Recent Environmental Wins

Due to pressure from members of People Over Pollution and OCV, a pollution monitor has been put in place by the SCAQMD near the Sentinel Power Plant in Desert Hot Springs.  Though we remain somewhat skeptical as to the effectiveness/availability of collected data, etc., this is a positive step towards being able to track what is happening to the air quality.  For more information, see:

http://www.desertsun.com/story/news/environment/2014/05/30/sentinel-monitor-desert-hot-springs/9784181/

In concert with this, over 95% of the candidates endorsed by the California League of Conservation Voters have successfully navigated the Top Two primary yesterday, June 3, 2014, and will be on the ballot in November, though some of CLCV’s picks may be questionable, especially in view of far more progressive third-party choices that were on the ballot.  But for what it is worth, you can find their summary here:

http://www.ecovote.org/page/endorsements

The fact remains, however, that according to Food & Water watch, “Despite thousands of emails, hundreds of calls and a new poll showing that 68% of Californians support a moratorium on fracking, the California Senate failed to pass a bill to do just that. Now, it’s up to Jerry Brown. The Governor has the power to stop fracking, but he has turned a blind eye to the real impacts that this toxic industry has on our state.”

Food & Water Watch is working with 350.org to get Governor Brown to visit Kern County to meet with impacted community members. Here’s how you can help:

1. If you haven’t already, sign this petition to tell the Governor to meet with Kern County residents who have been personally affected by fracking.

2. Share this action with your friends and networks to help us amplify this message far and wide.

MLK Rally/Memorial

Veterans for Peace, Move-to-Amend, OCV, Move On, and Progressive Democrats of America organized a Rally/Memorial to recognize MLK Day and the Third Anniversary of the Citizens United Decision on 21 January 2013 at Frances Stevens Park in Palm Springs, CA

Tom Swann, President of the local VFP chapter, made the opening remarks

Local musicians Richard Finn and Carolann Bouldin performed various songs including “I Come and Stand at Every Door,” Pete Seeger’s adaptation of an old folk melody and “Give Peace a Chance” by John Lennon and Yoko Ono, with updated lyrics by Carolann Bouldin

A good crowd was in attendance and signatures were gathered on petitions to abolish corporate personhood

The Laughing Yogi spoke, lifting everyone’s spirits

A number of local speakers participated

The keynote speech was “Peace or Profit: Violence as Commodity”

Dr. Debra Savitt led the group in a meditation in remembrance of victims of violence, while bells were rung every 10 seconds to symbolize each life, and a wreath was dedicated to the victims of violence

This non-partisan event was co-sponsored by Veterans for Peace, Move On, Progressive Democrats of America, Occupy Coachella Valley, and Move to Amend Coachella Valley.