September 2021 Newsletter
Aren’t we past the wake-up calls? What will it take to get climate action in the other Washington?
FEDERAL CLIMATE SPENDING
It’s crunch time for the reconciliation package in the House of Representatives.
Committees are finalizing the package, and by mid-September are expected to “mark-up” (debate, amend, re-write) the legislative text of the various reconciliation provisions. If Nancy Pelosi sticks to the schedule she set out earlier this summer, both the bi-partisan infrastructure bill and the House reconciliation bill will come to a vote by September 27th.
Will Joe Manchin’s predictable yet devastating opposition to the size of the 3.5 trillion-dollar spending package delay or diminish the climate action we so desperately need?
We’re not sitting still. Our Federal Policy Team continues to meet with Congressional offices, advocating for our favorite bills, including the End Polluter Welfare Act, the Build Green Infrastructure and Jobs Act, the Green New Deal for Public Housing Act, the newly proposed Polluters Pay Climate Fund Act and others.
To join a September 9 meeting with Pramila Jayapal’s staff, or a September 14th meeting with Adam Smith’s staff, email Selden.
In the meantime, sign this petition urging Biden to nominate a Fed Chair who will take action on climate-related risks, join Sunrise’s well-run phone bank between 9/8 and 9/15 in key Congressional districts, asking people to contact Congress regarding the reconciliation package. And here’s an excellent petition asking that the governments at COP26 in Glasgow commit to cuts in military emissions.
56 days until the Glasgow Climate Talks, the most important climate negotiations since the Paris Agreement was signed in 2015. Glasgow is a historic opportunity for the world to act on climate, but we won’t see the transformational action we need―unless the climate movement holds governments and corporations accountable.
That’s why we’ve joined with dozens of other organizations at Stop the Money Pipeline on the Deadline Glasgow: Defund Climate Chaos campaign to force financial institutions to phase out funding for fossil fuels by the start of the Glasgow Climate Talks, on November 1st.
And we’re taking to the streets. On August 13, here in Seattle, we shut down a Chase bank branch and painted the walls and the streets green to represent the big bank’s greenwashing efforts, as part of a global day of action against the Wall Street bankers of Line 3. Check out and share photos of the action on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
In two weeks, we’re taking part in a Petition Delivery Week of Action where we deliver the campaign petition to hundreds of bank branches and insurance offices. (We’re hoping to get at least 250,000 signatures on the petition before then, so if you haven’t yet, please sign the petition here and share it with family and friends!)
This week, our main online action is around the power of the federal government to regulate financial institutions and require that they stop bankrolling fossil fuels. We are calling for a Federal Reserve Chair who will use their power to advance climate action. President Biden could announce a new Fed Chair as soon as next week, and so we are turning up the pressure. Please call your Senators and ask them to support a climate-conscious Federal Reserve Chair that takes the danger climate chaos poses seriously!
We’re also launching a new program, Customers for Climate Justice, in which we support customers to leverage the special power that they have as customers to advocate for change at our targets. So if you are a customer with a big bank or insurance company that is funding fossil fuels, let us know by filling out this form.
We’ll be keeping you up to date with many of the key actions from the Deadline Glasgow campaign, but to get every update and to get the bi-weekly Deadline Glasgow campaign newsletter, you can join the Stop the Money Pipeline email list here.
LINE 3 RESISTANCE
The Indigenous-led movement to stop the Line 3 tar sands pipeline on Anishinaabe land in northern Minnesota continues in full force, even as pipeline construction nears completion. More than one thousand people gathered at the Minnesota State Capitol last week for the “Treaties not Tar Sands” rally and occupation, and earlier this week, members of the progressive House “Squad” visited Minnesota to urge President Biden to cancel the project.
Right now, President Biden and the Army Corps of Engineers are key targets, as pressure mounts on the White House to cancel the water permit for the project, which was issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and is currently under legal review. Send a message to Jamie Pinkham of the Army Corps of Engineers today here and urge him to #StopLine3.
TACOMA LNG RESISTANCE
The Pollution Control Hearings Board recently shared that on or before October 25th we can expect a decision on the Puyallup Tribe and Earthjustice’s legal appeal of Puget Sound Energy’s Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facility. Keep the prayers and good thoughts going for a decision on the side of justice, health, and a liveable planet.
While we wait on that decision, help demand that Tacoma City Council finally ban the expansion of existing fossil fuel operations. Public hearings and a vote are coming in the next couple months, but right now you can personalize a message here telling the city to reject amendments and exemptions that would allow polluters like Puget Sound Energy and US Oil to keep expanding.
Resistance Team Meeting
Thursday, September 16, 12:00pm
Online, register here.
Join our Resistance Team meeting to see how you can help support!
Seattle Public Schools (SPS) current and former students, families, staff and community members who want a healthy climate future are calling on the Seattle School Board to commit to rooftop solar for every Seattle school and to fully fund the Clean Schools Implementation Plan in the 2022 SPS Capital Projects Levy.
The Seattle School Board votes on what to include in the levy this fall. With sufficient public pressure, we can win funding for these climate goals: building community resilience, reducing climate pollution and helping Seattle Public Schools kickstart our region’s clean energy transition.
YOU can play a crucial role in building that public pressure by showing the Seattle School Board you support Solar Schools! Here’s how:
Sign and share the Solar Schools petition!
Even better, speak up at a virtual public hearing:
SPS Virtual Public Hearings
Tuesday, September 21, 6:30–8:00pm
Thursday, September 23, 6:30–8:00pm
Sign up here and our organizing team will reach out to you with more info and next steps.
And to learn about the campaign, connect with other SPS community members and prep for public hearings, attend our next organizing call!
Solar Schools Organizing Call – Prep for public hearings
Thursday, September 16, 6:30–7:30pm
Online, register here.
If left unregulated, shipping could be responsible for 17% of global CO2 emissions in 2050. The Shady Ships report, released by the ShipItZero campaign, shows how Amazon and other major retailers’ ocean shipping pollutes port communities, contributing to high rates of asthma, cancer, and premature death.
ShipItZero is a climate and public health campaign to move the world’s largest retail companies—Amazon, IKEA, Target and Walmart—to 100% zero-emissions ocean shipping by 2030. The campaign is pushing corporations to take responsibility for their ocean shipping pollution and lead the way to climate-friendly, clean-air shipping practices.
Maritime Solutions Team Meeting
Tuesday, September 7, 7:00pm
Online, register here!
We will welcome guest speaker Daniel from Pacific Environment to give a brief presentation on the ShipItZero Campaign and how to plug in, and do a Q&A.
Please support the Duwamish River Cleanup Coalition as they demand the EPA and responsible parties commit to a full river cleanup. Sign their petition here! For more information, check out this article from Grist: The EPA might water down its cleanup standards for Seattle’s only river.
Victory for North Seatac Park and local residents! Plans to turn 11 acres of forest and trails into an employee parking lot have been cancelled by the Port of Seattle. Thank you to King County Tree Equity for leading the protection efforts and everyone that signed their petition or spoke out at Port Commission Meetings!
CAN HYDROGEN BE A GREEN SOLUTION?
Hydrogen’s been in the news a lot lately. In the infrastructure bill that just passed in the Senate, almost $10 billion would fund projects to research hydrogen as a potential replacement for fossil fuels, and it’s seen as a key part of Biden’s long-term decarbonization strategy. But a major study just came out showing that certain types of hydrogen are even worse than coal!
Green hydrogen, made from renewable energy, may be key for hard to decarbonize sectors like the shipping industry, but all the greenwashing flying around makes it hard to know which hydrogen projects are true climate solutions. A new EarthJustice report sorts out the help from the hype when it comes to hydrogen power. You can also check out this recent presentation by Neal Anderson, 350 Seattle volunteer, on the different types of hydrogen, how to spot greenwashing, and his opinions on whether this is something we should support or oppose as we start seeing proposals for local hydrogen projects.
The shipping industry’s not waiting around to see how the debate plays out, though. Just a few days ago it was announced that the nation’s first hydrogen-powered ferry was launched for testing in Bellingham, WA.
CRUISE-FREE SALISH SEA
Cruise ships pollute our waterways by dumping sewage, trash and even toxic engine waste from “scrubbers”. Recently, 350 Seattle joined several organizations and tens of thousands of individuals in advocating for a ban on dumping scrubber waste in the Puget Sound via an amendment to the Memorandum of Understanding between Dept of Ecology, Port of Seattle and Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).
In an article by Manifold Times, covering CLIA’s refusal of the amendment, Marcie Keever with Friends of the Earth stated, “Scrubbers are nothing more than emissions cheat systems that turn air pollution into water pollution by dumping toxin-laden wastewater into our oceans. Studies show that this pollution drives up the acidity of surrounding waters and harms marine wildlife and ecosystems, including the endangered Southern Resident orcas. It is way past time for the cruise industry to stop dumping toxic wastewater into our waters.”
Although there have been numerous studies on the harmful impacts of dumping scrubber waste, CLIA wants to study the impacts to our region specifically before admitting the commonsense conclusion—toxic waste is bad for our marine environment!
Cruise companies could just pay for low-sulfur fuels and avoid using scrubbers all together. This refusal to use available mitigation, and refusal of the amendment demonstrates why we need to transition away from this harmful industry to a cruise-free Salish Sea.
Fill out this volunteer form to get involved with Seattle Cruise Control!
THE CAT IS BACK
That’s right, the 350 WA Civic Action Team is getting ready to launch this year’s cycle of our climate legislation campaign! Our mission this year is educating and empowering people to advocate in the Washington State legislature to pass strong, sound, and just climate policy while strengthening partnerships and relationships. We’re a volunteer-powered climate advocacy campaign, and last session we mobilized people across Washington to take over 18,000 legislative actions on climate.
We’re recruiting and onboarding new volunteers of all experience levels who want to help make this campaign a force to be reckoned with during the 2022 legislative session!
350 WA CAT Volunteer Campaign Launch
Wednesday, September 29, 6:30pm
Online, register here.
Our volunteer-driven teams help publish two emails and one text action a week during the legislative session. We also help constituents build lasting and effective relationships with their legislators before, during, and after the legislative session through virtual lobbying trainings and continuing engagement opportunities on climate policy. We provide the tools, trainings, education, and resources to make legislative action easy and accessible for all participants regardless of experience or background.
And guess what? We’re teaming up with other climate advocacy groups to host two virtual training events in preparation for next session’s Environmental Lobby Days. Attendees will learn how to be a Legislative District Lead, coordinate and lead a group of constituents to work as a lobbying team and set up and confirm appointments with legislative staff. (Hint: It’s easier than you think!)
Environmental Lobby Day Boot Camp
Same training, two dates!
Wednesday, September 22, 12:00pm
Online, register for Wednesday here. Shareable event page here.
Saturday, September 25, 10:00am
Online, register for Saturday here. Shareable event page here.
350 WA CAT wants to help you build relationships with your legislators and hold them accountable!
TRANSPORTATION BILL OF RIGHTS
The extreme heat and wildfires this summer have demonstrated that climate change is upon us. Transportation accounts for 45% of greenhouse gasses in Washington State. After the last legislative session ended without a new 16-year transportation package, Disability Rights WA, Front & Centered and 350 Seattle, with 350 WA Network local groups, came together to imagine a transportation system that would dramatically lower our carbon emissions.
The result is this Transportation Bill of Rights (TBR) and 350 WA Community Project List. Now we need your help to bring constituent pressure on the members of the House and Senate Transportation committees to halt road expansion and to invest in a green, equitable transportation future.
To get involved, email Ingrid with subject line “TBR.”
WASHINGTON GREEN AMENDMENT
The Green Amendment movement has come to Washington State. The movement seeks to secure for all people constitutional recognition and protection of their inalienable rights to pure water, clean air, a stable climate and healthy environments. It seeks to inspire and support self-executing, environmental rights amendments in the Bill of Rights section of every state constitution across the U.S. and ultimately at the federal level.
A Washington Green Amendment: A New Tool for Environmental Justice & Protection
September 14, 5:00pm
Online, register here.
Join state Representative Debra Lekanoff, prime sponsor of HJR 4205, in welcoming Maya van Rossum, founder of Green Amendments For The Generations, for a presentation and Q&A on the power of a Green Amendment to transform how we think about and pursue environmental protection and environmental justice from both a policy and legal perspective.
Want to help pass Washington’s Green Amendment? Contact David K.
HEALTHY AND SAFE BUILDINGS
Update: The hearing date has pushed back–there’s still time to get involved!
As we told you last month, King County is considering a policy that would eliminate most uses of fossil fuels like gas in commercial and large multifamily (over 5 stories) buildings in unincorporated King County. This policy is modelled after the energy codes Seattle passed in February, and as the new report, Methane Gas: Health, Safety, & Decarbonization indicates, very much needed.
Can you help King County pass their energy code updates?
Community members are needed to give testimony in a committee hearing later this month. If you live or work in unincorporated King County your testimony would be especially impactful! It’s not hard—a two-minute public statement over Zoom.
Using a node model organized into topics of interest, deepening our anti-oppression work through education, action and reflection, our two current nodes are centered around immigration justice and Indigenous sovereignty & solidarity. Nodes meet bi-weekly, in addition to a monthly drop-in time (via zoom) to ask questions and find out what’s happening in the nodes and how you can get involved!
Solidari-Tea Time drop-in!
Monday, September 20, 6:00–7:00pm
Online, register here.
FREE VIRTUAL SCREENING
To save her home from extreme weather, Malawian activist Anita Chitaya faces her greatest challenge: persuading Americans that climate change is real. As she travels across America, she meets climate skeptics and despairing farmers. Her journey takes her across all the divisions shaping the US, from the rural-urban divide to schisms of race, class and gender, to the thinking that allows Americans to believe they live on a different planet from everyone else. It will take all her skill and experience to help Americans recognize and free themselves from a logic that is already destroying the Earth.
“The Ants and the Grasshopper”
Includes Q&A with the producer
Sunday, September 26, 5:30pm
Online, register here.
CLIMATE GRIEF AND EMPOWERMENT
How are you feeling about climate change these days? Are you even letting yourself feel? Or is it too big to process? Being overwhelmed by climate-related emotions is a shared experience. We can continue to act from a grounded state when we process these experiences together.
Climate Grief and Empowerment
Saturday, September 11, 10:00–11:45am
Online, register here.
We will move through four interactive stages during our time together: Gratitude, Honoring Our Pain for the World, Seeing with New and Ancient Eyes, and Going Forth. Learn more about the group here.
We are made of stories and the impacts of these narratives ripple out through our relationships and our culture. We invite you to join us to explore the power of storytelling.
Friday, September 24, 6:00–7:30pm
Online, register here.
Together we learn new writing skills, listen to story readings, and write from a guiding prompt. Join us on the final Friday of each month. All are welcome!
Art makes our movement inviting and gives people of all ages and backgrounds a way to participate in important issues. Artful Activism makes our gorgeous banners, powerful and fun props, engaging music, theater, graphics, and more. Please join us!
Building Art Together
Join us for a few hours—drop ins welcome, bring family and friends! No skills needed, just smiling eyes and clothes for mess, your own mask, water and snack if you want one. (Masks required due to new Covid variants.)
In Person Green New Deal Screen Print Painting
Saturday or Sunday, September 18 or 19, 1:00–5:00pm
Outdoor location in Greenlake/Wallingford TBD based on weather
RSVP to Lisa M. for date and location.
We’re following CDC and WA state guidelines and will be practicing Covid precautions. We are working with those who show up around people’s individual needs. Everyone is at a different place with comfort levels, vaccine schedules, ever changing new variant challenges, etc., so we ask that everyone please come into the outdoor space symptom-and-known-exposure-free, with respect for other people’s boundaries, practicing social distancing, and wearing masks.
We’re also doing skilled art relays from home if that works better for you, and you already have some art or sewing skills you want to put to use.
If you are interested in either one, or are more available and want to be on a short list of people who get contacted last minute for smaller art builds, please contact Lisa M.
Deployment of our powerful and beautiful art!
No LNG overpass bannering for the Puyallup’s fight to keep the new LNG facility off! If you can help for an hour in the early evening (currently 5:30-6:30 pm on Thursdays at N. 50th St.), please sign up here, and with questions, contact Alison.
And if you are interested in other deployment opportunities and trainings to be able to guide last minute volunteers at events, we need YOU! Please contact Eric.
Join the Artful Workgroup
We’re looking for people with skills in any area of art including performance arts, visual arts like graphics, painting, drawing, screen printing, building props, etc. and people at any skill level with creative strategic humor and energy who like to brainstorm. Contact Lisa M.
Not skilled? No worries, join us! We’ll teach you how! We all love to see the work we had our hand in making, make a difference in the world! No skills tasks like tracing, cutting, twisting ties, painting in between the lines, etc. are always needing people. You’ll be surprised at how quickly you want to try a little something more! Sign up here.
THE PEOPLE’S ECHO
The People’s Echo is a singing collective for social and climate justice. We create and share songs that are medicine for us in these mysterious times. We sing for the healing of ourselves, each other, and the earth. Singing together is a human birthright that has less to do with “sounding good” and more to do with settling into our bodies, calming our nervous systems, and being together in community. We invite you to join us in song!
In Person Song Teach-In
Saturday, September 25, 6:30–8:30pm
Woodland Park (exact location to be confirmed)
More details here.
We recognize that everyone has different risk and comfort levels around gathering and singing. For the health and safety of everyone, all attendees are asked to wear masks throughout the event, regardless of vaccination status, and maintain 6 feet of distance between self and others, unless you are in the same household or pod. If you need to eat or drink, please step away from the circle. We will have masks available on site. Thank you for helping us to keep each other safe!
Bring chairs and/or blankets to sit on and anything else you need to be comfortable outside for several hours. Email Ahlay for accessibility and/or other inquiries.
If you took photos at a recent 350 Seattle event, art build, or action and are willing to share what you captured with our community, we invite you to submit your best images to our Photo Library. Your photos will be saved for future use in our organization’s storytelling, including our outreach, communications, and fundraising efforts. Here are our guidelines for submitting photos to our library editors.
There’s always a lot happening in the climate justice movement, which is why we need folks like you who are there to capture it! Thank you for helping us illustrate our story.
SAVE THE DATE: INTERTWINED
Mark your calendars for our annual fundraising event! On Friday, November 12th we will be gathering online for a celebration of our interconnectedness and to raise money for our work to advance climate justice.
Are you with a business or organization that would like to sponsor the event? Click here to learn more!
THANK YOU, MONTHLY SUSTAINERS!
Thank you so much to all of you who started or increased your support for 350 Seattle through a monthly sustaining donation.
We are deeply grateful to you for being one of them. By giving monthly support you not only help us continue this work, but you are ensuring that we remain powered by the community. We get very little money from large donors and zero from mega corporations ― and that’s the way we want to keep it.
If you missed your chance to give during the drive and have the means to be a monthly donor, you can sign up here.
Want more general information about 350 Seattle? Check out this handy new volunteer welcome guide.
Here are some really great ways to start on that path of engagement! Check out our updated Volunteer Opportunities List. Opportunities range from low commitment to high, introductory to skilled. All you have to do is find something you’re excited about and reach out! Unless otherwise noted, all opportunities can be done from home.
Unsure what you want to do? Still have questions about who we are and what we do? Schedule a time to chat with Shemona either by phone or video chat.
No time? Well, never fear—you can support the work we do at 350 Seattle by becoming a monthly donor! Sign up here.
Enjoy the last days of summer, friends—COP 26 in Glasgow is right around the corner.