Just 10 years after the Ballona Wetlands were acquired and preserved (an endeavor that took decades), they are again under attack. The Annenberg Foundation, which has done impressive work elsewhere, plans to purchase the wetlands, develop part of it, and restore Area C. The latter proposal has been described as "a phony restoration" to "give crony engineering companies some business" and "way too aggressive" for the highly- sensitive habitat. Annenberg claims their plans have been misrepresented, but there was no elaboration.
On Thursday, October 17, a demonstration was held outside the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills during that facility's very extravagant grand opening. Protest signs supported Annenberg's various plans, that include a pet rescue center, but lambasted any construction on or restoration of Ballona, which is among the remaining five percent of L.A.'s wetlands that has not been destroyed.
(Photo courtesy of the Wetlands Defense Fund.)
Story and photos: Ballona Wetlands Again in Jeopardy by R. Plesset
The best quality organic fruits, vegetables, prepared specialties, and non-factory farmed animal products were all found at the Rawesome Food Club in Venice. That is, before the Federal Government (FBI) raided it and eventually shut it down. Raw goat milk was the much publicized reason for the raids, but what appears to have been unsaid is that Rawesome was just a coffee shop and one small intersection away from Whole Foods Market, a giant corporation.
. . . Alex Jones, a controversial radio host, interviewed James Stewart just this year. James told the story of how the Rawesome Food Club was destroyed by the Federal Government to a sympathetic host that described James as a Raw Food Advocate. Too bad the local lefties didn't show the same sympathy. Venice lost a unique free enterprise that provided awesome quality food.In Venice the Constitution and Bill of Rights have been broken concerning the rights of the poor. James and Rawesome assisted poor and unhoused people by providing donations, including vegetables and fruits to the vegetarian Venice Food Not Bombs chapter. Harassment of the poor and unhoused population of Venice, surveillance by Government Agencies, an FBI bust of a raw food club and large corporations moving into Venice (such as Whole Foods and Google) have brought together the excesses of oppressive government policies.
The combinations of government, corporations and abusive community groups have altered the bohemian character of Venice Beach. By using local and federal law enforcement to abuse and control the unhoused population and people who choose the freedom to drink raw goat milk.
Full story: A Venice Rawesome Story by Calvin E. Moss
On August 17-18, the weekly Eagle Rock peace vigil went for 24 hours (normally it's two hours on Saturdays). When asked why they were doing this, they said they cannot in good conscience let their neighbors ignore global warming, "The world isn't proceeding normally, so we cannot proceed normally." Besides signs (which addressed a variety of issues besides climate change), there was a teach-in led by Anne Porter of NELA Move to Amend, "Psychopaths in High Places;" live music; and videos, including one about mass transit.
On September 21, the Eagle Rock peace vigil participated in 350.org's national "Draw the Line" campaign. About 35 people from all over North East Los Angeles converged on the corner to gather signatures to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline. This pipeline would carry one of the dirtiest fossil fuels, "tarsands oil," from Canada, through Montana, South Dakota and Nebraska. It would threaten sacred lands, delicate eco systems, precious farmland, and the health of communities along the entire route. This action was a cooperative effort by local activist groups; North East Los Angeles Radical Neighbors for Peace through Justice (NELA Rad), Tar Sands Action SoCal, and SoCal Climate Action Coalition 350.
Story and pictures: All Nighter in Eagle Rock, Los Angeles California by Nina Zvaleko
July 10, 2013: Some one hundred people protested the Ringling Bros. Circus on opening night at Staples Center. Much emphasis was placed on cruel treatment of animals and separating them from their natural environments and families. (Objection to incarceration and training of animals is nothing new--although a recent DVD documentary called No Fun for Elephants has shed additional light on animal abuse with its undercover footage of elephants being brutalized right here in California. Excerpts of it have been played on KPFK (90.7 FM). Some footage can be seen on YouTube here
Activity books were offered to small children, many of whom took interest in them. Children also showed interest in large photos of animals being treated inhumanely. At least one family, consisting of a mother and three children, changed its mind about attending Ringling and decided to do something else.
Protests of Ringling Bros. circuses are happening all over. "PETA volunteers will go to every city that Ringling Bros. goes to," said co-organizer and Campaigns Manager for PETA Katie Arth, "whether you're in cities like Los Angeles and New York or Biloxi, Mississippi."
Report and pictures: "The Circus is in Town!" by R. Plesset |
"The Circus is in Town!" (more photos)
Related: Victory! Colombia Passes Wild Animal Circus Ban by Animal Defenders International
A year ago, developer Ralph Horowitz sold the land at 41st and Alameda. The new owner has been working with PIMA, a partnership of garment companies (i.e., Miss Me, Poetry, Active, and Impact USA), which would build four industrial facilities there. This would bring in at least 2,000 additional Diesel trucks per day. PIMA has emphasized that perhaps as many 400 jobs (maybe as much as 650) would be created.
On June 5, a hearing was held at City Hall, on very short notice, over the required subdivision. Nevertheless, the room was packed with South Central Farm supporters (organizer Leslie Radford estimated 75, and indeed, with all 52 seats filled, a sizable crowd was standing in the back of the room). Many strong and cogent statements were made both by South Central residents and supporters of the South Central Farm.
Zoning Administrator Fernando Tovar said that he would take the matter under advisement. Public comments may be submitted until June 26 at the end of the business day. He noted that the various environmental concerns need to be substantiated. (Tezozomoc of the South Central Farm said he was already in the process of resubmitting the documents.) Tovar also underscored the limitations of his authority pertaining to land use and employment by the proposed facility.
Organizers for the South Central Farm indicated that a new battle is beginning.
Full report: The South Central Farm: A New Battle Begins... by RP
Saturday May 25 saw a spirited protest march occur in downtown Los Angeles. The protesters went from Pershing Square to City Hall. Well over a thousand people participated. This was part of a Worldwide Day of Protest against The Monsanto Corporation and those companies like Syngen, Dow, Bayer and others who are coming to dominate the world food supply. The worldwide protest numbers were reported to be over two million.
One of the reasons for the American marches was a rider that was attached to the 2013 Spending Bill that was signed by President Barack Obama. The rider was drafted by Republican Roy Blount who represents Missouri which is the home state of the Monsanto Corporation. The GOP representative states that he worked closely with Monsanto on the drafting. Senator Barbara Mikulski's Appropriations Committee was where the rider was injected.
The provision is being called "The Monsanto Protection Act." It's actual name is the Farm Assurance Provision.
The day progressed well and the ethnically and income varied crowd mingled. Some folks had access to Whole Foods and some folks shopped at Pay For Less. Some folks were homeless with a can of beans and the and some lived in houses with full fridges on the West side. But people spoke together and laughed and shouted and testified. Sacred Aztec maize dances were performed. There were citations of Monsanto's lurid chemical history, the GMO insider appointments the FDA and the USDA made, the unfair monopolistic competition that Monsanto practices against small farmers worldwide and the insanity of absolutely no real public safety tests for genetically modified foods. It was brought up that "RoundUp" resistant organisms are now becoming an issue and pesticide stocks are rising. Signs demanding the labeling of GMO's was a constant theme as well as the testimonials of those those that had had possible negative encounters with processed foods, GMO's and the like.
Full story and photos: Testing, Testing Can You Hear Us? by Robert Stuart Lowden | Photos Set 2 | Photos Set 3
The Indigenous movement, Idle No More, now several months old, has been ignored by the mainstream media. On Friday March 15, over 50 people stood in front of CNN, drawing attention to this. The event lasted four hours and coincided with rush hour. With traffic often at a standstill, we literally had a captive audience who had time to read our signs and take flyers. Initially, CNN said they would come out, take pictures, and interview some of us about our concerns, but we were ignored (except when they didn't want us too close to the entrance).
One of the several speakers said the media doesn't want to cover the movement "because we are waking up. We're waking up, and this is just the beginning of Idle No More."
Article and photos: CNN, Do You See Us Now? by Ross Plesset | | Video: CNN's Media Blackout! by Naui Ocelotl Huitzilopochtli
Update: Idle No More Returns to CNN by Ross Plesset
Animal Defenders International (ADI) has launched the first nationwide initiative in the United States about the use of elephants giving rides or making appearances at public events. At the heart of the campaign is a new DVD narrated by Emmy award winning TV host Bob Barker entitled 'No Fun For Elephants,' featuring harrowing undercover footage from inside elephant training facilities in California, as well as abuse of an elephant on tour by a Texas-owned company.
The video includes ADI undercover footage showing elephants supplied for rides, appearances and other events by Have Trunk Will Travel of Perris, CA and Trunks & Humps of Conroe, TX, being beaten and electric shocked during training and handling, behind the scenes. The same trainers are then shown with the elephants, giving rides and appearing at parades.
The move comes as Los Angeles City Council is considering a motion to prohibit performing elephants with traveling circuses in the city -- the new video will be sent to all City Council members.
Full story: Bob Barker Spearheads New Campaign on Elephant Rides as LA City Considers Ban by Animal Defenders International
Demonstrations have occurred in 46 cities around the world. The message to the International Olympic Committee: don't award the 2020 Olympics to Japan. The cruel dolphin drives in Taiji serve Japan's meat industry and provide slave entertainment to marine parks worldwide.
The Japanese people are not the target. This problem was kept secret from them for a long time (the Oscar-winning documentary the Cove got very little exposure in Japan)--but now, many of them are protesting, too.
Yesterday in Los Angeles, a protest and awareness-building campaign was held outside the Japanese Consulate on Grand Avenue in downtown. Fancy flyers were distributed, petitions circulated (four pages of them got signed), and there was plenty of chanting.
Article and photos: Drawing Attention to Dolphin Slaughter, Japan, and the 2020 Olympics | Dolphin Slaughter, Japan, and the 2020 Olympics (part 2) by Ross Plesset
On Sunday, a crowd of around one thousand progressive environmental demonstrators met at Paseo de la Plaza on Olvera Street and marched to Los Angeles's city hall. The protest was in solid opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline whose fate will be decided by Barack Obama in the near future. The keystone XL is an extension pipeline that will go from the Athabasca oil sands in Canada to the Texan Gulf of Mexico. It's purpose is to provide oil to the Southwestern United States from the oil sands and bringing the U.S. a greater level of "oil Independence."
The environmental impacts are somewhat myriad yet each and every one of those scenarios could prove to be extreme in its destruction of aquifers and wetlands, along with animal, plant and human populations. The Ogallala Aquifer, which lies beneath the great plains of the U.S. and supplies 30 percent of U.S. irrigation water, would be devastated if a pipeline broke and contaminated the shallow water supply with benzine. Benzine is a component of the dilute bitumen, which is flowing through the pipeline. The Keystone XL will carry 830,000 barrels per day.
During the rally portion of Sunday's event, a show of hands revealed that a large majority of participants got there via public transportation, bicycling/walking, or electric/hybrid vehicles.
Grandmother Gloria Arellanes of the Tongva people gave an opening prayer; Ed Begley, Jr. hosted; and there were a lot of good speakers and entertainers.
Article & photos: Shut It Down, Mr. President part 1 | Shut It Down, Mr. President part 2 by Robert Stuart Lowden
More coverage: L.A. Participates in Protesting the Keystone XL Pipeline (part 1) | L.A. Participates in Protesting the Keystone XL Pipeline (part 2) by Ross Plesset
Indymedia on Air: discussion on KPFK (available for 90 days)
In Echo Park, a solar panel was used to power an incandescent reindeer and other Xmas lights. The store-bought panel was connected to batteries, which were charged during the day and expended at night. (This panel has also been used to power a laptop computer and other devices.)
Pictures: Solar-Powered Xmas Lights in NELA by RP
Monday, October 15, 2012
POMONA - The community organization United Voices of Pomona continued its protest against the approved waste transfer station, and added to its demands the mayor's resignation.
The Los Angeles district attorney filed charges filed against one of Mayor Rothman's donors, alleging that Alfredo Solis, the owner of Western Recycling, had laundered $15,000 in contributions to Rothman's 2008 mayoral campaign through acquaintances. This latest scandal propelled the United Voices to demand Rothman's resignation, declaring, "we don't want trash money running our city."
Full story: United Voices of Pomona Demands Mayor's Resignation by Rockero, photos by Tony Hoang
Nuclear power plants generate heat by bombarding "fissile" atoms (such as uranium-235) with neutrons. When the atoms are split, more neutrons are released, which then split other uranium atoms in a sustained "chain reaction." The heat energy released by this process is used to boil water to produce steam to turn a turbine which produces electricity.
The process is inherently dangerous, inherently dirty, and inherently very profitable -- if you don't have to pay the additional costs of: Accidents, cancers from routine releases, or the safe storage of the nuclear waste stream for thousands upon thousands of years. However, somebody will have to pay all these costs. Catastrophic, globally-impacting accidents are inevitable, as the world has seen four times in the last three decades: Three times in Fukushima and once in Chernobyl, with many "near-misses," many of which have been hidden from public scrutiny, and countless less serious -- but still very serious -- smaller accidents.
Since the day in January that San Onofre sprung a leak, the station's owner/operators, Southern California Edison, have tried to come up with a plan to "safely" restart the reactor. Of course, they can never be operated safely, because many more things than just the steam generators can break catastrophically at a nuclear power plant, but ignoring that fact, as SCE does, SCE wants to at least run one of the reactors -- not the one that sprung a leak, that one's trashed -- at partial power, so they can make some money and, perhaps just as important to them, avoid an investigation by the CPUC of what went wrong (the CPUC has been so supportive of SCE's "need" to make a profit from San Onofre, that perhaps this was not a major concern, but it is always possible that an investigation would reveal something).
Full story: San Onofre doesn't have to become our Fukushima by Ace Hoffman
While the struggle against nuclear energy and weapons has been a long one, it has been reinvigorated since the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March of last year. The quake that set off the chain reaction ultimately resulted in a nuclear meltdown and the release of radiation into both the air and the Pacific Ocean. Traces of that radiation have been discovered in fish that have reached the west coast of the United States and in the atmosphere over the western hemisphere.
In addition to the nuclear weapons laboratories operated by the University of California, two stations generate nuclear waste in California; one at Diablo Canyon, the other at San Onofre. More than six months ago, a rupture in one of the generators prompted San Onofre's closure. Officials at first denied that any radiation had been released, but were soon forced to retract their claim, although they continue to minimize the damage the toxic radiation is causing. Southern California activists have pressured municipal officials and the public utilities commission to keep the waste-generating station closed and have been successful despite intense pressure from Southern California Edison, which profits from the station.
On August 20, the plant announced the layoffs of 730 workers, which is viewed as another step towards the plant's final closure and has awakened the possibility of a nuclear-free world.
From the newswire: San Onofre Layoffs: Latest Sign of Nuke Plant's Demise by Michael Steinberg
POMONA, California - Monday, July 16, 2012 - A city council meeting to decide the fate of a proposed waste transfer station in the city's impoverished east end became contentious as various factions interacted at a pre-meeting rally. After a long corporate presentation and an even longer public comment period, the council voted against the vast majority of the community to approve the project. Protest, including some shoving involving police, ensued. Full Story: Pomona City Council Chooses Trash Over Residents
by Rockero with photos by Melissa Ayala
Jacob Gutierrez, a Tongva, has a lot on his plate right now. The last science center in the LA Unified School District is "on the chopping block" due to budget cuts in education. (LAUSD originally had six.) This facility has been a resource for everyone in the community, especially children. It contains several gardens, consisting of over 80 native plants and fruit trees. Native wildlife is drawn there, including blue butterflies. There are also over 150 animals that children can visit, all rescues. Oftentimes they have been confiscated by the U.S. Government at the southern border and would have been killed were it not for the Center.
Just up the street is the site of Shwaanga (Ken Malloy Regional Park), one of the largest Tongva villages in pre-Spanish times, a site which has been suffering from pollution in recent centuries. In pre-European times, people would travel by boat from islands including Pimu (Catalina Island) and numerous inland communities via canoelike boats plying rivers, as well as different parts of the California coast. Among other things, Shwaanga was known for its fresh water. Now the water is heavily polluted and needs to be cleaned up.
Story and photos: San Pedro: Science Center Endangered/Tongva Village Site Revitalization by R. Plesset, Science Center photos by Isabel Avila
On May 5, demonstrations were held world-wide to draw attention to the dire consequences and continued threats of climate change. Here in Los Angeles, banners were displayed on freeways (pictures have been posted at 350.org
). Other local events happened in Pasadena; Arcadia; Palm Springs; San Diego; and in Eagle Rock, where 11 people participated in a climate vigil. Signs were displayed and flyers distributed.
Two of the participants (both residents of Eagle Rock) recently converted their homes to solar and were advocating it to passersby. The State of California still has financial incentives in place.
Story and pictures: Climate Impact Day in Eagle Rock by R of the Northeast LA Radical Neighbors | | More coverage: by Jan Freed
PASADENA, December 2, 2011 - Much of the San Gabriel Valley area was hit with a wind storm of unprecedented force Wednesday night. At this time 100,000s of people in the area effected are still without power. Some people are unable to leave their home by car due to fallen trees blocking the street. Wind gusts of up to 100 miles per hour brought down trees and cut power lines. Large hundred year old trees have fallen on some homes causing serious structural damage. Many cars parked on the street have also been crushed by fallen trees. No fatalities have been reported.
Report with photos: Massive Wind Storm Hits San Gabriel Valley Area
This morning, October 15, City Council is scheduled to vote on Jan Perry's proposal that would release developer Ralph Horowitz of the 2.6-acre green space requirement and make it easier for him to sell the property. And so the future of the 14-acre plot of land, at 41st and Alameda is once again under dispute. Previously the site of the famous South Central Farm, once known as the largest urban farm in the country, if the not world, the land has become the most disputed plot of real-estate in the city. (At the time of its demolition circa 2006, there was a massive community mobilization to save it, and the goal of the farmers to reclaim the land has not died.)
Are members of the City Council colluding with real estate moguls to illegally make bad real estate deals? The original deal to sell the land back to Horowitz was conducted in a closed-session meeting, a meeting which has recently been deemed illegal by a Superior Court judge, as reported in the LA Times. Not only has Horowitz underpaid for the land, he's now seeking to extract more value from it than agreed before. The City should demand the terms of the original agreement. That was the deal negotiated -- a community benefit of green space, the value of which cannot be measured in simple dollars and cents: our city needs more recreational space, particularly in the east side of South Central Los Angeles.
Full statement: Editorial: Jan Perry's Latest Offensive Against the South Central Farm Land (41st & Alameda) by LA Indymedia Collective
BREAKING: City Council Votes Unanimously Against South Central Farmers | Report Back: City Council Unanimously Supports "Turning Land into Cash" by RP | Video: LA City Council Votes for Warehouse At South Central Farm Site by wsrcreative
Background: (video) Justicia Tierra Y Libertad Large by altla04 | Jan Perry's Attempt to Remove Green Space Requirement Gains Steam | Jan Perry Proposes Waiver of Green Space Requirement for South Central Farm Land by RP
Archival: Never Forever 21: Round 3 | Joan Baez, Julia Butterfly & John Quigley Begin Tree Sit at South Central Farm by Jennifer Morris and Christina Aanestad | Encampment at the Farm -- Day 8 by LA-IMC, A, and Free Radio Santa Cruz | Protests growing at Farm, activists call for more support | BULLDOZER RETURNS TO FARM, Direct Action Disables Bulldozer
Monday, October 24: After 90+ minutes of open discussion, City Council's Budget and Finance Committee
unanimously approved Councilwoman Jan Perry's proposal
, though the announcement was rather low-key. Perry was not present herself but filled the room with residents of the low-income housing project Pueblo Del Rio (who were bused in and treated to a free lunch) and employees of PIMA, the company which hopes to develop the entire property. They wore shirts custom-made for this occasion. The measure will now be reintroduced to the full City Council, probably in mid-November. The South Central Farm is calling on Angelinos to contact their City Council members (contact info. at the bottom of this article).
Perry's proposal was the source of several unflattering remarks about City Council. "[W]e'll have to look into how some council members may be part of the increasingly unpopular 1%," said Bruce Campbell, whose involvement in that land goes back to 1986, when he opposed the Lancer trash incinerator.
"Releasing the owner [of an obligation for] a community soccer field so that he can increase his profit margin in a proposed sale is exactly why there are people occupying cities across the country and right here in front of City Hall," stated Linda Pierre-Avilla, another long-time South Central Farm supporter.
Report and photos: Jan Perry's Attempt to Remove Green Space Requirement Gains Steam by RP | Video: Urban Farming: LA City Council votes on Fate of South Central Farm by wsrcreative
Chevron threatened the City of Fullerton with a lawsuit unless it reconsidered and approved the the same development the City turned down in May 2010. Sadly, the current City Council bought into this threat and agreed to reconsider the same Chevron proposal on July 12, 2011. They then followed up on July 12 with an approval of the same bad development plan that they denied the previous year.
The fight is not over. The Friends of Coyote Hills is taking the vote to the public. We are currently in the qualifying round for our referendum to overturn the City Council's July 12 decision. We are circulating petitions to gather signatures through about mid-August to qualify for a ballot measure.
More information: Fullerton City Council Votes to Develop Coyote Hills by Referendum to Oppose Development
In an apparent attempt to make the 14-acre space at 41st and Alameda more attractive to developers, city councilmember and mayoral candidate Jan Perry is trying to waive the requirement that 2.6 acres be devoted to green space. Instead, seller Ralph Horowitz would pay about three million dollars to existing park services nearby.
A petition against this proposal is being circulated. People are encouraged to print out the petition featured here and collect signatures.
Supporters are also encouraged to e-mail public officials.
On Thursday August 4, the Harbor Commission in San Pedro held a public hearing to consider Perry's proposal (announcement).
Report and photos: Jan Perry Proposes Waiver of Green Space Requirement for South Central Farm Land By RP
This week TV stations are observing Shark Week by running shows that play on people's fear of sharks. One even re-creates a grisly attack on a human. Meanwhile, individuals are paying homage to Jaws on their websites. It seems like a better way to observe Shark Week might be to learn more about sharks, how best to avoid contact with certain ones, and how we humans are eradicating them out of existence. Instead, sharks continue to be vilified, and the misconceptions (many arguably the result of Jaws) are being perpetuated. All of this makes them more desirable as hunting trophies, meals, and aquarium exhibits.
Article: Another Way to Observe Shark Week? by Rick Panna
The San Francisco Peaks are a unique mountain ecosystem which are managed as public lands in Northern Arizona. The Peaks are held Holy by more than 13 Indigenous Nations. Nevertheless, a ski resort that plans to use treated human waste for snow is being allowed to go forward with expansion there. In December 2007, many in southern California welcomed and supported opponents of development/desecration of the San Francisco Peaks
. Here is an update:
From Arizona IndyMedia (6/16/2011): From the press release: Today we take direct action to stop further desecration and destruction of the Holy San Francisco Peaks. We stand with our ancestors, with allies and with those who also choose to embrace diverse tactics to safeguard Indigenous People's cultural survival, our community's health, and this sensitive mountain ecosystem.
On May 25th 2011, sanctioned by the US Forest Service, owners of Arizona Snowbowl began further destruction and desecration of the Holy San Francisco Peaks. Snowbowl's hired work crews have laid over a mile and a half of the planned 14.8 mile wastewater pipeline. They have cut a six foot wide and six foot deep gash into the Holy Mountain.
Although a current legal battle is under appeal, Snowbowl owners have chosen to undermine judicial process by rushing to construct the pipeline. Not only do they disregard culture, environment, and our children's health, they have proven that they are criminals beyond reproach.
Four weeks of desecration has already occurred. Too much has already been taken. Today, tomorrow and for a healthy future, we say "enough!"
Video: Alberta Nells - Brower Youth Awards 2006
Interview: Klee Benally, Navajo nation (Uprising Radio)
The fight for the Farm is on again. The Los Angeles Times
editorial board announced its support for restoring the South Central Farm (see below), once a fourteen-acre miracle of family agriculture in the heart of industrial Los Angeles. What the Times isn't saying here is that the land that was the Farm is in escrow according to reports received by the Farmers, with only four months left to find a way to return the Farm to the community before the land is sold. The Farmers are again relying on Angelinos to come to the aid of the legendary urban farm.
Update: The South Central Farmers: The Dream Reborn by The South Central Farmers | | Video: South Central Farm: Community Visioning at 41st and Alameda, in Los Angeles by The South Central Farmers
Most readers here already know about the effects of plastic on birds and sea life--although the footage shown here is even worse than anything I've seen. There is also footage of impoverished people in China sorting through OUR "recyclables" as their children loiter about and pollution from a processing plant poisons the air.
But most revealing of all (to me, anyway) is the effects plastic seems to be having on us humans, including, perhaps, the increase we're seeing in Autism; Attention Deficit Disorder; early onset of puberty; male infants becoming more feminine and females more masculine; and lower sperm count.
Also insightful is the film's revelations about the powerful American Chemistry Council, which is made up of plastic and oil interests, including Chevron BP, Exxon-Mobil, Shell, Dow, DuPont, 3M, Honeywell, and Bayer. ACC spends huge sums of money battling initiatives that would ban plastic bags. Some of their cute pro-plastic bag slogans include "save the plastic bag!"
Review: Important New Film "Bag It!" Playing on PBS This Week by R
Update: This film is now available on YouTube.
California State Senator Alex Padilla, a Democrat representing the San Fernando Valley, has called an April 14th hearing on the seismic safety of Pacific Gas'n Electric and Southern California Edison's nuclear power plants on the California Coast.
The hearing will explore a broad range of issues including the adequacy of current seismic risk assumptions, safety system redundancy, the continued accumulation of spent fuel, and other disaster preparedness and response requirements at California's operating nuclear power plants. The committee will hear testimony from seismologists, nuclear power plant owners and operators, and representatives from appropriate federal and state regulatory agencies.
Press release and KPFA radio report: Senator Padilla Announces Committee Hearing Exploring Safety at California's Nuke Plants by CA State Senator Alex Padilla & KPFA News
For her book, Cunningham spent over 20 years illustrating how California might have looked before the arrival of Europeans. Her artwork often goes back centuries and even millennia (and on a few occasions way back to the ice age).
Among her illustrations is a striking view of the San Fernando Valley (as seen on the book cover), not too long ago with a grizzly bear in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains. Below the bear is vast uncorrupted land. Another local scene by Cunningham shows San Bernardino with 15-foot-tall sun flowers. These plants were thought to be extinct since 1937, but recently some were found near LA. In "State of Change," this awe-inspiring painting is juxtaposed with a modern freeway on-ramp.
While researching "A State of Change," she studied protected areas but says she also learned from abandoned lots and their native grasses. Nineteenth-century art was another source of reference, as was accounts by early Euro-Americans.
Cunningham also consulted indigenous elders and sometimes learned things that were contrary to what anthropologists and other scientists had stated. She seems to agree with M. Kat Anderson, author of Tending the Wild, about the critical role Native Americans could have in restoring ecosystems. One problem, though, is that indigenous people tend to be more long-term in their approaches, whereas the Federal Government tends to think in terms of months rather than centuries. Nevertheless, she is aware of cases where the government was swayed toward the long-term. This gives her hope for the future.
Story and photos: Author/artist/scientist Laura Cunningham on "Forgotten Landscapes of California" by R. Plesset
Not every smoker can (or wants to) give up smoking, but everybody should prevent them from entering and poisoning our oceans vis-a-vis gutters and storm drains. Mary of the Echo Park Peace Vigil uses a portable ashtray from Europe. When she doesn't have access to one, she implements another solution.
Story and photos: Some Smokers are Butting Out of the Storm Drains by R of the Northeast L.A. Radical Neighbors
For the second consecutive year, the Northeast L.A. Radical Neighbors (NELA-Rad) and Converging Storms participated in the annual world-wide 350 demonstration. (Other groups were represented this year as well, including the Montrose Peace Vigil.) However, unlike last year, we organized two events: one on October 2, which coincided with Eagle Rock's annual Music Festival and thus benefited from heavy foot traffic. The second event happened on October 10 in conjunction with the other 350 activities around the world
Story and pictures: So Cal Participates in the 10/10/10 Global Work Party by R of the Northeast L.A. Radical Neighbors
George Duffy was a wilderness hero, a U. S. Forest Service employee and tireless advocate for the environment and for the wilderness who worked (and at times bled green) within the system for the safety of the Angeles National Forest that he was charged with protecting. With his retirement and now his death it is sad to see a staunch advocate of what is wild fall by the wayside. Farewell, George, your friends, family, and the forest creatures who knew you will miss you.
Letter: George Buffy's Farewell to the Wilderness by George Duffy via Fredric L. Rice
A developer is building a housing complex in Huntington Beach and is removing the remains of some 80 Indigenous people.
Bolsa Chica is a significant Southern California Native American Site which dates back about 9,000 years and was once a thriving ceremonial site of the Tongva and Acjachemen Nations. The site is referred to archaeologically as the Cogged Stone site (CA-ORA-83) which once covered over 120 acres of the Bolsa Chica mesa.
Cogged stones are unique to Bolsa Chica. The only other place in the world they have been found is Chile.
Please write letters expressing your concerns or offense to the coastal commission Call to action: Please Stop Removal of Native American Cemetery in Huntington Beach by not necessary | YouTube video
WEST LOS ANGELES, April 20, 2010 -- Residents of West Los Angeles neighborhoods impacted by the increase in corporate jet traffic at the Santa Monica airport held a press conference and marched to the airport this Sunday. The 70 year old Santa Monica airport which was once a relatively quite airport for small single engine private planes has become the nation's busiest small airport for large corporate jets in within a densely populated residential area. Long time West LA residents just East of the airport have watched the quality of their environment deteriorate to the point where toxic jet fumes are becoming life threatening for some.
Many of the home owners in the neighborhoods near the airport and under the flight path are retired and living on a fixed income so moving is not an option. Younger residents many who are recent first time home buyers with small children were not informed of the noise and toxic air generated by airport operation when they bought their homes. The problem is particularly acute for those living within a half mile East of the airport. A recent study by the UCLA Institute for the Environment shows ultra fine toxic particles in the air around the airport are 10 times higher than normal LA conditions. From the Newswire: West LA Community Fights to Stop Corporate Jets at Santa Monica Airport | | MP3 AUDIO: Speeches from the Shutdown Santa Monica Airport Rally
The Earth First! Organizers' Conference (OC) and Winter Rendezvous (Rondy) will be held in the beautiful mountains of Santa Barbara. Traditionally, this conference is a time for members of radical environmental campaigns to come together to discuss ideas and strategies, ideally creating a stronger, more unified front. We expect this year's gathering to help connect and strengthen existing campaigns within the movement, as well as look at how current social and political trends impact the biosphere in increasingly devastating ways. We hope the conference will inform and inspire new comrades to join the struggle in defense of the Earth--along with eating good food and doing a bunch of hootin' and hollerin'!
Complete announcement: EARTH FIRST ORGANIZERS by by Winter Rondy
Your assistance is requested to support the RELOCATION of the WCGC to a non culturally and environmentally sensitive location.
The Los Padres Forest Service is accepting public comments on the 20 yr permit of the Winchester Gun Club (WCGC) opposed by the Coalition to Save Husahkiw-Chumash Windcaves and Sierra Club, with many supporters in the fields of Archeology, Anthropology, Rock Art Specialists, Natives and Non-Natives.
Full announcement: Help Save the Chumash Wind Caves by AIM Santa Barbara
From the loose network of affinity groups that brought you the 2009 Round River Rendezvous, comes the first annual Earth First! California Roadshow! We will be presenting skill-shares, music, history and theory of direct action and radical ecology in events up and down the state.
The first annual Earth First! California Roadshow will be traveling through the state this month to build connections between bioregions and different ecological resistance groups, and to promote the upcoming Organizers' Conference (OC) and Winter Rendezvous in Santa Barbara. We will be holding skillshares/workshops, presenting radical history and critical analysis of our movement, and delivering great music and/or food.
Full announcement and tentative schedule: Earth First! Roadshow traveling thru California Jan. 12th - 24th!!! by Gambit
Tesla management and the Google major stake holders Larry Page and Sergey Brin along with former owner of Paypal Elon Musk are moving ahead with plans to build a "green" auto assembly plant at the toxic downey dump site in southern California where hundreds of workers have been sickened.
They have also received a $465 million loan from the Obama Department of Energy DOE to build the non-union assembly auto plant. Why would these billionaire owners need a US government loan to build a green electric car plant if they believe in this product?
. . . The California Coalition For Workers Memorial Day and the Peninsula Raging Grannies will be having a press/education/musical event in conjunction with the Detroit Auto Show which opens in Detroit on January 8, 2009.
Story: Google/Paypal Owners Building "Green" Electric Car On Downey Toxic Dump Site?1/9 by California Coalition For Workers Memorial Day
Related: Is Tesla Nuts? by California Coalition For Workers Memorial Day | | IATSE Local 44 Movie Propmaker Steve Basile At Tesla Motors To Report On Downey Toxic Dump by Labor Video Project
The Los Angeles City Council approved a legal settlement that puts an end to the controversial development of 24 luxury homes in El Sereno's Elephant Hill. As a result of the settlement, the City will acquire approximately 20 acres of hillside open space in this low-income community located in Northeast LA. The agreement resulted from a lawsuit filed against the City by developer Monterey Hills Investors after the Council required additional environmental review of the project before it would issue building permits.
Elephant Hill is the largest undeveloped hillside remaining in Northeast LA. Located on the border with South Pasadena, the110-acre area commonly known as Elephant Hill is geographically part of the Repetto Hills, a low but steep range that extends from the LA River to the Montebello Hills.
Story: Settlement Puts an End to Controversial Elephant Hill Development in Los Angeles by Elva Yanez
This victory was also discussed on KPFK's Sojourner Truth with Margaret Prescod on November 12 (second to last segment). It can be downloaded for 90 days at KPFK's Audio Archives.
On October 24th, thousands of rallies and actions were planned around the world to draw attention to the environmental crises caused by humans. The global action was organized by 350.org, and the actions, which will be presented at the UN Climate Negotiations in Copenhagen in December of 2009. Several events took place in Southern California, many of them pictured at 350.0rg
Also, in Los Angeles, a large banner was seen being held up over the 134 Freeway near the San Rafael exit, and on Tuesday October 27 a banner was still hanging over the Ventura Freeway in the San Fernando Valley.
In Eagle Rock, the 350 demonstration and public outreach had a turnout of at least 40 people. Some were from the community, many belonged to the Converging Storms Action Network, and others were with the Northeast LA Radical Neighbors (NELA-RAD), which hosted the event.
Story and photos: International Day of Climate Action in Eagle Rock (part 1) | (Photo set 2) by R of the Northeast LA Radical Neighbors ("bad-asses who care")
Steve Murphy is being charged with a 2006 E.L.F. action in Pasadena, CA. The complaint accuses Steve of allegedly decommissioning a tractor and placing an incendiary device in a housing development construction site in the name of the Environmental Liberation Front.
Report: New Earth Liberation Prisoner - Steve Murphy by GK
People who live in Southern California and have traveled up Highway 39 to the East Fork road to play in the water during the heat of the Summer will have noticed the unbelievable amounts of litter and heaps of garbage down in the river. Many families might also have been subjected to violence and threats by people illegally living and mining along the river and were drive back to their vehicles out of fear.
In the aftermath of the Morris Fire, an opportunity to collect, bag, and haul large amounts of accumulated garbage out of the San Gabriel River along the East Fork of the Angeles National Forest. . . . With the Forest closed, the USFS, fire fighters, and volunteers have been afforded the opportunity to go in to that section of the river safely to collect, bag, and haul a mountain of garbage in an effort to restore the East Fork and the San Gabriel River to a healthy and safe environment suitable for families once again.
Story: San Gabriel River Clean Up by Fredric L. Rice
SOUTH EL MONTE -- Residents of area communities and supporters of the Whittier Narrows Natural Area strongly criticized and rejected a controversial $30 million regional watershed visitor center proposed for the county Natural Area during a public meeting held Wednesday at South El Monte High School to discuss the project and its recently released draft environmental impact report.
No member of the community spoke in favor of the proposal during the meeting.
The project, the San Gabriel River Discovery Center, would dramatically increase the human footprint within the only wildlife sanctuary on the San Gabriel River, located between the Montebello and Puente Hills. It would replace the existing 2,000-square-foot nature center with a building nearly 10 times bigger, and it would destroy important wildlife habitat within a county Significant Ecological Area to build a 150-car parking lot and other manmade features. Full Story: No community support for $30M Discovery Center at EIR meeting by Jim Odling
There is a better way to deal with insects. Various companies make a science toy called the Bug Vacuum. (The one I've been using is made by a company called Summit, which I bought at a school supply store .) It sucks insects into a transparent holding area so that children can study them and then turn them loose. However, for the last several years, I've been using it to catch bugs in my home and set them free outside.
Story and photos: Obama Needs a Bug Vacuum by RP
Friday, June 12, 2009 LOS ANGELES -- Crowds of curious onlookers surrounded a group of indigenous rights activists, members of the Peruvian community, and environmentalists as they demonstrated in front of the Peruvian consulate today through dance, procession, chant, and speech.
At this latest in a series of demonstrations in front of the large building on the Koreatown stretch of Wilshire that houses the consulate, protestors angered by President Alan García's use of military force against indigenous rights activists decried the massacre of an unknown number of people. They also lashed out against the "free trade" policies the victims gave their lives fighting against. Full Report: Protest at Peruvian Consulate by Rockero
One block east of Figueroa, an empty lot belonging to the city of Los Angeles has been transformed into a vegetable garden and community space. The project, a long-held dream by many, has been made a reality with the efforts of community members spearheaded by Nicole Gatto.
The garden has been broken up into plots which are available to members of the community by application. A circle has also been created in the center of the space, where gardening workshops and other activities will be held.
The Opening Ceremony was attended by community members and others, including supporters of the South Central Farm which was bulldozed in 2006. . . .
Story and photos: Grand Opening of Community Garden in Highland Park by Anna Kunkin | | Press Release by Nicole M. Gatto | | Highland Park Adds a Garden by Milagro Allegro Community Garden
Web Site: Milagro Allegro Community Garden
On April 25, supporters of the South Central Farm held their third demonstration outside Forever 21 in Old Town Pasadena. (Background information can be found here
.) The turnout was high: between 20 and 30 people, and the demonstrators were vocal and lively. . . .
This campaign is country-wide. However, not all of Forever 21's stores have the same name (even within Southern California). The names tend to be variations on Forever 21, like Forever Fabulous.
Report back and photos: Never Forever 21: Round 3 by RP
A creative group of transit activists staged theatrical performance on the Palms overpass of the 405 freeway for a captive audience of drivers stuck in traffic last Friday, March 13, 2009. As passengers stuck in the usual gridlock looked on, a giant 100 foot banner was hung from the overpass, urging motorists to advocate for more public transit, and less freeways. The sign read "If we had trains, you'd be home by now!"
Press release: Mass Transit Advocates Action: 100 foot banner drop over 405 Freeway by A
I thought Fuel was very well-made, important, and informative--there's a lot to absorb. I don't agree with every point of view expressed in the film, but I realize the movie has to communicate to diverse people. . . . Still, the movie features a lot of provocative ideas like vertical farms (skyscraper-like farms that would exist in the middle of cities and other places where space is scarce), and there is some great historical information. For example, details of Rudolf Diesel's sudden and very suspicious death is discussed as well as the long and insidious history of Standard Oil (which was broken up 100 years ago but is now reunited as Exxon-Mobil). Also, a compelling case is made that Prohibition was really about stopping a car that Ford put out that ran on ethanol. As soon as Ford gave up on this car, Prohibition was lifted.
. . . I was glad to see depictions of monorails in the film (though they're never discussed). I think they could be a solution to some of our problems (at least until our population crisis is dealt with--if it is ever dealt with), as they have been in other countries for a century. . . .
Article: "Fuel" (review) by RP
In a crucial attempt to protect a densely populated Latino neighborhood in Los Angeles, environmental justice advocates and community residents filed an appeal in court on March 3, 2009, seeking to overturn a decision to build luxury homes on a fragile hillside in El Sereno. The development on Elephant Hill would endanger residents and strip the community of its last open space.
"The community of El Sereno needs parks and open spaces, not McMansions," said Tim Grabiel, project attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). "Elephant Hill is a greedy project pushed forward by developers at the risk of jeopardizing the health and safety of residents and the environment."
Story: Groups Appeal Elephant Hill Ruling by Hugo Garcia
February 2, 2009: Another demonstration took place outside the Forever 21 in Old Town Pasadena. The turnout was even higher than the previous action of December 13, 2008. One demonstrator reported giving a leaflet to someone entering the store. This person looked at the flier, turned around, and exited. Many other passersby showed interest. Participants were asked to contact other Forever 21 outlets (see the list following this article) to remind them of the boycott.
Story and photos: Actions Against Forever 21 Continue by RP
Inland Empire - January 25, 2009: The Marines want to use 188,000 acres of our desert for "live-fire training and maneuvering exercises." The land is currently available for public use, and is enjoyed by many families for driving off-road vehicles. But they won't be able to if the land is annexed by the Twentynine Palms Air Ground Combat Center.
What can we do? Remarkably, the Marines want to know what we think about their proposal! Unfortunately, they are only accepting public comments until January 31! That only gives us FIVE DAYS!
Go to the base website and download the comment form, fill it out, and send it in! That's all it takes! But please, don't delay!
Call for action: Act Now to stop the militarization of public lands! Jan 31 deadline by IEvoice
"For more than a decade California Safe Schools has led groundbreaking efforts to ensure that school children and the public have a right not to be poisoned, a right to learn, work and live in a healthful environment. Today we discussed not only challenges, but also actions for change. When we work together great things can and do happen," said Executive Director of CSS, Robina Suwol, who Produced the event and was recently named by UTNE Magazine as one of "50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World."
Report: California Safe Schools "Your Life is Now" 2008 Environmental Event of the Year by California Safe Schools
Despite the threat of rain and many competing activist events today, there was a very good turnout at the demonstration in front of Forever 21 in Old Town Pasadena. There seemed to be about 25 people during the time I was there (i.e., the first hour of the three-hour event).
Forever 21 intends to build warehouse space on the land of the South Central Farm, which developer Ralph Horowitz acquired by dubious means. (More details here.)
Story/photos: "BOYCOTT FOREVER 21! BOYCOTT FOREVER 21!" by RP
On September 20 and 21, Long Beach's Aquarium of the Pacific hosted the fourth annual Native American festival, Moompetam Gathering of the Salt Water People. Moompetam (which means "of the ocean" in Tongva) is comprised of several maritime tribes, including Tongva, Acjachemen, Chumash, Costanoan, and Luiseno.
As one of the speakers at the event pointed out, this was a rare opportunity to experience Native cultures up-close vis-a-vis storytelling, food, one-on-one conversations, music, and workshops.
Story/photos: Moompetam Gathering of the Salt Water People by RP
On July 2, Angelinos overcame the City-planned divides between rich and poor, cultural differences, and even broke through language barriers in the fight to restore the South Central Farm. When the developer proposed a diesel-spewing warehouse distribution center for the site, Farmers and Farm supporters threw a wrench in the cogs of City Hall and won a round in the fight to force Horowitz to do an Environmental Impact Report: they forced a twenty-one day delay for more public comments, and gained a glimmer of hope to restore the Farm. The fight between the people and developers' grip on City Hall could be decided by this Wednesday, July 23, 2008, the new deadline for public comments and the second hearing, a week or two later on the tenth floor of City Hall, in front of a small advisory board.
From the Newswire: Save the Farm. Deadline: Wednesday, July 23, 2008 by Leslie Radford
GOOD NEWS FOR THE SOUTH CENTRAL FARM by South Central Farmers
Saving the South Central Farm: Listening to the Land by Juan Santos and Leslie Radford
GAS FACT: Slowing from 75 to 55 mph boosts gas mileage 33 percent in both sedans & large SUVs. On Sunday, July 6, 2008, I set my cruise control to 55 mph, turned on my Flip video camera, & entered the south-bound 101 Freeway at the base of the Conejo Gade in Camarillo, California. I filmed for over one hour, traveling toward Orange County. My quest? To see if fellow motorists were saving gas & cash by driving 55 mph. And my findings?
Video: Driving 55 MPH: An Experiment on S. California Fwys by DF, mom4education
Note the "h" shape of Horowitz's planned warehouse.
On the former site of the South Central Farm Construction of a warehouse facility and distribution center with approximately 643,000 square feet of warehouse and ancillary support space in a 46-foot high, two-story structure on a 10.04 acres site (437,196 square feet after dedication) in the M2-2 Zone. The project includes subterranean parking of approximately 114,399 square feet for 306 cars. Parking for another 39 cars would be provided at grade level for a total of 345 parking spaces.
We need your help!
Action: July 2nd - Stop warehouse on old South Central Farm Land by FYI
Algalita Foundation JUNK boat made of 150,000 recycled bottles set sail for Hawaii to raise awareness of pollution from plastics and water bottle waste in the worlds oceans.
Crew members Joel Pascal and Marcus Eriksen left the harbor on their hand made boat towed out by the larger research catamaran also named "Algalita." Floating on fifteen thousand empty recycled water bottles that they salvaged from the dump, the two will attempt reach the Hawaiian Islands using prevailing currents and sail power once the boat is towed past the last of the Channel Islands, St Nicolas.
Story and photos: JUNK boat set sail Sunday by Lee Maidoff
Australia seems to be far ahead of the U.S. in terms of producing science fiction movies with content. Alien Visitor (originally released as Epsilon in 1997) makes blunt statements about our civilization's disregard for nature and the environment. One reason why such a film is possible in Australia may be because that country has already begun to feel the impact of our pollution (the same reason why permaculture caught on there much sooner).
Review: I Wish More Science Fiction Films Were Like This
LOS ANGELES, April 30, 2008 -- Environmental activists from AmazonWatch with support from the LA Greens and other local groups paid a visit to Occidental Petroleum's corporate headquarters today. Dressed up in Haz Mat uniforms demonstrators staged a mock toxic clean up outside the Oxy building in Westwood.
Activists are demanding that Oxy pay for the clean up of an area of the Amazon home to the Achuar people. Oxy is blamed for the poisoning of an entire ecosystem that the Achuar depend on for their survival. Today's demonstration was the first of two planned for this week. The next protest will be held at Oxy's shareholders meeting this Friday, May 2nd at 9am at the Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica.From the Newswire: AmazonWatch Clean Up Crew Hits Occidental Petroleum Headquarters | | PHOTOS - From Oxy Protest | | "This is What a Clean-Up Looks Like!" by RP | | MP3 AUDIO Protest at Occidental Petroleum Headquarters by A
On Wednesday April 30 and Friday May 2, there will be demonstrations against L.A.-based Occidental Petroleum over pollution and illness caused by nearly 30 years of oil sdrilling in the Peruvian Amazon. The first event, a mock clean-up will take place at the company's headquarters, the second will be outside the annual shareholder's meeting. According to Amazon Watch, Occidental Petroleum is sensitive to this kind of publicity. Full story: Two Upcoming Events to Expose Pollution, Sickness in Peru Caused by Occidental Petroleum
by RP Announcements: Wednesday event Friday event
Documental en audio de 11 minutos sobre la Granja Sur Central, con breve historia de la granja, el desalojo y la lucha actual. South Central Farm
by Radio Zapatista
On Saturday I participated in the Green Resolutions Ride, a tour of ecological landmarks in Maungna (Silver Lake/Los Feliz) via bicycle, which I was told, accommodated beginners like me.
Liz Allen, co-organizer of C.I.C.L.E. (Cicylists Inciting Change Through Live Exchange), began by addressing one of the biggest fears for bicyclists (or would-be bicyclists): auto traffic. "We tell them, 'That's not the big fear, especially when we know what we're doing," she said, adding that car-bike accidents "only account for about 18% of all collisions that a cyclist has. Out of that 18%, over half are due to us making mistakes."
Coverage: Report Back/Photos: Green Resolutions Ride (part 1) by Ross Plesset | Green Resolutions Ride (more coverage)
Between June 2006 and August 2007 tree rats entered my house. My (ultimately successful) quest to achieve peaceful coexistence with them was very much of a learning process. It seems that we have achieved not only peaceful coexistence but also a symbiotic relationship. The following story is based on a journal I kept during this period.
Story and photos: Year of the Rats: How I Achieved Peaceful Coexistence with My Rat Neighbors by LM
At a community meeting sponsored by LAUSD at Frank del Olmo
Elementary School on 1/30/08, LAUSD officials presented several
alternative sites to the 100 plus attendees. Indicating that they
have just started exploring these alternative sites and are not
prepared to make a decision at this point, officials announced that
there would be several more community meetings over the next few months.
Update and calls to action: UPDATE: LA Eco Village
A WWII Era Iron Foundry spews Ton of Particulates and Toxic Gases Just Upwind of the Rio Vista School and Headstart Program
Story/call for action: El Monte Iron Foundry Pollutes Community
by Joe Blackburn
On Saturday, Febuary 2, a demonstration was held in front of Office Max in Pasadena, one of some 30 similar actions at Office Maxes in the U.S./Canada.
Office Max sells paper derived from ancient forests that are home to the Grassy Narrows First Nation.
The issue is described in greater detail here
Report and photos Demonstration Against Clear-Cutting at Office Max in Pasadena by RP
Update: victory! In a recent newsletter, Rainforest Action Network has stated: "Yesterday, Boise, the company that supplies paper to OfficeMax, announced that it 'wishes to honor the request of Chief Fobister to discontinue sourcing fiber from the Traditional Use Area of Grassy Narrows.' What this means: Boise's announcement that they will stop purchasing pulp from Grassy Narrows means that your efforts to pressure OfficeMax and Grand & Toy worked!"
Cal State L.A., long a leader in "green" technologies, will be hosting a day-long discussion by local faculty, staff and students on creating a culture of sustainability.
Cal State L.A.'s participation, sponsored by Associated Students as well as by the campus chapters of Earth L.A. and The Humanist Association, will take the form of a day-long series of discussions, roundtables, lectures and videos, all on the broader topic of Sustainability.
Information: Focus The Nation Day, January 31: Global Warming Teach-In at CSULA!
Join C.I.C.L.E. and friends (Saturday January 26, at 10:00 AM) as we explore the Silver Lake and Los Feliz neighborhoods by bicycle in search of green and sustainable living ideas on our Urban Expeditions "Green Resolutions Ride."
Have you already broken your New Year's Resolutions? Now is your chance to pedal into a resolution you can keep! Join C.I.C.L.E. and friends as we explore the Silver Lake and Los Feliz neighborhoods by bicycle in search of green and sustainable living ideas on our Urban Expeditions "Green Resolutions Ride."
Details: In Search of Green Resolutions: The Ride by C.I.C.L.E
Update: This event has been rescheduled for February 23.
On Tuesday December 11, 2007, I joined in a community effort to welcome and support a coalition of Native American Nations and environmental
justice groups in their ongoing effort to defend Arizona's San Francisco
Peaks from proposed ski area development. The coalition had traveled
from Arizona in order to be present for a Federal Appeals Court hearing
in which developers would challenge a precedent-setting court victory
won by the coalition, which halted plans to expand the skiing business
by making fake snow out of sewage waste. This case is viewed as
precedent-setting in the realms of religious freedom and public health,
and particularly in establishing an interpretation for the 1993
Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).
As a person of faith, what struck me about the gathering is how deeply
important the theme of religious freedom was. . . Full report from
newswire: This is how we
by Amy L. Dalton Report on the court
proceedings: Tribes &
Environmental Groups Defend Religious Freedom & Human Health in Federal
| | Report with photos: March and Vigil
to Save the San Francisco Peaks
by Self-Hating Caucasian | |
| | Related: A Native
on How Non-Indigenous People Can Stop Colonialization
The Green California Schools Summit happens on December 4-6, 2007 at the Pasadena Conference Center Pasadena, CA. Learn how California Safe Schools (CSS), a nationally celebrated children's environmental health and justice coalition founded in 1998, successfully spearheaded the most stringent schools pesticide use policy in the nation, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), at the Los Angeles Unified School District. IPM uses low risk methods to eradicate insects, weeds and other pests, eliminating a major source of indoor and outdoor pollution. . . .
Info: Join Robina Suwol of California Safe Schools
A wildlife corridor in Echo Park is threatened by development. On Wednesday, November 14th, there will be a public hearing at City Hall concerning the developer's request for "a Small Lot Subdivision - from 3 into 16 lots and a zone change from R1 to RD6 rezoning." It will take place in room 1020 at 10:30am. The issue will also be addressed at the Greater Echo Park Neighborhood Council Meeting on Tuesday, November 13th, 7pm at Logan Street School (1711 West Montana).
Story: Hidden Oasis Threatened by Development
by Ross Plesset
"In the Angeles National Forest, the Curve Fire of 2002 did extensive damage, damage that was made worse by the flooding of 2005.
"On 28/Oct/07 I did a survey of one of the burn areas across from Valley of the Moon in a stand of pine trees and this is what I saw. . . ." Photos: New Growth Aftermath Curve Fire by Frederic L. Rice
Strykers are basically large, relatively fast-moving, armored, 19-ton vehicles that look like tanks. Each Stryker vehicle has a cannon - a great big gun - that can fire Depleted Uranium, explosives, and titanium. A total of 4,000 soldiers (and their families) are hoping to be positioned permanently inside Hawaii to perform military training that reportedly prepares them for urban warfare inside cities in Iraq. And for obvious reasons, it is apparently easier to get soldiers and their families to commit to staying for long deployments in Hawaiian paradise than it is to get them to move to Colorado or Alaska! Full story: EASY Ways to Stop the Military Radioactive Contamination of Hawaii
by Cathy Garger
We, the undersigned, members of an international coalition of many NGOs, biologists and activists concerned for the welfare of wild animals, are writing to express our grave concerns on behalf of Venezuelan decision in Margarita Island (Nueva Esparta State) to authorize and support the operation of a zoo and aquarium inside the facilities of the amusement complex made up by the Dolphinarium Waterland Mundo Submarino -- Marino and Diverland Park. For the last 15 years, Water Land 's show has generated controversy around the world. In Argentina they took Cheryl (a Russian dolphin) away from Mr. Ric O'Barry, against the decision of a court order that gave him the permit to transport and release that dolphin. The company ran away with Cheryl and then in 1997 the dolphin died because of stress in Margarita Island, inside their facilities.Full text here: COALITION FOR ANIMAL FREEDOM
by angela expósito
This upcoming 10/16/07 will be an International Day of Action against the McDonalds corporation, an entity responsible for factory farming cruelty and pollution, rainforest clearcutting, worker abuse and increasing heart disease by serving cholesterol saturated burgers to the consumers and calling it nutritious food! Show your resistance to this fast food megacorporation at a McDonalds store near you!
Complete announcement: 10/16; Global Day of Action Against McDonalds! by !NO MAS Factory Farming Cruelty!
California Safe Schools is recognized for spearheading the most stringent pesticide policy in the nation at Los Angeles Unified School District (2nd largest in the nation) The policy called Integrated Pest Management (IPM), uses low risk methods to eliminate pest and weeds. The policy was the first in the United States to embrace the Precautionary Principle and Right to Know about pesticides used on school campuses. Today it has become the model for school districts internationally. Full announcement: Join Robina Suwol at Western U.S. Pollution Prevention Conference
by California Safe Schools
LOS ANGELES 14 June 2007--Two hundred people came to the South Central Farm tonight to watch the corn grow. The familiar train whistle, the one that warned us each night of the encampment of the devastation to come, echoed in the night air. Fresh tractor treads scored the fallow land where Ralph Horowitz, developer, had plowed under the shoots of the ancient heirloom maiz seeds that determinedly sprout in this land, as they have sprouted for millennia, a developer's response to the people's vigil. But there was still no warehouse, not even the touted soccer field. A year after dozens of people risked arrest to preserve a way of life, the Farm is in limbo, neither converted into another concrete-block monolith for human labor nor allowed to offer up food to the three hundred and fifty people who relied on it for fourteen years. The economics of declining property values and the determination of the people have kept the Farm alive, but just barely. The California black walnuts are dying and still living, their roots cut to fit in wooden boxes, guy wires holding them aloft as they fight for life.
The two hundred people neither mourned nor celebrated: they got to work. The energy that has been gathering for the past year broke out at last Sunday's tianguis, when people hopped, skipped, and danced around a ceremonial drum to a reggae rendition of "La polic ía, la migra, la misma poquer ía" on the southern boundary of the Farm, amid tables awash in the harvest of the new farm. Tonight more joined on the north side in music and speeches and two vigil walks, an old Farm ritual. The banners joined the Farmers' battle cry "¡Aqui estamos y no nos vamos!" with their new call to the community: "Desplazados pero no derrotados" Displaced, but not defeated.
Reports from the newswire: The South Central Farmers: No derrotados! by Leslie Radford | | The South Central Farm: The Struggle Continues by RP | | South Central Farm: Encampment Reunion 2007 | | Photos from South Central Farm re-union
VIDEO: Video from South Central Farm Reunion Party by A
AUDIO: MP3 Audio: John Quigley & the Farm 1 year later | | MP3 Audio: Dele Aileman speaks at the Farm Reunion | | En Espanol: AUDIO: Campesina de South Central Farm
. . . In addition to today being National Trails Day, an Eagle Scout candidate would be organizing a rock bridge effort along Golden Cup Nature Trail. The amount of work that needed to be done certainly required the large number of Scouts and others that gathered since Golden Cup has two fairly badly flood-damaged sections. The section that was going to get a new bridge would fill in the missing section of the loop that had been washed away.
Full story: LA: Crystal Lake update
by Frederic L. Rice
Planning a vacation to the American West this summer? How about boycotting the State of Montana in protest of their intended slaughter of 300 wild bison, including many small nursing calves, in the next few days
The Montana Department of Livestock (DOL) has set up a bison trap near the West Yellowstone airport, on state land and they intend to begin capturing approximately 300 wild buffalo, including tiny newborns and their whole families, beginning Thursday, May 31.
Call to Action: Boycott State of Montana this summer...
by D. Grant
The Los Angeles MTA has announced astonishing fare hikes. A day pass will increase from $3 to $5 in July and to $8 by January, 2009, and a monthly pass will go from $52 to $75 in July and to $120 in January, 2009. Not only will these fare hikes punish poor people, the proposal presented by MTA officials works against the declared goals of our society of reducing petroleum dependence, decreasing traffic, improving air quality, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Full story: The Disturbing Case of Antonio Villaraigosa
by Francisco Frias
Bike Week Pasadena is a grass roots initiative organized in cooperation with the city of Pasadena that brings together "everything bike" for a weeklong salute to the bicycle and its many uses, from commuting, to exercising, to just plain having fun. More than 15 free events are planned starting Monday, May 14 through Sunday, May 20. Full announcement: Bike Week Pasadena
by Liz Elliott
In the Angeles National Forest about fifty or sixty young volunteers from a variety of religious youth organizations (the UCC, "United Church of Christ" and many other groups from all around Southern California) gathered together with representatives of the Sierra Club, the San Gabriel Mountains Trailbuilders, and the U. S. Forest Service at the Rincon Fire Station in the San Gabriel River Ranger District.
Full story: Crystal Lake Update
by Frederic L. Rice
Westchester, Los Angeles, April 14, 2007 - A local grassroots group called Environmental Change Makers
held a march up and down Sepulveda Blvd this Saturday to bring attention to the threat of global warming. They are calling for an 80% cut in carbon emissions by the year 2050. Also joining in the march were members of the LosAngeles Green Party
who are planning a series of Earth Day events this month, including a presentation on the South Central Farmers the coming Wednesday, April 18th. Photographs: Environmental Change Makers March in Westchester
Human activity on Earth is heating up the planet. The polar ice caps are melting and at the current rate will be gone before the end of the century. The rain forests, which have served for millions of years as a carbon sink for greenhouse gases, are being turned into barren deserts. Around the world there are over 40 different wars and civil conflicts. Many of these conflicts are directly related to the effects of global warming and the destruction of balanced ecosystems.
In response various environmental groups have put out the call for a series of international days of demonstrations to raise awareness and to take action to halt the deterioration of the earth's environment.
Upcoming Events: Earth Day LA | | Childrens Earth Day | | LA Green Party | | Earth First | | Tree Planting | | Biotech IMC
LOS ANGELES, CA --- President , George W. Bush (PGWB) a Rap artist? With the Internet swarming with PGWB parodies, it was time to exercise the First U.S. Amendment, "Freedom of Speech" utilizing clearer communication about war, profits and the environmental impact. Writer-Producer-Musician-Environmentalist, Jon Hartmann has released "George Bush Sings" in a rap-funk-groove download on http://cdbaby.com/cd/jonhartmann4 , featuring tracks, "Don't Believe Me," "Let Us Bomb," "Stay The Course," "My Heart Breaks," and "Start A Business" which talks about America's addiction to oil. Other new tracks will be added to the site for download as they are produced. Story: MUSICIAN-ENVIRONMENTALIST JON HARTMANN ADDRESSES AMERICA'S OIL ADDICTION WITH BUSH RAP
by Stacey Kumagai
. . . The presentation emphasized the proposed system's use of clean technology and its minimal impact on "farmlands, wetlands, and sensitive habitats" by using existing right-of-ways (i.e., train and freeway routes) with stops confined to urban areas. . . . Some of the film's computer-generated imagery depicted wind generators powering the system. Report: The Proposed L.A. to Palmdale High-Speed Train
by Ross Plesset
The fare hikes come at a time when the car as the primary mode of transportation strains the society and becomes ever more expensive. Ironically, by so drastically raising the price of the alternative, more people will buy into the exorbitantly expensive transportation model and exacerbate the problems associated with it. However, there are alternatives that would yield far more beneficial results to the society than the proposed fare hikes. Full Article: An Alternative to Los Angeles Metro's Fare Hikes
by Francisco Frias
" . . . These plantings are controversial, I should note, since a great many of the saplings die for lack of water. Many of the saplings continue to live, however, since they get planted in places where pine trees like to grow. Because of the beetle infestation and the fires that have gone through the region, a great many trees have died and statistically newly planted trees such as these have a better chance of surviving to grow into adulthood now than in years past where competition and disease is less." Report: Watershed Restoration Tree Planting Day!
by Frederic L. Rice
Robina Suwol has helped protect millions of kids from harmful pesticides and toxins. After seeing her own children walk through a cloud of pesticides outside their school door, Suwol founded California Safe Schools to protect students from dangerous toxic substances. Suwol's incredible dedication to safeguarding children prompted the American public to name her a finalist in the 5th Annual Volvo for life Awards. As one of nine top heroes selected, Suwol will receive $25,000 for her cause, and now has a chance to win an additional $25,000 and a car for life. Story: VAN NUYS WOMAN NAMED VOLVO AWARD FINALIST
by Haberman & Associates
The Crystal Lake Creation Area, located in the Angeles National Forest within the San Gabriel River Ranger District, has been receiving repairs and restoration through the work of contractors and unpaid volunteer organizations in the hopes that the Recreation Area will eventually be re-opened. The work is part of the restoration efforts taken in the aftermath of the Curve and Williams fires, and as a result of the beetle infestation which has destroyed much of the area's forested stands.
Update: Los Angeles: Crystal Lake Update
by Fredric L. Rice
At the weekly peace vigil in Highland Park, we meet numerous homeless people. A few months ago, one of them in particular piqued my interest.
The first time I saw him, he was diligently and meticulously collecting small pieces of garbage to prevent them from entering the storm drain. He was also very dedicated to sweeping up leaves and garbage at the nearby veterans' memorial, and he stopped a young child from scaring pigeons. One of our vigilers claims to have seen this man praying while picking up litter. Full story: An Interview with a Homeless Environmentalist
by R of the Northeast LA Radical Neighbors
Turn Everything Off for Five Minutes!!!
On February 1st you can participate in the worldwide greatest action against climate change!!! Turn everything off - On February 1st between 7:55 p.m. until 8 p.m.
Various environmental organizations are asking the peoples of this planet to hold 5 minutes of silence. to bring attention to other inhabitants, the media and politicians about the daily waste of energy.
An act which takes only 5 minutes, which cost nothing, but shows the governments that climate change should be on the top agenda of world politics.
Why this date? On February 1st the United Nations is publicizing the newest results and knowledge base on climate change.
SO...TURN OFF AND SEND THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS
by Stop Global Warming
Many of the schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District are virtually treeless. In collaboration with Planet Green and TreePeople I created a solution that you can put into action today! By recycling inkjet cartridges you can earn cash and a sponsored tree planting at your school! (Photo courtesy of Natosongs.com).Full story: Help Green LAUSD with Trees and Funds Renee van Staveren
In December 2006 & January 2007, the Japanese whaling fleet will begin to illegally kill 1,000 whales in the Antarctic Whale Sanctuary. Fifty of these whales will be endangered humpbacks and another fifty will be endangered fin whales. Although the Japanese claim research as their motivation, the only research they are undertaking is product development and marketing of whale meat -- to turn their illicit whale flesh into dog food, cosmetics, and sushi dishes they make huge profits. Full story:Act NowtoEndWhaleSlaughter Oceans Forever
ALSO: $25,000 Reward for Japanese Whalers' Coordinates Sea Shepherd
The fight for the land at 41st and Alameda goes on still, in courtrooms and in low-key conference rooms. Some of the original Farmers have gone in different directions. Some are digging plots in Venice, and some in gardens in Watts, newly opened because of the Farmers' eviction. Some have given up the skills of generations. But some, a hundred or so families, are holding on to the original vision to raise fresh, healthy food for the inner city.Full story:The Winter Harvest of the South Central FarmersLeslie Radford
LOS ANGELES, December 5, 2006 - It was bittersweet, turning right on 41st Place off Alameda. The South Central Farmers were celebrating the opening of their community center. There they were, the Farmers bringing fresh organic vegetables into South Central, where Whole Foods, Wild Oats, and Trader Joe's dare not tread.
The Farmers had lined the tables at the tianguis with chard, radishes, pomegranates, almonds, squash, and grapes. Grapes not too sweet, grapes that tasted like a crisp, slightly fruity wine. Four dollars could be swapped for two plastic bags of fresh produce, all from small farmers in the local food shed.
Full story:The Farmers'PromiseLeslie Radford
In the past two years there has been a resurgence in the number of bed bug infestations in North America.
Bed bug city has maps showing the extent of the plague, with the situation being worst with some of the heaviest infestations spreading in the Western Coastal regions of the United States which has a climate the most favorable to year round bed bug travelling (they are killed in winter should they be found outside the warm comfort of a nest in someone's bedroom, which inhibits their ability to travel in some regions of the country).Full story:SleepTightBrent Herbert
LOS ANGELES, November 19, 2006 - Six UC students and three community members were forcefully dragged from the UC Regents board meeting on Thursday by police after they informed the Regents that they would not allow the board to convene its DOE lab oversight committee, the Regents' body in charge of UC's nuclear weapons research, design, and manufacturing labs in Los Alamos, New Mexico and Livermore, California. The civil disobedience action was conducted by The Coalition to Demilitarize, a group of students and community activists who seek to end the University of California's participation in the production of nuclear weapons.Full story:Students arrested for blocking UC nuclear email@example.com
The exhibit (which runs from October 21 to December 31) explores the inventive objects and strategies created by artists in response to the environmental, political and social issues of our time. The objects featured will include protest art meant for public display as well as tools for socially conscious living.Full story:SocialCraftinLAJoap
". . . With few sources of water and difficult-to-find places for shade, the Southwestern Mojave is a dangerous enough place. The people who actually live out here are almost always as sun-crazed and violently paranoid as the gila monsters, buzzards, coyote and kit fox that inhabit these regions. . . ."Full story:FrenchFriesintheAmericanSouthwestFrederickL.Rice
Bring your Bikes to the October 5th World Can't Wait Rally. What better way to demonstrate against the Bush regime's war for oil and against it's deception on climate change and environmental issues, than on a bike?
Bring your bike and a sign to Pershing square, for a Critical Mass style ride. The mobility of the bike will allow us to be seen on streets where the marchers would otherwise not be seen on. Also it will demonstrate an alternative method of transportation not dependant on oil.
On September 30, 2006 Los Angelinos will have the opportunity to enjoy an evening of fun celebrating and demonstrating Car-Free and Car-Lite transportation choices.
C.I.C.L.E., (Cyclists Inciting Change thru LIVE Exchange) a local bicycle advocacy group, will be presenting their first ever Car-Free celebration entitled "Life Can Be So Car-Free" at the new Los Angeles State Historic Park in downtown Los Angeles. Interpretive walks, bicycle rides, live music by local car-free and car-lite bands Telematique and Triple Chicken Foot, interactive exhibits featuring examples of utilitarian forms of car-free transportation, and short film selections by local cyclist and filmmaker Ashira Siegel are all slotted in as part of a fun-filled evening.
These efforts are part of the on-going effort to re-open the camp grounds in the aftermath of a series of fires and floods which closed the grounds in 2002. The re-opening of the grounds is somewhat controversial since the main highway -- Highway 39 from Azusa, California -- has been closed long enough for the litter and graffiti that plagues these mountain canyons to degrade and virtually disappear (with considerable help from volunteers over the years.)
From the newswire: Crystal Lake Eagle Scout Project / Los Angeles by Fredric L. Rice
The destructive bulldozer raid by real estate developer Ralph HorowitzCo. & LA Sheriffs' on LA's southcentral community farm only resulted in strengthening the resistance and improved networking between sc campesino farmers, ecoanarchists and permaculture communities. Full Story: Ecoanarchists help reclaim southcentral farm
LOS ANGELES COUNTY, August 23, 2006 - the San Gabriel Mountains Trailbuilders returned to the Crystal Lake Recreation area to finish the trail work needed to complete the Lost Ridge Trail, a fairly easy hike where one end of the trail is at Deer Flats and the other meets Lake Road.
Hiking trails are established in these recreation areas in an attempt to concentrate foot traffic (and thus erosion and pollution) along official routes through the mountains while providing some measure of safety for hikers and campers. While the Crystal Lake Recreation area is currently closed and has been since 2002, the area is being worked on by professional, commercial companies and by volunteers such as the San Gabriel Mountains Trailbuilders.
Full Story: Lost Ridge Trail Almost Completed by Fredric L. Rice
Derrick (Jensen) is a very articulate advocate for a world view that is increasingly going to be making more sense to people in the industrialized world in the very near future. This world view has been labeled many things, from primitivist, to anti-civilizationist, to green-anarchist to autonomist. Whatever one chooses to call this world view, it is becoming more and more obvious to more and more people that this 10,000 year experiment in Western Civilization has been one of the worst disasters to have befallen humanity in the history of its existence on this planet.
Derrick Jensen In Los Angeles: A review of an evening in reality by Jeff Hendricks.
Apocalypse No! by Juan Santos
Green is the new Red--the 1950s had their vast Communist conspiracy, Congressional hearings, blacklists, and red-baiting. Today, we have "Eco-Terrorists," secret databases, Congressional hearings, indictments, grand juries, raids, surveillance, arrests, convictions, and potential life sentences.
Join acclaimed activist and author, Derrick Jensen, for a night of dialogue, debate, controversy, and an exploration of the nature of what's been termed THE GREEN SCARE.
Saturday, July 29th... Los Angeles
3706 N. Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, Calif., 90065
(Near Figueroa St. & W. Avenue 37 off the 110 Freeway)
Read Complete Information...
There's enough rain falling on the desert to sustain human life at our present level of overconsumption. You just need to use it rather than let it flow into the street and be reclassified as "sewage."
Brad Lancaster, a permaculture designer and educator based in Tucson AZ, toured California in April with his new, self-published book Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands. His presentation at Eco Village on April 26th was hosted by the Los Angeles Permaculture Guild.
Report Back: Rainwater Harvesting: Brad Lancaster shares DIY water wisdom by Jennifer Murphy
Video: Brad Lancaster on rainwater harvesting
(Thumbnail photo courtesy of harvestingrainwater.com.)
LOS ANGELES - On Sunday, January 29th, Jan Lundberg and Tezozomoc will speak at an event called "Petrocollapse and Food Security" at the South Central Community Farm. It may sound like an unlikely combination, Jan Lundberg, an oil analyst and presenter at peak oil conferences, and Tezozomoc, an organizer with South Central Farmers Feeding Families, but they actually have much in common.
by Eric Einem
The San Gabriel Mountain Trail Builders build hiking trails and perform repairs and maintenance on trails in an effort to limit the human environmental impact in the San Gabriel Mountain chain.
In areas where humans hike, bicycle, picnic, and camp, the lack of established, professionally developed trails results in a number of unplanned trails that are almost always dangerous since they take a direct route from parking areas to rivers. Numerous unplanned trails caused more extensive erosion to microenvironments and cause some spreading out of litter that gets dumped along the trails.
Full article: Dumpster Recovery in San Gabriel Mountains by Fredric L. Rice
On October 27, 2005, a local Post Carbon meet up took place at Coco's restaurant on North Lake Avenue in Pasadena. A major part of the organization's mission is to find ways of surviving oil depletion and other crises (more information is at: lapostcarbon.org
). Among the attendees was Tony Kienitz, author of the book The Year I Ate My Yard.
Unlike many of his public appearances, Kienitz this time delved into dark subjects such as global warming, oil depletion, and biotechnology. However, he also described positive actions people can take and offered a lot of advice about gardening and living harmoniously with nature.
Transcript: Tony Kienitz Attends a Post Carbon Meet Up by Rick Panna