EVENTS: CLIMATE ACTION CAN BE OVERWHELMING…LET’S NOT DO IT ALONE!
Now is a great time to work with us! RRUUC’s Earth Ministry is helping to organize a CAPITAL AREA UU CLIMATE CONVOCATION, hosted at RRUUC on May 6. Register now to join like-minded activists from congregations all over the DMV for combined spiritual energy, practical expertise and meaningful action. Here’s the plan for the day:
9:00 On-site registration, informal gathering with light plant-based breakfast for coffee, light plant-based breakfast, conversation.
Browse the activities of our congregations presented in five categories:
- FIRE – clean energy production and conservation
- AIR – greenhouse gases and other gaseous & particulate pollutants
- WATER – access, conservation and flood risks
- EARTH – land, farming and forests, food production and waste
- SPIRIT – human connection, advocacy for justice and equity
10:00 Spiritual grounding in the Sanctuary, led by Rev. Nancy Ladd, RRUUC
10:15 Clergy Panel on the intersection of racial justice, environmental justice and climate action, featuring:
- Rev. Abhi Janamanchi, Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Congregation
- Rev. Aileen Fitzkee, UU Congregation of Sterling, VA
- Reverend Charlotte Lehmann, Bull Run UU
- Rev. Carol Thomas Cissel, UU Church of Arlington
- Rev. David A. Miller, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Fairfax
- Rev. Nancy Ladd, River Road Unitarian Universalist Congregation
11:30 Brief presentation of potential common and joint actions for the remainder of 2023:
- Our congregational facilities and the lands and waters around them
- Environmental justice and equity partnerships
- Legislative & policy advocacy (local, state, national)
- Spiritual connections to nature and climate in the Sanctuary and in RE
- Plant-based food policy
12:15 Plant-based buffet lunch, table discussions, and free-will offering
1:00 Consensus discussion:
- What joint actions should we take back to our home congregations for engagement and approval?
- What are our mechanisms for executing these actions?
1:45 Closing led by ministers
Visit http://bit.ly/3xU1SRj for more information and to register, or click the button below.
WE MADE A DIFFERENCE IN ANNAPOLIS! LEGISLATIVE UPDATE…
In addition to keeping our own house green clean and sustainable, we have a responsibility to guide our local and state representatives in working towards Green policies and laws.
PASSED! The Energy Savings Act (an update to the EmPOWER energy efficiency program) which incentivizes deployment of efficient electric home utilities!
- Creates subsidies for natural gas systems, creates a rebate system to focus on reduction of greenhouse gasses
- Directs more of the EmPOWER funds to Low and Moderate Income families and individuals
- Aligns current Maryland Law with Federal Law which incentivizes movement to electricity over methane gas. Maryland law includes Methane Gas as an alternative to electricity.
PASSED! HB 9 – Equity in Transportation Sector – Guidelines and Analyses –
- Centers equity with planning and data reporting requirements
- Mandates transit equity in analyses, cost-benefit analyses, and extensive outreach to affected communities be done before public hearings on any proposed major service changes or capital projects
PASSED! SB 144 – Public Utilities – Energy Efficiency and Conservation Programs – Energy Performance Targets and Low-Income Housing – has completely passed and its companion HB 169 is also on its way to final passage! Families who live in rental units often don’t have the autonomy or the means to invest in clean energy for their homes, and they suffer the economic and health consequences of dirty and inefficient systems.
- Producers of packaging are required to set up a non-profit to develop an incentive plan to improve recycling and reduce packaging costs.
- Local government currently pays for the packaging waste, this bill will shift the cost to producers.
- Helps us transition to a Zero Waste Future, which reduces a huge component of the climate problem: Waste.
- Will provide a comprehensive look at the waste stream.
PASSED! CLEAN TRUCKS
Maryland will set requirements for vehicle manufacturers to sell a rising annual percentage of zero-emission vehicles like electric trucks, delivery vans and school buses in the state beginning in model year 2027.
PASSED! OFFSHORE WIND
- HB 793 / SB 781 – Off-shore Wind Transmission Bill (Chesapeake Climate Action Network priority)
- Bill supports the expansion of offshore wind power by setting an offshore wind goal of 8.5 GWh (gigawatt hours) by 2031
- Initiates a state process to coordinate transmission infrastructure, and investing in the full build-out of the existing lease areas.
GREEN BANKING AND INVESTING – PRESENTATION BY NEW RRUUCer WILL BRUNO
At our meeting on April 16, Will Bruno, VP and Financial Planner for Sustainable Investing at Sandbox Financial Partners presented information on Green banking & investing: protecting people and planet. A recording of his enlightening talk with his recent Kiplinger article “Impact Investing in the Era of Black Lives Matter” will soon be available in our RRUUC Earth Ministry Resources Library. Learn more about how you can use the power of your purse to reduce climate change!