Showing posts from February, 2020

Carbon Countdown

Today, I attended a forum hosted by Sustainable Middlesex called Carbon Countdown. At the forum, we heard from Senator Mike Barrett and Representative Christina Minicucci about legislation in the State House and got to hear what some other climate advocates are working on.

Climate catch-up

Today, I caught up on a bunch of tasks that I had committed myself to, for the Climate Reality Project and the Climate Coalition of Somerville.

Nonprofit Incorporation Seminar

Today, I attended a seminar on how to incorporate a non-profit organization. Not that I have an actual organization to non-profit to incorporate, but it was good to have the knowledge behind it of the legal, tax and administrative implications.

Mass Power Forward

Today, I attended the weekly call for the Mass Power Forward coalition to hear the latest updates on the coalition’s priorities in the legislature and the actions it has planned.

Draw Seven Park Public Meeting

Today, I attended a public meeting on current designs for Draw Seven Park, a small park in Somerville that is owned by the State. It’s a significant win that the State is designing the park for climate resilience: it’s a floodable park with native plantings that will help to keep the rest of Somerville dry when the Mystic River floods its banks. It’s just a matter of time so it’s nice to see the State getting ahead of a problem.

Breakfast with City Councilor

Today, I had a monthly breakfast with one of Somerville’s City Councilors to talk about progress on sustainability in the city.

We the People amendment

There’s been some progress on the state-level We The People amendment. It’s an important state legislative call for a constitutional convention to redress three specific wrongs: (1) corporations are created by people but are not people, and should not be allowed to use the people’s Constitutional rights against us, (2) political spending amplifies speech but is not speech, and should be regulated to ensure political equality, and (3) Massachusetts should apply for a limited-scope amendment-proposing convention, to pressure Congress to propose its own constitutional amendment. Today I wrote my State Rep. and State Senator to congratulate them for the bill’s passage from the Joint Committee on Veteran’s Affairs and to ask them to push for the bill to get a vote before the House and Senate.

Organizational details

Today, I sat down with the former finance lead for Indivisible Somerville. I wanted to pick her brain about how we should organize the Climate Coalition of Somerville.

Meet a new activist

Today, I had coffee with a potential Somerville climate activist, with a particular focus on environmental justice and resilience. What a great addition to the team!

Prep for Somerville Platinum Labs Public Forum

Next week, there’s a public forum to discuss whether LEED Platinum is an achievable standard for laboratory buildings. Today, I joined a planning call for that meeting, with some architects and engineers. With that said, the forum will probably too technical for me, so I think I’ll sit that day out.

Somerville Stands Together Summit meeting

350 Mass is planning a labor-climate summit next month, with Somerville Stands Together. Today, I joined a planning meeting to see how the summit might come together and brainstorm on whom to invite.

Climate Reality Project chapter call

Today, we held a monthly call for the Climate Reality Project’s Boston Metro chapter. We had to deliver some bad news about postponing two upcoming events but there’s still some momentum growing in the chapter.

Kiva loan

Today, I made another Kiva loan, this one to an avocado farmer in Peru. It’s my 18th Kiva loan, to recipients now in seven countries.

Plastic-free Amazon

The amount of packaging that accompanies every Amazon order one reason I’ve cut back quite a bit on my use. Today, I signed a petition asking Amazon to develop plastic-free option at checkout and plastic-free labeling for sellers who choose eco-alternatives.

Green & Open post-mortem

We lost one on Thursday, when our City Council voted to fund the replacement of a natural grass field with artificial turf. Or “plastic grass,” as we like to call it. Today, I had a post-mortem with some memers of Green & Open Somerville to discuss a response, and next steps.

Climate Reality update

Today, I caught up on some Climate Reality Project Boston Metro chapter work, notably getting a newsletter out to our membership. We unfortunately have had to reschedule two things that were coming up in the next months, so I had to deliver some bad news.

Green New Deal Town Hall

Today, I attended an Ed Markey town hall on the Green New Deal, right here at Somerville High School. I didn’t hear much of anything new, but it was important to be in the space with so many other dedicated local activists.

Commission on Energy Use and Climate Change

Today, I participated in the the monthly meeting for the Commission on Energy Use and Climate Change. It was a productive meeting when we were able to work out some priorities for the year. Also — I was elected to chair the commission.

Op-ed for the Least Developed Countries Fund

Today, I drafted an op-ed for the Least Developed Countries Fund . Our bill made it out of committee and it’s time to push for a vote during this legislative session. One of our partners will probably pitch it to some Massachusetts media outlets.

Climate Coalition of Somerville

Today, I attended the monthly meeting of the Climate Coalition of Somerville. We’re doing some planning for Spring activities.

The Brattle Theatre's Oscar Party

Today, I went to the Oscar Party held every year by the Brattle Theatre. Because of the timing, this was less of a fundraiser than in past years, but I wanted to spend some time cultivating members and donors.

Climate Coalition of Somerville website copy

Today, I drafted some language for the Climate Coalition of Somerville’s website. We still have some design things to work out, but I wanted to be ready with the copy I’d been assigned to draft.

Least Developed Countries Fund

Today, I dialed into our monthly call to discuss the strategy for the Least Developed Countries Fund bill. And we got some good news — the bill was reported out of committee favorably and is moving forward.

Gas Leaks Allies and FRRACS

Today, I joined two meetings to get more involved with a transition from fossil fuels. First was a Gas Leaks Allies meeting; that’s a coalition that is fighting to triage our leaky gas infrastructure statewide and transition away from the fossil fuel. Then, I attended a briefing and training by the Fore River Residents Against the Compressor Station (FRRACS), which is fighting the installation of new natural gas infrastructure in Weymouth. The compressor station in question by the way, is in a contaminated dense residential neighborhood and is actually not needed for the state’s gas supply; it’d ultimately send more gas for export.

Winter Hill Neighborhood Association

Today, I facilitated a discussion at the Winter Hill Neighborhood Association’s monthly meeting about sustainability strategies for households. I spoke about the City’s sustainability efforts. And we brought in a special speaker from All in Energy to talk about the Mass Save program. The real value came when we shared different things we’ve done with one another.

Making connections

It’s been a very busy past few weeks with One Civic Act. It was nice to take a breath for a moment. But catching up meant taking care of a few things that needed attention. Today, I made made several introductions between organizations and individuals that I’ve come across that need to be know about each other. Some of those connections involve the net-zero stretch code I’ve been advocating. Others are around bringing the En-ROADS climate simulation to the Long Now Foundation.

Long Now Boston on Conscious Capitalism

The Long Now Foundation likes to think about the long-term. I mean the very long-term, like 10,000 years. Today, I went to a Long Now Boston talk from Raj Sisodia, who started Conscious Capitalism with his book a decade ago. He spoke about the history and future of capitalism. I was also happy to connect back to the Conscious Capitalism Boston chapter.

Climate Coalition workday

Today, I got together with a few fellow members of the Climate Coalition of Somerville to work on a few back-office projects, notably our website. It really helps to work together on this, rather than trying to push forward virtually.

Anti-Oppression training

Today, I spent the whole day in a training run by MCAN, to introduce how climate activists can recognize and counter the influence of dominant culture and power structures on our work. Today, I also met with a couple Somerville advocates to help plan for an event this coming Wednesday. Long day.