Darkest hour

Happy winter solstice – if happy is what you want to call it. It’s been another rough week. Earlier this week the Republicans rammed through a disastrous tax bill that will (among many other bad things) give special tax breaks to pipeline builders, Arctic drillers, and other assorted fossil fueled ne’er do-wells.

As I write this, they’re voting through a short term spending bill without doing anything about the DREAMers – who are at risk of being deported every week Congress refuses to act. All week long brave young people have risked arrest and deportation just to demand Congress vote on the issue. They shut down the Cafeteria today, in solidarity with seven other activists who went on hunger strike in jail. And still, Congress lacks the courage to protect people, not polluters.  

One other wrinkle to this week’s tax bill that you might not haver heard about: The #GOPTaxScam effectively eliminates the tax deductibility of charitable donations, removing the incentive for most people to donate to groups like us. I know that a lot of you will still donate because you care about the mission, not the tax break. But no less than New York Attorney General Schneiderman estimates groups like us could lose $20 billion in 2018 alone.

Can you chip in to support our work before these stupid new rules take effect so we (and you!) can afford to support climate activist?

Here in the darkest hour, it’s also worth remembering the lesson of the solstice: that darkness and light move in cycles, and just when it can’t get any darker – the light starts to come back.

So here’s 4 short gifs to tell you how we’re brining the light and heat to the Climate Justice movement in 2018:

The Thomas fire around Los Angeles is almost out now, which means it’s time to rebuild. Click here to support our plan to build a mobile ClimateDisaster response unit with partners in 2018 so we can be ready for what’s next

It wasn’t just California of course. Much of Puerto Rico is still without power and the death toll hundreds of times worse than the Trump Administration admits. We need to build local resiliance and resistance efforts from coast to coast to coast (there are three in America – Pacific, Atlantic, Gulf). Click here to chip in to support our local community building efforts in 2018.

If fire and water aren’t enough to get your elemental on, how about some atmosphere? Here’s a time lapse showing how carbon Dioxide moves in our atmosphere – if you look close you’ll notice that the rainforests in the global south act like a pair of lungs, constantly inhaling carbon and exhaling oxygen. But the global north is like a chain smoker, filling the shared resource of our atmosphere with more than our share of (red) Carbon and other global warming pollution. Click here to support our work to slash pollution, stop the expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure, and build out 100% clean, green energy here in North America.

Finally, today is a good day to donate because it’s the solstice. The longest night which turns into a long series of lengthening days, each one a little brighter than the day before. For the next six months we’ll be traveling the east coast – meeting up with frontline activists in the Carolinas, Virginia, DC and points north. We’ll keep a watchful eye on the Bayou Bridge and Keystone XL Pipelines – which thousands of us have signed up to show up and block, if and when we’re asked by local leaders.

One big thing w need to get ready, set, and rowdy for is California Governor Jerry Brown’s big international meeting next September. A lot of Governors, Mayors and other “sub-national” elected officials are expected to show up and talk about climate change, but action is less certain. Just like the Paris Climate Summit 2 years ago – a lot of what is decided in those rooms will hinge on action outside in the streets:

Do we demand a target that protects the most vulnerable (closer to 1.5C and serious action by 2020, instead of 2C and 2050)? Do leaders enact binding action, like state, county, an state-wide bans on new pipelines and fossil fuel infrastructure; Or do we let them get away with another promise to do better? Are conversations lead by communities on the frontlines that are poor, led by People of Color, and otherwise hit first-and-worst by climate impacts; Or does former-Mayor Bloomberg talk about sea walls in Brooklyn, while JP Morgan Chase is talking about not funding pipelines someday. (hint if Bloomberg and JP Morgan Chase are talking, the conversation is not about climate JUSTICE, even if it is about climate CHANGE).

So click here to chip in $1.98, $19.80 or whatever you can afford to help us get ready for 2018. Because today may be dark, but it only gets brighter from here.

PS – All the images and gifs in this message are from NASA’s Earth Observatory program. I mention because you should totally check out ALL their amazing and beutifle videos and images. But also because they’re yet another science-based program that (you guessed it) is set to have their budget radically cut by Trump and Republicans in Congress next year. We’d also love your financial support so we can incorporate a C4 arm that can lobby Congress directly, advocate for and against candidates, and more. Next week I’ll be sending you more of a roadmap and plan for 2018. But in the meantime, Please chip in to support our work.

Specific NASA images and videos we can’t live (or write this post) without:
The entire NASA Earth observatory team:

The coverage of the Thomas Fires in California, in particular

The 2017 Hurricanes and Aerosols Simulation

NASA | A Year in the Life of Earth’s CO2

Harvey

Most of the info on this page is copied from the Harvey response page at Another Gulf Is Possible. Their page is updated more frequently – so click here for the most up to date list of what’s needed and what to do.

When Hurricane Katrina made landfall in Louisiana 12 years ago, it seared into the mind of America a simple fact about the climate crisis: Climate Change is racist.

Here’s what I mean: Even as the impacts of climate change accelerate all around us with devastating impacts (this was, for example, the third once in 500 year storm to hit Houston in the last 3 years) they always hit the poor, communities of color, and the disenfranchised first and worst. There’s a reason that the people who lived in New Orleans’ lower ninth ward ward were mostly black, and the worst hit by Katrina’s flooding 12 years ago. There’s a reason why the people living next to flooded chemical plants and refineries that are leaking and spewing toxic gasses are mostly Latino and black. And there’s a reason that climate impacts like rising sea levels, more severe storms, and increased rainfall and flooding disproportionately  impact people in the global south, and poor and minority communities here at home in America.

That reason, as eloquently described by Wen Stephenson in the nation this week, is that:

Our unfolding climate catastrophe … is rooted in social and economic inequalities that render most vulnerable the most marginalized and powerless. …[B]oth causes and deadly effects, are inescapably political—as much about our democracy as about the changes wrought upon our atmosphere. (Note to those in the media: It’s not “politicizing” a tragedy to point out that the causes of the tragedy, and responses to it, are deeply political.)

Saying so is fine and necessary. But understanding that Harvey, and all climate chaos, cary a fundamental racial and political bias is also necessary to how we respond. During and After Katrina, the Red Cross drove empty trucks around to make it look like they were busy, and raised millions of dollars that were never spent on the people who needed it most. Its just one of several examples of how that charity, in particular, mis-manages donations. Just as important, after Katrina had passed, New Orleans was gentrified, it’s school districts privatized, and it’s reconstruction benefited many of the same developers, oil, and gas companies that made a climate-fueled super storm such a disaster for the city in the first place.

Which is why we’re asking you not to give to the Red Cross and other big charities in response to Harvey. Instead, we’re directing you to a consortium of local, frontline groups fighting climate change and environmental justice fights in and around the gulf region. Our goal is a #AJustHarveyRecovery – not just a new beginning for people’s who’s homes are flooded and who lost loved ones in the storm; But a new start for the region that shows Another Gulf Is Possible.

So here’s a full list from Our friends. If you’re not sure how to split your donation over these groups, or only have a minute – you may also donate on this page we setup, and we’ll divide 100% of the donations evenly between TEJAS and the L’eau Est La Vie camp‘s pages, since we’ve worked with both groups in the past.

Gulf South Regional Resource & Support Mobilization

This webpage is being continually updated and is serving as a central information source for frontline-to-frontline direct resource & support mobilization. 

WHERE TO DONATE MONEY


RECOVERY SUPPLIES NEEDED

PERSONAL SUPPLIES

  • Basic toiletries – toothbrushes, toothpaste, period products (diva cups, pads, tampons etc), hair care, soap, lotion, talcum powder
  • Sleeping bags, pillows, blankets
  • Baby formula and baby food (MREs do not meet nutritional needs of infants), breast pumps, bottles, bottled water, diapers (cloth or disposable), carriers, strollers, car seats
  • Children’s toys, games, puzzles, cards, books
  • Water
  • Nonperishable, high nutrient density food
  • New, seasonally appropriate clothes of all sizes (for humid, hot weather)
  • Wheelchairs, walkers, canes, catheters, alcohol wipes, and “diapers” for adults/larger kids with disabilities

CLEAN UP SUPPLIES

  • Storage – plastic tubs, contractor bags, boxes, buckets, tarps, duct tape
  • Work tools – especially for demolition: hammers, axes, shovels, crowbars, tarps, screwdrivers, drills, box cutters and extra blades, crowbars, screwdrivers, drills, wheelbarrows, wire cutters, ladders
  • Cleaning supplies – heavy duty respirator masks (n95 or better), knee high rubber/rain boots, rubber gloves and thick work gloves, bleach, mops, brooms, rakes, garbage bags (especially large contractor bags), sponges, towels, heavy duty paper towels
  • Mold remediation supplies – borax, tea tree oil or vinegar are herbal products that eliminate black mold, as well as commercial “mold control”/other concrobium/ specifically mold-remediation products which tend to go quickly in affected sites.

HEALTH AND HOUSEHOLD SUPPLIES

  • Dehumidifiers, fans, flashlights, lanterns – especially solar powered
  • Solar power chargers, long-lasting/heavy duty/water-resistant power sticks, batteries of all kinds
  • Health/wellness supplies – herbal medicines/tinctures, vitamins, mosquito repellent, bandages (especially the waterproof kinds, NexCare is a good brand), gauze, medical tape (plastic and paper), medical gloves, antiseptic cleaners, pain relief, sanitizer, tweezers, muscle pain relief balms/ointments, ice packs
  • Dog food and emergency pet supplies like leashes, flea medicine
  • Large coolers, large cooler bags
  • Relevant gift cards: Home Depot, Lowes, Target, IKEA, Walgreen’s, H.E.B.

FRONTLINE DONATION DRIVE DROPOFF LOCATIONS

AIMING FOR DELIVERY ON FRIDAY 9/1

Donation Drop-Off – Monday 8/28 – Thursday 8/31 

NEW ORLEANS, LA AND SURROUNDING AREA

  • Mid-City and Gentilly
    • 3449 Roger Williams Street, 70119 – private home
      • anytime
      • Knock on door, leave donations on porch if not home/no answer
  • Bywater and Marigny
    • 609 St. Ferdinand Street, 70117- Catapult art space
      • Wednesday 12-8pm and Thursday 12-4pm
      • Blue metal warehouse next door to hot pink mosaic building; doors will be open
    • 1305 Alvar Street, 70117– private home
      • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 9am – 9pm
      • Knock on front door
  • Uptown
    • 5206 Magazine Street, 70115 – Rank and File Books
      • call/text 504-239-7140 for drop-off

BATON ROUGE, LA AND SURROUNDING AREA

  • Garden District and Mid-City
    • 5700 Florida Blvd, Suite 110 (Florida Blvd. side of Mid City tower) – Harvest Moon Listening Room
      • Contact: Jason Hall
    • 2228 Cherokee Street, 70806 – private home
      • Leave donations on screened porch
    • 7735 N Jefferson Place Cir Apt D, 70809 – private home
      • Text 225-588-1175 for dropoff
  • Mutual Aid Disaster Relief working on locating more drop off locations

LAFAYETTE, LA AND SURROUNDING AREA

  • Breaux Bridge
    • 1545 Anse Broussard Hwy, 70517
      • Call owners Malcolm and Jodie Orgero at 337-332-4740
  • Lafayette
    • Working on locating drop off location
  • Rayne
    • Working on locating drop off location

MOBILE, AL AND SURROUNDING AREA

  • Coden
    • Coastal Response Center (https://www.facebook.com/CoastalResponseCenter/) at 7385 Hwy 188, Coden, Alabama has three trucks and three trailers that they will be filling to send to the Houston area, and they’re accepting goods for the delivery at these times this week:
      • 9am-12pm, 3pm-7pm & 7pm-10pm Tuesday
      • 9am-12pm & 3pm-7pm Wednesday
      • 9am-12pm Thursday
    • 7-10pm Tuesday will be their normal monthly fundraising concert ($6 at the door including refreshments & music) and any donors will receive a ticket for a door prize.
    • They are loading Thursday afternoon and evening and should be prepared to leave early Friday morning.

AUSTIN, TX AND SURROUNDING AREA


LOCAL FRONTLINE INFO, SUPPORT AND RESOURCES


MORE SOURCES FOR INFO

Immediate response efforts:

Other sources for information:


ENVIRONMENTAL HAZARD REPORTING

TEXAS

  • Pipeline, or oil and gas related emergency
  • Air emissions *note: suspension of air quality rules and air quality monitors in effect*
    • TCEQ: 1-888-777-3186,
      • Main Number: 877-228-5740
      • Emergency Number:  1-844-773-0305

LOUISIANA

  • Pipeline, or oil and gas related emergency
  • Debris
    • LDEQ Debris Hotline: 225-364-7901

NATIONAL

  • EPA (National Response Center )
    • 1-800-424-8802

Please contact jayeesha@gmail.com if you would like to be shared on the collaborative Google document serving as the central source for content here.