Our guest speakers include Matt Remle, Rachel Heaton, Paul Chiyokten Wagner, Dakota Case and supporters who have spent time at the Unist’ot’en Camp. Discussion will be based around how to support the Wet’suwet’en struggle, and local indigenous struggles.

If you can’t attend the event, you can still support the movement by donating, spending time at the camp, or hosting a film screening in your own community/neighborhood.

Invasion: A film about the Unist’ot’en struggle for self-determination
Hosted by Mazaska Talks and 350 Seattle
Tuesday, December 10, 6:30–8:00pm
Washington Hall, 153 14th Ave, Seattle 98122
Shareable event page here.
For questions about the event, accessibility or to volunteer, please email Sulakshana.

And whether you attend the Seattle screening or not, please join us as we discuss the camp while also learning about the history and culture of the Muckleshoot people.

Invasion at the Muckleshoot Cultural Center
Hosted by Muckleshoot Culture Program and 350 Seattle
Tuesday, December 17, 6:30–8:00pm
Muckleshoot Culture Building, 39009 SE 172nd Ave. Auburn 98092
Shareable event page here.

LOVE BOAT? WE THINK NOT!

The Port of Seattle’s proposing another cruise ship berth at Terminal 46, but we’re not on board.  Cruise ships are the antithesis of decarbonization, fueled with one of the dirtiest fossil fuels on earth — heavy fuel oil. We know fossil fuels need to stay in the ground, so why would we expand this unnecessary and polluting industry that exists solely for entertainment and luxury, in complete denial of its impacts on climate and sensitive environments?

At a time when vessel traffic noise is crippling the ability of critically endangered Southern Resident Killer Whales to hunt salmon, and the pollutants that have bioaccumulated up the food web are damaging their ability to survive and reproduce, introducing more toxins and more mega-ship traffic into their habitat could push these iconic animals closer to the brink of extinction.

So, please join us for the next Port of Seattle Commissioners meeting. Public Comment is given at the beginning of the meeting. Come speak from the heart!

Port of Seattle Commissioners Meeting
Tuesday, December 10, 12:00pm
Pier 69, 2711 Alaskan Way, Seattle 98121

To join our maritime workgroup or to join the multi-org coalition forming to stop the expansion at T46, contact Stacy.

TRANS MOUNTAIN

We’re headed up to Vancouver, British Columbia for a solidarity rally with the Indigenous nations who are in court to stop the Trans Mountain Pipeline. Bring your voice to support the Federal Court of Appeal cases by Coldwater, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations against the Trans Mountain Pipeline. Family friendly!

Indigenous Legal Challenges Solidarity Rally
Monday, December 16, 12:30–1:30pm
Georgia and Howe Streets, Vancouver, BC
More details here and carpooling here.

And thanks for all your help making Pancakes over Pipelines a huge success! We raised over $20K Canadian and $35K US including a matching donation for part of it. All proceeds will go to Pull Together to help First Nations in this critical round of legal challenges. Want to chip in? Donate here.

TACOMA LNG

In the upcoming days or weeks, the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (PSCAA) will announce a final permit decision for the proposed Tacoma LNG fracked gas storage, refinery and bunkering facility. Although they announced their intent to approve the permit before the most recent public comment period even opened, this fight is far from over!

The data used in PSCAA’s analysis is over a decade old, relies on industry data and impossible-to-enforce conditions such as all the gas for the lifetime of the project coming from only one area in Canada. The agency has also refused the numerous requests made by the Puyallup Tribe of Indians to engage in meaningful consultation.

Please join us at the next PSCAA board meeting for public comment. Wear red in solidarity!

PSCAA Board Meeting
Thursday, December 19, 8:45am
1904 3rd Ave, Seattle 98101 (Lower level)

Missed our meeting last week on how to be part of the LNG fight from right here in Seattle? Contact Stacy for more info or to join one of our LNG work teams such as Solidarity Action Planning, Social Media Support or Community Engagement!

CHASE OUT OF FOSSIL FUELS

The campaign to stop JPMorgan Chase from funding climate disaster is popping off all over the nation. This month, there were major actions targeting Chase in Washington DC, New York, Rhode Island, Oregon and more. We’re not quite ready to share all the details with the world yet, but let’s just say we have a feeling that this campaign is going to take off on a whole new level very soon. Fill out this form to stay up to date with our Chase campaign.

SEATTLE FOR A GREEN NEW DEAL

Since we’re coming up to the end of the year, let’s review our progress in 2019, shall we?

We gathered over 10,000 signatures from Seattle residents in support of a Seattle Green New Deal, and nearly 250 Seattle-based organizations and community leaders endorsed the call. In response, we saw the City Attorney publicly commit to taking legal action against the fossil fuel industry, a Green New Deal Community Oversight Board was created, and the City Council unanimously passed a resolution committing to creating a transformational Green New Deal that will eliminate climate pollution by 2030, address current and historic injustice and create thousands of good jobs.

2020 here we come! To get involved, sign up here.

KEEP THE IRP!

What’s an IRP? Why, that’s the bi-annual Integrated Resource Plan that electric utilities like 58% fossil-fueled Puget Sound Energy use to explain how they’re going to power their customers and implement necessary legislation like the Clean Energy Transformation Act, which calls for carbon accounting and addressing equity concerns.

After cancelling this year’s IRP, the Utilities and Transportation Commission proposes to reduce the frequency of planning session from every other year to once every four years. Wait, what?

Sure, public regulators are spread thin trying to put our new clean electricity law in place, but these planning sessions are nearly the only oversight and watchdog opportunities the public gets!

So, take two seconds to make sure the public keeps this critical oversight function: Submit a comment here.

And bonus points for personalizing your comment with the words transparency, accountability, trust, stonewalling, and “utilities should disclose their models and data to technical advisory group members who sign non-disclosure agreements, as is done in other states”!

EQUITY AND INCLUSION

Our Equity and Inclusion workgroup (the next iteration of Frontline Allies) continues to deepen our undoing oppression and equity work across the organization. We have 6 co-leads on 4 teams: Solidarity, Equity Filter, Education, and Hiring, all of which have set ambitious but achievable goals for the year. Our workgroups are working closely with frontline communities on climate related issues like stopping pipelines or refineries and launching Seattle for a Green New Deal. We’re developing more trainings and an equity lens to ensure that work is widespread and successful.

We’re looking for folks to join the Solidarity Team to focus on networking with majority frontline community groups on justice issues that share the same root causes as the climate crisis. Examples are immigration, prisons, militarism, and requests for support to stand up to oppression and racism is various forms.

See our new “350 Seattle in Solidarity” calendar and our Facebook Group for upcoming educational and solidarity events and join our workgroup discussion list!

No experience needed, just a desire to learn alongside us, but if you have skills in undoing oppression or equity work, please let us know! If you’re interested in anti-war solidarity, please contact Kara or Anna. If you are interested in getting involved in other crucial solidarity work for our climate movement, please contact Lisa.

SOLIDARITY

Climate Emergency Declaration. On Thanksgiving Day, The Protectors of the Salish Sea visited Jay Inslee’s home on Bainbridge Island to pray and ask that he declare a Climate Emergency and use his executive power to terminate fossil fuel expansion in the state.

Please lend your voice by signing and sharing their online petition.

For more about this prayer-led movement, check out this beautiful video by Jenna Mason. If interested in volunteering at the prayer camp in Olympia or from afar, please fill out this online registration form. To be added to the updates list for upcoming actions, please email the Protectors, or follow them on Facebook and Instagram. To donate to the camp, see the equipment needs list or make a financial donation here.

About the missing. Learn about the intersectional issues that contribute to Native people going missing and being murdered at rates higher than any other demographic. It will be a night of amazing panelists and speakers, families speaking out about their experiences, and discussion of the work being done to combat this issue of MMIP.

Amplifying the Voices of Missing & Murdered Indigenous People

Hosted by: Missing and Murdered Indigenous People & Families, Mazaska Talks, Unkitawa and Seattle Human Rights Commission

Thursday December 12, 5:30–9:00pm
Town Hall, 1119 8th Ave, Seattle 98101
Shareable event page here. To volunteer at this event please email Ahlay.

ANTI-WAR SOLIDARITY

As part of 350 Seattle’s solidarity work, we have joined two local anti-war coalitions: the Seattle Anti-War Coalition (SAWC) and Washington Against Nuclear War (WANW). Both groups are focused on our region’s significant role in the U.S. military-industrial complex, including building and readying nuclear weapons. Nuclear weaponry has direct connections to climate, including destructive mining practices, the potential for ecological catastrophe, and health consequences to communities surrounding nuclear weapons manufacturing and testing sites. We are working on both learning and educating others about how war fuels climate change and how climate change fuels conflict.

How to Plug In
Seattle Anti-War Coalition: Attend monthly anti-war protests outside the Federal Building in downtown Seattle on first Tuesdays, 11:00am–1:00pm (or as much of that time as possible). The November SAWC rally focused on the US role in the atrocities happening in the Philippines. The December rally focused on the US role behind the coup in Bolivia.

Washington Against Nuclear War: Participate in organizing phone calls (no more than once a month); participate in political advocacy by calling and writing your representatives about key pieces of legislation.

Contact Kara or Anna for more info.

TIME TO MAKE THE CALL ON TRADE

Word on the street says there’s huge pressure on Nancy Pelosi from moderate Democrats to allow a vote on Trump’s USMCA, or NAFTA 2.0 in the next two weeks. This deal would continue to allow fossil fuel companies to sue Mexico over environmental policies and continue the trend of climate polluting industries moving to Mexico, where standards are weaker. Until trade deals include enforceable climate standards, the work we do here in the US will be insufficient.

If you are in one of these Congressional Districts, please call your rep and tell them to oppose the climate-killing NAFTA 2.0:

Derek Kilmer, (253) 272-3515
Adam Smith, (425) 793-5180
Kim Schrier, (425) 657-1001
Suzan DelBene, (425) 485-0085
Rick Larsen, (425) 252-3188

CIVIC ACTION TEAM

Get your phones ready, we’re gearing up for the 2020 legislative session in Olympia! And you know what that means: It’s almost time to start calling our legislators to make sure they are making climate justice a top priority this session! Sign up here to join our Civic Action Team and receive regular updates and calls to action throughout the session. Then, mark your calendars for 2020:

2020 CAT Kick Off Webinar
Sunday, January 12, 7:00pm
We’ll discuss the bills that we’ll be championing and a few tricks of the legislative advocacy trade. RSVP here.

Youth Climate Lobby Day
Friday January 24, 10:00am–3:00pm
Temple Beth Hatfiloh, 201 8th Ave SE, Olympia 98501
Shareable event page here.

And in other exciting news, we can share that we’ve been talking with many of the ten other 350.org-affiliated groups in Washington State and we’re hoping to partner with some of them on our Civic Action Team work this year. 350 WA? Stranger things have happened…

TRANSPORTATION UPDATE

Transpo meeting is a Zoom call now! Second Monday of the month, 5:00–6:00pm. This month we’ll be discussing upcoming #ClaimTheLaneForClimate actions, leadership opportunities in Transpo, MASS coalition work for 2020, transpo bills in the upcoming state legislative session, and Orca for All.

Transportation Team Monthly Meeting
Monday, December 9, 5:00–6:00pm
Online: https://zoom.us/j/397697975

For phone call-in info, or to get involved but can’t make the meeting, email Alice.

Been wondering about leaving your car behind more often?  New to the transit system? Trying to find safe routes to bike? Give one of our Transpo #CarlessInSeattle coaches a call! Experienced transit riders and bike riders can tell you about safe routes to bike, or where to find frequent and reliable transit. Email Andrew to get connected with a coach.

Orca for All, the campaign to get employer funded transit passes for more people (and ultimately free transit) needs our love at city hall:

Orca for All
Thursday, December 12, 1:00pm
Seattle City Council,
Shareable event page here.

And if you can’t attend, can you still take a minute to sign the petition and email Seattle elected officials in support? 

Regional Clean Fuel Standard. Given that the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency has used out-of-date science to evaluate Tacoma LNG, can we expect them to do a good job lowering the carbon intensity of fuels for vehicles in the Puget Sound region? Study up here, and then join scads of your concerned fellow citizens at the public hearing on the draft rule at the Washington State Convention Center.

Public Hearing on a Regional Clean Fuel Standard
Thursday, December 19
Rally, 11:00–11:30am
First session, 12:30–4:30pm
Second session, 5:00–8:00pm
Washington State Convention Center, Room 2AB, 705 Pike St., Seattle 98101
Shareable event page here.

ARTFUL ACTIVISM

We welcome all skill levels in any art form, and have lots going on to jump into, from occasional participation to leadership opportunities. Join online here or come to art builds whenever you can! They are fun, no-skills-needed community gatherings with food and good connections.

If you’re a skilled artist (visual, theater, dance, music…) and want to apply your skill or show others how, please let us know! Contact Lisa.

PEOPLE’S ECHO

You do NOT need to be a singer to sing. We are louder when all our voices join together as one. The People’s Echo is teaching songs written for this political climate.

Every successful social movement has had song. Come learn a few to carry in your back pocket! You never know when it might come in handy!

Our upcoming song teach-ins are held at All Pilgrims Church (December 18, January 23, February 13, March 5 and April 23). Contact Ahlay for more info.

BE WELL

Community Resilience is here to assist individuals in finding ways to contribute to our efforts in working towards climate justice. The climate movement requires many skills and talents. Can you offer a service to benefit our community? Do you have skills which can help our organizers take care of their basic needs (e.g. healing modalities, computer help, haircuts)? The broader our skill sets and resources are, the stronger our chances are of success. Contact Ahlay.

DROP IN, HELP OUT

Looking for an easy way to help out at 350 Seattle? Curious about other ways to get involved?

Join us on the third Wednesday of every month to meet others and help out with all the small things that keep 350 going! Tasks range from phone calls to data entry to arts and crafts.

350 Seattle Drop in Hours
Wednesday, December 18, anytime from 3:30 to 6:30pm
350 Seattle, 1127 10th Ave E. Suite #1, Seattle
Shareable event page here. Questions? Contact Meg.

That’s it for 2019! As we know you know, 2020 is going to be a critical year… so rest up and get ready.

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Support the Unist’ot’en Camp! Film Screening this Tuesday!

Screening of Invasion this Tuesday, December 10,  6:30-8 PM at Washington Hall 153 14th Ave Seattle WA 98122 AND on Tuesday December 17, 6:30pm-8pm at the Muckleshoot Culture Building, 39009 SE 172nd Ave. Auburn, Wa 98092

This Tuesday there will be a film screening on the fight at the Unist’ot’en Camp, where clans of the Wet’suwet’en Nation have been resisting the construction of multiple fracked gas pipelines on their land for over a decade. It will be followed by a panel of local indigenous leaders making the connections to struggles here in Washington.

The Unist’ot’en camp is a day’s drive from Seattle, and is an assertion of indigenous sovereignty over lands that were never sold, surrendered, or signed away in treaty to the Canadian government. For the last 10 years Wet’suwet’en people and their allies have been living in the path of the proposed pipelines and controlling who can access their unceded territories.

The pipelines and export terminals they are resisting would bring about a dramatic expansion of fracking in NE British Columbia in the Monterey Shale Basin, and could ultimately also be used to export tar sands. The Monterey Shale Basin is where a large percentage of gas burned in Seattle homes comes from, and the extraction already happening there is already wreaking havoc on local water supplies and releasing large quantities of radically climate-destabilizing methane into the atmosphere.

The fight at the Unist’ot’en Camp is a critical struggle for climate justice that is in need of ongoing support. People who can travel to and spend time at the camp are needed on an ongoing basis, and grassroots fundraising has provided the vast majority of funds used to run the camp and pay for legal challenges.

Here in Seattle we are the closest U.S. urban center to this fight, and are well positioned to organize meaningful material support. If you’d like to learn more and get involved in this critical fight to keep fossil fuels in the ground please come out to the event Tuesday December 10 at Washington Hall from 6:30 to 8 PM, or Tuesday December 17, 6:30pm-8pm at the Muckleshoot Culture Building, 39009 SE 172nd Ave. Auburn, Wa 98092.

Check out the Facebook events here and here.

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Aviation Growth Radically Undermines Climate Goals

Jet in flight
Dear PSRC Executive Board,

I am submitting these comments on behalf of 350 Seattle in response to the Aviation Baseline Study currently underway.[1] Founded in 2013, 350 Seattle is a grassroots group working for climate justice by organizing people to make deep system change: resisting fossil fuels; building momentum for healthy alternatives; and fostering resilient, just, and welcoming communities. We have a mailing list of over 13,000 people, the great majority of whom are in the Seattle metropolitan area. We’ve been a key leader in successful fights like the #ShellNo campaign against Arctic drilling, the campaign to defeat the (proposed) world’s largest oil-by-rail terminal in Vancouver, and the campaign against the Anacortes Shell oil-by-rail spur. With Got Green, we are co-leading the Seattle for a Green New Deal campaign.

We have very serious concerns regarding the Aviation Baseline Study, and three specific asks for you.

Without consideration of our climate, public health, or environmental justice, PSRC has positioned the Aviation Baseline Study as setting the stage for unconstrained aviation expansion.[2] This expansion is projected to consist of a doubling of flights in the next 15 years. [3] According to King County’s 2017 greenhouse gas emission inventory, emissions from Sea-Tac and King County International Airport, based on fuel used, totaled 7,168,000 MgCO2e, or roughly a quarter of the County’s emissions.[4] If we allow aviation to indeed double, increased emissions will far outweigh reductions achieved in other sectors.[5]  

The science is clear: our climate cannot bear this. Instead of laying the groundwork for doubling emissions, we must spend the next decade cutting emissions in half to avoid the most catastrophic impacts of climate change.[6] Moreover, the very bases of the Study do not reflect PSRC’s own stated climate goals—which include protecting and restoring the natural environment and reducing greenhouse gas emissions—and conflict with the principles of PSRC’s Regional Transportation Plan, including “moving people and goods in ways that support a healthy environment.”[7]

The Study also fails to acknowledge that those harmed by aviation expansion are not those benefitting from expansion. Indeed, impacted communities have been fighting against increased air traffic. For example, residents of Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood[8]—which sits directly below flight paths for two airports and is constantly bombarded by noise and pollution—have been tirelessly collecting noise data showing that noise levels over their schools and homes are constantly above acceptable levels set by the city and FAA.[9] Exposure to these levels of noise has serious health consequences, and negatively impacts student learning.[10] Impacted communities are also dealing with unknown levels of air pollution, including ultra-fine particulates.[11]

Finally, while the Public Involvement Plan says that PSRC will “provide transparency and create confidence,” it has failed to engage and listen to impacted communities, instead prioritizing the profits of large corporations and the aviation sector.[12] The Public Involvement Plan says that “community leaders … have been briefed,” but staff has not told us who those leaders are.[13] The Public Involvement Plan also says that PSRC is communicating the scope and findings of the study to “diverse audiences.”[14] These audiences appear not to include impacted communities, as many, if not most, of the potential stakeholders listed in the Public Involvement Plan are corporations or industry groups. PSRC should not prioritize the profits of Alaska Airlines, Amazon, and FedEx over the health and wellbeing of impacted communities.

As the Board overseeing this Study, you must take responsibility for these shortcomings. We urge you to direct staff to fully consider aviation emissions in the study. How can you have a “clear picture”[15] of aviation activities without considering that these activities are inimical to our region doing its part for a stable climate? You must also ensure that PSRC’s other stated goals and policies are incorporated into the study instead of being at odds with them, including substantially reducing, not increasing, greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, if PSRC is to be the “honest broker of reliable and valid data and analysis”[16] that it touts itself as, it must be clear that the putative benefits of aviation expansion do not flow to those suffering from its direct negative consequences every day. Finally, PSRC must prioritize engaging impacted communities, particularly marginalized communities whose voices are often unsought or downed out—and this engagement should not just be lip service or box checking.

Specifically, we ask that you:

  1. Adopt greenhouse emission reduction targets set by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change as a non-negotiable restraint on aviation expansion.[17] When doing so, consider the full extent of emissions from aviation activities based on fuel usage.[18] Climate must be an existing condition recognized in the Study and necessary greenhouse emission reductions must be a future constraint.
  2. Ensure that the Study’s Economic Analysis captures which corporations are driving and profiting from increased aviation.[19] This analysis must also show who is benefiting from aviation activity and who is paying the immediate and longer-term price.
  3. Establish a community advisory board made up of representatives from each and every impacted community, including south Seattle neighborhoods. Involve this community advisory board in all phases of the Study, and ensure that its members review and weigh in at each phase of the Study. With regard to public involvement, the advisory board should help determine which stakeholders receive outreach, how focus groups are comprised, how surveys are constructed and conducted, and where and when public meetings are held. The advisory board’s questions, concerns, and input should be recorded and reflected in the Study results.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Sarah Shifley
350 Seattle

[1] Founded in 2013, 350 Seattle is a grassroots group working for climate justice by organizing people to make deep system change: resisting fossil fuels; building momentum for healthy alternatives; and fostering resilient, just, and welcoming communities. We have a mailing list of over 13,000 people, the great majority in the Seattle metropolitan area. We’ve been a key leader in successful fights like the #ShellNo campaign against Arctic drilling, the campaign to defeat the (proposed) world’s largest oil-by-rail terminal in Vancouver, and the campaign against the Anacortes Shell oil-by-rail spur.

[2] Scope of Work, p. 1 (the purposes of the Study includes “set[ting] the stage for future planning”); Draft Public Involvement Plan, p. 9 (PSRC’s “elevator speech” for the study includes “meeting future aviation demand”).

[3] Port of Seattle, “Forecast of Aviation Activity,” September 2015, available at https://www.portseattle.org/sites/default/files/2018-05/TM-No-04-Forecasts-of-Aviation-Activity.pdf.

[4] “GHG Emissions in King County – a 2017 update,” pp. 10 and 29, available at https://your.kingcounty.gov/dnrp/climate/documents/201907-KingCounty-GHG-Emissions-Analysis.pdf. This inventory only reflects 10% of actual emissions resulting from fuel used at Sea-Tac and King County International Airport.

[5] The Study’s Scope of Work pays lip service to climate concerns, making it internally inconsistent since its entire premise is laying the groundwork for doubling aviation emissions. p. 6 (stating that the Study “will consider the principles of sustainable transportation that includes… reducing carbon and other emissions”).

[6] “We have 12 years to limit climate change catastrophe, warns UN,” The Guardian, Oct. 8, 2018, available here https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/oct/08/global-warming-must-not-exceed-15c-warns-landmark-un-report.

[7] Regional Transportation Plan – 2018, p. 2. Indeed, the Study states that it will “integrate the policy framework of the PSRC’s Regional Transportation Plan,” including “that the transportation plan must move people and goods in ways that support a healthy environment.”  Scope of Work, p. 6.

[8] 70% of SeaTac landings and 30% of SeaTac take-offs travel directly over Beacon Hill. Beacon Hill also experiences heavy air traffic from King County International Airport and the noise and pollution impacts of all of this air travel on Beacon Hill are demonstrably high, even compared to the communities considered directly adjacent to Sea-Tac.

[9] In King County, the Beacon Hill population is in the top 25% for poverty, infant mortality, deaths due to diabetes and stroke, and adults without health insurance. About 25% of Beacon Hill residents older lack a high school diploma. About 80% consider themselves non-white. More than 30 languages other than English are spoken at home, and of those who do not speak English at home, less than half report being able to speak English “very well.” See https://beaconhillseattlenoise.org/about.

[10] A study of six million older people and 89 airports in the US, including Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and Seattle’s King County International Airport, linked aircraft noise with cardiovascular disease and increased hospital admissions. In a study of 46 US airports and surrounding schools, including five Beacon Hill schools, statistically significant associations were established between airport noise and lower reading and math scores as compared to non-impacted schools. Additional studies underway may show that exposure to aircraft noise may also be linked to negative metabolic outcomes and lead to depression. See https://beaconhillseattlenoise.org/noise-health-effects.

[11] See https://deohs.washington.edu/mov-mobile-observations-ultrafine-particles-study.

[12] Although I have been corresponding with staff about the study and voicing concern regarding public involvement, I was not made aware of this meeting nor the opportunity to submit comments.

[13] Staff has only stated that community leader briefings entailed “conversations with member jurisdictions, discussions at PSRC board meetings, and with others….” We’ve also requested that Beacon Hill be considered among the “core” audience for purposes of the Public Involvement Plan; that request was denied.

[14] Draft Public Involvement Plan, p. 4.

[15] Scope of Work, p. 1.

[16] Draft Public Involvement Plan, p. 4.

[17] UN Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change, “Special Report: Global Warming of 1.5 C,” available at https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/chapter/spm/.

[18] Scope of Work p. 12.

[19] Id., p. 6.

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Climate activists need to prioritize tax reform

map of US highlighting WA State's regressive taxes

by Andrew Kidde

Climate change has arrived. In the northwest, climate problems are likely to worsen in the coming decades—increased wildfires, smoky and polluted air, heat waves, droughts, floods, etc. These crises will lead to economic disruption and fewer resources. Our poorer communities will be hit hardest. The rich already seek protection: anti-immigrant movements, police-state treatment of refugees and the homeless, and the ever more popular “gated communities” and “doomsday escape plans” for the super wealthy. Left unchecked, the trajectory of these trends in a world of worsening climate crisis will create a dystopian future.

As climate activists, we seek a different future where communities come together to make the changes we need to survive climate change. To do this, our state and local governments need to set a different course. Rather than implementing homeless sweeps, they should respond to the next crisis by saving lives, helping relocate and re-engage the displaced. Rather than permitting gated communities at the edges of suburbia, state and local governments should help communities become more inclusive, energy efficient, resilient, transit focused, and healthy.

To pay for this, local and state governments need adequate revenue that is based on a fair tax system. We don’t have this now. A recent report found that in our current tax structure, “the poorest fifth of residents pay 17.8 percent, (while) the top 1 percent only pay about 3 percent of their income in taxes.” Our state and local tax system, considered the most regressive in the country, has long been unfair and dysfunctional. As the crises of climate change hit us, this will become dramatically worse—our poorest communities will both pay the highest state and local taxes, and face the brunt of damages from heat waves, floods, and poor air quality.

The good news: We can design a tax structure that collects revenue more fairly. In Oregon, for instance, the poorest families and the wealthiest families pay a relatively equal percentage of their income, about 9%, in state and local taxes. Climate activists should join the struggle to restructure our taxes. We can start by supporting Noel Frame’s bill, Modernize and Rebalance State Tax (HB2117 / SB 5973), which gained several sponsors in both houses last year. Other recent proposals include a state capital gains tax, a corporate tax on high earners, and of course Seattle’s Income tax ordinance, the constitutionality of which will soon be taken up by the State Supreme Court. It is hard to know at this point which proposals will gain momentum down in Olympia. For now, let’s be sure to tell our legislators that it is time to make our tax system more equitable and more appropriate for the coming climate challenges we face.

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October Newsletter!

7 million marched worldwide for climate. Will it make a difference? With your help, it will.

KEEP CLEAN TRANSPORTATION ALIVE

We have just one month to defeat a ballot initiative that would devastate our efforts toward climate justice in Washington.

Seattle transit advocate says vote no on I-976

I-976 would gut funding for transit throughout Washington. Small town bus service in many areas could close, and in areas like Seattle, thousands of service hours would be cut. Basic maintenance of bridges is threatened. And it’s all being sold under a banner of cutting costs for individuals by just a little.

Help make sure that we don’t lose our ability to have clean, accessible transit for everyone in Washington. Here’s how:

Questions? Want to really dig in and help lead a canvass? Reach out to Meg.

TRANSPORTATION = 62% OF SEATTLE GHG

Want to do something about the largest source of greenhouse gases in our city and the state? The next Transportation Team meeting will be on Zoom:

Stop I-976, support transit in the city budget, and more!

Monday, October 14, 5:00pm

Join online here.

This month we’ll focus on opportunities to stop I-976; ways to engage with transportation issues on the city budget; and how to support our own 350 Seattle members in choosing options other than driving to attend our events and get around town. We’ll also debrief our recent #ClaimTheLaneForClimate actions. Email Andrew for additional call-in options or to join the Transportation team email list.

THANK YOU FOR STRIKING

In September 7.6 million people around the world responded to the global call from youth to strike for climate. Here in Seattle, 10,000 marched. These strikes were organized by a powerful intergenerational, multiracial, multi-issue, worker-organizing coalition—and we know that’s the only way we can win the fight against the fossil fuel industry. To change everything, it’s going to take everyone.

From the pressure of 1,800 Amazon employees pledging to walk out on September 20, CEO Jeff Bezos announced the Climate Pledge the day before the Global Climate Strike; the Climate Pledge is a commitment to get Amazon’s carbon footprint to net zero by 2040. Of course, Amazon Employees for Climate Justice and allies are demanding that the company get to true zero by 2030, not rely on offsets, and stop selling AI to oil and gas companies… so thousands of Amazon employees still walked off the job. This announcement is a huge win—there’s no way it would’ve happened without organized worker power!

Throughout the week, other actions unfolded: The Protectors of the Salish Sea started their walk (more below); Artful Activism informed and enlightened with three separate interactive events including Envision at the Luminata walk; the Toxic Assets Affinity Group raised awareness about Carnival Cruise Line’s pollution; our Transportation Team held two #ClaimTheLaneForClimate actions, holding a morning rush-hour ride down 4th Avenue, and, in the evening, holding space for buses; and on Friday, a crew of us attended Netse Mot: One Mind for Xw’ullemy (The Salish Sea), an action on the land and sea.

And last but not least, we shut down every downtown branch of JPMorgan Chase, the world’s largest funder of fossil fuels as we shone a light on Chase’s salient role in the climate crisis. In the months ahead, we’ll be supporting the eleven people who were arrested. Pitch in here if you can help.

Will all this make a difference? With your help, it will.

CALLING FOR A CLIMATE EMERGENCY

The Protectors of the Salish Sea have been occupying the traditional indigenous gathering place of Sta,chas, now known as the Washington State Capitol, since Tuesday, September 24, after walking 46 miles from the Tacoma LNG construction site. The walk started on Friday, September 20, as part of the Global Climate Strike. As Governor Inslee was talking to climate activists in New York, more than 70 state riot police forcibly removed peaceful and prayerful indigenous climate protectors and their allies.

Despite this, the Protectors of the Salish Sea have vowed to remain in occupation indefinitely until a Climate Emergency is declared in the Washington State and all fossil fuel expansion projects are halted. Questions or offers of support can be directed here and monetary donations can be made here.

Saturday October 5th, people from all over Washington filled the capitol steps to add their voice in urging Gov Inslee to take action on the Protectors’ demands. Please keep calling our Green Governor at (360) 902-4111 and reaching out on social media.

PULL TOGETHER

Nothing focuses the mind like a good deadline, and we’ve got one from the Canadian Federal Court of Appeal: we have less than 10 weeks to fundraise for Indigenous Nations facing down the Trans Mountain pipeline and tankers project. Court hearings start the week of December 16th.

With your help we’re going to stand with Coldwater, Tsleil Waututh, Secwepemc and Squamish Nations in court to get this tar sands pipeline off of Indigenous lands and waters. Click here to help support their legal effort. Want to host a house party or get involved in some other way? Contact Hogan.

KALAMA METHANOL

The Department of Ecology makes their decision on October 11 on the shoreline permit for the world’s largest methanol refinery and one of Washington’s biggest contributors to the climate crisis! So here’s your last chance to tell the Department of Ecology to do the right thing—personalize this email!

Here’s a few key facts to remind them about the flawed environmental analysis that was used for the project:

  • Current science puts the impact of methane emissions at 20% higher than the older science used in the study;
  • Methane should be evaluated using its 20-year intensity, not averaged over 100 years as the study did;
  • The magical 0.5% leak rate used in the study was way off; the EPA uses 1.4% and independent studies suggest it’s even higher, due to fracking.

TACOMA LNG

While the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (PSCAA) prepares to approve the final permit for the Tacoma LNG fracked gas project using outdated science, controversial data, and an apparent disregard for the legal rights of the Puyallup Tribe—we must not sit idle!

Please send a letter to the elected PSCAA board members reminding them that we can’t build a clean energy future by investing in dirty energy.

You can also reach out to the PSCAA board members that represent you here:

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan: Facebook, Twitter, email

King County Executive Dow Constantine: Facebook, Twitter, email

Tacoma City Council Member Ryan Mellow: Facebook, Twitter, email

Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier: Facebook, Twitter, email

City of Everett Council Member and PSCAA Board Chair Paul Roberts: email

Snohomish County Council Member Sam Low: Facebook, email

Bremerton Mayor Greg Wheeler: Facebook, email

Kitsap County Commissioner Edward Wolfe: email

Your representative on the PSCAA board needs to hear from you! Share this video to help spread the call! (And if anyone else finds it strange that there’s no contact info available for Public at Large representative Stella Chao, drop the agency a line here.)

Support Tacoma LNG legal challenges!

Our local permitting agencies have failed to protect the public’s health and safety, put corporations above future generations, and completely disregarded the sovereignty and rights of the Puyallup Tribe. We’re not giving up though—too much is at stake—and we have more people standing with us than ever. Together we WILL keep the proposed Tacoma LNG from ever becoming operational! Please give what you can! Want to help by planning a fundraiser? Email Stacy.

Are you in the LNG evacuation zone?

Recently discovered documents reveal that 12.6 miles in every direction from the refinery/storage tank could be affected in the event of a disaster! That distance includes multiple airports, countless schools, parts of JBLM, all of Vashon Island, parts of Burien, Seatac, and a large section of the I-5 freeway. The city of Tacoma has had the information for 3 years, yet we’re only finding out now thru a public disclosure request and none of this safety data was included in the Environmental Impact Statement. Join the Puyallup Tribe, environmental organizations, and concerned community members in demanding a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement that accurately considers the health and safety risks of this proposed project to the public. The number to call: (253) 591-5818, office of Tacoma City Manager Elizabeth Paulie.

Free screening of Ancestral Waters

Learn more about this fight from an Indigenous perspective: join us for a free screening of Native Daily Network’s documentary.

Ancestral Waters

Thursday, October 24, 6:30pm

Urban Grace Church, 902 Market St, Tacoma 98402

Shareable event page.

This film chronicles the Puyallup Tribe and Water Warriors’ movement to resist the Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility currently being built without proper permits on the Tribe’s ancestral tideflats in violation of the Medicine Creek Treaty.

Contact Stacy to set up a screening in your neighborhood!

NEW P.U.D. IN THE HOUSE

And speaking of bait-and-switching, politician buying, greenwashing, for profit utilities who build unwanted climate killing fracked gas facilities… If you live in east King County, or can help gather signatures there, you have a chance to help make Public Utility District history!

East King County PUD Initiative Planning Meeting

Monday, October 7, 7:00–9:00pm

Northshore United Church of Christ, 18900 168th Ave NE, Woodinville 98072

Come help get the East King County PUD Initiative on the ballot next November. All are welcome!

SCAP? WHAT’S THAT?

Have you ever asked yourself:

  • When will King County follow Seattle’s lead on the Green New Deal, particularly banning fossil fuels like fracked gas in new construction?
  • How will the County decrease the number of miles driven by private cars?
  • How can the County reduce air travel?
  • When will the County start to measure the carbon embodied in building materials?
  • How can we build accountability into our climate action plans so we don’t continue to fall short of our goals?

If you have, or would like to, bring your questions and ideas to these public workshops on King County’s 2020 Strategic Climate Action Plan!

King County climate workshops

Saturday, October 12, 10:00am–12:00pm, University of Washington, RSVP here for North King County

Wednesday, October 16, 6:00–8:00pm, Highline College, RSVP here for South King County

These workshops are a once-in-five-years opportunity to help the most climate-conscious county in the state do more, better, to reduce our collective emissions footprint. And a lot more is needed.

ARDAGH’S BAD AIR

Glass packaging manufacturing is a notoriously harmful. The Ardagh operation has been one of the Northwest’s biggest polluters, spewing carcinogens into the air and water 24/7 since the 1930s, fighting clean up efforts all along the way.

County leaders have heard from interests with financial motives, but until now have declined to hear from members of the community who will be paying the price of this decision with their families’ health for years to come. This may be the community’s only opportunity be heard before the decision is made and finalized.

Environmental Impacts of Ardagh Glass

Tuesday, October 8, 6:30pm

South Seattle College Georgetown Campus, 6737 Corson Avenue South, Seattle 98108

Tony Wright, King County’s Director of Facilities Management, will hear concerns from the Georgetown community about the environmental impacts of Ardagh Glass’ toxic operations. More background information here.

EQUITY AND INCLUSION

Our new Equity and Inclusion workgroup is the next iteration of Frontline Allies, continuing to supercharge all our work, and deepening our equity work across the org with Lisa facilitating, and coaching from BJ at Wildfire. We have 7 co-leads on 4 teams: Solidarity, Equity Filter, Education, and Hiring, all of which have set ambitious but achievable goals for the year. We are looking for folks to engage as part of the Solidarity Team. If you are interested in getting involved in this important work, please RSVP to Kara who is developing the Solidarity Team.

SOLIDARITY

Here is a statement from Raynell Squil-le-he-le Morris and Ellie Tah-Mahs Kinley, the two Lummi tribal women intending to sue Miami Seaquarium, Palace Entertainment, and EQT, for the return of Sk’aliCh’elh-tenaut, the orca also known as Tokitae or Lolita:

“We will be together in prayer for Sk’aliCh’elh-tenaut next Thursday, October 10, at 9:30am. We are asking you all to join us from wherever you are. Please say her name, please pray in your own way, please carry her in in your heart. We want Sk’aliCh’elh-tenaut to feel our love, we want to send her hope and strength. Please pray for Miami Seaquarium to do the right thing and work in a good way with us to bring her home in 2020. Hy’shqe.”

Miami Seaquarium has until October 25, 90 days from the date of the letter of intent, to respond. Here is a shareable event page. And you can donate to the Tokitae Fund here.

SING WITH US

Join The People’s Echo to infuse our movement with music and learn original songs written for this very moment! Learn to be a song leader and come release endorphins with us!

Check out our group page for more info and mark your calendar with our upcoming song teach-ins: October 24, November 20, December 18, January 23, February 27, March 10 and April 23. Questions? Contact Ahlay.

BRING YOUR TEARS

Overwhelmed by the immensity of what needs to be done to reverse the enormous ecological crisis and injustice of our times? Community practice can help!

Grief and Empowerment Support Group

Saturday, October 12 10:0am–1:00pm

Capitol Hill, Seattle–for the address, register here.

Using practices developed by Joanna Macy and drawing on longstanding wisdom traditions, this monthly group for adults 18+ will gather to deeply feel, process and move through grief to empowerment. Limited childcare will be available on a first-come, first serve basis; contact Megan.

ARTFUL ACTIVISM

We welcome all skill levels in any art form, and have lots going on to jump into, from occasional participation to leadership opportunities. Join online here or come to art builds whenever you can! They are fun, no-skills-needed community gatherings with food and good connections.

Join the Deployment Team!
Ever wish you had a role during actions and events? Come learn crucial skills with us! We need you! Contact Shemona. Lots of opportunities to learn by doing this month!

If you’re a skilled artist (visual, theater, dance, music…) and want to apply your skill or show others how, please let us know! Contact Lisa.

Join our Photo/Imagery Library Team!
We’re organizing our photos and imagery data and are looking for folks who want to join a team to do photo sorting and labeling for our events and our imagery library. Also looking for an imagery co-librarian! Contact Lisa.

VOLUNTEER DROP-IN HOURS

Looking for an easy way to help out at 350 Seattle? Curious about other ways to get involved? Join us this month to meet others and help out with all the small things that keep 350 going! Tasks range from phone calls to data entry to arts and crafts.

Volunteer drop-in hours

October 16, 3:00–7:00pm

October 30, 3:00–6:00pm

350 Seattle, 1127 10th Ave East, Seattle 98102

Questions? Contact Shemona.

THANK-YOU-THURSDAY FUNDRAISER!

September was a busy month for the climate movement—both worldwide and locally! Let’s take a night to celebrate our hard work and raise some funds for future activism. $1 dollar from each pint, growler, or three-taster sets will be donated directly to 350 Seattle so that we can continue our work. We’ll also have activities with the chance to win a small prize, information about our upcoming events and ongoing campaigns, such as the Seattle Green New Deal.

350 Seattle Thank You Thursday at Reuben’s Brews Brewtap

Thursday, October 10, 3:00–9:00pm

Reuben’s Brews – The Brewtap, 800 NW 46th St., Seattle 98107

All ages welcome. Non-alcoholic beverages and hard cider also available. Please note, this event takes place at The Brewtap on 800 NW 46th St, not the Taproom on 14th Ave NW! Contact Allie with any questions.

COME PARTY WITH US AT INTERTWINED

Tickets for our fall fundraiser are on sale now! Come celebrate with us on Friday, November 15th at the Centilia Cultural Center. Buy your tickets now! Family friendly dinner, dessert, music, videos and more! Can’t make the early part of the evening? Come dance with us at the after party!

Want to help volunteer on the day of the event? We could really use your help with food prep, set up, auction logistics and more! Please Contact Shemona!

SAVE THE DATE

Remember the Battle of Seattle? Some of us do, and we’re joining with Washington Fair Trade Coalition and other community groups to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the World Trade Organization protests. Please join in!

20th anniversary of the WTO protests

Saturday, December 7

10:00am, Rally at Occidental Park

3:30pm, Workshops at Town Hall on the negative effects of trade agreements on climate and other topic areas

7:30pm, keynote by economist Joseph Stiglitz at Town Hall

To learn more, contact Hillary Haden of the Washington Fair Trade Coalition.

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From giving testimony at hearings to blockading oil trains, we work on all levels to fight for climate justice. We’re building a movement here in the region, and we need you!

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The Science

Why 350 is the most important number in history: To protect our world from devastating climate disruption, science tells us we must stop global warming in its tracks, and justice demands it. This means holding total warming to the peak seen since the last ice age, just a little over 1°C

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- Naomi Klein