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Archive for Coal

Green Team Speaks Out Against Coal in Oakland

Hi Dear Skyline Green Team, 

Thank you, for adding your voices to help bring forth this important decision, and environmental justice victory for all the people of Oakland!

Thank you, for coming out to the vigils on Saturday and on Monday, and to the council meeting. 

As you experienced it, the stakes were high and the rally was contentious, and grew even more so during the meeting. But we won!

Here’s the news!

Laurie’s talk at the rally on Saturday, June 25

http://www.ktvu.com/news/166685923-story

http://www.wsj.com/articles/oakland-officials-vote-to-ban-coal-handling-and-storage-at-new-shipping-terminal-1467106207

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/29/us/oakland-coal-transport-ban.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/oakland-coal-shipments_us_577204abe4b017b379f72d3c

http://www.sltrib.com/home/4054521-155/oakland-city-council-discusses-coal-ban

http://nocoalinoakland.info/

http://www.eastbaytimes.com/breaking-news/ci_30064002/happening-now-oakland-council-considering-ban-coal 

Laurie’s Speech Before the City Council Meeting

What a gorgeous day, let’s hear it for the organizers of this rally! Give them a big applause! 

I feel so much hope today, here w/ you, & here representing the voices of so many Oakland faith communities, including the dozens that are part of CIPL & the Sierra Club, in saying no to coal in Oakland …. You’re here, bec. you care about Oakland & your voice matters.   

Tonight, our City Council will vote a/ bringing coal into W. Oakland from Utah to export to Asia. I think if they asked us,  we’d tell them right away – NO! no more coal dust, no more asthma, no more cancer, no more climate change! 

The developers have gotten our city council to a pickle..

The developers claim that they’ll create new, never before seen, clean coal operation that covers up the train cars & covers up the terminal, so no coal dust escapes.  

But the real cover up was the developers’ intentions to sell off access to our city’s waterfront to the highest bidderregardless of their promise that coal wasn’t part of the plan.”    We’re not going to fall for it! . 

Come to the city council mtg tonight -make sure that they don’t fall for it either!

The good news.. our city councilman, Dan Kalb is recommending an item on the agenda that we can support – to ban coal in Oakland. Come & support him. 

We don’t need a coal terminal in Oakland .. why? because coal IS terminal – it’s terminal for human health, it’s terminal biologically, morally & economically. 

We’re all familiar with “the Golden Rule.” It’s a universal principal, an ethic of reciprocity that teaches: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” “Love your neighbor as yourself.” It teaches us to care about our neighbors.  Who doesn’t care about the kid down the street, in W. oakland breathing dirty air. 

As Flint MI, reminds us, environmental toxins particularly impact poor children of color, globally, & locally. W. Oakland has many parallels to Flint. (%90 black & Latino, where residents already experience high rates of poverty & unemployment. Imagine if this coal train were being routed through Piedmont or Montclair? 

 This is a local health issue. The children of W. Oakl& are already contending with fumes & noise from the heavy volume of diesel trucks & other pollution from the Port. We need to ask ourselves, what if it were our own children? 

This is a global health issue. We need to imagine the impact on children, not only W. Oakland, but in Asia, & in Utah. We need to imagine the impact on children of the next generation. Right now, accdg to WHA, 7 mill. people die every yr because air pollution. 

Our Governor & our mayor, spoke out in Paris at the Nov climate summit. They presented our city & our state as leaders in the environmental justice. They echoed the global scientific community’s unanimous pleas to leave 90% of fossil fuels in ground Speaking out in at Vatican, Jerry Brown clearly articulated that this is a moral issue. Why be complicit in prolonging, & accelerating this environmental & humanitarian disaster? 

 

It’s a  bad investment for Oakl&.   Renewables are the way of the future. … 

Oakl& deserves.. good energy, good jobs, clean air. 

We don’t need a coal terminal because coal is terminal  YOUR VOICE MATTERS COME TO CITY COUNCIL TONIGHT!

No Coal in Oakland

2-16-16 ministers in front of city hall 2

Statement by Rev. Laurie Manning, pastor of Skyline Church UCC-Oakland Hills, and UCC Northern California representative for Environmental Justice at the no-coal-in-Oakland press conference outside City Hall Tues, Feb 16, 2016:

We’re all familiar with “the Golden Rule.” It’s a universal principal, an ethic of reciprocity that teaches: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” “Love your neighbor as yourself.” It teaches us to care about our neighbors.  Who doesn’t care about the kid down the street, or down the hill breathing dirty air?

As Flint Michigan reminds us, environmental toxins particularly impact poor children of color, globally, & locally. West Oakland has many parallels to Flint. (%90 black & Latino, where residents already experience high rates of poverty and unemployment).2-16-16 Coal Nancy Laurie David

This is a local health issue. The children of West Oakland are already contending with fumes & noise from the Port. We need to ask ourselves, what if it were our own children?  

Now the proponents of the coal partnership in Oakland argue that it is bringing a $52 million investment and will bring almost $3 mill in annual property taxes and 2300 jobs.

But at what cost? What cost to the environment: excavating coal in Utah, transporting it here by rail, & shipping it by ocean to be burned in China? What cost to human lives in every step of the coal production process:  the health risks to those most vulnerable; the miners in Utah; the residents of West Oakland; and those who breathe the air in China? 

I’m so proud of Governor Brown, and his global leadership in environmental justice. Speaking out in Paris, and at 2-16-16 Becky? at CouncilVatican, Governor Brown echoed the global scientific community’s unanimous pleas to leave 90% of fossil fuels in ground. Why would we want to be complicit in prolonging and accelerating this environmental and humanitarian health crisis?

Furthermore, besides the moral argument, there’s an economic argument.  It’s a bad investment for Oakland. The demand for coal and the coal industry are rapidly failing. Why would Oakland want to invest, even in the short term, as major coal companies are going bankrupt? As Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize economist, has recently noted, “fossil fuels 2-16-16 Laurie at Councilare the way of past, renewables are way in the future – if we care about the future, we care about switching.”http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/01/opinion/wind-sun-and-fire.html?_r=0

Finally, there’s the voice of the people. According to the recent Sierra Club survey, 76% of Oakland residents are against coal in the port. 

Surely, there are healthier and safer long term sources of jobs and revenue that will benefit all of the people of Oakland.

Coal in Oakland & Refugees from Central America

2-16-16 ministers in front of city hall 2On Tuesday evening members and friends of Skyline’s Green Team joined hundreds of others to take part in Oakland City Hall’s ongoing discussions about approving a coal distribution center in the port. There will be an interfaith vigil, and undoubtedly, a long evening of discussions. 

I lift up thanks to the great collective sense of civic responsibility involved in these meetings, and even more, in our collective efforts to transition to renewable energy sources.  

The outcome of Tuesday’s meeting is that the City Council did delay the vote on taking the next step to bring coal through Oakland.Here’s a video of Laurie speaking at the press conference Here’s CBS Bay Area’s news report from last night.

I’d like to share with you some quotes on the UCC’s stand and long history involved in the environmental justice movement. 

This Sunday, Rev Deborah Lee will be joining us to share stories about the refugees from Central America and Dleeways in which faith communities, including ours, are offering support to refugees and their families.  After worship she and her colleague, Daniel Pinell, will share stories about the underlying causes. 

Thank you, Skyline for your compassionate hearts and voices!

A Press Conference and Vigil to Oppose Coal in Oakland, Feb 16

dreamstime_Coal trainThere will be a press conference sponsored by several faith and environmental groups at 4:30.   Then the vigil will be held from  5:00 – 6:00 pm at Oakland City Hall (Frank Ogawa Plaza). The Oakland City Council needs to hear from people of faith about our deep concern about the negative impacts on the health of our brothers and sisters in West Oakland if this proposed project proceeds. (See below for City Council members you can contact). For more information contact Rev Laurie Manning, revlauriemanning@gmail.com.

Pastor Laurie’s statement on coal in Oakland.

Some organizations supporting this:

350BayArea.org http://www.350bayarea.org/coal-free_oakland_city_council_20160216

OccupyOakland.org https://occupyoakland.org/event/no-coal-in-oakland-city-council-meeting/

Article in New York Times

WHERE:

Frank Ogawa/Oscar Grant Plaza, in front of

Oakland City Hall. (1 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza)

WHAT CAN I DO?

City council members really need to know how the people that they represent feel about Coal so that they may take action and stop this disastrous plan. You can;

1.     Sign the MoveOn petition to tell the city Council to stop Big Coal

2.    Copy this email and send it to your neighborhood listserv if you live in Oakland. Otherwise, forward it to everyone you know in Oakland

3.     Call and write Oakland city council members.   Email is easy to ignore, a phone call isn’t.  It doesn’t hurt to do both

Below is a brief script for calling and the text of a sample email. Feel free to personalize them.

To find your council district click here:

District 1 Dan Kalb   

   238-7001 dkalb@oaklandnet.com

District 5 Noel Gallo

238- 7005 ngallo@oaklandnet.com    

District 2 Abel Guillen

238-7002 aguillen@oaklandnet.com

District 6 Delsey Brooks

238-7006 dbrooks@oaklandnet.com

District 3 Lynette Gibson McElhaney

238-7003  lmacelhaney@oaklandnet.com

District 7 Larry E. Reid 

238-7007

lreid@oaklandnet.com

District 4 Annie Campbell Washington

238-7004

ACampbellWashington@oaklandnet.com

At Large Rebecca Kaplan

238-7008 rkaplan@oaklandnet.com

 

Mayor Libby Schaaf 

238-3141 lschaaf@oaklandnet.com

Phone:

“Hi, My name is _____________ and I live and vote in your Council district. I’m concerned that the city of Oakland could become a terminal for shipping coal. West Oakland does not deserve the negative health and toxic environmental impacts of mile-long coal trains shedding coal dust. Coal must be prohibited from the new export terminal. I call on you as my city council representative to pass an ordinance banning coal on health and safety grounds.”

Thank you

Email:

Subject:   Coal trains

Dear Mr./Ms./ council member,

My name is _____________ and I live and vote in your Council district. I’m concerned that the city of Oakland could become a terminal for shipping coal. West Oakland does not deserve the negative health and toxic environmental impacts of mile-long coal trains shedding coal dust. Coal must be prohibited from the new export terminal. I feel strongly that it would be a terrible mistake to expose our community to this toxic commodity.  I call on you as my city council representative to pass an ordinance banning coal on health and safety grounds.”

Thank you 

  This action section was prepared by Heather MacLeod, Alameda Interfaith Climate Action Network (A-ICAN)

Don’t Ship Coal Through Oakland

dreamstime_Coal trainWhy Rev. Laurie is against coal in the Port of Oakland..

The “Golden rule” of all the world’s religions teaches us to care about our neighbors.  Who doesn’t care about the kid down the street breathing dirty air?

As Flint has made us all aware, these are matters that particularly impact poor children of color. West Oakland has many parallels. This is a local health issue, especially for the children of West Oakland who are already contending with fumes & noise from the heavy volume of diesel trucks & other pollution from the port. What if it were your children?  Jess Dervin-Ackerman of the Sierra Club points out that “major organizing victories squashing export proposals in Oregon and Washington mean that Big Coal has turned its sights on California.  Bay Area communities are already burdened by poor air quality caused by our five oil refineries and the shipping industry. We even have some coal snaking through our neighborhoods by rail and shipping out of a private terminal in Richmond. Now Oakland is in Big Coal’s crosshairs.”

It’s a bad investment for Oakland, for both the short term and the long term.  The coal industry is rapidly failing, and demand is rapidly falling. Why would you want to invest in something going in the wrong direction, even in the short term, as major coal companies are going bankrupt? We’re living in a time when you can make good financial arguments about it. Things have really shifted because, in many states, renewable energy is cheaper than fossil fuel . The second line of defense from the fossil fuel industry is denial, and the first line of defense is money – it’s going to cost us too much. However, as  Paul Krugman, Nobel Prize economist, has recently noted, fossil fuels are way of past, renewals are way in the future – if we care about the future, we care about switching.

In 1987 the United Church of Christ Commission for Racial Justice published an explosive report entitled Toxic Wastes and Race in the United States. People of color, especially African-Americans, the report demonstrated, are the most likely victims of industrial pollution. Based on the findings, Reverend Ben Chavis helped launch the movement against “environmental racism.”

 “Environmental racism is racial discrimination in environmental policymaking. It is racial discrimination in the enforcement of regulations and laws. It is racial disccrimination in the deliberate targeting of communities of color for toxic waste disposal and the siting of polluting industries. It is racial discrimination in the official sanctioning of the life-threatening presence of poisons and pollutants in communities of color. And, it is racial discrimination in the history of excluding people of color from mainstream environmental groups, decision-making boards, commissions, and regulatory bodies.”

– Rev. Benjamin Chavis, Jr.

“Environmental justice advocates are not saying, ‘Take the poisons out of our community and put them in a white community.’ They are saying that no community should have to live with these poisons. They have thus taken the moral high road and are building a multicultural and inclusive movement that has the potential of transforming the political landscape of this nation.”

– Benjamin Chavis, Jr.

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