Posted in Uncategorized

Divest from fossil fuels


So you’ve got some money in the stock market, and like watching it grow. But what if your money is ruining the future for everyone? What if your stocks are in the coal, oil & gas industries? i.e. In fossil fuels?

“Every company, investor and bank that screens new and existing investments for climate risk is simply being pragmatic.” Jim Yong Kim, President of the World Bank Davos

Learn of 5 ways your personal investments can tackle climate, from triplepundit, and of the movement to divest from fossil fuels and invest in life enhancing projects.



Posted in clean renewable energy, no fossil fuels, pipelines, Uncategorized

Human Pipeline brings message to Gas Profiteers

I had a bit part in a direct action today. See news release and photo.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016
Contact: EDGE Angela Vogel 206-579-9309 or Elizabeth Arnold 267-745-7041



Philadelphia – A group of Pennsylvania residents claimed eminent domain today for a right-of-way through the lobby of a Penn’s Landing hotel during two energy industry conferences. Using their own bodies and lengths of industrial tubing, they built their own pipeline to carry their message to industry and government officials who want to double down on investment in fossil fuels and fracking instead of shifting to  renewable energy sources.

The Hilton Philadelphia at Penn’s Landing is hosting two conferences this week: The Natural Gas for Power Generation (NGPG) Summit on the conversion of coal-fired electrical generation plants to gas, and the Association of Energy Services Professionals spring conference.

“Converting coal-fired plants to gas often really means building a new gas-fired plant. It’s another investment that justifies more fracking, more pipelines to Philadelphia and more pollution,” said Meenal Raval, a Mt. Airy business owner. “Using fracked gas for power causes a path of destruction from wells, pipelines, and compressor stations through thousands of communities.”

The chairman of the NGPG Summit is Michael Krancer, who served as Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and then returned to his partnership at Blank Rome, where he heads the law firm’s Energy, Petrochemical & Natural Resources Practice. Krancer is also a member of the Greater Philadelphia Energy Action Team, a trade group that recently announced plans to seek public funding for a massive natural gas pipeline to Philadelphia.

“This is the revolving door in action,” said Angela Vogel of EDGE (Ending Dirty Gas Exploitation). “The same people go back and forth between government and industry, working together to keep profiting by poisoning us.”

On Monday an NGPG session called How to Overcome Environmentalist & Community Opposition and Accelerate the Approval Process included the topic “How to influence regulators and dominate the regulatory review and permitting process.” Tuesday morning featured pipeline proponent Philip Rinaldi, CEO of Philadelphia Energy Solu tions, whose refinery has suffered multiple fires in the past two years and produces two-thirds of the toxic air emissions from industrial sources in Philadelphia.

Built along two tidal rivers, Philadelphia is the city second-most at risk to power outages from climate-change-fueled storms. Members of the public who brought their message to the conferences say that reliance on fossil fuels undermines global efforts to slow climate change and locks the city and the state into decades of fossil fuel use while the rest of the world shifts to energy efficiency and renewables.

“Monday’s presenter on community opposition said, ‘Listen, listen, listen’ to what communities tell you. We are telling these industries that Philadelphia wants clean energy, not the fossil fuels that are making Philadelphia the asthma capital of the Northeast, poisoning our drinking water, scarring our state with pipelines, and destroying our planet,” said Elizabeth Arnold of EDGE (Encouraging Development of a Green Economy).


Posted in Uncategorized

The Lorax

 Discovered a gap in my education. For the first time last night, I read The Lorax by Dr Seuss. I think we should all start calling ourselves The Lorax – Speaking for the Trees (or Rivers or Oceans or Mountains or Fish, even Children or Indigenous Peoples – any lifeform that has no voice in the dominant culture…)
Posted in Uncategorized

Story Sharing at Occupy Philadelphia

This past Friday evening, Bill Mettler of Wyncote led a story sharing session as part of the impromptu teach-in currently occurring at Occupy Philadelphia (on the web at and on Facebook at OccupyPhiladelphia). tent city at occupy phillyTrainings are on-going in subjects such as non-violence, permaculture, the monetary system, direct action, and Harvey’s Homeless Walking Tour.

When we arrived, there was a cool drizzle and we circled the plaza, debating the improbability of organizing a story swap in the rain. Since our last visit just 4 days ago, we witnessed many more tents, neatly in rows on the City Hall plaza with Occupiers claiming space beside office workers and the homeless. We ran into Ben (working to bringing an  alternative currency called Equal Dollars to the region), Bill (a green architect working with the climate change campaign), and Rabbi Julie, organizing Friday night Shabbat services outside a Sukkah.

We decided that the Sukkah, a temporary structure open to the elements, was an appropriate setting for our Story Sharing session. Though we began with just a handful of people, by the end our circle had expanded and included quite a diverse group, some stopping by with plates of food served up by volunteers at the Friends Center, with the weather clearing up.

Bill started off with a story from his childhood, about Hurricane Hazel and his initial awareness of their household’s dependence on electricity & water. An unemployed Iraqi veteran talked about how nice the Iraqis were, and how simply most families lived there, a young woman wondered why her generation was so obsessed with texting people when there were people right in front of them.

Memories of a summer camp where she got a chance to live in a teepee and as simply as Native Americans, a young mother repeated that that experience of living simply was just more interesting than any other summer camp option.   One fellow reminisced about the time he spent outdoors in North Dakota, Celeste Zappala spoke about the rainbow viewing celebrated in her family, and especially the double rainbow at her son’s (Sgt Sherwood Baker) funeral, while Bill Marston sweetly sang a song from Sunday School that he experienced as an epiphany, about God being in the rustling of the grass. 

The Story Sharing melded right into the Shabbat services, where we invited ancestors we’d like present – today, on the City Hall plaza, at Occupy Philly.

I enjoyed the graceful public space our City Hall plaza has become, bringing such a diverse set of people together.

Meenal Raval, one of the 99 percent | 267.709.3415