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Bridging Visions Summit

Bridging Visions Summit

Bridging Visions for a Fossil-Fuel Free World

Join EJC for this inaugural summit in beautiful southern Illinois:

November 14, 15, and 16
Touch of Nature
Carbondale, Illinois

Briding Vision.001

Click here for a printable Bridging the Vision flier with detailed information.

The November 6, 2014 decision to approve rules that regulate hydraulic fracturing in Illinois places the spotlight on fossil fuel extraction in this state. The summit will bring together grassroots organizations and activists working to move industry and policies to transition from fossil fuels and build a new economy based on clean, safe, renewable energy and energy efficiency. This promises to be a weekend of fun, sharing, learning, and building the relationships that we need to bring about a fossil-free future.

Guest speakers include Steve Horn, DeSmogBlog; Pam and Lan Richart, Eco-Justice Collaborative;Barney Bush, Shawnee Vineyard Indian Settlement; Braze T. Smith, Shawnee Forest Sentinnels; Bill Price, Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign; Tom Shepherd, Southeast Environmental Task Force; Debra Michaud, Tar Sands Free Midwest; Natalie Long, Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund; Penni Livingston, Attorney; Tyler Rotche, Prairie Rivers Network; and more.

Weekend Highlights:

  • Friday evening, will feature a “Friendship Dance” with the Vinyard Indian Settlement. Afterward, sit around the campfire with old and new friends.
  • Warm soups, hors d’oeuvres, desserts, drinks, and local music will be waiting your arrival for the weekend Summit.
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner theater frame Saturday’s calendar featuring a keynote speaker, guest speakers, panel discussions, and workshops, ending the night with a silent and live auction and some of the best live music Southern Illinois has to offer.
  • Sunday begins with breakfast and another keynote speaker, followed by a tour of Rocky Branch ending at High Knob, sacred ground of the Shawnee. A picnic lunch will be provided.


Registration includes food, spirits and music. Just click here to register and select the appropriate PayPal button for the day(s) you intend to come, then follow the PayPal directions. http://shawneehollers.wordpress.com/events.

Full Weekend Workshop, Nov. 14-16:   $60
Saturday/Sunday, Nov. 15 & 16:             $40
Saturday only, Nov. 15:                             $30
Student discount price:                             $20

Separately purchased lodging s available onsite at Touch of Nature Environmental Center.  Cabins are available a few miles south at Giant City Lodge; camping, at Giant City State Park or Little Grassy; B&B’s and cabins, along the nearby Shawnee Wine Trail; and other chain motels are about 5 miles north in Carbondale.

Climate Change Warning Labels

Climate Change Warning Labels

… On the Handles of Gas Pumps! 
The San Francisco Bay Area city of Berkeley is moving forward with plans to put climate-change warning labels on gas pumps in what could be the first such requirement of its kind in the nation.

Scientists know that CO2 emissions contribute to climate change, just as they know that smoking causes cancer. If cigarette companies are required to post warning labels reminding consumers of the risk on their products, why not include warning labels on gas pumps, too?

Berkley’s environmental advisory panel asked the city manager last week to draft an ordinance for the labels. The city’s community environmental advisory commission called on the city manager last week to draft an ordinance for the labels. The city council is expected to vote on the ordinance in the fall

From the LA Times on June 18, 2014:

“It’s a perfect opportunity to remind people that there are greenhouse gas impacts and there are alternatives,” said Councilman Kriss Worthington, who sponsored an initial measure but then moved to send it to both commissions to vet “all possible objections” from the petroleum industry.

The design idea for the stickers, which could change, currently includes a statement reminding consumers that California “has determined that global warming caused by CO2 emissions poses a serious threat to the economic well-being, public health, natural resources and the environment of California.”

One of the warning labels under consideration by the City Energy Commission of the City of Berkeely

The idea was modeled on warnings on cigarette packaging and crafted by a grassroots environmental organization known as 350 Bay Area. A San Francisco supervisor is also working with the group to promote similar labeling there. A Canadian organization is moving forward as well.

Targeting All of Us, “the Consumer”
This is exciting, and shows what we can do at the local level.  Will it immediately cease purchases at the gas pump?  Maybe not. But the point of sale is a great place to have people stop and think about the impact of their purchases.  And it is consumers that can drive policy, whether it be higher gas mileage on cars and trucks; a carbon tax; or shift to cleaner sources of energy.


Crowd-funding video for BC One Horizon Project

No More Oil – With Dr. Riki Ott

An Evening of Stories from the Frontlines in the Battle against Big Oil
with Dr. Riki Ott

Paul Henry’s Art Gallery is pleased to have the opportunity to host Dr. Riki Ott who will speak for three hours here on Friday, June 20th, 6:30PM until 9:30PM. Dr. Ott witnessed first-hand the ecological destruction and social chaos from the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound, Alaska––and became an “accidental activist” in its wake.

Not One Drop.001

When:   June 20, 2014, from 6:30pm to 9:30 pm
Where:  Paul Henry’s Art Gallery, 416 Sibley Street, Hammond Indiana

Dr. Ott will present her material in an informal storytelling format, encouraging engagement with the audience throughout the evening.. Short personal videos shot during her on-site experiences and power point visual aids will augment her presentation, which is sure to promite lively and engaged discussion!.

Dr. Riki Ott is a trained marine toxicologist and former commercial fisher woman. She has written two books on oil spill impacts to ecosystems, people, and communities and starred in Black Wave, an award-winning feature film. In 2009, Ott co-founded Ultimate Civics, a project of Earth Island Institute, and the national grassroots coalition MoveToAmend.org. In May 2010,

Ott brought her expertise to the Gulf of Mexico, volunteering for one year to expose a public health crisis of chemical illness and to help with local community organizing. For her work in the Gulf, Huffington Post named Ott a 2010 Game Changer. On the one-year memorial of the BP disaster in 2011, she co-hosted a national webcast teach-in, Changing the Endgame, to expose the high costs of America’s fossil fuel dependency––and show how communities are reducing their carbon footprint.

Ott advocates ending corporate rule and creating sustainable communities. She lectures nationally and internationally, inspiring students from fifth grade through universities and adults to take action and showing by example how one person can make a difference.

Be sure to read more about (and join) the event here. Then please share with family friends and colleagues!

Canada: The New Saudi Arabia of Oil

Canada: The New Saudi Arabia of Oil

Click to watch video by Sustainable Guidance

Canada Now Largest Supplier of Oil to US

Most of us don’t know that for the last 7 years, Canada has been the largest supplier of oil to the U.S.  But obtaining oil from Canada’s tar sands comes at a high price. Making liquid fuels from oil sands requires energy for steam injection and refining. This process generates two to four times the amount of gases per barrel of final product as the “production” of conventional oil.

Tar sands also take 3 barrels of water to process every barrel of oil extracted. Ninety percent of this water becomes so toxic that it must be stored in tailing ponds. Unfortunately these ponds regularly leach pollution into the third largest watershed in the world. And water depletion, exploitation, privatization and contamination have become one of the most important issues facing humanity this century.

But tar sands development can be minimized by blocking development of pipelines, such as Keystone XL, that carry the sludge of this incredibly polluting energy project.  Today, the Senate passed a bill that requires a 60-day, expedited decision-making process for the pipeline in return for a payroll tax cut, and the President has said he will sign it.

President Obama came into office promising to “end the tyranny of oil.”  He now needs to convey two months is not enough time to review the pipleline, which is a threat to our climate, our communities and the creation of a new clean energy economy.

You can contact the White House by email and ask Obama to relay the following message, crafted by Bill McKibben of 350.org:

“Two months is not long enough to review the pipeline. The Canadians themselves have just delayed review of their tar sands pipelines over safety concerns, and we’ve just come through a year that set a record for billion-dollar climate-related disasters; I’m not going to do a rush job just to please the oil industry lobbyists. So this pipeline is dead.”

Thanks so much for all you do for generations to come,


Pam and Lan Richart
Eco-Justice Collaborative

Part II: From the Holler to the Hood – Stories of Oppreseion

Part II:  From the Holler to the Hood – Stories of Oppression

Larry Gibson, Keeper of the Mountains, is coming to Chicago!

January 24, 2011
Loyola University, Lakeshore Campus
6525 North Sheridan Road, Chicago
Crown Center Auditorium
7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

Click here for a flier

Join Eco-Justice Collaborative at Loyola to welcome Larry Gibson as he talks about mountaintop removal mining and the extractive industry.  He will share his recent experiences traveling with Amazon Watch.  The purpose of this trip was to learn from and connect with community leaders who are fighting for justice in their communities, much as he is in Appalachia.  Indigenous Nations in the Ecuadorian Rain Forest have been poisoned by the massive oil drilling operations that Texaco, now Chevron, undertook to profit from their people.

Also featured are:

Junior Walk, Coal River Mountain Watch.  Junior will share his experiences growing up in the coalfields, and explain why he decided to stay at home to participate in the ongoing struggle to end mountaintop removal mining (rather than leave the area for a college education).

Ian Viteria, Little Village Environmental Justice Organization.  Ian will talk about the impacts of burning coal felt in his community, and the campaign to clean up or shut down Fisk and Crawford, Chicago’s coal-burning power plants.

Pam Richart, Eco-Justice Collaborative.  Pam will talk about Illinois coal extraction, making the case that Illinois, with its large reserves of high-energy coal, is slated to be the next Appalachia.  Impacts from coal mining already include destroyed farmland and forest; polluted water; coal slurry impoundments and slurry injection into abandoned mine shafts and displaced communities.

If you live in Chicago, this is a great way to learn about the impacts of extractive mining and what you can do to work for a sane energy policy.

Watch our website for details as they are available.  Contact Pam or Lan at ejc@ecojusticecollaborative.org with questions.

Noted Energy Consultant and Financial Analyst to Speak in Rogers Park

Noted Energy Consultant and Financial Analyst Nicole Foss to Speak in Rogers Park

January 19, 2011
7:00 PM to 9:00 PM

United Church of Rogers Park
1545 W. Morse Ave., Chicago

Free Parking in lot at Ashland and Morse
Suggested donation:  $20 to defray costs (no one will be turned away)

Click here for a flier.

We live in a world that runs on oil.  And oil prices are rising again. In fact, analysts project they will reach a price of $100 or more a barrel by early 2011. In a recent Bloomberg BusinessWeek interview, senior energy analyst Charles Maxwell of Weeden & Co. said he believes the price of oil will rise to $150 a barrel in the next four years. This exceeds the all-time high price of $147 a barrel reached in September 2008 – the beginning of the current recession.

What’s the connection between oil, our finances and the  heath of our planet?  How will rising oil prices affect our economy?  What do we need to know that our mainstream media isn’t telling us?

Nicole Foss, who writes as Stoneleigh for The Automatic Earth, is coming to Rogers Park on January 19, 2011 to help us make sense of today’s financial crisis and begin to prepare us for the challenges that lie ahead. Her presentation will begin promptly at 7:00 p.m. at the United Church of Rogers Park (1545 W. Morse Ave).

Sponsored by Transition Rogers Park in conjunction with ChicagoREgen.com, Eco- Justice Collaborative, Midwest Permaculture and others, Foss will talk about how the intersection of peak oil, climate change and the economy are creating a “perfect storm” that threatens economic meltdown. After her presentation, she will answer questions and provide recommendations on how best to weather consequences that few expect.

Foss is an energy industry consultant, former writer for The Oil Drum Canada, and
co-editor of The Automatic Earth blog.  Her current writings warn us that, like the September 2008 crisis that “came within hours of the global banking system seizing up,” the brewing financial storm she predicts may come very quickly and will result in rapid deflation. Successfully dealing with deflation, she says, will make it possible to meet the twin challenges that will follow – peak oil and climate change.

Free parking for “Making Sense of Today’s Financial Crisis” is available at the southwest corner of Morse and Ashland Ave. For further details, contact Pam or Lan Richart, 773.556.3418.

Transition Rogers Park is a local initiative built upon the foundation of the global Transition Towns Movement designed to meet the 21st century challenges of peak oil, climate change, and today’s economy. It aims to build resilience through relocalization, self-reliance, and new relationships in Rogers Park. Its goals include raising awareness of climate change and global resource depletion, and creating a vibrant economy through the localization and sharing of resources within a community.  EJC is a founding member of Transition Rogers Park.

ChicagoREgen.com’s mission is furthering local resilience, improving awareness to the consequences of our actions, personal responsibility to those consequences and becoming regenerative in Chicago as  a model for other urban centers.

Eco-Justice Collaborative (EJC) is a Rogers Park-based not-for-profit. Through interactive presentations, special events and advocacy, EJC works to raise public awareness of the environmental and social impacts of U.S. lifestyles and to encourage changes that will heal and restore our planet, while bringing about a more just and sustainable world.

Midwest Permaculture is an educational business owned by Bill and Becky Wilson of Stelle, IL. They are beginning their fifth year of offering talks, classes, webinars, and full courses in all aspects of Permaculture and Transition Town Training.

Photo of Ms. Foss taken from the American Society of Peak Oil  USA Conference in Washington DC, October 2011 on the Future of Oil, Energy and the Economy.

What Oil-Dependent Economies Bring …

© Wanghanan | Dreamstime.com

What Oil-Dependent Economies Bring …

In the Gulf of Mexico, the black tide from the Deepwater Horizon accident continues to grow, as do concerns for marine life and gulf coast residents and their livelihood. The cost, liability and environmental hazards associated with oil extraction in our oceans ought to be enough to say STOP!!

While we look on with horror as the gushing oil makes its way into the gulf stream, President Obama stated he remains committed to offshore drilling as part of the U.S. energy plan, and Shell Oil is poised to begin exploratory drilling in Alaska’s Arctic Ocean later this year. The Alaska Wilderness League has described the Arctic as one of the “most remote and extreme environments on Earth”, noting it would be almost impossible to mount the kind of clean-up witnessed in the Gulf of Mexico.

Because our economy runs on oil, we seem mired in an energy policy that appears to have no feasible alternatives. But oil is a fossil fuel, and experts say we’re entering the time when the demand for this resource exceeds the supply.

We are exchanging the survivability and health of our planet for the short-term use of a resource that is becoming increasingly more difficult and dangerous to extract and contributes to climate destabilization when combusted. Our oil dependency sends our young men and women to foreign lands to secure access to a resource we claim rightfully “ours”. Resource wars cause untold destruction, including: country destabilization and displacement; loss of life, property and livelihood; and health impacts such as increased cancer and birth defects from the pollution left behind by our munitions (e.g. depleted uranium)

Yes, it will take time to move from an economy built on oil to one that is based on conservation, efficiency and clean energy. But to continue on our current course of action means we are willing to sacrifice people’s lives and livelihoods as well as clean water, clean air and a safe, healthy environment for all. We’re doing this while hoping that we we are capable of mitigating disasters with our technology. Looking at the extent of BP’s catastrophe, I’m not so sure….

This article was posted by Pam Richart, Eco-Justice Collaborative
May 24, 2010


Posted in Oil