GREEN PARTY PRESIDENTIAL UPDATE . . . Presidential Candidate Jill Stein was on NPR’s On Point Tuesday, July 17, 2012. Access the excellent 46:36 minute audio, plus 3:59 minute campaign video, here.
Unique articles on the Green Party 2012 Convention results in Baltimore last weekend include the following: AP, Democratic Underground, C-SPAN, Comedy Central, Baltimore Sun, NPR, Time, and Reuters. A compilation of Convention videos is here. Another U.S. is Possible — Another Party is Necessary.
FARMERS MARKETS . . . There are more than 90 local Farmers Markets in Nebraska this year. For a partial schedule of current Buy Fresh Buy Local Markets, click here.
Lincoln area: Congressional District 1
OCCUPY EDUCATION . . . Free school Sundays are from 7:00pm – 8:00pm, at Meadowlark Coffee & Espresso, 1624 South Street, in Lincoln. Each Sunday a different member of the Lincoln community will host a short class on the topic of their choosing. July 22, 2012, “Living Off the Abundance of the Land for Health and Harmony” will be presented by Dustin Rymph. **This teach-in will meet at 9th and Park Streets; walk-about at Standing Bear Grounds to follow**
VIGIL AGAINST THE DEATH PENALTY . . . Every Monday, noon to 1:00pm, Nebraskans for abolition of the death penalty meet in front of the governor’s mansion when weather is good, 1425 H Street, Lincoln. When weather is bad, the vigil is inside the capitol, near the Information Desk. The lunch-hour presence reminds the governor of a constituency that does not want state killings. Weekly vigils have taken place year-round since July, 1991. All abolitionists are welcome to participate for a few minutes, or the hour. For more information about NADP, click here. “It’s barbaric. It’s outlawed in all but a few extremely repressive countries like Iran, China, and not many others. It’s shameful that it continues to be performed. It’s well established that mistakes are made–yet half of our states practice pre-meditated state-sponsored murder. It’s also known that it’s not effective. So why is it done? Revenge & retribution? That’s not what our justice system is supposed to be about. It’s not an effective deterrent.” –Jill Stein, GP Presidential Nominee.
OCCUPY THE FOOD SUPPLY . . . This Occupy Education series is devoted to resisting the industrialization of agriculture and food production, reinstituting the use of plants as medicine, as well as reclaiming the means to produce healthy, chemical-free food, with special focus on sustainability and truly organic practices. Learn the basics of gardening, composting, seed saving, and harvesting, as well as connect and work with others who share the same passions, every Monday through August 6, 2012, 7:00 – 8:00pm, Indigo Bridge Books, 701 P Street, Lincoln.
LINCOLN PEACE VIGILS . . . Lincoln peace vigils continue at the Federal Building, 15th and O streets, every Wednesday from 5:00 to 6:00pm. Contact Mark at 402.499.6672 or e-mail mark [at] weddleton [dot] com for more information.
ATM ANNUAL POTLUCK & PEACEMAKER AWARD . . . Thursday, July 26, 2012, the annual Alternatives to the Military potluck supper will be held at Christ United Methodist Church, 46th and A Streets, in Lincoln, starting at 5:30pm. The 2012 “Peacemaker of the Year” honoree will be Marilyn McNabb, longtime Lincoln activist for peace, justice and the environment. Everyone is welcome. It is always a simple but fun event. Bring your friends, a place-setting, and some food to share. Or just show up. There is always plenty. Feel free to help spread the word.
LAST CALL AT THE OASIS . . . The Ross Media Arts Center, 313 North 13th Street, Lincoln, will show Last Call at the Oasis, a new documentary dealing with the global water crisis, Friday, July 27 through Thursday, August 2, 2012. The film, featuring activist Erin Brockovich and distinguished experts, shatters myths behind our most precious resource, and presents a powerful argument for why the global water crisis will be the central issue facing our world this century. Sunday, July 29, at 2:45pm, following the 1:00pm screening, the Friends of the Ross are sponsoring Movie Talk with Professor John Gates, Assistant Professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at UN-L. A specialist in water quality and underground water resources, he teaches classes on environmental geology and geochemistry. Admission to Movie Talk is free and open to the public. Admission for LAST CALL AT THE OASIS is at regular Ross prices.
PEACE EDUCATOR SPEAKING . . . “Fire From Heaven” will be special guest speaker Titus Peachey’s sermon, Sunday, July 29, 2012, 10:45am, at First Mennonite Church, 7300 Holdrege Street, Lincoln. Peachey, a conscientious objector to military service, performed alternative service in Vietnam during the war. At 2:00pm he will participate in an informal discussion of military recruitment practices and ways in which alternatives may be presented to youth and young adults. All are welcome.
SAVE THE DATE . . . The Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center in Lincoln will be showing Niobrara: A Film Perspective, on Wednesday, August 1, 2012, at 8:00pm. The screening is free, open to the public, and will feature Niobrara Sweet!; Niobrara Jewel of the North, and Snowbound, all produced by Thomas Bouse, independent film producer in Nebraska. Click here for more information.
SATURDAY FARMERS MARKET . . . The Haymarket Farmers Market, on 8th Street in Lincoln’s Historic Haymarket District, is now open every Saturday, 8:00am to noon, through October 13, 2012. More than 100 vendors bring farm-fresh produce, flowers, baked goods and handmade items to the local gathering place that also features a “Performance Showcase” for Nebraska folk, jazz, blues, classical, and dance talent, plus educational demonstrations and informational booths. Buy Fresh. Shop Local.
SUNDAY FARMERS MARKET . . . The Old Cheney Road Farmers Market offers local produce, baked goods and natural meats every Sunday, 10:00am to 2:00pm, at 55th Street and Old Cheney Road.
OCCUPY EDUCATION . . . Free school Sunday on July 29, 2012, from 7:00pm to 8:00pm, at Meadowlark Coffee & Espresso, 1624 South Street, will be a Planning Session for Events and Direct Actions.
OCCUPY LINCOLN . . . There is a calendar of Occupy Lincoln events here. The Facebook page is here. The Twitter feed is @OccupyLincoln. For more information, e-mail occupylincoln [at] gmail [dot] com or phone 402.585.5865. Corporate Greed is Revolution’s Seed!
MOVE TO AMEND/END CORPORATE PERSONHOOD . . . Nebraska Move to Amend is gathering signatures on a petition to End Corporate Personhood by a Resolution to be presented to the Lincoln City Council. To get involved with the local campaign, e-mail Carol Smith, smithcarol [dot] 49 [at] gmail [dot] com 2004 Green Party presidential candidate David Cobb will be starting a Move to Amend tour of the Midwest with Nebraska appearances in Lincoln and Omaha on Sunday, August 12th. Watch for details in future Green Notes. A July 22nd Lincoln Journal Start article “Drive to overturn Citizens United decision under way,” announced that Common Cause Nebraska has launched a campaign to enact a constitutional amendment reversing the US Supreme court’s 2010 Citizens United decision.
Omaha area: Congressional District 2
OMAHA PEACE VIGILS . . . Omaha peacemakers vigil every Wednesday, 4:30-5:30pm, at StratCom/UN-O, 6801 Pine Street, east of the Scott Technology Center on the UN-O campus. Free parking is available at the NE Corner of 67th Street and Pine in a student lot. For more information, phone Jerry Ebner, 402.502.5887. Every Saturday, 1:00-2:00pm, there is a Peace Vigil at 72nd and Dodge Streets. Park next to 72nd Street, in the pet store parking lot. Contact Steve Horn at 402.426.9068 for more information about Saturday vigils.
OMAHA GREEN DRINKS . . . Omaha Green Drinks will meet Wednesday, July 25, 2012, 5:30 to 8:30pm, at Whole Foods Market Omaha, 10020 Regency Circle, in the education room by restaurant seating, across from the coffee bar. Walk, cycle, bus, or carpool if possible. All are welcome at the informal self-organizing network meet-up. The Facebook group listing is here. FB event information is here. Green Drinks now meet on a regular basis in 664 cities around the world.
OMAHA PEOPLE’S FILM FESTIVAL . . . There is a People’s Film Festival every Wednesday evening, 7:00pm, at McFoster’s Natural Kind Cafe, 38th and Harney in Omaha. Wednesday, July 25, 2012, the film will be “Waste Land,” a documentary following artist Vik Muniz to the world’s largest garbage dump where he photographs pickers of recyclable materials. Watch a 2:16 minute trailer here. For more information, click here. The People’s Film Festival – Expanding Political Consciousness Since 2004.
OMAHA FARMERS MARKETS . . . Click here for an Omaha Market schedule.
ENGAGE OMAHA . . . One of the nation’s first city-wide, virtual town hall websites, EngageOmaha, is now online. Omaha residents may weigh in on issues for the city to consider. Pick a topic, and join the mix here.
Greater Nebraska: Congressional District 3
KEYSTONE XL PIPELINE UPDATE . . . Friday, July 20, 2012, the Lincoln Journal Star editorial, “TransCanada must do more,” begins “TransCanada has a lot of work to do before Gov. Dave Heineman should give the OK for the new route for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality pointed out some major problems with the proposed corridor in the “feedback report” it released this week. State officials pointed out that the corridor suggested by the pipeline company “crosses areas of fragile, sandy soil that are outside of the Sandhills ecoregion but that have surface features very similar to the Sandhills.” The Editorial is continued here.
Also on July 20th, LJS published “Threat to water,” a letter to the editor by Scott Svoboda: “…Nebraska’s groundwater needs good stewardship. The KC Federal Reserve noted that Nebraska irrigated farmland prices increased 36 percent in 2011. Ordinary citizens and commodity specialists agree that without the Ogallala Aquifer, our state wouldn’t be as big a player in world food production. The current drought only emphasizes the fact that we are somewhat protected with close to half our farmland irrigated. …
TransCanada wants to pump the same heavy crude across the porous and high water table areas of our Sandhills via the Keystone XL pipeline. Something is not right. If money and access to money is driving the decision for placement of the Keystone XL pipeline, then we Nebraska stewards are all the worse if we allow TransCanada to move forward at our own environmental risk.” Read the entire letter here.
“No way can Heineman approve Keystone XL now,” by Greg Awtry, Publisher of the York News Times, was printed Tuesday, July 17th: “Last week, on July 10, 2012, the National Transportation and Safety Board released its findings on the tar-sand oil pipeline spill in Michigan, when more than 800,000 gallons of diluted bitumen poured from a ruptured pipe two years ago, ending up in the Kalamazoo River where cleanup continues even now.
Here’s what happened. Corrosion fatigue cracks were discovered in a section of pipe in 2005. “(For) five years, they (Enbridge) did nothing to address the corrosion or cracking at the rupture site – and the problem festered,” said Deborah A.P. Hersman, the chairwoman of the NTSB. Then, in July 2010 the huge pipe ruptured under the intense pressure of a tar-sand pipeline and what followed was like a scene from the Keystone Cops, Hersman said.
…The fact is the NTSB report said the pipe failed, employees failed and the government failed. The report also cited many factors that are not yet in place to prevent disasters like this from occurring. …If you are not afraid of this pipeline, you should be. If you think a spill like this, or worse, can’t happen in Nebraska, you are wrong.
In light of the NTSB report, there is no way Gov. Heineman or the Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality can possibly sign off on Keystone XL. Not now, not over our water and not until each of the 19 NTSB recommendations have been implemented into law and thoroughly tested. To approve it now, in light of the Michigan findings, would be an act of insubordination by neglecting known dangers and known recommendations to improve the safety of our own natural resources and most importantly the safety of our own Nebraskan citizens.” Read the entire editorial here.
“State wants more answers from TransCanada,” by Art Hovey, LJS, July 18, 2012: “The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality released 68 pages of initial feedback Tuesday on a proposed alternative route for the Keystone XL pipeline that would avoid the Nebraska Sandhills. In commenting on its contents, Pat Rice, NDEQ’s project manager, said the agency wants more answers from pipeline builder TransCanada on how the project can be constructed and operated safely. But Rice made it clear the agency cannot reject TransCanada’s choice. “We’re trying to help them find the best route,” he said. “They get to choose the route. We have no authority to tell them what route to choose one direction or the other.”
…“The next step is for TransCanada to complete its field work, identify a route and then provide us with a route,” Rice said. That leads to a public hearing at a site that has yet to be identified along or near the alternative route and ultimately to a recommendation to Gov. Dave Heineman on a specific path.” Continued here.
From “Concerns Expressed in NDEQ Report to TransCanada,” 10/11 news, July 17, 2012: “The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality (NDEQ) has provided an initial feedback report to TransCanada regarding the state’s evaluation of the rerouted portion of the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline project.” The 2:41 minute video is here.
To view a copy of the initial 20-page feedback report, click here.
The Tar Sands Blockade greeted President Obama in Austin, Texas on July 17th. Photos on flicker for ‘We Are the Kalamazoo’ Tar Sands Blockade joined by Occupy Austin, are here. A second “We Are The Kalamazoo” Action started Wednesday, July 18th, at the capitol in Lansing, Michigan, with a human oil spill organized by the National Wildlife Federation. Photos from the two events can be found here. A 3:09 minute video of the Michigan human oil spill event is here.
On Wednesday, July 25th, groups across the country are holding solidarity events to mark the 2-year anniversary of the toxic tar sands spill in Michigan’s Kalamazoo river. Bold Nebraska has a “Keep Our Water Blue” blog post asking for photos taken by a water crossing or favorite body of water at-risk: a small creek or stream, an aquifer-fed pond, or of the sources of water listed county-by-county at the blog. Photos should have individuals or groups holding handmade signs (the yard signs that say “Keep Our Water Blue” will work great for this) calling attention to the pipeline’s threat. Groups will then hold a press conference (location TBD) on July 25th using these photos, information from the Stansbury report documenting that the pipeline could have 91 leaks and spills over the lifetime of the pipe, and findings from a government report on the Kalamazoo spill, making the case that the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and this route are too risky for our water. For more information, or to ask questions, phone Ben at 402.705.8679.
“Windfall from first Keystone pipeline falls short,” by Paul Hammel, in the July 15th Omaha World-Herald opens with “When TransCanada officials began promoting the benefits of its first pipeline to cross Nebraska, they projected a $5.5 million tax windfall for the state in the first year of operation. The actual tax bill for the original Keystone pipeline is less than half that figure.” The article is continued here.
Read a July 16, 2012 TransCanada press advisory announcing their bribery in Nebraska here.
Rachel Maddow did a segment on the Enbridge tar sands spill in the Kalamazoo, but did not mention the pending decisions on Keystone XL. Please send a note to a senior producer, cory [dot] gnazzo [at] msnbc [dot] com encouraging her to do more on tar sands and KXL.
“Enbridge spills it out” is a new 1:39 minute animation here.
Tell the Obama Administration: Reject Keystone XL. Again. The following message accompanies a new petition from Credo Action: In the same week that record June heat blanketed the southeast, Minnesota tried to recover from record flooding, and the biggest fire in Colorado’s history continued to burn out of control — President Obama doubled down in his support for the energy that is causing this deepening climate change spiral approving the first portion of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, giving away 720 million tons of publicly owned coal to a coal company for virtually nothing, and promising to lease more arctic offshore areas for oil drilling. Now, the Canada to Oklahoma portion of the Keystone XL pipeline – which would turn up the spigot on deadly, “game over for the climate” tar sands production – is back before the State Department after being rejected by President Obama earlier this year when Republicans tried to force his decision.
Without the pressures of the election, President Obama could conceivably cave when a decision is made in 2013 – if he is re-elected. This public comment period is our opportunity to go on the record, before the election, with our fierce opposition. Please urge President Obama to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline. (Note: Credo Action petitions do generate e-mail from other petitions.)
If you have a Twitter account, click here to automatically tweet: Tell @StateDept and @BarackObama: The weather is bad enough already. Don’t “XL” climate change – reject #Keystone XL!
Sign a Natural Resources Defense Council Action Alert telling Congress to reject all attempts to force approval of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline by attaching it to any unrelated legislation. The Keystone XL will deliver billions in profits to Big Oil while the people get stuck with poisoned water, contaminated land and an overheated planet.
“The Keystone pipeline will spew a massive amount of carbon pollution into our fragile atmosphere. It should be stopped. ” –Jill Stein, 2012 Green Party Presidential Nominee.
STOP FRACKING NOW . . . At the First-Ever National Mobilization Against Fracking on July 28th, celebrities, community groups, and more than 100 organizations will join forces for “Stop the Frack Attack” in Washington, DC, where they will make three demands of Congress: 1. Stop dangerous fracking; 2. Close 7 legal loopholes that exempt the oil and gas industry from parts of the Safe Drinking Water, Clean Air, and Clean Water Acts; and 3. Implement a pathway towards 100% clean renewable energy. Learn more about the event here. Petition Congress: “We, the undersigned, call on Congress to pass the Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act this year. It’s time to hold the oil and gas production industry to the same standards as any other industry to ensure the safe protection of America’s drinking water.”
PETITION THE EPA . . . Tell the Environmental Protection Agency to immediately prohibit the use of clothianidin and conduct a full scientific review to determine its impact on honey bee populations. Learn more about clothianidin and sign the petition here.
BUY FRESH. BUY LOCAL . . . . Farmers, gardeners, and craftspeople meet through The Nebraska Food Cooperative, an on-line, year-round farmers’ market and local food distribution service offering the best in local freshness. For ordering and pickup schedules, refer to the calendar here. Click here for products and prices from North Star Neighbors, a Cooperative member that doesn’t therapeutically medicate or unduly confine animals. Click here for Tomato Tomäto, Omaha’s year-round indoor Farmer’s Market at 156th & West Center. Shop for fresh foods grown in or very near your own community at Open Harvest, Lincoln’s member-owned natural foods retail cooperative at 1618 South Street. Buying local grows family farming, grows the local economy, and is thousands of miles fresher.
HELP NEBRASKA GREENS WITH GOODSEARCH . . . Each time you search the Internet (or shop online at a participating store), a donation can be made to Nebraska Green Party at no cost to you! To help NGP in this way, enter Nebraska Green Party where it asks you to name your cause here. Bookmark the GoodSearch Homepage, or make it your own Home Page. Enter the url you want in the GoodSearch search box. Each time you do, one penny will be donated to Nebraska Greens. THANK YOU for your support!
Remember, every man-made by-product of the petroleum industry could be replaced by hemp. “Help Save the Earth, Time to Substitute Hemp for oil.“