On April 10th, Trump issued an Executive Order that limits states’ ability to protect their own water resources from harmful pipelines and other dirty energy projects.
They’re in stain resistant carpets and clothing, cookware, some cosmetics, outdoor gear, and even dental floss. You may know them as Teflon®, or Scotchguard®. You have them in your body and they’ve been detected in 455 California drinking water sources thus far. I’m talking about a class of fluorinated chemicals, called PFAS, and they threaten California’s water and its people. Why haven’t we done more about them?
Imagine over 600,000 acres of wilderness. You are surrounded by blue sky, mountains, rock formations and a cornucopia of plants including creosote, palo verde, cacti, and ocotillo. As you walk around, you have the opportunity to see bighorn sheep, mountain lions, kit foxes, mule deer, coyotes, greater roadrunners, golden eagles, black-tailed jackrabbits, ground squirrels, kangaroo rats, quail, prairie falcons, desert iguanas, chuckwallas, and red diamond rattlesnakes.
While Maryland's legislative session normally ends with celebrations, this year we are all mourning the death of House Speaker Busch. Speaker Busch has served Maryland for many years, championing many environmental issues. His leadership in the House of Delegates and Maryland will be missed.
When the bells rang at midnight, Maryland's legislative session officially ended.
Here is where our priorities landed:
People all across Maryland - especially in Baltimore, Frederick, and Montgomery County where communities have fought or are fighting against trash incinerators in their neighborhoods - have been working to make sure that any increase in the renewable portfolio standard not increase subsidies for trash incineration. Today, on the last day of the legislative session, the current version of the Clean Energy Jobs Act maintains burning trash as a tier 1 renewable energy source, keeping it eligible for the maximum amount of subsidy available.
Last month, the Comité Lost Hills En Accion, a group of community members that I work with to advocate for public health and community wellbeing measures in Lost Hills, invited representatives from Caltrans to do a presentation on the expansion of Highway 46. Highway 46, which runs through the Lost Hills community, is also known as a "Blood Alley" for the high number of motor-related deaths that take place on it. The current Caltrans proposal is to expand the highway from 2 lanes to 4 lanes.
Spring is finally here! It’s my favorite time of year, despite the unpredictable Massachusetts weather. Spring means greening foliage and blooming flowers. It also means shopping for all things spring -- and the first place I head to is Marshalls, or T.J. Maxx. These stores have great deals and a large selection. As a customer, neighbor (the parent company TJX is headquartered in Massachusetts), and activist I want to be able to say “and its wide collection of safe and non-toxic products” —but I can’t.
The United States contains 5% of the world’s population, yet consumes about a quarter of the planet’s resources. Much of this consumption stems from our “throw away” lifestyle, whereby many products are used once and then thrown away. This started in the 1950s, when the plastics and chemical industries sold the American public on the convenience of single-use disposable items. In 2011, the average American produced 4.4 pounds of household garbage per day, twice as much as in 1960.
Last week we organized to oppose President Trump’s nominee to serve as Secretary of Interior. David Bernhardt, a former oil and gas lobbyist and lawyer with extensive conflicts of interest, has used his position at DOI to harm America’s public lands, waters and wildlife and gut some of the nation’s landmark conservation victories at the behest of corporate special interests.