Blog – Climate

  • Food, Films, Transportation & More This Sunday From 1-3pm

    Join us Sunday, November 5th from 1-3pm in the loft overlooking the golf course at 161 Oakland Street for a Sustainable Wellesley get together. Interesting Topics including:

    Transportation and clean vehicles discussion from Eleanor Fort, Union of Concerned Scientists – Food and The Environment – Winter Film Series – Gas leaks update – including upcoming pipeline event on 11/6 at the State House

    ***Please bring clean bandanas, fabric squares, scarves you can donate for Sustainable Wellesley to use at our booth at the Wellesley Marketplace event***

    This is a great group of folks who’s actions together make a measurable difference in Wellesley. Plus, the meetings are humorous and on time, so please add this to your calendar. Feel free to invite a friend, family member, work colleague or neighbor.

    Never been before? No problem. Sustainable Wellesley gets together a few times a year to talk about issues happening in our community and what we can do to make a difference.

    Please email us at info@sustainablewellesley.com to let us know if you will be there, plus issues, concerns, ideas of your own.

    See you Sunday! Snacks provided.

  • Frustrated With The Train?

    You are not alone.

    The Union of Concerned Scientists acknowledges that our transportation system is old, congested, under funded, and inaccessible, and it’s our state’s largest source of global warming emissions (40%). Plus, transportation related pollution causes over 3,000 asthma attacks, 500 preventable deaths, and $1.3 billion in combined health costs in Massachusetts a year. Low income and otherwise vulnerable communities suffer disproportionately from these impacts.

    However, they have an idea on how to build a clean, affordable, accessible, equitable, convenient system that offers access to jobs, schools, and services across the Commonwealth.

    Come hear about it from Ms. Eleanor Fort from the Union of Concerned Scientists this Sunday, November 5th from 1-3pm at 161 Oakland Street. Since Governor Baker has shown continued commitment to the Paris climate agreement, including setting a goal of reducing transportation emissions by 35% by 2030 under the Global Warming Solutions Act, and working on a regional collaboration with other Northeast states to address these issues, there is hope.

    Ms. Fort will explain a transportation cap and invest program that could potentially raise up to $4.7 billion, including over $120 million per year for clean vehicle incentives, $120 million in affordable housing initiatives, and $225 million to improve public transportation for Massachusetts. A cap and invest program could help the Commonwealth achieve their climate goal while also expanding transportation access, creating jobs, and reducing health costs. Similar regional programs, including the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), have succeeded when states work together to reduce emissions, strengthen the economy, and save consumers money.

    A clean, equitable, modern transportation system is within our reach.

  • EASILY FLEX YOUR POLITICAL MUSCLE

    We are Making it Easy For You.

     

    Don’t feel paralyzed.  Make your views heard on important federal and state ENERGY issues:

    1. FEDERAL The EPA estimated the Clean Power Plan would prevent up to 6,600 premature deaths and 150,000 asthma attacks in children. Yet, the EPA Chief announced that the Administration will start the process of dismantling this policy. The health and well being of our communities depends on strong climate action from our government, not the removal of protections. Here is an easy way for you to write to our Federal Government about maintaining and improving our Clean Power Plan.

    2. STATE The gas industry has been pushing for a tax on OUR electric bills to build new interstate fracked gas pipelines. Not only is this terrible for our environment, but it is a risky investment for us consumers. Democratic and Republican state legislators are circulating a sign-on letter to oppose the pipeline tax and reform the Department of Public Utilities to make the agency more democratic. Urge your state legislator to sign on by clicking here here.

       
  • Massachusetts + Solar

    Last week, Sustainable Wellesley — with 84 other environmental, civic, housing, health, faith organizations and businesses representing tens of thousands of Massachusetts residents — co signed a letter to Chairman Barrett, Chairman Golden, and members of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy urging them to approve legislation that will expand solar energy and ensure that its benefits are available to all. Excerpts from the letter are below. To learn more and get involved on the State level, please email info@SustainableWellesley.com.

    “Solar energy has grown rapidly in recent years, with more than 300 times as much solar capacity installed today as in 2007. Thanks to supportive state policies as well as the efforts of countless families, businesses, institutions and municipalities, Massachusetts has emerged as a national leader for solar energy. We are seeing the benefits of solar energy all around us. Solar is helping to clean up our air and protect our health from dangerous fossil fuel pollution.

    We are emitting less carbon dioxide and other climate-altering pollution, which contributes to rising sea levels, more severe storms, and other impacts of global warming.

    Cities and towns are reducing their municipal electric bills and saving money for their residents by installing solar panels on capped landfills, brownfields, and rooftops. Nonprofits and affordable housing organizations are switching to solar to stabilize their energy costs and invest more of their resources in serving their communities.

    According to MassCEC, more than 18,000 Massachusetts residents are now working for solar companies, a number that will grow with continued policy leadership from state officials.

    For all of the progress we have made, we have still tapped only a small fraction of Massachusetts’ solar potential. To maximize the benefits to our environment, our health, and our communities, we should accelerate the growth of solar energy and ensure that everyone in Massachusetts has access to its benefits.

    Unfortunately, the caps on net metering are preventing families, businesses, nonprofits and local government from switching to solar power. Although the Legislature acted last year to raise the caps, the increase was insufficient to accommodate continued solar growth. As a result, communities served by National Grid and Unitil, as well as Western Massachusetts communities served by Eversource, have once again seen solar projects stall due to the caps.

    Additionally, the 40 percent cut in the value of net metering credits, adopted by the Legislature when it raised the net metering caps last session, is making it harder for many to switch to solar. This adverse impact is particularly severe for affordable housing providers, low-income families, renters, and others who are unable to install solar panels on the roofs of their homes….

    Specifically, we recommend taking the following steps: 1. Eliminate the caps on net metering. Absent an elimination of net metering caps, they should be lifted by no less than 5 percentage points for public and private projects, to provide certainty for solar projects over the coming year. 2. Restore the full value of net metering credits, particularly for projects that benefit low-to-moderate income communities. For the long term, we also support a thorough and transparent process to study and adopt a “value of solar” methodology that fairly accounts for all of the benefits that solar provides as well as the costs. 3. Set aside a portion of any future solar incentive program to benefit low-income communities and renters. 4. Allow net metering”

     
  • Truth To Power

    Quentin Prideaux, President of Sustainable Wellesley, spoke most recently in Wakefield about the impacts and causes of climate change, the actions we need to take, and what it all means for Massachusetts and the Northeast. You can watch the talk by clicking on the video above.

    Quentin will be part of a panel of experts at the conclusion of TCAN’s showing of An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power this Sunday night at 7.30pm.

    Grab tickets to learn how close we are to a real energy revolution. Vice President Al Gore continues his tireless fight traveling around the world training an army of climate champions and influencing international climate policy – including Quentin.

    Interested in hearing more from Quentin? Having him speak to a group of yours? Contact him at qprideaux@gmail.com.

    His talks:

    -Share why some have been confused about the science

    – Discuss a serious topic, Quentin keeps it positive and lighthearted where possible

    – Lead into a question and answer session and/or a workshop where participants can discuss specific actions they will take – according to the wishes of the organizers

    – Are informative, intelligent, visually appealing, very lively, smart and funny

  • Foodie Event, Book Club, RDF Dates, Global Warming Discussions and more

    Check out our CALENDAR page to learn more about upcoming foodie events, book clubs, paint collection/ shredding at the RDF dates, global warming and your backyard discussions and much more!

    Have something to promote? Let us know at info@sustainableWellesley.com.

  • An Open Letter to Wellesley Municipal Light Plant’s Board and the Selectmen

      This spring, amid growing concern about the federal government’s withdrawal from Paris Climate Agreement, many Wellesley residents have been searching for ways to ensure that our town’s energy policies reflect the priorities and values of our community in combatting climate change.  In April, a group of 50 residents sent a letter to the Board of the Municipal Light Plant expressing concern over the board’s policy on renewable energy and whether it adequately supports our state renewable energy goals under the state Global Warming Solutions Act. The MLP board held a public meeting on energy policy in late May, and on June 26, the leadership team of Sustainable Wellesley presented a petition to the MLP board and the Board of Selectmen signed by more than 200 Wellesley residents. Our July 12 letter to the MLP board — included below — is the latest in this on-going dialogue about renewable energy policy in our town. Sustainable Wellesley invites interested residents to share their views with us at info@sustainablewellesley.com.

     

    July 12, 2017

    To the Board of the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant:

     

    We are writing to follow-up with you on the recent public discussions concerning your renewable energy policy and the Sustainable Wellesley petition submitted to you on June 26, 2017, signed by 205 Wellesley residents. The signers of the petition requested that you support the Paris Climate Agreement, despite the recent withdrawal by the federal government, and take specific local actions to reflect the priorities and values of our community. We asked that you commit to a goal of 100 percent renewable energy, and to meeting or exceeding state clean energy standards under the authority of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection in support of the goals outlined by the state Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA).

     

    As you know, Wellesley Town Meeting adopted a goal in 2014 to reduce Town-wide carbon emissions 25 percent below 2007 levels by 2020. Approximately one-quarter of the Town’s carbon emissions result from the electricity sector. The Town will be unable to achieve its carbon reduction goal without meaningful changes in the portfolio of the Municipal Light Plant. Given the urgent need for local action to protect our climate, we believe Wellesley should not only meet this goal, but also set a course for 100 percent renewable energy for our town. More than 30 U.S. cities and towns have committed to 100 percent renewable energy goals — and some have already achieved it. The town of Concord, MA, recently set ambitious goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and is now on track for 65 percent renewably-sourced electricity by 2018.

     

    Concerning our request that the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant accept the authority of the state Department of Environmental Protection, we appreciate that the board has a strong desire to maintain local control of their activities without regulatory oversight by the state. To be responsible to Wellesley residents, this local control needs to respect both the stated goal of Wellesley Town Meeting and the mandated requirements of the GWSA, the landmark climate law of our state. The GWSA requires reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from each sector of the economy summing to a total reduction of 25 percent below the 1990 baseline emission level in 2020 and at least an 80 percent reduction in 2050. Massachusetts will be unable to achieve the carbon reduction goals mandated by the GWSA without the participation of communities served by municipal light plants.

    We also wish to underscore that towns with municipal light plants, such as Wellesley, have so far avoided the challenge and higher costs of shifting to clean sources of energy, while ratepayers in towns with investor-owned utilities are required to do so. Wellesley currently enjoys an electricity rate that is roughly 30 percent below that of our neighbors who get their electricity from investor-owned utilities, which are subject to the state clean energy standard.

    We therefore call upon you: 

    1. To revise the mission statement of the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant to reflect a commitment to renewable energy and energy conservation.

    2.  To develop a Wellesley renewable energy standard that meets or exceeds the state requirements. This standard should be quantifiable and should increase annually with a goal of achieving 100 percent renewable energy on a schedule to be determined that works for our Town.

    3. To work with the Municipal Electric Association of Massachusetts to develop a system of accountability for the proposed standard.

    We appreciate that the development of this policy will require input from Town leadership and from residents with relevant expertise, and therefore, we are sharing this letter with the Wellesley Board of Selectmen and the wider community.

    Respectfully yours,

    Regina LaRocque Jessica Stanton Sustainable Wellesley Leadership Team: Mary Gard, Lise Olney, Quentin Prideaux, Phyllis Theermann

     
  • Take Action re: Renewable Energy. Sign the Petition and Come to MLP Monday at 5.30pm

    Residents filled the Municipal Light Plant meeting room with thoughtful conversation last Thursday for the Open Forum on Renewable Energy.

    For those who missed the Municipal Light Plant/Sustainable Energy Committee/Board Of Selectman sponsored event and would like to encourage the Town to take specific local actions to run on clean, local sources of renewable energy; please read, consider signing and sharing this petition TODAY and come the MLP Board Meeting this Monday evening, June 26th at 5:30 PM at the Municipal Light Plant on the 2nd floor of 4 Municipal Way.

    Some of the highlights of the meeting were three key requests for Municipal Light Plant Board including:

    1. Formally including “renewable energy and energy conservation” in the mission statement of the Wellesley MLP

    2. Developing a Wellesley-specific policy on renewable energy procurement, with measurable goals

    3. Working with other Massachusetts MLPs to develop a binding agreement, perhaps through the Municipal Electric Association of Massachusetts, to meet or exceed the Clean Energy Standards — this is particularly important if the MLPs continue to request that they be considered exempt from the state’s Clean Energy Standards

    There will be continued dialogue on this topic so be sure to be part of it.

  • Sustainable Wellesley Responds to the Withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement and Urges Local Action

    paris climate agreement

    In response to the decision to withdraw our country from the Paris Climate Agreement, the leadership team of Sustainable Wellesley reaffirms our commitment to the goals of the agreement, and to taking local actions that reduce Wellesley’s greenhouse gas emissions to combat climate change.

    Take action with us today by signing our petition request, urging the Wellesley Board of Selectmen and the Board of the Municipal Light Plant to commit to a goal of 100 percent renewable energy and to accept the authority of the state Department of Environmental Protection in support of the goals and principles of the state Global Warming Solutions Act.

    We can’t change the choices made at the federal level, but we can choose an energy future for our town that reflects our values and priorities. By proving that climate change solutions work, we can set an example at the local level that shows it’s possible to transition to a clean energy future statewide.

    Across the U.S., cities and towns are leading the way towards 100 percent renewable energy. Wellesley can join this historic movement to invest in the health and future of our planet.

    Right now, our own Wellesley Municipal Light Plant is pushing to be exempted from state clean energy standards that are under development by the MA Department of Environmental Protection. We need to send a clear message: The Wellesley MLP should reflect our community’s aspirations for a clean energy future.

    1. Click here to sign our petition request to the Wellesley Board of Selectmen and Board of the Municipal Light Plant.

    2. Then, join us next Thursday, June 15, 7:00 pm, for a public discussion with the Board of Selectmen and the Board of the Municipal Light Plant in the meeting room at the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant (1 Municipal Way).

  • Letter To School Committee

    wps compasss log

    The Following Letter was written by a Green Schools/Sustainable Wellesley advocate. Please consider researching and writing something of your own and sharing it with the Members of the Wellesley Public School Committee here school_Committee@wellesleyps.org.

    ________________________________________________________________________

    “I am writing today to ask the Board to consider making Climate Change part of the science curriculum in the middle and upper grades.  In addition, I request that the Board officially acknowledge human caused climate change as a clear and confirmed scientific fact, arrived at by the overwhelming consensus of the international scientific community, and that the subject be treated as such in the classroom.

    The reason for such requests is NOT to bring politics into the classroom, but to keep it out.  As you may know, there has been an ongoing campaign to spread disinformation about this subject, much like the tobacco companies in a previous era spread disinformation about the dangers of smoking.  The latest tactic, initiated by the Heartland Institute, is to infiltrate the schools by sending science teachers a book entitled “Why Scientists Disagree About Global Warming.”  This book argues that that the science is not conclusive, that climate change, may or may not be happening, that it is likely a natural phenomenon and that it can even be a good thing.

    In fact, there is very little disagreement.  Scientists are nearly unanimous in concluding that human activity is contributing to climate change, with potentially disastrous results.

    The Heartland Institute is spending millions to send out 25,000 copies of this book every two weeks, “until every science teacher in the nation has a copy,” according to Heartland CEO Joseph Bast.  This means that our Wellesley science teachers will be seeing one in their mailbox in the near future.

    “It’s not science, but it’s dressed up to look like science,” said Ann Reid, executive director of the National Center for Science Education. “It’s clearly intended to confuse teachers.”

    This cynical tactic of sowing doubt where it doesn’t belong is working.  According to a survey of US science teachers published in the journal Science, 31 percent of teachers told their students that the cause of climate change is still being debated. About one in 10 teachers teach children that humans had no significant role in climate change.

    To help guide teachers after Heartland’s packages began arriving in schools, David Evans, executive director of the National Science Teachers Association, sent a memo to all 55,000 NSTA members reinforcing that scientists do not disagree about the causes of climate change, and referring educators to curricula supported by established climate science. Some school districts are suggesting that their teachers throw away the book upon receipt.

    I would respectfully request that your board do likewise, and soon.  Our children deserve the truth.”

  • Green Up Your Summer BBQ Routine With These 5 Great Recipes!

    kelly's blueberriesDid you know that 51% of Greenhouse Gas Emissions are from livestock production, compared to only 13% from all transportation combined? Animal agriculture is responsible for 91% of amazon rainforest destruction and it takes approximately 2,500 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef. A pound of brown rice can be grown using approximately 250 gallons of water and provides more servings. It all adds up! Every time you choose to eat a vegan or vegetarian meal it reduces the strain on our environment and lessens your carbon footprint.

    That’s great incentive to give your Summer BBQ a makeover! Here are 5 great crowd-pleasing vegan recipes, just in time for grill season.

    5 Delicious Recipes For Your Next BBQ

    Speedy Three Bean Salad

    Marinated Grillable Carrot Dogs

    Asparagus and Potato Salad

    Grilled Avocado with Roasted Tomatoes

    BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches

    Want more green tips for the grill? Check out Kathy Patalsky’s Vegan Grilling Guide with Green Tips.

    cowspiracy graphicStatistics on animal agriculture are from the critically acclaimed environmental documentary Cowspiracy. Their facts and sources can be found here.

  • Don’t Spray That Lawn!

    landscapes for living

    Before you treat your lawn with chemicals this spring, come learn about safer, healthier, and more eco-friendly ways to care for your home landscape. Sustainable Wellesley is co-sponsoring “Landscapes for Living: A Forum on Eco-Friendly Gardening and Lawn Care,” on Saturday, May 13, 10:30 am to 3 pmat Wellesley Free Library.  

    Whether you are a beginner or a long-time green thumb, you’ll find inspiration and information at this free forum. Come early at 10:00 am to get advice on soil analysis from Cricket Vlass, Landscape Planner for our own Wellesley Department of Public Works. 

    The program includes nationally known speakers Doug Tallamy and Chip Osborne. Doug will speak about easy ways to incorporate native plants into your decorative landscape. Chip will discuss how you can use the same principles of organic turf management that he developed for the Town of Wellesley to manage your lawn at home. And in between these two keynote speakers, you can choose a practical workshop:

    • Planting for pollinators, with Best Bees
    • Gardening with beautiful ornamental edibles, with Home Harvest
    • Composting in your backyard, with Ann McGovern, EPA 

    Wellesley Women Artisans will also present the exhibit “Art in Nature,” with works by 17 local artists. 

    Register here to be eligible for prizes: tinyurl.com/LandscapesForLiving  

    Click here for flyer to download and share.  

    Click here for Facebook event.

    Event co-sponsors: Wellesley Natural Resources Commission, Sustainable Wellesley, Health Department, Recreation Department, and Wellesley Free Library.

  • Film For Students – Young Voices for the Planet

    young voices

    As part of the Mass Climate Action Network (MCAN) Young Voices for the Planet documentary film series, Mass Audubon’s Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary will screen four short films, Wednesday, May 10, from 7:00 to 8:30 pm.

    “The Young Voices for the Planet short films show the difference young people can make,” said Carol Oldham, director of the MCAN. “These touching stories of kids taking action in their communities to make your world a better place is inspiring and just what we all need right now.”

    The short films document youth speaking out about climate change, creating solutions, and taking action. Highlights include stories of youth in the United States and Germany implementing a statewide ban on plastic bags, saving their school $53,000 in energy costs, and planting millions of trees, in addition to changing laws and minds in an effort to reduce their carbon footprint of at homes, in schools, and throughout communities.

    Following the screening, one of the young stars from the film “Save Tomorrow” will lead a discussion about her experience changing town bylaws in Lexington, MA, which allowed for solar panels on public buildings.

    WHAT: Young Voices for the Planet climate change documentary film screening

    WHEN: Wednesday, May 10, 2017, 7:00–8:30 PM

    WHERE: Mass Audubon’s Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary, 280 Eliot Street, Natick, MA

    HOW: Admission is free and open to the public

  • THIS Saturday (April 29): Boston People’s Climate Mobilization & MAICCA Pre-Rally Gathering

    People March

    On April 29, the Boston People’s Climate Mobilization will bring together a diverse coalition to call for solutions to the climate crisis that are rooted in racial, social, and economic justice. The Mass Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action (MAICCA) invites you to start the day at Arlington Street Church.

    • 10:30 am – Gather in the Clarke Room at Arlington Street Church (351 Boylston Street)

    • 11:00 am – Interfaith service in the sanctuary

    • 11:30 am – Head to the rally on the Boston Common (rally starts at 12 pm)

    Click here to let us know you are coming via our Facebook event. We also need volunteers — let us know if you can help on Saturday morning: interfaithclimatecoalition@gmail.com.

  • TONIGHT COWSPIRACY FILM– Food We Eat & Its Environmental Impact

    Few seats left for tonights free showing at 7:30 pmShowcase Cinema at Legacy Place. Come over!

    Middle School and High School Students Welcome as well.

    cowspiracyEmail kelly.caiazzo@gmail.com to reserve free tickets today for Cowspiracy – The Sustainability Secret is a groundbreaking feature-length environmental documentary following intrepid filmmaker Kip Andersen as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it.

    Animal agriculture is the leading cause of deforestation, water consumption and pollution, is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the transportation industry, and is a primary driver of rainforest destruction, species extinction, habitat loss, topsoil erosion, ocean “dead zones,” and virtually every other environmental ill. Yet it goes on, almost entirely unchallenged.

    As Andersen approaches leaders in the environmental movement, he increasingly uncovers what appears to be an intentional refusal to discuss the issue of animal agriculture, while industry whistleblowers and watchdogs warn him of the risks to his freedom and even his life if he dares to persist.

    As eye-opening as Blackfish and as inspiring as An Inconvenient Truth, this shocking yet humorous documentary reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact large-scale factory farming has on our planet, and offers a path to global sustainability for a growing population.

  • Celebrate Earth Day by Joining the Boston March for Science! Saturday, April 22nd

    march for science

    April 22 is both Earth Day 2017 and a day to celebrate science at the Boston March for Science on the Boston Common! Family friendly activities start at the Parkman Bandstand at 1:00 pm and run until 4:00 pm. The rally for science runs from 2:00 to 4:00 pm at Beacon and Charles Streets. This diverse and non-partisan event celebrates the discovery, understanding, and sharing of scientific knowledge as essential to the success, health, and safety of the human race. Publicly funded and publicly communicated scientific knowledge is a pillar of human freedom and prosperity.

    Earth Day Is 47 Years Old!

    The March for Science is co-organized with Earth Day, which started 47 years ago in the United States and is now celebrated in all 193 United Nations member states. This year’s theme is environmental and climate literacy. The Earth Day Network is also promoting the Trees for the Earth campaign, which aims to plant 7.8 billion trees worldwide by the year 2020 – one tree for every person projected to be on Earth.

    You can help right here in Wellesley by planting a tree! Just sign up to get a free tree planted in your yard through the Wellesley Natural Resources Commission. Contact nrc@wellesley.gov.

    Honoring Trees

    The single largest living thing in the world is the giant sequoia tree. Sequoias live for hundreds – sometimes thousands of years. The age of one sequoia was calculated to be 3,500 years – determined by counting the rings in the trunk after the tree died.

    The tallest known sequoia trees live in the Sierra Nevada Desert in California. “General Sherman” is the tallest at 275 feet high. The second tallest is known as “King Arthur” and is 270 feet high. The widest tree trunk belongs to a sequoia called “Boole” that is 113 feet wide. It would take 23 adults or 42 children to form a circle around Boole.

    During this past year, the Wellesley Free Library has exhibited photos of favorite Wellesley trees to commemorate Earth Day. Catch the exhibit before it ends on April 22, 2017!

     
  • Standing Room Only at Wellesley Gas Leaks Forum

    gas leaks forumIt was hard to find a seat last Tuesday as Wellesley residents filled the Wakelin Room at the library to hear from gas leaks experts and share concerns about the 193 gas leaks throughout town. If you missed the event, you can watch it online through Wellesley Media here. To see an updated map of leaks in Wellesley, click here.

    Meanwhile, here are some highlights of the forum… There are some important reasons to be worried about gas leaks in our town:

    – Gas leaks are a safety risk – The Wellesley Fire Department responds to more than 80 calls a year concerning gas odors. – Gas leaks contribute to global warming – In fact, methane is at least 80 times more potent as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. – Gas leaks kill trees – Public shade trees and private trees and shrubs are all affected by methane seeping into the soil and suffocating their roots. – Gas leaks are expensive – All ratepayers pay for “lost and unaccounted for” gas through our gas bills – estimated to be as much as $60 million worth each year. – Gas leaks affect our health, resulting in asthma and other respiratory disease.

    State Representative Alice Peisch spoke of her strong support for legislation that would prevent gas companies from continuing to charge ratepayers for wasted gas (H.2683/S.1845 An Act relative to protecting consumers of gas and electricity from paying for leaked and unaccounted for gas).

    One of the expert panelists, Dr. Nathan Phillips of Boston University spoke about his work mapping gas leaks, including recent research that indicates about 7 percent of gas leaks are “super emitters” and are responsible for 50 percent of gas emissions. Dr. Phillips and others are working on ways to identify these high volume leaks and prioritize them for repair.

    Audrey Schulman, president of the Home Energy Efficiency Team (HEET) surprised the crowd with a slide showing a graphic representation of the leaks along Route 9, with large peaks of methane emissions all along the main gas line that cuts across Wellesley. She also pointed to a recent study conducted by HEET and the Metropolitan Area Planning Council which demonstrated that millions of dollars could be saved by improving coordination between utility companies and local governments on pipeline replacement and repair.

    Dr. Regina LaRocque, Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a newly elected member of the Wellesley Natural Resources Commission, raised concerns about the health effects of exposure to natural gas, including increased rates of asthma and other respiratory diseases. Much of the natural gas in Massachusetts originates from fracking sites in Pennsylvania, and Dr. LaRocque spoke of the carcinogenic chemicals that are used to extract natural gas as part of the fracking process. These toxic chemicals have been identified in the areas around the fracking sites and gas transfer stations, but little is known about what is in the gas that is leaking throughout Wellesley.

    National Grid representative Sue Fleck offered to hold quarterly meetings with residents to report on progress in repairing the leaks. She also committed to improving coordination with the town on scheduling road work and street closings as National Grid works to repair all gas leaks within the next 10 years.

    Following the forum, the organizer of the event and chair of the Wellesley Natural Resources Commission (NRC), Lise Olney, said that the NRC would continue to research the connection between gas leaks and the death of public shade trees throughout town. The NRC is exploring a possible independent survey of gas leaks in Wellesley.

    The Selectmen offered this statement: “The Board of Selectmen is grateful to the co-sponsors and participants of the recent forum on Gas Leaks in Wellesley for bringing this critical issue to the forefront, raising public awareness, and elevating our understanding of the problem and its solutions. The Town is working with National Grid to implement an effective, coordinated town wide strategy for the repair of gas leaks and with both National Grid and the Massachusetts Department of Transportation to coordinate gas leak repair and road improvement work along Wellesley’s Route 9 corridor. The Selectmen appreciate the importance of on-going public engagement on these issues and plan to hold a follow-up forum in the near future to continue public dialogue and discuss progress with the community.”

    whats next gas leaks forumWhat Can Wellesley Residents Do? – Call National Grid when you smell a leak. The gas company needs to hear from us whenever we smell gas. The number to call is 1-800-233-5325.

    – Support bi-partisan action on gas leaks legislation. Wellesley’s State Representative Alice Peisch and State Senator Cynthia Creem are cosponsoring a bill to prevent gas companies from continuing to charge ratepayers for wasted gas – H.2683/S.1845 An Act relative to protecting consumers of gas and electricity from paying for leaked and unaccounted for gas. If you live in Precinct B, F, or G, please consider contacting State Senator Richard Ross to encourage him to support sponsoring as well. – Power your home with renewable energy

    – Wellesley residents can enroll in Power to Choose, a program offered by the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant that allows you to sign up for 10, 25, 50, or 100 percent renewable energy for your home for a modest additional cost. Even if the gas leaks are fixed, our continued reliance on natural gas and other fossil fuels is not sustainable and is harming our planet. We can and must make the transition to 100 percent renewable energy. Do so today by clicking here.

    – Join us – Sustainable Wellesley’s next action team meeting is Sunday, April 9, 3 to 5 pm, 161 Oakland Street. We’ll be having a debrief on the gas leaks forum and talking about next steps for action.

  • Human Health & the Environment

    you-are-invited

    Over the past few decades, Dr. Eric Chivian has been inspiring medical and environmental professionals, as well as policy makers, religious groups, and others—through his research, writing, teaching and organizing—to recognize the implications of biodiversity loss in particular, and the health of the global environment in general, on human health and well-being.

    Dr. Chivian is a physician, and the Founder and Former Director of The Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School. He shared the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize for co-founding The International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. He is currently Director of The Program for Preserving the Natural World, Inc., and an Associate in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University.

    Now, as the reality of climate change is setting in, Dr. Chivian’s work and messages are more important than ever before. We’ll have the chance to hear from him just how critically important conservation work now is, not just for the earth’s ecosystems—for its people too.

    Dr. Chivian’s award-winning Oxford University Press book Sustaining Life: How Human Health Depends on Biodiversity will be available for sale, and he will be happy to sign copies.

    The Mass Audubon’s Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary sponsored event takes place on Sunday, March 26th from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm at the Natick Center for the Arts (TCAN) at 14 Summer Street, Natick and is is free, but preregistration is required as it will fill fast. Register here.

  • BE THERE TUESDAY PM: National Grid In Town at Gas Leaks Forum

    Ethan Gas Leaks

    Photo Credit: Olivia Snapper

    Mark your calendars and join us on Tuesday, March 21, 7:00 to 8:30 pm, at the Wellesley Free Library for a public discussion of gas leaks in Wellesley.

    You smell the leaks, and see the signs around town marking the roughly 200 gas leaks in our neighborhoods (thank you 40+ volunteers who made it happen). Perhaps you have seen this Wellesley Media and the Natural Resources Commission’s video on the topic. Unfortunately, there surely are leaks in your neighborhood.

    We want do something about all that leaking gas that poses a risk to our safety, our health, and our environment — don’t you? As ratepayers, we are also all paying for this wasted gas.

    Now is the time to hear what we can do about it from health, environmental, and energy efficiency experts, as well as ask questions to National Grid and Town Officials.

    The Board of Selectmen will preside, joined by Representative Alice Peisch. Featured panelists: Dr. Nathan Phillips, Dept. of Earth & Environment, Boston University Audrey Schulman, Home Energy Efficiency Team Dr. Regina LaRocque, Mass General Hospital Sue Fleck, Pipeline Safety, National Grid Town officials will also be available to answer questions

    Please click here so we know you are attending!

    This event is free and open to the public and is co-sponsored by Wellesley Board of Selectmen, State Representative Alice Peisch, State Senator, Cynthia Creem, State Senator Richard Ross, Natural Resources Commission, Sustainable Energy Committee, Health Department, and Sustainable Wellesley.

  • Buy Your Bus Ticket Now for The April 29 DC Climate Mobilization

    change everything

    Join people from all over the country on April 29, 350 in Washington, DC for the People’s Climate Mobilization—a massive march to protect our climate, our families, and our communities.

    Join us—buy your bus ticket now!

    The huge mobilization on April 29 is a chance to fight back against Trump’s disastrous plans and show our passion, our commitment, and our fierce love for this planet and one another.

    Just as importantly, it’s a chance to build the relationships that will allow us to transform our movement right here in Massachusetts. We’re mobilizing for April 29 alongside a powerful coalition of labor unions, faith organizations, and youth organizations, in addition to environmental justice groups with deep roots in Boston’s communities of color. We’ll travel to DC together, march side-by-side, and return to Boston ready to fight together for our shared future.

    This could be a crucial moment for the Massachusetts movement, and we want you to be part of it. Buy your bus ticket now!

    Ticket prices will rise significantly after March 24. Buy your ticket now to secure your spot and take advantage of our $85 round-trip early bird rate.

    “Can’t go to DC? Come to the People’s Climate Mobilization on the Commons in Boston — start time will be 1 pm. A coalition of organizations is working on building this amazing event — more information coming soon!”

  • ‘Time to Choose’ Film and Discussion This Sunday

    time-to-choose

    How can we, as individuals, address the climate crisis? See, Time to Choose, a powerful 90-minute climate change film at First Parish in Needham, 23 Dedham Ave. With footage from five continents, Time to Choose explores the scope of the climate change crisis and the power of solutions already available.

    The film will be followed by a discussion of concrete steps to address climate change.

    Attendees can also enjoy refreshments and a chance to browse informational tables from local groups.

    This free event is sponsored by First Parish in Needham, Green Needham Collaborative, as well as 10 Metro West environmental groups, local League of Women Voters groups, and houses of worship. For more information, see greenneedham.org.

    Academy Award®-Winning documentary filmmaker Charles Ferguson (Inside Job, No End in Sight) turns his lens to address worldwide climate change challenges and solutions in his new film TIME TO CHOOSE.

    Featuring narration by award-winning actor Oscar Isaac, TIME TO CHOOSE leaves audiences understanding not only what is wrong, but WHAT CAN BE DONE to fix this global threat.

    Ferguson explores the comprehensive scope of the climate change crisis and examines the power of solutions already available. Through interviews with world-renowned entrepreneurs, innovators, thought leaders and brave individuals living on the front lines of climate change, Ferguson takes an In-depth look at the remarkable people working to save our planet.

  • Local Environmental Action Conference

    you-are-invited

    Join community leaders, environmental advocates and experts from across New England to learn, connect, get inspired, and take real action for change at the 30th annual Local Environmental Action conference.

    WHEN?  March 05, 2017 at 9am – 6pm

    WHERE?  Northeastern University, 360 Huntington Ave., Boston

    Click here to register, visit the conference website at to learn more, or call 617-747-4362 with any questions.

  • What To Say When Discussing Climate Change

    climate-reality-project Wondering how to handle the next climate change discussion you engage in?

    Get insights on this topic at the upcoming Climate Reality Talk given by Sustainable Wellesley’s President, Quentin Prideaux or contact us at info@sustainablewellesley.com to have him come speak at an event you would like to organize. Prepare to be educated and inspired.

    With the U.S.’ part in the Paris Climate Accord under discussion, it is vital that we all get involved. These talks are a great way to do so. Grab a friend and relative, neighbor or colleague and learn more.

  • This is Not Just for the Ladies

    womens-marchOn Saturday, January 21, folks from across the state will unite in Boston to march in solidarity in the Women’s March for America in Boston.

    Let your environmentalist voice be heard by bringing signs that emphasize you are marching to safeguard the protections that exist and to push for more. This peaceful, nonpartisan march is open to everyone.

    Consider jumping on the 9:47am train from Wellesley Hills into Back Bay station, then walking with others to the Common. For more information about going into town with Wellesley residents and/or making signs, contact laurellanders2003@yahoo.com.

    You can also meet up with folks from 350 MASS and MA Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action when they assemble at the Arlington Street Church, UU, (corner of Boylston and Arlington Streets) between 9:30 and 10:30 am, before walking over to the Common with a big yellow parasol. For more information, contact Amy Benjamin at interfaithclimatecoalition@gmail.com.

       
  • Welcome Back: Here is Your Post Holiday Recap 🙂

    o            If you care about our town, WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO RUN! You can run for any Board, whether you have previously served in town government or not, and whether or not someone else is running! Deadline is January 17th so head over to Town Clerk’s office soon. More details here.

    There are many important issues that will be decided or voted on by Boards and by Town Meeting in the months to come. Be part of it, including the fate of the North 40; the closing or renovation of Hunnewell, Hardy, and Upham schools; a new private sports facility at 900 Worcester Street; our town’s commitment to renewable energy; and countless others.

    o            For only $3 a month the typical Wellesley home can receive 10% of its energy from renewable energy. That is a really simple way to reduce your greenhouse gas emissions. WELLESLEY’S POWER TO CHOOSE PROGRAM enables residents like YOU to pay a small premium to purchase 10%, 25%, 50% or 100% of your power from regional renewable sources (such as the Spruce Mountain Wind Farm in Maine).

    More than 10% of Wellesley residents already participate in this program, making us 3rd in the US in 2014 for voluntary renewable energy participation. However, approximately 200 new households could move Wellesley up to 2nd place! Learn more and sign up here.

    o            In Wellesley, so many decisions will be based on the UPCOMING UNIFIED PLAN. Lets show how strong our sustainability constituency is by letting the Planning Board know what the community — us — wants! Upcoming meeting dates here.

    o            Go BEHIND THE SCENES to learn about the design and construction of a net zero energy home that will produce as much energy annually as it consumes. Check out a home that will achieve exceptional energy performance, healthy indoor air quality, superior thermal comfort, and long term durability.

    While the home is under construction, you will get the unique perspective of seeing the building and systems while the walls are still open for viewing, plus a short explanatory presentation by the experts. Details here.

    o            SCHOOL GARDENS event on Wednesday, January 25th, 2017. Have one? Want one? Learn more at this free event by John Forti, Director of Horticulture at Elm Bank. Be there by 10.30 in The Parkman Room at Elm Bank.

    o            REMINDER: BRING YOUR BAGS!

    The town’s new bag bylaw kicks in this month, plus its the waste reduction and energy/cost savings thing to do. Simply move those re-usable bags you have to the front seat of your car, or the basket on your bike so you don’t forget them.

    o            Don’t miss the next Wellesley GREEN COLLABORATIVE MEETING this Wednesday, January 11 from 9:15 to 11 am, in the Wellesley Free Library’s Wakelin Room. Topics include the Historical Commission’s proposed demolition delay; WasteWise Wellesley campaign; NRC eco-landscaping initiative, Grow Green Wellesley; and WHS student presentations on community projects.

  • Make a Difference Easily – for Less Than That Cup of Coffee In Your Hand

    power-to-choose-2016 For only $3 a month the typical Wellesley home can receive 10% of its energy from renewable energy. That is a really simple way to reduce your greenhouse gas emissions.

    Wellesley’s Power To Choose program enables residents like YOU to pay a small premium to purchase 10%, 25%, 50% or 100% of your power from regional renewable sources (such as the Spruce Mountain Wind Farm in Maine).easy-to-make-a-difference More than 10% of Wellesley residents already participate in this program, making us 3rd in the US in 2014 for voluntary renewable energy participation. However, approximately 200 new households could move Wellesley up to 2nd place!

    Did you know?

    • A typical Wellesley home (750 kWh/month) that shifts all of its electricity to renewable sources for one year, provides the same environmental benefits as driving 15,000 LESS miles in the average car
    • Our Town’s electric rates are so low that even a 100% participant would have a lower rate than residents of surrounding towns such as Needham and Natick

    Please consider choosing Renewable Energy as it provides cleaner air & water, a stronger energy future, and greater energy independence.

    You can easily sign up to participate at 10%, 25%, 50% or 100% online HERE or by calling the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant at 781-489-7766. They can also provide an estimated cost, based on your home’s electric use and participation rate.

    Once you are signed up, the Wellesley Municipal Light Plant adds 4 cents per kWh to your bill each month and the proportional amount to its renewable energy purchases. You will see your percentage of participation and the amount of the surcharge on your monthly electric bill listed as “Residential Renewable.” There are no installations or hookups, this is simply a paper transaction and can be canceled at any time.

    What a gift to your family and our future.

  • What is Next? Join Us Sunday to Discuss

    Photo from Time Magazine

    Photo from Time Magazine

    It is more pressing than ever to raise the number and volume of our voices!

    Channel your energy into action.

    Come to the Sustainable Wellesley Action Group Meeting on Sunday, November 20th from 1-3 pm at 75 Emerson Road.

    There are clear actions we can all do to step up our game.

    We will discuss general topics, than break-out into action groups. These meetings are on time, leave you with a sense of purpose and a great way to meet new folks as we have fun along the way.

    All are welcome—bring a friend! Snacks provided.

    Please email us to confirm your attendance at info@SustainableWellesley.com.

  • To Our Sustainable Wellesley community:

     

    Colourbox Image

    In the aftermath of the election, we wanted to reach out to you — our Wellesley neighbors — who share our deep concern for the environment and our planet.

    The election outcome has sent our country into uncharted waters. For the first time, we will have a president who considers climate change to be a matter of belief, rather than science. In this new era of uncertainty, it will be up to local communities such as ours to continue to promote actions and decisions that will protect our planet. We will need to organize as never before.

    In the meantime, we invite you to share your thoughts with us about how you are feeling and processing the events of this week. We are here for you and we are listening. Our email address is: info@sustainablewellesley.com, or feel free to message us here on Facebook. 

     

    In solidarity,

     

    Jeff, Lise, Paul, Phyllis, Quentin and Scott

     

    Sustainable Wellesley Leadership Team 

    we-are-listening

     

  • Buying A Car? Read On.

    carbon-of-cars

    In the market for a new car?

    Wondering how you can compare the carbon footprint of various car makes and models?

    Try out http://carboncounter.com/.

    MIT’s Trancik Lab designed it to help people shopping for a car (new or used).

    You may be surprised that some of the big electric cars have a higher carbon footprint than some hybrids!

  • See you SUNDAY, October 2nd 1-3pm

    Sustamark-your-calendarinable Wellesley’s next Action Meeting is Sunday, October 2nd from 1-3pm at a new location — 161 Oakland Street.

    The meeting will be done promptly at 3pm for anyone prepping for Rosh Hashana. {Happy New Year! What a way to start of the new year by taking action to help Mother Earth}.

    Never been? No problem. It is a great way to feel connected, hear what is happening in town and jump in where you can make a contribution.

    we-are-listening

    WHAT DO YOU WANT TO SEE CHANGED? Feel free to email us at info@sustainablewellesley.com with your initiative/topic ideas in which you want a team to work with.

    NEW LOCATION: THIS MEETING WILL BE HELD AT 161 OAKLAND STREET. 

    jeff-and-paul-sw-meetingThese are casual meetings, yet we get things done!

    Some of the topics we will be discussing and taking action on include:

    • Gas Leaks – how many do you think there are in Wellesley?

    • Ecological landscaping –

    • Power to Choose – easy renewable energy option in town

    • Demolition Review Bylaw

    • Sustainable Stakeholders – what is happening in town government

    For other events, please check Sustainable Wellesley’s calendar section here.

  • Sustainability Lecture Series for 55+ Starts Sept. 19th

    lifetime learningA series of 5 lunch-time classes focusing on climate change and sustainability issues in Wellesley and neighboring towns, titled Conservation Information for Suburbanites, is being offered by Wellesley Weston Lifetime Learning to seniors 55 years-old and over.

    Presenters will cover a range of sustainability topics including:

    • September 19 Quentin Prideaux, Climate Change and Massachusetts

    • September 26 Natural Resources Commission, Fuller Brook Park reconstruction project and rain gardens

    • October 3 Rick Lent, Elders Climate Action

    • October 17 Cricket Vlass, Landscaping with Native Plants

    • October 24 Wellesley WasteWise, Food and other waste reduction

    Teacher: Our own Quentin Prideaux, President of Sustainable Wellesley, is leading the first event.

    Classes meet once a week at the Wellesley Unitarian Universalist church. Email for registration information.

  • There Is A Spot For You At the National Moral Day of Action

    action alert

    In the highly charged atmosphere of this election season, people of many spiritual traditions are coming together at the State House this Monday, September 12, to ask candidates and elected officials to take a stand for higher ground moral values.

    Mass Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action will be there to help deliver the message that climate change is a moral issue.

    Join them at the State House on Monday, September 12, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

    To prepare, folks will be painting signs at an “art build” in Wellesley on Saturday, September 10, 3 to 5 pm. Sign up through this link to receive the address.

  • Action Alert: State House Leaders Negotiating Final Energy Bill – Please Call Now!

    action alert
    A message from our partners in the MA Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action:
    We are in the last stretch on the way to historic energy policy in Massachusetts! House and Senate leaders are negotiating a final bill to send to the Governor for his signature. Just before the July 4th holiday, the State Senate gave a huge boost to the prospects for clean energy in Massachusetts with a unanimous, bipartisan vote for an energy bill (S2400) that includes:
    • an historic commitment to offshore wind power (2000 megawatts),
    • a significant increase in the amount of renewable energy that would power our state by 2030,
    • a pipeline tax ban that prohibits utility companies from charging ratepayers for pipeline construction,
    • other provisions that strengthen energy efficiency programs, protect utility workers responsible for fixing gas leaks, and support safe decommissioning of the Pilgrim nuclear power plant.
    The House passed its own energy bill a few weeks earlier (H4385), so a conference committee must now come up with a compromise bill before the legislative session ends on July 31st.
    Now is the time to raise our voices once again on behalf of our planet and future generations. Please contact your legislators this week to tell them you want the conferees to stand firm on historic provisions that move us closer to a sustainable and clean energy-powered Massachusetts. Utility companies are working hard to persuade our legislators that we need more dangerous fracked gas in our state – we must make sure our elected officials hear from us!
     
  • Citizens’ Climate Lobby Meet Up in Wellesley

    citizens climate lobby

    Citizens’ Climate Lobby has been building the political will for sensible climate and energy legislation in Washington since 2009. The Boston chapter is starting regular meet-ups in Wellesley to give people a chance to learn more about the organization and get involved.

    Come learn:

    – Why Carbon Fee & Dividend is the right economic and environmental solution to fight climate change

    – News from the 2016 National Conference

    – Opportunities to participate at a level that’s right for you

    WHEN: Wednesday, July 20, 7:00 – 8:30 PM WHERE: Starbucks, 68 Central St. LOOK FOR: Gary Rucinski, Massachusetts State Coordinator, sporting the “Ask Me about Carbon Fee” pin

  • Sustainability Evolutions Projects at WHS

    Last week Wellesley High School Evolutions Students showcased their capstone projects at the Spring Expo.

    carinakirstin

    The Evolutions program — an innovative school-within-a-school educational program open to juniors and seniors — launched this year.

    Sustainable Wellesley was pleased to see some impressive sustainably minded projects including Kirstin Johnston’s The Effects of Climate Change on the Great Barrier Reef, Carina Delgado’s investigation into fashion’s high cost on the environment and her upcycled fashion creations, as well as Kassandra Rodriguez’s organic candles.

    Lots of collaboration, interdisciplinary learning, and experiential learning happens in the evolutions program. Interested in learning more? Click Here.

  • Climate Change in the Northeast

    ellen mcreaEllen Mecray, Regional Climate Director for the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), will be presenting the NOAA’s most recent climate information, and actions the Federal government is taking to help local communities adapt to climate change on Wednesday, April 20th at 7pm at the Wellesley Free Library. All are welcome to the free event sponsored by the Wellesley Conservation Council and the Wellesley Free Library.
  • Zero Waste || Augmented Reality || Consumption @Babson Friday!

    Environmentalist Bea Johnson (cq) opens the cupboard in the kitchen of her home in Mill Valley Calif. on Friday April 9 2010. She buys in bulk in order to avoid packaging that must be recycled or thrown away. She and her family take extreme measures to achieve a zero waste lifestyle. (IJ photo/Frankie Frost)

    Thanks to San Jose Mercury News for this photo of Environmentalist Bea Johnson. She and her family take extreme measures to achieve a zero waste lifestyle. (IJ photo/Frankie Frost)

    Join us this Friday, April 1st for a great lineup of speakers at the 19th Annual Babson Energy and Environmental Conference!

    Register now

    This year’s theme is “Redefining Consumption” and cool speakers are digging into the megatrends such as the sharing economy, augmented reality, and the internet of things.

    • Ken Kimmell President, Union of Concerned Scientists

          Taking action on international climate change goals

    • Bea Johnson Lifestyle blogger & author of Zero Waste Home

          Living a zero waste lifestyle

    • Jim Heppelmann CEO, PTC

          Discussion and demonstration of augmented reality

    • Mark Donohue ’88 Serial Entrepreneur

          The future of consumption

    Don’t forget that Sustainable Wellesley is offering a 25% discount on a General Admission ticket. Use promo code: SW2016.

    More information can be found here.

  • Lots Going On In & Around Town

    sw calendar

    The Sustainable Wellesley Calendar is chock full of events with interesting topics such as:

    • Home energy savings
    • Gardening
    • Family events
    • Transportation
    • Eco landscaping
    • Politics
    • Renewable energy,
    …and much more in and around Wellesley (many thanks Sam for populating it for us!). Check it out regularly and easily add the events to your calendar so as not to miss them. Have something we should share? Simply email us at info@sustainablewellesley.com.
  • Ground-Breaking MA Energy Report Briefing || Jobs, Justice, Climate March: Rally to Defend New England’s Future

    MA interfaith
    This month as many people of faith celebrate the Season of Light, the MA Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action are watching for rays of hope coming from world leaders at the COP 21 UN Conference on Climate Change. Whatever the result, they will find light by joining together as they continue to grow their interfaith movement and work for a clean and just energy future.
    Join Them Next Monday, December 14! MAICCA Campaign Update and Energy Briefing Monday, December 14 6:45 – 7 pm: Welcome and light refreshments 7 to 8:30 pm: Program Temple Israel, 477 Longwood Ave., Boston (near Longwood T station on the Green Line; paid parking next door at 375 Longwood Ave.)
    Come for a MAICCA Campaign Update and Energy Briefing that will include: – Spiritual framing for our work together on climate change – Update on the MAICCA campaign with a briefing on the just-released, ground-breaking energy
      report commissioned by Attorney General Maura Healey’s office
    – What’s next for your faith group’s involvement in MAICCA – MAICCA leaders Amy Benjamin, Rev. Reebee Girash, Lise Olney, Rev. Fred Small, and Minister Mariama
     White-Hammond will be participating.
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Join Rev. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas on December 12! March on Saturday, December 12! Jobs, Justice, Climate March: Rally to Defend New England’s Future Saturday, December 12, 1 to 3 pm Parkman Bandstand, Boston Common
    This rally and mobilization of New Englanders will call for climate justice and local solutions that strengthen communities and create a more just, resilient future. MAICCA faith leader Rev. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas will speak at the rally. Look for our yellow parasol at the Parkman Bandstand. Then join them for the march to Government Center!
    ________________________________________________________________________________________________
    New Recording of “The Tide Is Rising” The folks at Rise Up and Sing have made a beautiful recording of Rabbi Shoshana Meira Friedman’s song “The Tide Is Rising,” performed by Annie Patterson. Rabbi Shoshana is on the MAICAA leadership team; she and her husband Yotam Schachter wrote the song this past summer and performed it at the October 12 launch “Answering the Call: An Interfaith Gathering for Climate Action.”
    Click to hear “The Tide Is Rising”
     ______________________________________________________________________________________________
    For more information, contact the The MAICCA Leadership Team InterfaithClimateCoalition@gmail.com Amy Benjamin, Rev. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas, Rabbi Shoshana Meira Friedman, Rev. Reebee Girash, Rachie Lewis, Lise Olney, Rev. Fred Small, Minister Mariama White-Hammond, Joel Wool
  • Training for Legislative Action Day TOMORROW

    Following the successful “ANSWERING THE CALL: An Interfaith Gathering for Climate Action” event, will be Legislation Action Day on November 10th and you are invited.
    state house

    MA Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action

     
    The first training for this important day will be Sunday, October 25! (Another training is tentatively scheduled for November 3; details to follow.) The training will give you the background you need for meetings with your legislators about the priorities for upcoming energy legislation — priorities we believe will help build a clean and just energy future in Massachusetts.  MA Interfaith Coalition for Climate Action invites you to join folks this Sunday, October 25, 4 to 5:30 pm, at Temple Sinai of Brookline for a Legislative Action Day training!   Training for the November 10th Legislative Action Day Sunday, October 25, 4 pm to 5:30 pm Temple Sinai, 50 Sewall Ave., Brookline Near Coolidge Corner T stop and 66 bus Space is limited, so sign-up is required: Please click here to sign up for October 25!   Here’s a brief overview of what folks will be talking about: ·       Goals for the November 10 Legislative Action Day ·       Five legislative priorities for this campaign and where they fit in the energy landscape in Massachusetts ·       The plan for November 10 and what the day will look like (rally and meetings with legislators) ·       How folks can be most effective in their meetings with legislators If you aren’t able to join on Sunday, please watch for upcoming information about a second training on November 3, location to be announced.   Meanwhile, please sign up for the November 10 Legislative Action Day itself. Even if you signed up already, please click the link to provide the information we need to plan for our big rally and meetings with legislators.   And please spread the word that we are “answering the call” on November 10!   Legislative Action Day at the State House Tuesday, November 10 10 am Rally; 11 am to 1 pm (timing of legislator meetings to be determined) Please click here to sign up for November 10!
       
  • Friday: Should We Ban The Bags Wellesley?

    SusWell_fly_Aug15_D02_11x17 ban the bags 2
    With growing evidence of the environmental hazards of plastic bags, at least 16 Massachusetts communities have now passed bag bans and many more communities are considering restrictions. What should Wellesley do?
    Wellesley residents are invited to come together for a free event on Friday, Sept. 25, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm, at the Unitarian Universalists of Wellesley (309 Washington St., Parish Hall) to discuss the topic.
    The evening will start with a 45-minute version of the award-winning film, “Bag It: Is Your Life Too Plastic?” to give some perspective on the topic. Then Newton Alderman Alison Leary will describe her work on passing the Newton bag ban, which went into effect in July. Discussion will focus on whether a ban is right for Wellesley.
    The recent decision by the Wellesley Recycling and Disposal Facility to stop collecting plastic bags for recycling has brought a new sense of urgency to the issue of banning bags. The Wellesley Natural Resources Commission is also concerned about the environmental effects of the bags on wildlife and wetlands.
    The event is open to the public. Pizza and light refreshments will be provided by UU Wellesley. The Town of Wellesley 3R (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) Working Group will also be giving away free reusable bags. The 3R Working Group was formed by the Wellesley Department of Public Works, the Natural Resources Commission, and the Sustainable Energy Committee to explore waste management issues in Wellesley.
    Event sponsors include UU Wellesley (Green Sanctuary Ministry Team and Learning Committee), Sustainable Wellesley, and the Town of Wellesley 3R (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) Working Group.
  • Save The Date: Answering the Call An Interfaith Gathering for Climate Action

    inerfaith - answering the callThe Boston area community will be gathering on Monday, October 12th for an interfaith movement for action on climate change.  Welcoming Reception & Sign-in begin at 6:30pm and the full program will run from 7:00pm to 9:00pm at Temple Beth Elohim, 10 Bethel Road, in Wellesley, MA. Please bring family and friends and join this special interfaith event as messages of hope, inspiration, and action for healing our world are shared. To RSVP or for more information and a current list of our sponsors and supporters, visit here. Together voices will be raised as unified people of faith and seize the moment for concrete, communal action to safeguard our planet. With his encyclical in June and U.S. visit in September, Pope Francis has created an opportunity for people of all faiths to respond to the challenge of climate change as an issue of moral imperative and social justice with “a new and universal solidarity.” At this event — part service, part forum, part rally — folks will gather to learn  
  • Last Chance to Vote For Quentin and Dylan in MIT’s Climate Competition

    logo-climate-colab MIT has a huge annual competition for the best ideas on solving climate change. Sustainable Wellesley’s Dylan Husted and Quentin Prideaux are working on Dylan’s brilliant idea, SaveOhno, which is in the Finals, and you can help! To vote for SaveOhno: http://climatecolab.org/web/guest/plans/-/plans/contestId/1301417/planId/1320156 Do check it out and please support/ vote for them. SaveOhno creates an online vision of the future that is bleak at first, because of global warming,  But when you do something positive in the real world today you earn rewards and see the future improve. It’s a neat way of making it easy and fun for non-hardcore-activists to take real action and to feel the results immediately. Votes for MIT Climate CoLab are free, and you won’t get spammed, so please click the link to register and give it the ‘thumbs up’ now. Votes count towards winning “The People’s Choice”, and getting real support to implement SaveOhno.  Dylan is a brilliant Babson student who has put a lot of thought into how and why regular people act on climate change, and doing well in this competition will really make a difference to him (and it’s a *great* idea). Please vote here: http://climatecolab.org/web/guest/plans/-/plans/contestId/1301417/planId/1320156 For more information, and detailed steps on how to vote: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1E3yUG8CRQn3bcJKp4Mgx_kvFFGvHcW-GWAUv6XwV2p0/ Voting closes midnight on Saturday Sept 12th so please spend two minutes and vote now. Thank you – we will now return to normal Newsletter service…
  • Vote For Sustainable Wellesley’s Quentin and Dylan in MIT’s Climate CoLab Competition

    MIT Climate Co Lab MIT has a huge annual competition for the best ideas on solving climate change.  Sustainable Wellesley’s Dylan Husted and Quentin Prideaux are working on Dylan’s brilliant idea, SaveOhno, which has made it into the Finals! To vote for SaveOhno: http://climatecolab.org/web/guest/plans/-/plans/contestId/1301417/planId/1320156 Do check it out and please support/ vote for them.  The idea is to create an online “vision of the future” that is initially bleak because of global warming, until you do something positive in the real world today.  It’s a neat way of making it easy and fun for non-hardcore-activists to take real action and see their results immediately.  Votes for MIT Climate CoLab are free, and you won’t get spammed, so please click a link to register and give it the ‘thumbs up’ now.  Votes directly feed into winning “The People’s Choice” and support for implementing the idea. To vote for SaveOhno: http://climatecolab.org/web/guest/plans/-/plans/contestId/1301417/planId/1320156 For more information, and step-by-step help with how to vote: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1E3yUG8CRQn3bcJKp4Mgx_kvFFGvHcW-GWAUv6XwV2p0/
  • Save These Dates

    Answering the Call, an Interfaith Gathering for Climate Action October 12th : Columbus/ Indigenous People’s Day, from, 7-9pm in Wellesley.  An interfaith service, forum and rally inspired by the Pope’s Save-the-date-stamp-2Climate Encyclical.  The event is receiving very strong support from local Houses of Worship, so save the date and watch this space.  http://www.sustainablewellesley.com/events/answering-the-call-an-interfaith-gathering-for-climate-action/ Plastic Bags – To Ban or Not to Ban? Fifteen Massachusetts communities have passed bans on plastic bags — should Wellesley do the same? Wellesley residents will come together for a free event on Friday, September 25, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the Unitarian Universalist of Wellesley (309 Washington Street, Parish Hall) to discuss the topic. http://www.sustainablewellesley.com/events/plastic-bags-to-ban-or-not-to-ban/
  • Quick Survey For You

    guitars  folkdesign samplesSLF On Saturday, we had an amazing Sustainable Living Festival at Wellesley’s Municipal Light Plant. With electric cars, gardening ideas, kids activities, solar power information, stylish upcycled fashions, electric guitars, lectures, sustainable investing, a huge raffle and a lot more, folks were inspired and entertained. For all exhibitors, attendees, and those that did not get a chance to attend the Sustainable Living Festival, please take a few seconds (120 for those that attended – we timed it and 25 for those that didnt) to respond to our survey. This will allow us to give you really what you want next time.
    Attendees’ Survey:https://sustainablewellesley.wufoo.com/forms/mx4m6xp14uf6iq/ Exhibitors’ Survey:https://sustainablewellesley.wufoo.com/forms/zd8zkon05xdnnz/ See all the photos here! Thank you to all of the wonderful exhibitors, presenters and raffle donors! We hope you made it, and if not see you next time. The Sustainable Wellesley Leadership Team, Quentin, Phyllis, Lise, Scott, Jeff, Alex
  • “What’s With the Weather?” WCVB Channel 5 Chief Meteorologist Harvey Leonard

    harvey leonard
    Mass Audubon is teaming up with WCVB Channel 5 chief meteorologist Harvey Leonard, who will discuss “What’s With the Weather?” at The Center for Arts (TCAN) in Natick on Sunday afternoon, March 29.
    This event is free and open to the public.
    Leonard’s fascinating take on this unprecedented winter—and where our weather patterns might be headed—is sponsored by Mass Audubon’s Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary in Natick. And the local connection extends to the speaker, himself a longtime Natick resident.  The meteorologist will address the heavy snowfall and deep cold of the past month. But Leonard will also focus on the temperature swings, record high winds, severe drought and rainfalls, and other extreme weather events of the past several years.
    He will also be answering questions from the audience.  As his loyal audience knows, Leonard, who joined WCVB Channel 5 in 2002, has been a broadcast fixture in the greater Boston area and throughout the region for more almost four decades. “February, 2015 has certainly been one for the record books, and only serves to add to the interest, need and importance of discussing normal climatic variation and climate change,” Leonard said.  “I look forward to a lively discussion and to meeting many interesting people.”
    Broadmoor Wildlife Sanctuary Director Elissa Landre said Leonard’s timely subject matter aligns with the mission of Mass Audubon, the respected conservation leader.  “In helping to connect people with nature, we support birds and other species whose habitats are being impacted by threats including floods, dangerous heat spells, and beach erosion caused by coastal storms of increasing ferocity and frequency,” Landre said. “So everyone who attends is going to find Harvey’s talk enlightening and educational.”

    More Information

    For more information and to reserve seats, contact Broadmoor at 508-655-2296, hit zero  or register online through this link: Jean and Henry Stone Memorial Lecture: What’s With the Weather?
    Feel free to pass along to others!
  • 5 pm TONIGHT @ Babson’s Olin Auditorium #CLIMATE REALITY

    Come to Babson’s Olin Auditorium tonight at 5pm for a talk by Sustainable Wellesley’s Quentin Prideaux.
    He will be presenting and discussing global warming, science and the implications for Massachusetts and the North East. Presented by the Babson Energy & Environmental Club.
    quentin at babson
  • Join Us for a Sustainable Wellesley Action Team Meeting this Sunday, Jan. 25, 2 to 4 pm!

    Join the SW Action Team

    Join the SW Action Team

    Sustainable Wellesley action teams are in gear and making plans for upcoming events and initiatives on Wellesley recycling, town government, and an exciting new event planned for May—the Sustainable Living Festival. Please join us at Quentin’s home, 75 Emerson Road, for break-out groups and a discussion of next steps. We will also be taking a look at what we can do to make our homes more sustainable right now. All are welcome—bring a friend! Please email us to confirm your attendance at info@SustainableWellesley.com.
  • Latest “Climate Reality” Talk This Thursday Evening

    WN_Header_2
    WELLESLEY NEIGHBORS SPEAKER SERIES
    Thursday, December 11th at 7:00 P.M
    at the Wellesley College Club
     
    “CLIMATE REALITY
     
    Quentin Prideaux

    The talk reviews the causes and impacts of climate change, the actions we need to take, and what it all means for Massachusetts and the Northeast. Quentin will discuss why some have been confused about the facts and, although the subject is serious, Quentin keeps it positive and lighthearted where possible. The talk will lead into a question and answer session.

     

    Quentin Prideaux is a Partner in the management consulting firm Alder Associates and lives in Wellesley with his wife,Delissa, and two children; Alex (15) and Samantha (10).  He has a degree in Physics from Bristol University, leads SustainableWellelsey, and is a trained presenter for The Climate Reality Project and for Climate Voices.
    To register: 
    Send email to events@wellesleyneighbors.org or call (781) 283-0417, ext. 2
    Let them know if you need a ride.
     
  • Want To Laugh? Go Get Your Tickets.

    A new comedy from Eve Ensler, the author of The Vagina Monologues, O.P.C. is an exploration of consumption and politics that asks, “How are we to survive as a species if we insist on destroying the world we love?” opc-web-wide A dumpster-diving freegan is doing just fine squatting in an abandoned apartment, but when her mother, a candidate running for the Senate, tries to make her toe the party line, radicalism comes into collision with mainstream liberalism. Mother and daughter wrestle with the inconvenient truths at the heart of consumer culture, tossed between political compromise and “obsessive political correctness.” The performances will be at the American Repertory Theater (A.R.T.) in the Loeb Drama Center, 64 Brattle Street, Harvard Square, starting November 28 and running through January 4, 2015. ASL Interpreted performances: December 30 @ 7:30PM and January 4 @ 2PM Audio Described performances: December 30 @ 7:30PM and January 3 @ 2:00PM Ticket are available from $25.00 at the Box Office (617.547.8300) or here.
    Tomorrow night
    catch the “Politically Incorrect: Feminism and the Future of the Planet” discussion with Eve Ensler and Timothy Patrick McCarthy, at 7PM @ Farkas Hall, 12 Holyoke Street. This discussion is free and open to the public.
  • Join Us This Sunday 1-3pm!

    What is next Many of you told us that the People’s Climate March was such an “Important experience for me and my family.” Then you told us “You wanted be more actively involved because the experience reinvigorated you.”
    Now is your chance!
    Be part of a Climate Action Group based in Wellesley to keep the momentum of the People’s Climate March going. Sustainable Wellesley is hosting the first meeting on Sunday, November 16th from 1-3 pm where we will decide where we are going to take this next. The meeting is at 75 Emerson Road, Wellesley, the house of Quentin Prideaux who will facilitate the meeting. Please click this link to confirm your attendance : [OR : please RSVP to info@sustainablewellesley.com ].
  • Turn Climate Grief Into Action

    SILA_Poster JPG Chantal Bilodeau’s new play, Sila, asks “How do we accept what is happening to our planet and let it inspire us to act? What does it mean, at this historical moment, to adequately grieve and then adapt for survival?” This powerful script offers a major opportunity for engagement around one of the most vital questions of our time.
    November 3, 6:30pm McCarthy Center Forum SILA by Chantal Bilodeau Staged reading
  • Presentation Tonight, 10/27 & 12/11: Solutions Are Real & In Our Grasp

    ImTooHot_ImageCarosel_programLooking for motivation? Come hear Sustainable Wellesley’s own Quentin Prideaux when he shares the updated Climate Reality Project’s presentation Solutions Are Real And In Our Grasp. Dates and locations listed below:
    Tue Oct 21, 2014 7pm – 8:30pm Wellesley Free Library, Washington Street, Wellesley Sponsored by Wellesley’s Council of Aging Monday, Oct 27, 2014 7pm- 8:30 pm Needham Free Public Library, Community Room, 1139 Highland Avenue, Needham * informational tables with materials about residential solar, energy efficiency, and local agriculture will be available as well. Plus the first 12 people to arrive will receive a free LED light bulb. This program is sponsored by Green Needham Collaborative and the League of Women Voters of Needham. Thursday, Dec 11,2014 7pm- 8:30 pm Wellesley College Club, 727 Washington Street, Wellesley Sponsored by Wellesley Neighbors
    Quentin Prideaux of The Climate Reality Project will give an informative and energizing presentation on the impacts and causes of climate change, the actions we need to take, and what it all means for Massachusetts and the Northeast. A question/answer period will follow the talks.
  • Wellesley Went to New York & Met 400,000 Friends

    climate change march 1
    Show me what democracy looks like. This is what democracy looks like : people in the streets making their concerns clear to those they employ as politicians.
    A few months ago several of the Sustainable Wellesley (SW) Leadership decided to go to the Climate March in New York. We had gone to one in Washington where up to 40,000 people turned out in the cold to walk around the White House to send a message about Keystone XL to the President. As Bill McKibben said on that day “All I ever wanted to see was a movement on climate and now I see one”. We felt that march was important and we wanted to do what we could this time around. Lise Olney suggested renting a bus from Wellesley. That sounded ambitious but Lise decided to find out what was possible, and discovered that the bus would cost over $2,000. SW has no budget and we seemed stuck at the first hurdle. Then we realized that a train to New York would cost each of us over $200 so if we could get 10 people to commit to a train fare we could then hire an entire bus instead – and maybe get some more people to go. We sent the email and in the space of a few hours we had 8 commitments and Lise reserved the bus. The full bus would cost $40 per ticket. Lise even managed to get the March Organizers to help fund the bus, dropping ticket prices to $25. The race was on to fill it. Our large and very active membership really stepped up and within few days; we were approaching capacity. As soon as tickets became scarce, demand rocketed. When we filled the first bus, Lise booked another without blinking and filled that within 15 hours. We could have filled another three busses but every single one in Massachusetts was already booked for the march. On the day of we got up at 4.45 and stood in the rain singing-in people on wet pieces of paper waiting for a bus to arrive in a Wellesley College lot. They all came – from age 9 to age 76+ (no one over 30 was volunteering their age) and got on the bus….and fell asleep. As we neared New York we discussed climate change and our reasons for coming. We had people who had marched in each decade since the 60’s – from civil rights, through the original Earth Day, women’s rights, Vietnam, nuclear disarmament and the Iraq War. But mostly we were people who had never marched before until this day. climate march from up highWe arrived at 86th street to massive crowds and superb organization. Walking to the march we reached 83rd street and had to stop. The front of the March was about 40 blocks away at Columbus Circle and for two hours people streamed in behind us. By 12.pm they couldn’t unload busses because the streets were too full. It took more than two hours after the first marchers started walking before the wave of motion reached us and we were on the move. At 12:58 the entire crowd went deathly quiet and raised their hands above their heads. All that could be heard was a police siren far away in the city as all of Central Park went still, with every street packed with silent people. Two minutes later we raised the ‘climate alarm’ : 30 marching bands struck up, countless other bands and groups played, and every single mouth was shouting or blowing a whistle. The roar progressed from the front of the march to the back and could be heard over a mile away. When the noise reached us we joined in and saw again just how many people had turned out to make a statement and just how much they cared about global warming. The march itself was very entertaining, with representatives from the science community, faith groups, animal rights groups, anti-pollution groups, and of course fracking and Keystone XL protesters. The atmosphere was committed and optimistic. As news began to spread of the size of our crowd the significance grew – this was the largest climate march in history and was so big that it would get noticed by every politician in the country, from the President through Congress to State Senators and beyond. As a society we have been addicted to coal oil and gas for a century or more. After decades of research into global warming, after decades of talking, explaining, writing and petitioning we were making a statement that could not be ignored. The time had come to sound the climate alarm. And we did it in a way that no one can ignore.
    And no one can ignore what happens next – we move from coal oil and gas to clean, job-creating, renewable energy or we watch everything that we value suffer.
    Millions judge their politicians first on this question : “Are you working as hard as you possibly can to curb global warming?”. A “Yes” answer is simply the table-stakes to be able to deal with all the other issues that global warming make worse – war, jobs, security, food scarcity, unemployment, human rights, the environment and more. Now the politicians know we are paying attention, and voting and acting accordingly will keep that pressure on. — by Quentin Prideaux
  • Sustainable Wellesley’s 2nd Bus to People’s Climate March Sells Out in Just 15 Hours

    PCMSignsWHS
    Can’t Go? Inspiring Signs Needed Show Your Support & Make A Few
    After so many locals called and emailed last week to join Sustainable Wellesley’s chartered bus to the People’s Climate March, the group decided to add a second bus. The second bus sold out in just 15 hours. There are now 110 folks – including many students from Wellesley College — who will be traveling to New York City with Sustainable Wellesley on Sunday, September 21. More than 374 buses will be heading to New York City for the march. The 29th bus from Boston just sold out. There are even 5 buses driving 22 hours from Minnesota. Others will be carpooling and taking the train. However, if you can’t make the event but want to be part of it, buses and marchers need inspiring signs. Please create a sign or two that will remind the world why the People’s Climate March is so important. Let Instagram images, tweets, and Facebook posts show world leaders and the global press corps that Wellesley, Massachusetts, is ready for a better future and we want real action now! Another way to be part of the event: Answer the question, “What do you love and hope to never lose to Climate Chaos?” Then post your answer here: http://theclimateribbon.tumblr.com/make. Or create a ribbon for Sustainable Wellesley marchers to carry in the march! Signs and ribbons may be delivered to 15 Windsor Road before Saturday, September 20th. Signs should be easy to roll or fold, and carried with a hollow cardboard tube or string (no sticks). i dont want to loose
  • Expert Panel on Local Climate Change Issues

    climate-change-panel-flyer A panel discussion by local experts on the challenges and solutions that Massachusetts faces in dealing with the climate change crisis. When: Monday, September 15th, 7-9pm Where: Common Street Church, 13 Common Street, Natick, MA (See map below)(NOTE NEW VENUE) Panel: Keneth Weiss of 350MA. Kenneth Weiss will update us about the destructive projects the fossil fuel industry is working on and that we need to stop. He will also cover the growth of renewables and share examples of encouraging projects. He was part of the team that started up the Metrowest Node of 350 in Massachusetts. .350 Massachusetts, a Better Future Project, (“350MA”) is a thriving, volunteer-led, statewide movement to address the urgency of the climate crisis. Rev. Ian Mevorach of the Common St. Church. Climate Change Activist: Rev. Mevorach has been active in the planning for the upcoming People’s Climate March in NYC and will offer us his insights on the importance of this event. Rev. Ian Mevorach, founding pastor of Common Street Community Church, has a long history of engagement with eco-justice movement, especially through faith-based organizations and 350.org. Common Street and its members are active in eco-justice causes. He is the author of “Stewards of Creation: A Christian Calling for Today’s Ecological Crisis” in For Such a Time as This: Young Adults on the Future of the Church (Judson, 2014). He represents the American Baptist Churches on the board of Creation Justice Ministries, a national ecumenical environmental advocacy coalition. Rev. Mevorach is a PhD candidate in Theological Ethics at Boston University, and is working on a dissertation in the field of ecological theology and ethics. He is currently teaching a course at Emmanuel College in Boston titled, “Religion and the Environment: Ethical Explorations.” Terra Friedrichs: Socially Conscious Business Consultant and Legislative Activist: How corporate money and influence shape politics in ways that impact climate and environment. and how to leverage municipal government to reduce carbon footprint. What towns are doing to protect their towns–across the nation and in Massachusetts–both to protect their own towns and the wider community from corporate destruction, including reducing their carbon footprint, divesting, and/or prohibiting certain “land uses” and/or products such as chemicals and plastics. Terra Friedrichs, ex-elected official (Selectman, Acton), small business owner and concerned citizen. She speaks around the state on these matters, sharing what she’s learned with public officials and other concerned citizens. Rob Rand. Western Massachusetts Pipeline Activist: What Else?: Light refreshments will be served. Ample parking on street and municipal parking lot (Church St.). Show Your Support As many of you know, there is a giant climate mobilization–The People’s Climate March–planned for September 21st in New York City. The same time that heads of state will be holding a summit on climate change. Climate activists and others who care about our planet will be converging in the Big Apple to make a giant statement and demand for action about the climate threat (based on our addiction to fossil fuels) that is facing humanity and our fellow travelers on Planet Earth. We are offering this evening’s event in support for and in resonance with the march. There are (inexpensive) buses leaving from many locations in MA. We hope that many of you will choose to get on the bus and join the march (tickets and information here).
  • Wellesley Resident Builds Support for MA Carbon Tax

    Wellesley resident Jessica Langerman last summer, introducing the results of a study on a carbon tax in Massachusetts conducted by the Regional Economic Models, Inc.

    Wellesley resident Jessica Langerman last summer, introducing the results of a study on a carbon tax in Massachusetts conducted by the Regional Economic Models, Inc.

    Working with the grassroots group Climate XChange, Wellesley resident and activist Jessica Langerman is building support for legislation that would create a revenue-neutral carbon tax in Massachusetts. Langerman asked the Wellesley Democratic Town Committee (WDTC) to support the currently proposed environmental tax reform bill (H 2532), which is co-sponsored by Wellesley’s state representative, Alice Peisch. On June 26, the WDTC voted unanimously to support the bill and the concept of environmental tax reform to “simultaneously reduce greenhouse gas emissions, strengthen our economy, and help move our state away from its dependence on fossil fuels.” Langerman and Climate XChange emphasize that the concept of a revenue neutral carbon tax has received support from citizens across the political spectrum, including former Congressman Bob Inglis, Republican from South Carolina. ClimateXChange.logoClimate XChange is working on a web page here. Meanwhile, you can find them on Facebook and Twitter. Your faith group, workplace, or civic organization can host a trained Climate XChange volunteer for a non-partisan, informational presentation on the concept of a revenue-neutral carbon tax. For more information, contact Shira Rascoe at srascoe@climate-xchange.org.
  • NPR’s Steve Curwood In Wellesley Nov. 19th

    Sorenson Theatre, Babson College

    Sorenson Theatre, Babson College

    Lets Fill This Place!

    Please join the League of Women Voters and the Citizens Climate Lobby in welcoming

    Steve Curwood, Pulitzer-prize winning host of NPR’s “Living on Earth,”

    for a carbon pricing forum at Babson College on November 19 at 7:00 p.m. They have a stellar panel of renowned academics and activists:  Theda Skocpol and Joseph Aldy of Harvard, John Reilly of MIT, Fritz Fleischmann of Babson and Gary Rucinski, CCL Boston Coordinator, who will discuss how most effectively to put an economy-wide price on carbon – including the concept of a carbon tax. In addition, various environmental and political organizations — including Sustainable Wellesley — will be “tabling” – a great opportunity to network. There will also be a Tesla on site for anyone interested in checking it out! This event will be held at Babson’s gorgeous Sorenson Theatre which holds 450 people.  Because they hope to have several legislators and gubernatorial candidates in attendance, and because the media will be on hand, lets help fill every seat to convey the message to our leaders that the political will to price  carbon is building.