Tell Woonsocket City Council: No Pipeline! Call Today!

From FANG:

Invenergy, the company trying to build a massive fossil fuel power plant in Burrillville, is desperate to find a source of water for the proposed plant. Their newest water scheme is to build a 15-20 mile long pipeline to bring wastewater from Woonsocket, across the Northern part of Rhode Island, to Burrillville.

If we can stop this wastewater piepline, it is most likely that Invenergy will have to cancel their power plant proposal.

The Mayor of Woonsocket is meeting with the City Council THIS WEEK to discuss this dangerous proposal. Please call TODAY and email the Woonsocket City Council members and urge them to reject the waste water pipeline and help stop Invenergy’s toxic power plant!

Denise Sierra: 401-769-6474
Richard Fagnant: 401-309-9288
Jim Cournoyer: 401-864-9995
Melissa Murray: 401-327-0615
Christopher Beauchamp: 401-356-4940
Jon Brien: 401-559-3999
Daniel Gendron: 401-769-4458

SAMPLE CALL SCRIPT:

“Hello – my name is ______ and I’m calling to urge you to reject Invenergy’s wastewater pipeline proposal. The wastewater pipeline would be used to help run Invenergy’s proposed toxic power plant. The emissions from the plant would impact a huge radius, including Woonsocket.

So far twelve cities and towns across the State have passed resolutions against the plant, including Burrillville who have formally requested your help in stopping the power plant.

The power plant would be bad for Rhode Island, and a 15-20 mile long wastewater pipeline poses a huge risk if there were to be a leak.

Do the right thing and reject the wastewater pipeline and help stop Invenergy’s toxic power plant.”

You can also mention Rhode Island’s need and capacity to transition to renewable energy, and  the fact that any jobs that come out of this will likely go away when the pipeline is built.

Here’s an easily shareable version of this information.


More information about this unfolding situation here: http://www.rifuture.org/public-not-invited-to-a-series-of-woonsocket-city-council-meetings-discussing-sale-of-water-to-invenergy/

No LNG in PVD: Public Hearing 12/13, 5:15pm, Providence City Hall

Let the Providence City Council hear your opposition to the proposed liquid natural gas (LNG) facility in Fields Point (South Providence):

Tuesday, December 13th, 5:15pm

Providence City Hall (25 Dorrance St.), 3rd floor

Read here for details, reasons why the city should not permit National Grid to build this facility, and talking points. Here’s the text of the resolution itself.

 

No LNG in PVD: Community Meeting 10/29

Providence friends and readers, I hope you’ll come to this community meeting to keep National Grid from building a dangerous liquid natural gas (LNG) processing facility on the already environmentally-compromised (and environmentally unjust) South Side.

 

No LNG in PVD Community Meeting

Saturday 10/29, 3-5pm

Renaissance Church, 184 Broad St, Providence, RI

 

You can find more information about the risks and injustices of the project here. The Facebook event for the community meeting is here.

North Dakota Police and Military Attack Standing Rock Water Protectors

The alliance of over 300 peoples resisting the Dakota Access Pipeline is under aggressive attack by police, National Guard and other forces.

As I post this, Atsa E’sha Hoferer was still posting live from the site.

Kelly Hayes spoke yesterday with people there about the history and context of their resistance.

You can donate to the legal defense fund for the water protectors, if you have money to spare.

Climate Anxiety Counseling at the Armory Park Farmers’ Market, 10/6/16

Weather: Cool and sunny and dry, chilly toward twilight

Number of people: 10 stoppers, 10 walkbys

Number of hecklers: 0!

Dogs spotted: 13

Dogs pet: 0. That’s ZERO FOR THIRTEEN. A scandal and a shame, I tell you.

Money raised for Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island: $1:50

 

Observations:

I’d intended to be there till 7, but only stayed till 6:30, when it was getting too dark to write.

I had just enough Rhode Island organism cards to hand out to people who spoke with me.

Someone tried to ventriloquize their climate anxieties through their baby, which is the most extreme version of next-generation-ism I’ve seen yet.

 

Some conversations:

I’m anxious that the Republicans think that climate change is a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, because that’s a major political party which is supposedly half of the country–that’s a lot of people that think climate change is not real.

What scares you about that?

If people don’t think it’s real, it will continue to get worse and before we can do anything about it, it’ll be too late–it already is too late.

Too late for what? 

Well, we can’t stop the polar ice caps from melting. In 30 years, we’ll be underwater. I’m not really sure, maybe. It’s really difficult to think about because no one wants to die and no one wants the world to die, but it might.

*

[These two knew each other, and mostly talked together with a little input from me.]

Person 1: In this community, I don’t know how many people worry about climate change. It’s concerning, yes, but people are worried about food in the stomach. I wonder if people will see [you] and think, What’s wrong with that person.

Person 2: I worry about the economy, the rate at which automation is going. There are already driverless cars–a lot of people are going to be put out of work. What 10 people used to do, now one person does it, and it’s going to be automated–no one’s talking about how it’s going to be managed … A lot of people are going to be out of work. It’s coming, it’s coming fast.

Person 1: This kind of conversation asks me to think about all of that. I might have been thinking otherwise, but now I have to think about it this way, and I am thinking: the way we know life will never be the same, because once technology and automation…get into the picture, life will be different–the larger population are not used to that, and who is having that conversation?

Person 2: Nobody!

Person 1: Who comes to this neighborhood and talks about automation? Who’s saying, “Your life is gonna change?”

*

Sickness. My pressure [touches chest]. My back hurting–I’m not able to stand.

*

We’re wasting our rainwater, we should save our rainwater, and we’re doing terrible things to our soil. We don’t take care of it at all, our Grandmother Earth. And they’re not enjoying it–it’s “supposed to” be used up and made into money, rather than this gift that we should love and take care of. The company doing landscaping at the East Side Market, they’re ripping up the shrubs. Those are living things! I can hear them crying–I know it’s ridiculous, but–and then it gets dumped. There’s a society against cruelty for animals, there should be one for cruelty against plants, the planet–it’s taken years for them to get the way they are. I’m a landscape designer, I educate people all the time … Leave the plants where they are, let them grow deep roots, and go and sit amongst them.

It’s wonderful to hear someone talk about plants with so much love, and the relationships between plants and humans.

It feeds each other, right, we do need to stick together.

*

High property taxes, and nobody gets anything for the money. What I would really like to see–the thing that irks me more than anything is that [while] property taxes are so high, out-of-town companies get tax stabilization agreements and that creates housing that takes away the tenant pool for the rest of us, and we foot the tax bill. It creates an enormous inequity and fleeces the rest of the city. If taxes make it impossible, if you can’t afford to build here without a TSA, you can’t afford to build here. But the companies all pay the prevailing wage, so it’s all union jobs, so the union supports them because they can’t get jobs anywhere else…Most of the construction guys I know who are in the union commute up to Boston, and they do have work up there, they are working.

*

[These two came up together and appeared to share a dog.]

Person 1: We moved here six months ago from Chicago, and we were really excited about this neighborhood. But there’s so much garbage in the streets … I think it’s related to the way we treat the climate.

Person 2: I picked up so much garbage the first few months, and then I’d come out the next morning and it’d be all dirty again, and I sort of gave up.

Do you still pick up garbage though? 

Oh yeah, and there’s kind of an unofficial group who walks through [the park] and picks up glass, and it’s comforting to see them and know I’m not the only one.

 

 

 

 

Climate Anxiety Counseling TODAY: Armory Park Farmer’s Market, 3:30-7pm

Today is the last, the very last, session of Climate Anxiety Counseling for 2016. The booth and I will be at the Armory Park Farmers’ Market (just off Parade St.) from 3:30-7pm. You can share your climate-change-related and other anxieties with me, take home a drawing of one of your nonhuman neighbors, donate 5 cents (my fee) to the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island, and pick up a flyer for the Interdependence Days we’ve started holding again. You can also buy some vegetables. Come see me!

Interdependence Days return: 10/4/16, 6-8pm

After a month of consideration and revision, Interdependence Days–community gatherings, based in (but not limited to) the Broadway neighborhood, free and open to the public–are back, every Tuesday night through December. The next one is TODAY, October 4th, 6-8pm at 186 Carpenter St., Providence.
Aria Boutet and Ada Smailbegovic will lead us in walking, noticing, and writing in the streets around 186 Carpenter St (there will be a stay-put version for people who arrive late or don’t walk well).
As always, we’ll use a brief ritual of voice to welcome each other to the gathering and to send each other out into the world at the end, and we’ll share stories and food. We’ll also outline a few additional guidelines for treating each other with respect while we’re there, and ask people about things we might work on together when we’re not there–group efforts that would meet a need or a desire within the community.
Again, that’s tomorrow (Tuesday), 6-8pm, 186 Carpenter St. Bring some food to share if you can and want to (you don’t have to).
Write to the organizers at the Facebook page or at my gmail address, publiclycomplex, if you have questions.

No LNG in PVD: City Council Hearing TODAY, 9/12/16, 5pm

The Providence City Council’s Ordinance Committee is meeting today to discuss Councilman Seth Yurdin’s proposal to strengthen the Council’s opposition to the proposed National Grid LNG facility in South Providence. (Slightly fuller coverage of this resolution and the process here.)

This committee meeting has an opportunity for public comment. Please go if you can and let the City Council know that the city’s people don’t want this dangerous facility here.

Climate Anxiety Counseling: Sankofa World Market, 9/1/16

Weather: Coolish, muggy. Rained earlier so everything was soggy. Sun came out and stayed out, mostly, around 4:15.

Number of people: 11 stoppers, 9 walkbys

Number of hecklers: 0! I think one guy was messing with me, but not in a mean way

People who recognized the Peanuts reference: 1

Dogs seen: 21

Dogs pet: 2

Ferrets seen: 1, on a leash

Ferrets pet: No

Money raised for the Environmental Justice League of Rhode Island: $6.35

 

Observations:

Maybe this is a good time to remind readers that A) I don’t call out to people from the booth–they choose to come up to me or not; 2) people can talk to me about whatever’s pressing most on their mind, even if it’s not climate-change-related; D) I try not to argue with people at the booth, though I may try to get them to see something from an angle they haven’t previously considered.

This market was extremely rich in both kids and dogs. There’s a playground in the park, and the fields of the park itself; lots of playing, running around, shrieking, and so on. One kid stood rapt as a human threw a frisbee for a dog and the dog caught it in the air.

I heard enough people speaking Spanish to each other that I think the next time I’m in this spot, on 10/6, I’m going to try to line up an English <–> Spanish translator.

An unusual number of people, including lots of kids, marked a map of the state with a place in Rhode Island they love and would like to protect. Some places they marked on the map: the coast (x2), the park (for riding her bike), the zoo, Block Island, CityFarm, Dimeo Farm and farmland in Johnston, Burger King, Brockton (Massachusetts, where her family and friends live), salt ponds, farmland in Portsmouth and Newport, his house. A kid with an orange slushie circled the whole state.

 

Some conversations

Kid 1: Are you a doctor?

No, not really, but I talk to people about their worries.

Kid 2: Can we talk to you?

Yeah, you can talk to me. 

Kid 2: [Throws me an extremely suspicious look, leaves]

*

[These two came up together; the first speaker is the second speaker’s son.]

Person 1: I’m waiting for a kidney transplant. I’ve been waiting for two years and eight months. My friend’s finishing up with the testing and it looks like it could be good.

Person 2: We’re hoping that he’s gonna be a good recipient and that she–that it’s gonna go well for both of them.

That is a transplant they do a lot.

Person 1: Yeah, you don’t realize it until you’re in the situation. Everyone at the party has had it … I have dialysis Monday, Wednesday, Friday. I’m grateful for the help that I’ve gotten, I’m happy to have Obamacare, I don’t care what anyone says. My medicine would be $2000–it would be $44, 000 a month for dialysis.

*

I worry about my children. They don’t do anything bad, it’s just concern. Like in school, are they okay, are they gonna be okay in the future in school, are they gonna be okay if they go to college, how will they deal with it? One goes to [NAME OF HIGH SCHOOL], one goes to middle school. I wonder if they put pressure on themselves. The one in high school, she’s gonna take three advanced classes, she’s just gonna be a junior–is that a lot of pressure? She says she likes the challenge … If they don’t get what they want are they gonna be disappointed in themselves, are they gonna be something wrong? She’s a cancer survivor when she’s four, now she’s sixteen and she says, “I want to be a doctor, a children’s cancer doctor,” and you don’t wanna say, “It’s kinda hard,” but … How do you approach that? Once they become adult, they don’t talk to you. She brings me her report card, in calculus I think she got a C, she said, “Oh, you gonna yell at me? You can yell at me, I’m already mad at myself.” I’m not gonna yell at her!

I teach college and I’m also an advisor for students, and a lot of students, especially if they’re the first generation in their family to go to college, they worry about making their parents proud, about giving back to their parents.

But that’s not what we want. We want them-we know how it is to survive, we don’t really care what we are. For us, we start with nothing, we want them to do good, not for us, not to help us, it’s more for themselves. We just want them to have their own easy life.

*

Black people being shot by angry white people, ’cause nowadays everybody seems to be shooting Black people. Education and job security for my children. Saving Black babies here in Rhode Island–maternal and infant health. I run a cloth diaper service, I’m trying to help the environment.

*

Smaller Sister: I’m scared of something.

What are you scared of? 

Smaller Sister: I’m scared of poisons, poisonous spiders.

Slightly Larger Sister: I’m scared that somebody poison my food and make me eat it.

[A few minutes later, Smaller Sister comes back with Smallest Sister]

Smaller Sister: She’s scared of dogs.

Little dogs or big dogs?

Smallest Sister: Big dogs.

*

The word, “Anthropocene.”* The idea that an entire stage in the planet’s existence could be defined by human destruction. I read this headline, “Scientists define the Anthropocene,” and that really made me anxious … When I was a kid I had this Reader’s Digest atlas, with all sorts of information in the back, and there was a list of geological epochs, and I always think of the Holocene as being the geological epoch in which I live. And that we’ve changed things so fundamentally that we can never go back to living in the Holocene–

How does that cause you to approach the world, how you perceive things?

Even if we get to the state where we’ve reduced emissions so that temperatures are back to what they were during the Holocene, we won’t be able to go back. We’ll have changed so much. I still have that optimism–it’s just who I am, the belief that millions of people will change their minds, that something will bring it home to people. But it’s so definite–one era ends and the other begins. It implies a tipping point. I suppose that’s why they use it.

*Doctor’s note: I hate this word too, but for different reasons, which I might outline here or somewhere.

*

I wanna be an adult and buy property, but I’m worried if I go too far south it’s gonna be dry, and I don’t wanna move too far north. I don’t wanna buy property along the coast. Should I think more about farming my own sustenance?

It sounds like you’re worried that you might not be able to have the life you imagined.

Yeah. The old models that my parents used to plan their future don’t apply anymore.

 

 

 

 

Climate Anxiety Counseling at the Armory Park Farmers’ Market TODAY (9/1)

I’ll be at the Armory Park Farmer’s Market with the Climate Anxiety Counseling booth today, 3:30-6:30 pm (the market runs till 7, but I’m going to set up for the Interdependence Days mini-show closing). This is my first time boothing it up at this market, in a park that I really love, one of the places in Providence where you can see a lot of the sky at once.

The booth and my materials are mostly paper and cardboard, so we may be a little pulpy if the rain keeps up, but come and visit anyway.