UUs active in climate justice

UU seminarian hangs from Portland's St. Johns Bridge to block Shell ice breaker from returning to the Arctic while canoes block below. In this video Elizabeth Mount explains how her faith informs her work for climate justice.

As of 10 Thursday morning media were reporting that the activist had lowered themselves further and the ice breaker had turned back to dry dock.

Many Washington State congregations gather signatures for the Carbon Tax Initiative

Meanwhile Gov. Inslee is proposing an executive order to impose a cap on carbon emissions....

[Lots more after the flip include a youtube link to "The Roof Is on Fire"]

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I asked environmental economist, Yoram Bauman, who has spearheaded the Carbon Tax Initiative, about Gov. Inslee's proposal and how it relates to the Carbon Tax Initiative. He indicated that Gov. Inslee's proposal is far from a done deal and addressed the lack climate justice built into his proposal.  "Legal issues surrounding the Governor's path are still murky. There are pretty strong limits on what he can accomplish without legislative action. He cannot address the social justice aspects without legislation," he remarked

He also indicated that there are significant roadblocks to implementation. "The Governor's policy will take a year to write. He has instructed Ecology to work on it over the next year. There will probably be a lawsuit that will block implementation."

He urged Unitarian Universalists to keep up the great work of signature gathering. "We really appreciate all the support and we are excited to push forward for bi-partisan climate action."

Kids' climate action lawsuit likely influence

YouthCouncil_AjiPiper_small.pngInslee's statement came just two weeks after the eight young plaintiffs (age 10-14) met with the Governor, urging him to direct Ecology to adopt a new carbon emissions reduction plan "based on the best available science." Among the eight are Adonis Williams and Aji Piper, who performed at last month's Sacred Public Witness at General Assembly. The meeting came a few weeks after a state court issued a precedent-setting ruling requiring the Department of Ecology to consider the complaint they filed a year ago. It demands a new plan that will lower emission by 4% per year. 

In an interview with The Stranger just prior to the meeting the plaintiffs talked strategy. Here is a snippet of the conversation reported.

Doing anything otherwise is, "like if your house is on fire, and you called the police instead of the firemen," Wagenbach suggested.

"And then you go sit on your couch and start watching TV," Adonis Williams, 10, added.

"Your couch would be gone," Wagenbach said.

I'm trying to talk with Aji and Adonis and will add to this post when I reach them.

The house, the house. The house is on fire with apologies to Rock Master Scott

To be fair to the Governor, he has been hamstrung by a legislature where anti-climate justice legislators have the upper hand and the pro-climate justice legislators are too timid. It takes bold and strong action, as well as faithful everyday actions, to overcome a government that is sitting on the couch watching TV while the house is on fire.


The Roof is on Fire Warning: profanity. But sure sounds like many of our public officials.

Jolinda Stephens

What else is going on across the state that either involves UU's or that we should be aware of? Let us know in the comments.

 

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Unitarian Universalist Voices for Justice - Washington
We empower Unitarian Universalists to give voice to our values in the political arena.