Governor, How Much Methane is Leaking?

Monday Action for the week of 2/13/17:
Methane is leaking from the old pipes across the state. There could be one right under your street. Look up where the leaks reported in 2015 are in your town.
In September, in response to a court ruling, Governor Baker ordered new regulations to meet the 2020 goals set in the state’s climate plan – the Global Warming Solutions Act. We all know the devil is in the details so we’re wading into the details of how methane will be limited.

You can use the sample talking points or copy-and-paste text below, if you like. Calling shows you really mean it, but if you email, be sure to personalize it.



Dear Governor Baker,

I am urgently concerned about climate change. This is the defining issue which future generations depend on us to solve. I urge you to be bold in fighting climate change and promoting clean energy for the health and safety of all our children.

Methane is leaking from the old gas pipes under the streets in my town. As you know, gas companies haven’t been required to fix most of these leaks and thousands of them have been leaking for years.Methane is 80 times more powerful a Green House Gas (GHG) than CO2 in the first 20 years. Methane leaks kill trees, make people sick and can explode!

The DEP has proposed using a formula for gas companies to calculate and report the total amount of methane leaking in their pipelines along with a limit that is reduced each of the next three years. The DPU will be developing regulations for a timeline for fixing gas leaks that have been leaking for years. Please make sure they work together so they get it right! And three years of reductions are not enough; we need the limits to show the companies are plugging all the leaks.

There’s a much better way to reduce methane leaks than estimating emissions. Measure the volume of the leaks and require that gas companies fix the biggest ones without delay.

A study in Boston found that 7% of the leaks are gushing 50% of the methane leaked from the pipes under our city streets. If those “super-emitters” were found and fixed, the limits DEP is setting for total methane leaks would be surpassed quickly.

We must reduce the leaks the fastest way, not the easiest way, because in 20 years, when the methane released today is dissipating in the atmosphere, today’s children will be young adults. I’m counting on you to do all you can to leave them a healthy, clean energy future.

Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

YOUR TOWN/CITY

With Mothers Out Front


Contact:
Governor Charlie Baker
To call: Phone: 617.725.4005 or 888.870.7770 (in state)
To email
To write a letter:
Massachusetts State House
Office of the Governor
Room 280
Boston, MA 02133


You did it!

Together we can make a difference in Massachusetts for all of us.

Thank you! See you next Monday!



Still here? Submit your testimony using the points in the sample letter above to DEP before the 2/24 deadline by e-mail to climate.strategies@state.ma.us.


In Person Events:

  • Sunday, 2/19, 4:00pmNorthampton MOF Organizing Team Meeting. Join the newly formed Northampton MOF group! Contact Sarah at sarahrpartan@earthlink.net.

  • Monday 2/20, 5:30 – 7:30, MOF Family Potluck. We’re not having a meeting as usual on the 3rd Monday in February because many people will be away during school break. But you’re invited to a potluck with your family on. RSVP to Ariella for location at ariellaschwell@gmail.com.

  • Saturday, 2/25, 2:00-4:15pm, Amherst MOF House Party. Join with other concerned people at this introduction to Mothers Out Front. RSVP ellentmiddleton@gmail.com.

  • Sunday, 2/26, 1pm, GATHERING OUR HEARTS AT STANDING ROCK, a documentary in process by Fidel Moreno followed by a panel discussion, Unitarian Universalist Meeting of South Berkshires, 1089 Main Street in Housatonic.
  • Monday, 2/27, 7:00pm-9:00pmClimate Action Now meeting with breakout reporting on 100% Renewable Local Campaigns, Northampton Unitarian Society, 220 Main St.
  • Wednesday, 3/1, 7:00-9:00pm100% Renewable Amherst Meeting. Come learn how Greenfield has raced ahead in lowering their GHG emissions with deep energy efficiency and clean energy. Contact Andra for location and info at amherstamr@gmail.com.

Keep up with other actions for resisting and protecting our communities and climate by following 413 Staying Connected for Action.


Thank you for doing Monday Actions.

See and follow all actions to date on the Monday Action BLOG

Onward!
Your Monday Action Team
Mothers Out Front Pioneer Valley

http://mofpioneervalley.nationbuilder.com/

We Go High, Senator

12/5/16 Monday Action:
When they go low, we go high. Tell your State Senator that more is riding on Massachusetts taking the high road toward a renewable energy future than ever before. We need to go into high gear growing our green economy.

As we celebrate the Water Protectors’ success in persuading Obama to reconsider the permit for the route of the Dakota Access Pipeline, we also know that we have much work ahead to phase out the use of fossil fuels.

The natural gas industry knows it’s running out of time. That’s why there’s a mad rush to put in new pipelines to meet the supposed increasing demand for energy. But they haven’t fixed the thousands of leaks across the state which means dangerous methane is escaping, accelerating the climate crisis, hurting our health and wasting our money.

The cost to our children’s health and the actual cost to ratepayers (almost a billion dollars each year just in the Boston area) cannot continue. See below to join a social media outcry on Saturday 12/10 to call attention to the leaks in your area.

Find the gas leak that matters most to you on this HEET leaks map. Click on the marker to see the address and use it in the talking points below where it says THESE LEAKS. Or copy and paste and mention the address of “your” gas leak in your email.
Please note: Calls and letters really count more on the state level. So if you can today, grab a postcard or reach for the phone.

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Dear Senator Rosenberg,

I am urgently concerned about climate change. I know you are making a difference through your leadership opposing the pipeline tax and supporting renewables, conservation and energy efficiency. Please make sure the bills that you and other legislators introduce for the next session will:

1. Halt the building or expanding of natural gas infrastructure.
Instead of making consumers pay for new pipelines, make the gas companies pay to fix THESE LEAKS in the old ones.
2. Expand programs for conservation and energy efficiency.
  We’re national leaders in energy efficiency here in MA, but THESE LEAKS are creating as much climate warming emissions as we’ve saved with all the energy efficiency programs so far.
3. Speed our complete and rapid transition to 100% renewable energy.
We need to build the renewable energy infrastructure NOW.

Thank you for protecting us and future generations.

Sincerely,

YOUR NAME
YOUR TOWN/CITY
With Mothers Out Front
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Contact info (or HERE: http://openstates.org/):
State Senator Stan Rosenberg
To call: (617) 722-1500
To email
To write a letter:
State House Office
24 Beacon Street, Room 332,
Boston, MA 02133

It’s really important that you bring this home to legislators all across the state by asking a friend in another zip code to do what you just did! You or your friend can enter an address and look up State Senators and State Representatives HERE: http://openstates.org/
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Timely Action Extras:
Mothers Out Front is calling attention to the gas leaks across the state by taking pictures of our families where leaks are in our towns and cities. Hold a sign that asks whether that leak is a super emitter (gas companies aren’t required to measure the volume of leaks!). Take your pictures ahead of time, but wait until Saturday 12/10, to post and tweet pictures to create a social media storm. Include your town, use the hashtag #FixTheLeaks and tag your gas company in your tweets and posts. For Berkshire Gas, use @AVANGRID, and also mention BG. If you’re in Columbia Gas territory please don’t target them because they are working closely with us. You can still share and retweet photos from other communities to contribute to the storm! On Saturday, check out our Facebook page and Twitter @MOFpv and please share and retweet all day! For more info contact amherstamr at gmail dot com.

Want to learn how to use Twitter or Facebook for getting attention to climate? We’re offering online seminars. If you’re curious, contact Andra: amherstamr at gmail dot com.

Support the Boston Gas Leaks Ordinance. This will be a model that towns and cities can replicate across the state to mandate strong local requirements for fixing leaks. Click here to sign the petition.

Tell Governor Baker we want a Carbon Fee and Rebate! A comment page is available for the next 10 days. For more information on what to say and why, go to http://climateactionnowma.org/carbonpollutionfeecomments/


Upcoming In-Person Events:

TODAY!!!! Walk & Water Ceremony to Stand With Standing Rock and Defund DAPLMonday, Dec 5th, 2016. 12pm – 1:30pm. Amherst, MA. Yes, it’s still on! We still have to pressure the banks to divest from pipeline projects and the DAPL is only being rerouted, not stopped. Meet at the North Common and march down N. Pleasant St to the TD Bank branch in Amherst. Wear blue, bring a small offering for the ceremony, find a friend with a TD Bank account who will close their account as part of the action.

Climate Solutions 101: Sunday, Dec 18, 10-11:30 in Amherst, MA. MOF explains it all! Come learn everything you always wanted to know about the climate emergency and the solutions we’re pushing for. Don’t be afraid to ask; there’s no such thing as a stupid question. Newbies especially welcome. RSVP to amherstamr at gmail dot com.

Mothers Out Front Community Meeting: Monday, Dec 19. 6:00-8:00pm in Amherst, MA: Learn about how we can get to 100% renewable energy by 2030 across our state. We will have time to mingle and snack. Children welcome.

RSVP to greenzinnia at hotmail dot com

Amherst Mothers Out Front House Party: Jan 8, 2:00 – 4:15 pm in Amherst, MA

Please join us for an empowering and engaging presentation and discussion party with Mothers Out Front on how to protect all of our children and the children of future generations. There is urgency, but there is also hope.
RSVP to ellentmiddleton at gmail dot com. Feel free to bring an interested friend or neighbor. Child care is available (please let us know by 1/4 if you need care).

Thanks for all you do. Onward!
Visit our Mothers Out Front webpage for details about other ways to join us in person and online.

In collaboration,

MOF Pioneer Valley Organizing Team

Gov Baker, No More Gas Pipelines

Today’s Monday Action: Tell Baker To Protect Otis State Forest and Meet Us In Person.

Image result for otis state forest

Remember: Calls and letters count more. That could make this a Tuesday Action.
Happy Fourth of July.
————————————————–
Dear Governor Baker,
I am urgently concerned about climate change.
This is the gravest threat facing us all and future generations depend on us to halt it. Therefore I oppose all new fossil fuel infrastructure and want a fair price on carbon. I want to see Massachusetts get 100% of its energy from clean, renewable sources like solar and wind. We owe it to our children and future generations to do everything we can to avoid the worst impacts of global warming. What will your own children’s futures be if we do not act together NOW?

Therefore I oppose building new gas pipelines in Massachusetts including the CT expansion through Otis State Forest which is in violation of our State Constitution. These pipelines would harm local communities and natural landscapes, and keep us hooked on fossil fuels for decades to come. We need you to halt this. You understand modernizing and good business: natural gas is a dinosaur sir; let’s not saddle ourselves with this stone around our collective necks. Fossil fuels are bad business.

We don’t need fossil fuels to power our lives. We can meet 100% of our needs with our abundant renewable energy resources. When can you sit down with us to discuss natural gas expansion, risks to ratepayers, the climate and the environment, and repairing the leaks?

Please support efforts to prohibit spending public money on new gas pipelines, and please do everything in your power to prevent the expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure. Thank you for fighting for us and our environment. The children thank you and we look forward to seeing you soon.

Sincerely,
YOUR NAME
YOUR TOWN AND STATE
With Mothers Out Front
——————————-
Contact: Governor Charlie Baker

To call: Phone: 617.725.4005 or 888.870.7770 (in state)
To email
To write a letter:
Massachusetts State House
Office of the Governor, Room 280
Boston, MA 02133
————————————-
In Person:
Saturday 7/16 from 2-4pm:

A Celebration of Solidarity with Berkshire Friends and Neighbors
Fighting the Connecticut Expansion Pipeline proposed by Kinder-Morgan to run through the Protected Otis State Forest.

There will be a solidarity rally on the small beach and boat launch off Cold Spring Rd in the Otis Sate Forest. The event includes live music, speakers on the issues, kayaks and canoes, picnic tables (no grills but people can bring their own). This is a marvelous way to get people down in person to experience the beautiful slice of heaven that is Spectacle Pond, which stands as an example of all the land Kinder Morgan would yank out of permanent protection for its own profit. Co-Sponsored by Code Pink, Sugar Shack Alliance, Climate Action Now, and Pioneer Valley Mothers Out Front. See you there!

——————————
Thanks for all you do. Onward!

In collaboration,
Your Community Organizing Team
Mothers Out Front – Pioneer Valley

Senators Holding FERC Accountable

Today’s Monday Action: Thank our Senators for questioning FERC’s objectivity. *(see note below action for more details)

To contact our Senators, find their phone numbers, address, and link to their email below the letter. To email, copy the letter, click on the email link with the contact info, and paste into the body of your email. It’s good to personalize the email, but if you’ve got to move quickly to get this action done, just send it!

For local climate events, see the end of this blog.
————————————————–
Dear Senators Warren and Markey,
I am urgently concerned about climate change. This is the gravest threat facing us all and future generations depend on us to halt it. Therefore I oppose all new fossil fuel infrastructure and want a fair price on carbon. We have to be bold and act fast.

Thank you for calling on the nation’s top energy regulator to redo its environmental review of a proposed natural gas pipeline project after reports of possible conflicts of interest surfaced:

I was pleased to learn of your letter to Norman Bay, chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, noting that a third-party contractor FERC hired to vet Spectra Energy’s Atlantic Bridge project had already been working for the developer on a separate project.

Thank you for your vigilance in pointing to a post in the green website “DeSmog Blog,” which claimed a third-party contractor, Natural Resources Group, was hired to vet the Atlantic Bridge project. According to the blog, NRG was also contracting on the PennEast project — which Spectra partially owns — that would stretch from northeastern Pennsylvania into New Jersey.

I am delighted by your call on FERC to redo the environmental assessment it released earlier this year on the Atlantic Bridge gas project. FERC found the pipeline expansion proposal would have no “significant impact” on the environment.

You both rightly said that the relationship appears to constitute a conflict of interest according to FERC’s standards. Commission rules bar contractors from having an ongoing relationship with applicants or financial or other interests in the outcome of a commission decision.

Thank you, keep up the good work!

Sincerely,

YOUR NAME
YOUR TOWN
With Mothers Out Front
—————————-
Contact:
US Senator Elizabeth Warren

To call: (202) 224-4543
To email
To write a letter:
317 Hart Senate Office Building,
Washington, DC 20510

US Senator Ed Markey

To call: 202-224-2742
To email
To write a letter:
255 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

*Warren and Markey noted that a third-party contractor FERC hired to vet Spectra Energy’s Atlantic Bridge project had already been working for the developer on a separate project,and wrote: “To ensure the thoroughness and objectivity of the environmental review process and to restore public confidence in that process, I urge you to issue an environmental impact statement on the Atlantic Bridge project using only third-party contractors without ties to the natural gas industry,… Even if NRG managed to technically avoid a conflict of interest, the company’s myriad ties to the natural gas industry make it difficult to believe that it could objectively evaluate the environmental impact of the Atlantic Bridge project”.

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Well done! See you next week.
And remember, friends don’t let friends ignore climate change. Forward Monday Actions today. Share this Environment MA petition to Ban Fracking.
__________________

Local Climate Events

There are hundreds of gas leaks under our streets which the gas company hasn’t fixed, even those they’ve known about for years. Get involved:

6/20 (today!) MOF Community Meeting in North Amherst from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM for details write to RSVP to greenzinnia at comcast dot net

6/26 12:45pm – 3pm.  Find out more about Mothers Out Front and how to get involved in our Gas Leaks Campaign by attending a  House Party in Shutesbury. RSVP for childcare and address to greenzinnia at comcast dot net

7/2 Noon – 2pm, Northampton. The World We Love is an intergenerational, theatrical climate crisis protest that will also be the launch of our Northampton Gas Leaks Flagging Action.

7/14 Call on Governor Baker to stop pushing pipelines– 350 Mass and Mass Power Forward kick off a 43-mile, four-day march against new gas pipelines. We’ll walk along the route of Spectra’s proposed Access Northeast pipeline and past the proposed Weymouth compressor station. We’ll stand with our allies at Resist the Pipeline to stop construction in West Roxbury. And then we’ll march to the State House itself. Together, we’ll remind Governor Baker and our legislators that if they don’t do what’s necessary to stop climate change, we will.

Thanks for all you do. Onward!

MA House: Make it Law, No Pipeline Tax

The omnibus energy bill is expected out of the House Ways and Means committee TODAY, Monday, and there is a very short window for amendments to be filed before the full bill goes for a vote on Wednesday. 

Today’s Action: Ask your State Representative to support an amendment that clearly prohibits electric ratepayer funding of gas infrastructure (a definitive ban of the “pipeline tax“).

Light Up The Map: If your rep, like Ellen Story, is already committed to forbidding a pipeline tax, tell her instead that you’re enlisting the help of your friends across the state. The omnibus energy bill comes at a critical time for the planet and you are the ones who can bring it by lighting up your networks: Ask at least one person to do today’s Monday Action: For phone numbers for this urgent action use This Link from the State

To help you think of friends in MA towns, see below the Special List of Legislators to target.

Calls are critical today. But if that’s a no go for you, then cut and paste the suggested letter below and email it to your State Representative and to one person in another part of the state.
————————————————–
Dear State Legislator,

I am urgently concerned about climate change. This is the gravest threat facing us all and future generations depend on us to halt it. I want to see Massachusetts get 100% of its energy from clean, renewable sources like solar and wind.

I therefore need the new omnibus energy bill to prohibit public or electric ratepayer financing of new natural gas infrastructure.  

We also need:
At least two thousand megawatts of offshore wind (or NY will grab it from us- it’s federal waters off our shores and NY needs the power. 2K MW is enough for infrastructure to be built in MA. That means jobs!).
Increase Renewable Portfolio Standard to 2% a year.(this means that we’ll get local green jobs twice as fast as now, and it means the industry can count on investing in twice as much infrastructure -because it is currently at 1% growth).
Environmental standards for massive transmission projects (Gov. Baker is pushing big hydro and that means tearing up our landscape to bring power from Canada).

Thank you for fighting for us and our environment. The children thank you.

Sincerely,
YOUR NAME
YOUR TOWN AND STATE
With Mothers Out Front
——————————-
Contact:

State Representative Ellen Story
To call: 617-722-2012
To email
To write a letter:
State House, Room 277
Boston, MA 02133

And, if you can:
State Senator
Stan Rosenberg
To call: (617) 722-1500
To email
To write a letter:
State House Office
24 Beacon Street, Room 332,
Boston, MA 02133
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Special List with TOWNS (Know anyone in these towns? Call them today!) of the Legislators to target:

James.Murphy@mahouse.gov – 617-722-2240, Fourth Norfolk, Consisting of Weymouth: Precincts 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 11, 13, 14, 15, 17, 18; Hingham: Precinct 2 (Plymouth Co.)
Robert.Koczera@mahouse.gov617-722-2582 – Eleventh Bristol, Consisting of Acushnet; New Bedford: Ward 1: Precincts A, B, C, Ward 2, Ward 3: Precincts B, C
Paul.Schmid@mahouse.gov617-722-2210 – Eighth Bristol, Consisting of Fall River: Ward 1: Precinct A, Ward 6: Precincts A, B; Freetown: Precincts 2, 3; New Bedford: Ward 1, Precincts D, E, F; Westport

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Remember to contact your elected officials often,
they need to hear from YOU and your mother, father, best friend, colleagues…you get the picture.
(NEED A CLICK: You can also keep sharing this generalonline petition. It auto-directs to your personal state senators, state representatives and the Governor.)

Enter your Town and State to look up your State Senatorand State Representative HERE:
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Upcoming In-Person Events:

  • June 26: MOF House Party at in Shutesbury. 12:45-3pm. RSVP to LightUpTheMap (at) gmail (dot) com. Childcare available if you let us know.
  • Fix the Gas Leaks Campaign: For details including locations RSVP to amherstamr (at) gmail (dot) com

    • June 6 Planning Meeting for marking every gas leak in Northampton 7:30 pm Forbes St. Noho
    • June 18 and 25 Art Work Days: Help Beth Fairservis with puppets and props for street theater action on July 2
    • June 20 Planning meeting Massasoit St. 7 pm.
    • June 27-July 2 Children’s camp to prepare for July 2
    • July 2 “The World We Love” and launch of Gas Leaks Flagging.

Thanks for all you do. Onward!
Visit our Mothers Out Front webpage for details about other ways to join us in person and online.

The New Sexy: Stop Wasting Gas

Today’s Monday Action: The upcoming omnibus energy bill in the MA Legislature is HUGE. We need it to phase out fossil fuels:
Write your state legislators to make gas companies fix all their gas leaks and seriously ramp up energy efficiency measures statewide.
————————————————–
Dear Senator Rosenberg,

Thank you for your work in opposing the NED project and holding Berkshire Gas’ feet to the fire about its moratorium.

I am urgently concerned about climate change. This is the gravest threat facing us all and future generations depend on us to halt it. I need to see us get 100% of energy from clean, renewable sources like solar and wind, and become the energy efficiency model for the world– Good Old Yankee Values and Know-How in action.

I believe that in order to meet our climate goals, we must learn to meet our development needs while using much less fossil fuel such as gas, and fast.  If the state invests in doing more with less gas, gas companies like Berkshire Gas will surely end their moratorium.  Two things I ask today:

Get gas companies to fix all their leaks ASAP. We are wasting our gas supply daily through thousands of leaks statewide. Consumers pay for that. But the worst is the huge amount of methane leaking. New pipelines leak as much as the older ones because the industry is laying pipelines so fast they’re cutting corners that could have disastrous results like the gas explosion in Pennsylvania last week.

Ramp up energy efficiency measures. Energy efficiency remains a tremendous resource, especially on the commercial side, and is the most cost-effective way to meet our energy needs. Demand management and retrofitting are programs that create jobs and bring down costs to the consumer as it saves energy.  Expanding and building on MassSave incentives for energy efficiency can help us end up on the right side of the “bridge” to a clean energy future.

Thank you for fighting for us and our environment. The children thank you.

Sincerely,
YOUR NAME
YOUR TOWN AND STATE
With Mothers Out Front
——————————-
Contact:
State Senator
Stan Rosenberg
To call: (617) 722-1500
To email
To write a letter:
State House Office
24 Beacon Street, Room 332,
Boston, MA 02133

State Representative Ellen Story
To call: 617-722-2012
To email
To write a letter:
State House, Room 277
Boston, MA 02133

Enter your Town and State to look up your State Senator and State Representative HERE:
http://openstates.org/
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Special List of the Legislators to target if you have time:

House Energy/Utilities Committee members who did not sign Dear Colleague pipeline letter:
Chicopee, Ludlow; Springfield, Belchertown
Thirty-second Middlesex, Consisting of Malden: Ward 5: Precinct 2; Melrose; Wakefield: Precincts 4, 5, 6.
Quincy: Ward 1, Ward 3: Precincts 1, 2, Ward 4: Precincts 2, 4, Ward 5: Precincts 1, 3, 4, 5.
Claire Cronin – Claire.Cronin@mahouse.gov
Eleventh Plymouth, consisting of Brockton: Ward 1, Ward 3: Precinct D, Ward 7: Precincts C, D; Easton: Precincts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (Bristol Co.)
Randy Hunt – Randy.Hunt@mahouse.gov
Barnstable: Precincts 11, 12; Bourne: Precincts 1, 2, 7; Sandwich; Plymouth: Precinct 9 (Plymouth).
Tom Golden (chair) – Thomas.Golden@mahouse.gov
Sixteenth Middlesex, Consisting of Chelmsford: Precincts 2, 3, 6; Lowell: Wards 5, 6, 9.


Remember to contact your elected officials often, they need to hear from YOU.

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Upcoming In-Person Events:

Tuesday, May 3rd, come to Boston to Celebrate and Rally for a Renewable Future and No More Pipelines. For transportation click: tinyurl.com/May3rd-res–11:30 Rally, Celebration & Pizza
-12:00 Training/Opportunities to Visit Legislative Offices and Push Hard on the Pipeline Tax
-1:00 Senate Committee on Global Warming and Climate Change Hearing: Commonwealth’s Clean Energy Future

Saturday, May 7, 3-7 PM, Cleaner, Greener, More Just Earth Care Fair
At Mt. Toby Friends Meetinghouse, 194 Long Plain Road, Leverett
Food, music, education, kid activities. MOF will be there with the “Plug the leaks” cork toss.
Please share this Monday Action with your friends all across the state. We need to enlist their help. The upcoming omnibus energy bill comes at a critical time for the planet and we need citizen input. You can keep sharing this online petition. It sends an email to your own state senators, state representatives and the Governor.

Onward!