Phyllis Theermann

This Monday, Governor Charlie Baker and Democratic candidate Jay Gonzalez are invited to share their visions for climate leadership in Massachusetts at a special non-partisan event in Jamaica Plain.

Opportunities for this type of civic engagement are rare so RSVP by clicking here and mark your calendars for THIS Monday, October 1st, at 7 pm, at the First Church in JP (6 Eliot St., Jamaica Plain), hosted by the Jamaica Plain Forum.

Come hear what the candidates have to say about our state’s crucial environmental issues, the importance of renewable energy legislation, and their ideas on mitigating climate change. (Please Note: As we write this, Jay Gonzalez has confirmed his participation. Charlie Baker has not yet responded.)

Sustainable Wellesley has joined 350 Mass and Mass Sierra Club as a co-sponsor of this event as part of our commitment to  helping voters focus on environmental issues when making decisions about which candidates to support. We encourage you to make your voice heard and learn more  before you cast your votes on November 6th.

Register for the event on Eventbrite by clicking here.

Share the  Facebook event here.

Phyllis Theermann

As part of National Preparedness Month, Communities Responding to Extreme Weather (CREW) is hosting the first annual Climate Preparedness Week! CREW and partner groups are coordinating activities throughout Greater Boston with the support of local schools, businesses, city governments, and nonprofit organizations. Read some of the media coverage, and be sure to check out the full calendar of activities. Learn more here.

photo credit: Bob Ackley, Gas Safety Inc

Last week’s tragic gas explosions in the Merrimack Valley have many people wondering about the future of gas in Massachusetts and whether the dangers outweigh the risks. The fact is, this tragedy could have happened in any community with gas, no matter what gas company was involved. Gas is a highly volatile substance and human error is always a possibility. Since 1987, there have been more than 3,200 gas accidents in the US that were deemed serious or significant by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (part of the US Department of Transportation).

There are safer choices. We don’t have to rely on gas to power our homes and businesses. The Mass Clean Energy Center has great resources on alternatives so you can start making the switch to clean, safe heating and cooling — and start saving money.

As we face this crisis together, let’s not repeat last century’s mistake and simply rebuild out-moded — and dangerous — gas pipelines. Even before the horrific accident in the Merrimack Valley, the state had projected a cost of $9 billion for the necessary replacement of all the failing gas pipe in Massachusetts. Let’s choose a faster, cheaper, safer way forward! We need to rethink our fuel source and how the state regulates and oversees our utilities.

Meanwhile, let’s do everything we can to help our neighbors in the Merrimack Valley. Sustainable Wellesley is active with the Gas Leaks Allies who have started a GoFundMe campaign to raise money to buy electric induction cooktops for folks who have electricity but no way to cook or heat water. We are helping with the volunteer effort to deliver the cooktops to those in urgent need — let us know if you can help!

Here is a link with more ideas on how you can help.