Author Archives: Jim Snyder-Grant

new Green Acton mission statement

Green Acton has revised its Mission Statement to be more comprehensive and robust:

Green Acton works to protect and enhance Acton’s natural environment and resources for present and future generations, and to help resolve the urgent environmental issues that transcend Acton’s boundaries.

Click here for the rest of the new mission statement.

It was inspiring to work with everyone involved to make sure it spoke to people’s values, concerns, and hopes. We hope it inspires you, as well.

 

About the Green Acton Website

The greenacton.org  website is built on top of WordPress, a free and open source content management system that allows our writers and editors to work on portions of the website as if they were using a basic word processor. Continue reading

People’s Climate March in DC April 29 – buses and more information

Join the
Jobs, Justice & Climate March
in Washington DC
Saturday, April 29, 2017 Continue reading

To Acton Selectmen, Dec 2016: Part 1, climate change

Thanks for having us back to help start your conversation about natural gas use in Acton. There are a lot of health and safety reasons for reducing the use of natural gas, but tonight we want to focus on another reason: Climate Change. Continue reading

To Acton Selectmen, Dec 2016. Part 2: Heat Pumps

The best current technology for heating and cooling homes and buildings is the heat pump, which comes in air source and ground source varieties Continue reading

30th Annual Local Environmental Action conference: Sunday, March 5th at Northeastern University, Boston, MA

Local Environmental Acton conference poster30th Annual Local Environmental Action conference: Sunday, March 5th at Northeastern University, Boston, MA

  • Great way to connect with other towns and see what they are working on, and gain exposure to new ideas and information on climate / clean energy issues
  • Nearly 20 workshops that cover a range of issues and skills – from the future of energy in New England, to organizing in the age of Trump, to the health impacts of fracked gas well-heads to your kitchen stove
  • Recognize our many victories over the year and be inspired to go back and continue the fight to protect the health and safety of our communities, our environment, and our climate

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS:

  • Kandi Mossett
    Kandi Mossett is a powerful Indigenous leader and environmental justice hero on the frontlines of the fight to stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. A member of the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, Kandi is the Indigenous Environmental Network’s Extreme Energy & Just Transition Campaign Coordinator, leading the fight to raise awareness about the environmentally & socially devastating effects of hydraulic fracturing on tribal lands. We’re so honored to have her joining us to share lessons from NoDAPL and her international and national climate advocacy work.
  • Lois GibbsLois Gibbs is known by many as the mother of the anti-toxics movement and the federal Superfund program. Lois was a housewife living in Niagara Falls, New York in 1978 when she learned that her neighborhood, Love Canal, was built on top of 21,000 tons of hazardous chemical waste. After successfully organizing her neighbors to win the evacuation and cleanup of Love Canal, Lois went on to found the Center for Health, Environment & Justice and has helped communities across the country fight to protect themselves from toxic exposures. Most recently, Lois has been working on the ground in Flint, Michigan.

Register online here and read up on the conference agenda information here.  Breakfast and lunch are included in all tickets.  Cohosted by the Massachusetts Climate Action Network and the Toxics Action Center.

Black Lives Matter statements of October 2016

The Green Acton Board of Directors just issued two statements through our social media accounts:

• Twitter: Real sustainability = every person & voice are included & valued. After centuries of racism & exclusion, we agree: #BlackLivesMatter.

• Facebook: Green Acton’s focus is primarily local, but we know that our small community is interdependent with the wider world’s concerns. Long-range sustainability means every person and voice must count. To unpack and heal centuries of systemic racism, and to ensure that everyone is valued and included, we understand the importance of affirming that #BlackLivesMatter.

These posts were the result of discussions at the July and October 2016 Green Acton meetings, at which we talked about the connections among racism, inequalities, environmental damage, and environmental justice. We noted that, although we are a local organization, focused primarily on Acton, we understand that our small community is interdependent with the wider world’s concerns, and that achievement of our broader sustainability goals means that changes will need to happen in the rest of the nation and world, as well as here at home.

Globally: we note that people who live near the equator, in deserts and tropics, are feeling the damaging effects of climate change first, and that these are areas populated largely by brown- and black-skinned people. Without clear empathy and a sense of connection to all sorts of people, white environmental activists in northern climes might not appreciate fully the urgency of stopping climate change.

Nationally: we recognize that much of everyday life in the United States has been distorted by a narrative of white supremacy, which allowed slavery and its persistent and insidious residue — a broad system of racial oppression that has huge impacts on black people’s lives. Silence in the face of oppression permits it to continue; we felt called to make a statement.

Locally: we recognize that Green Acton itself has room to grow as an organization, and that we’d benefit by the addition of people with a wider variety of life experiences, including more people from racial and ethnic minorities.

Broadly: we recognize that progress on environmental — and economic, social, and racial — justice necessitates that we connect across our “silos” of activity and advocacy to speak up and out. At every level, we understand that undoing racism is part of the work of making progress on environmental sustainability that works for all.

Going forward: One way we will continue this work is to look at how our planned actions in the coming years can be more inclusive. Another step we will take is to identify the local groups engaged in this justice work, and pass on their calls to action to our membership. We look forward to continuing this dialogue with all of you.

Green Acton Board of Directors

Debby Andell
Jane Ceraso
Sue Cudmore
Danny Factor
Karen Herther
Sue Jick
Steve Long
Debra Simes
Jim Snyder-Grant

Metropolitan Area Plannning Council

http://www.mapc.org/
The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) is chartered to distribute Federal planning money, and to assist towns in cities in their 101-city region to cooperate in planning. They’ve done a lot of helpful work on regional environmental issues, and they are a good source for regional data and analysis.

Acton 2020

http://www.acton-ma.gov/326/Acton-2020-Committee
Acton’s current community plan was developed under the name “The Acton 2020 Comprehensive Community Plan”. The site has the plan and a lot of supporting material. Of particular interest to Green Acton is the material under Goal 2: Ensure Environmental Sustainability.

Complete Streets

Acton created a Complete Streets policy that was adopted by the Board of Selectmen in 2014. Here it is as a PDF file.  Continue reading