Day of Action: Stop Trump’s Dirty Energy Agenda!

JOIN FOR A RALLY & DAY OF ACTION
September 20, 2017
8:30 AM
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
888 First St, NE, Washington, DC 20426

Afternoon lobbying on the hill to begin around 11:30, starting with a lunch time gathering in the Lower Senate park next to the Russell Senate Office Building, the corner of D St. and Delaware Ave NE.

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Day’s Agenda

8:30am:  Gather and Rally from 8:30 until 9:30 am

10:00am:  Attendees encouraged to attend FERC’s open public meeting which begins at 10 am

11:00 am (or thereabouts):  At 11 am folks will be invited to grab a bag lunch and join together to drop in on Congressional offices to deliver the Stop Trump’s Dirty Energy Agenda sign on letters.

11:30am: Over lunch at the park outside the Senate office buildings we will talk about the message and how to effectively drop in and drop off materials.

12:30pm: Head into congressional buildings to drop materials and ask for drop in meetings

2:45 pm: Reconvene in the park outside Senate building to share your experience of the day

3:30 pm: Head home feeling good that you have been part of delivering a powerful message of opposition to FERC, Trump’s Dirty Energy Agenda, and advocating for reform and change. OR, head over to St. Stephen’s Church for dinner at 6pm and the Beyond Extreme Energy Strategy Meeting.

Those who cannot rally or go into the FERC meeting but just want to lobby in the afternoon are welcome to simply meet us at the park at 11:30

People are also encouraged to set up meetings with their own House members and/or Senators. Contact Bridget at bridget@delawareriverkeeper.org for materials that can be left with those you meet with.

How to Participate! 

Organizations can endorse our action here.

And can sign on to the letter to be delivered to congress here.

Individuals can sign up to attend the rally, other actions, and  housing here.

And individuals can sign on to the letter to be delivered to congress here.

Keep up to date at the Facebook event page.

Housing

There is low-cost housing at First Trinity Lutheran Church (309 E St. NW, Washington, DC) about a 10 minute walk from FERC the night of September 19th. You will be asked to pay $27 for this, the cost to us, though no one will be turned away who needs housing. Mattresses on the floor are available. When we leave First Trinity on the morning of the 20th, people will be able to store their gear in a storage van for safe keeping during the day.

Housing is available on the night of the 20th as well, starting at 6pm at St. Stephen’s Church (1525 Newton St NW).

Please bring everything you’d need to be comfortable sleeping, including toiletries. Showers are available at both locations but please bring your own towel and soap.

Be sure to fill out this form to reserve a spot: http://bit.ly/2vFtSGs.

Parking

Driving and parking in DC can be a logistical challenge. Folks are encouraged to arrive in DC using public transportation. Otherwise, although it’s possible to find street parking, it’s usually not long term and can be expensive. We’d encourage you to research parking options, including parking garages, ahead of time.

Food

Food will be available at First Trinity Church at 6pm on September 19th and again for breakfast the next morning. There will be bag lunches distributed to people in front of FERC before we walk over the Capitol Hill. Dinner will be available for folks who attend the BXE Strategy meeting the night of the 20th at 6pm at St. Stephen’s Church.

What to Bring

  • sleeping gear and toiletries, a towel, and soap
  • rain gear and appropriate outdoor clothing
  • dress clothes (optional). When lobbying, some choose to wear casual clothes, and some choose to dress up.
  • government-issued photo id (needed for entering the FERC Commission Meeting)

Art Build

We will make art for the event at Trinity Lutheran Church (309 E St. NW, Washington, DC) from 4pm to 6pm on September 19th. Please join us! Dinner will happen after the art build and housing is available at the church that night.

Strategy Meeting

Beyond Extreme Energy is organizing a strategy meeting on the evening of the 20th from 7-9 pm and the morning of the 21st from 9 am -1 pm.

The meeting will take place at St. Stephen’s Church (1525 Newton St NW) in DC. We’ll be sleeping at St. Stephen’s on the night of the 20th and having meals together. Come for all or parts of the meeting. Doors will open at 6pm on the 20th. We’ll have dinner prepared by Seeds of Peace at that time. Don’t let past, present, or future participation in BXE activities prevent you from coming. All are welcome!

The strategy meeting will include three sections.

1.) Evaluation of what we’ve done
2.) Long term visioning
3.) Creation of a one year plan

RSVP to ACTIONS@BeyondExtremeEnergy.org if you plan to attend all or parts of this meeting.

Supporters of this Day of Action

OVEC-Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition
Delaware Riverkeeper Network
Safe Energy Rights Group, Inc.
Coalition for Responsible Siting of LNG Facilities
River Healers
Wild Virginia
Agape Community
Center for Health, Environment & Justice
198 methods
The Enviro Show
No Fracked Gas in Mass
Lancaster Against Pipelines
Resist Spectra
Safe Energy Rights Group (SEnRG)
Berks Gas Truth
Communities for Safe and Sustainable Energy
Bold Alliance
ECHO Action NH: #FossilFree603
PAUSE- People of Albany United for Safe Energy
350NYC
SCRAM
Center for Biological Diversity
StopNED
Alliance To Protect Our People And The Places We Live
Food & Water Watch
Toxics Action Center
Berkshire Environmental Action Team
The Shalom Center
North Jersey Pipeline Walkers
Resist the Pipeline
Damascus Citizens for Sustainability
Pennsylvania Alliance for Clean Water and Air
Northern NJ Chapter, National Organization for Women
Earthworks
Earthworks
The Essene Church of Peace
Global Coalition for Peace
Gas Free Seneca
Seneca Lake Guardian, A Waterkeeper Affiliate
Sullivan Area Citizens for Responsible Energy Development (SACRED)
Christians For The Mountains
Citizens Coalition for a Safe Community
Athens County (Ohio) Fracking Action Network
STOP (Sandisfield Taxpayers Opposing the Pipeline)
Frack Free Genesee
Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy
Sullivan Alliance for Sustainable Development
NJ State Industrial Union Council
350NJ
350 Central Mass
Aytzim: Ecological Judaism
Potomac Riverkeeper Network
Green Education and Legal Fund
Interfaith Moral Action on Climate
350 Fairfax
Pay it Forward Global Foundation
Greenbrier river association
New Hampshire Pipeline Awareness
New progressive Alliance
AMP Creeks Council
Lebanon Pipeline Awareness
Norfolk Catholic Worker
New Mexico Story Power
OgreOgress productions
http://www.kevinrauch.com
NH Pipeline Resistance
Catskill Mountainkeeper
Bucks County Environmental Action
Schuylkill Pipeline Awareness
Mason Pipeline Committee
LAWPA (Local Authority Western PA)
Interfaith Power & Light (DC.MD.NoVA)
Grassroots Environmental Education
Philadelphia PSR
Stop the Algonquin Pipeline Expansion
100grannies for a Livable Future
LEPOCO Peace Center (Lehigh-Pocono Comittee of Concern)
Coalition to Protect New York
Nuclear Information and Resource Service
Green Party of Santa Clara County
Organic Consumers Association
The Shalom Center
People Demanding Action
Rachel Carson Council
Sierra Club New York city Group
Earth Echoes….Stories for a small planet
Protect Our Water Heritage Rights – POWHR
Interreligious Eco-Justice Network
Amistad Catholic Worker
Hip Hop Caucus
Schuylkill Pipeline Awareness
Oil Change International
Greenpeace

 

Three Arrested in Relentless Resistance to FERC’s Rubber Stamping of Harmful Fossil Fuel Infrastructure

Three activists with Beyond Extreme Energy disrupted today’s Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the nominations of the final two members to join Trump’s FERC (Federal Energy Regulatory Committee). One was a 25-year veteran of the agency.

When Chairwoman Sen. Lisa Murkowski asked the nominees – Richard Glick and Kevin McIntyre – to stand, Andrew Hinz also stood and shouted, “Have a conscience! FERC is destroying the atmosphere!” In a prepared statement, he wrote, “Because I spent 25 years working at FERC, I am compelled to speak out.  It is abundantly clear now that natural gas is not a safe bridge fuel.  We must divert any proposed investment in fossil fuel infrastructure not required for safety to a rapid transition to sustainable energy.  FERC is broken and in dire need of a reset. It must take into account solid, overwhelming evidence of climate impacts and, instead of permitting fossil fuel expansion projects, it must support and aggressively promote incorporation of sustainable energy into our grid. Until FERC is reset, we are witnessing an undemocratic, non-representative process that is merely an extension of the fossil fuel industry and is destroying our atmosphere and poisoning our water.  My message to our legislators:  find your conscience before it is too late – while there is still time to keep our planet habitable.”

Ted Glick, who was arrested at a similar hearing for Trump’s first two nominees to FERC, stood and repeatedly asked Congress to investigate FERC. The agency’s abuses of law and power have been exhaustively documented by the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, which hosted a speak-out at the National Press Club last year.

Glick, a New Jersey-based activist, met earlier this year with Richard Glick (no relation), whose expertise is in renewable energy. Ted Glick said, “Based on my meeting with him and what I know about him, he will have no impact at FERC. He will be run over by Trump’s three appointees, and probably [Obama appointee] Cheryl LaFleur, too. FERC is a corrupt agency and it’s a waste of a good man.”

Clarke Herbert, a retired school teacher from Alexandria, Virginia, disrupted the meeting and focused on the disruption to the lives of thousands of people due to construction of fracked gas infrastructure. In a statement, he wrote, “FERC’s process for approving pipelines violates our constitutional protections of private property. The 5thamendment not only protects us from self-incrimination [‘Taking the Fifth’], it also states, ‘No person shall be deprived of property without due process of law nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.’ In this country FERC allows the legal seizure of private property from landowners because the government determines there is a public need without allowing landowners to question that need or examine the studies the government relies upon.  At one time pipelines were useful to carry gas to remote areas of the country to keep Grandma warm in the wintertime. Today, with deregulation, pipelines are a platform for commodity trading and the export of gas to foreign countries.”

The three men were escorted out of the hearing room and arrested.

Beyond Extreme Energy has been using creative, non-violent actions to target FERC since 2014. BXE is a leader of the FERC Vacancies Campaign, which fought for six months to get Congress to investigate FERC before approving nominees who would restore the agency’s quorum. The Senate approved Neil Chatterjee and Robert Powelson in August, restoring the quorum. The agency’s first meeting since February is set for Sept. 20.

Fighting White Supremacy with Rabbi Mordechai Liebling

Once every two weeks, Beyond Extreme Energy hosts a conference call on fighting white supremacy. We invite a speaker from inside or outside our network to share an experience or story about their involvement with the fight against white supremacy.

On Tuesday, September 12th at 7pm ET, we’ll be joined by Rabbi Mordechai Liebling who will talk about his experience at the recent white supremacist rally in Charlottesville. He will also talk about his understanding of the white supremacists and the challenges of developing non-violent direct action tactics in these situations.

After Rabbi Liebling’s talk, we will hold a discussion. All are welcome!

Rabbi Mordechai Liebling is the Director of the Social Justice Organizing Program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philly. He serves on the steering  committee of Green Justice Philly, a city-wide coalition of environmental, community and labor organizations. He has been involved in anti-racist work for several decades.

Date: Tuesday, September 12th. 2017
Time: 7pm ET-8pm ET
Call-In: 302-202-1108
Code: 950727

Stop Trump’s Dirty Energy Agenda; The Change Starts Here

We need a big showing at FERC’s September meeting! We’ll have a rally before the meeting begins and then we’ll be inside the meeting, in overflow rooms, outside chanting, and some of us will even go to Capitol Hill to lobby. We’ll be chanting, disrupting, showing solidarity, and lobbying.

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Here’s why!

FERC is set to reconvene on September 20th with Trump’s Senate-approved commissioners Robert Powelson and Neil Chatterjee eager to use their newly minted rubber stamps.

All of this is happening as the Senate and House are moving bills that would expand FERC’s authority. One of the House bills actually strips the president of the border crossing authority used to stop Keystone XL and gives it to FERC. But the worst of the bills is the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Act of 2017, S. 1460. It expands FERC’s authority by requiring other permitting agencies to “give deference” to FERC and it limits FERC’s review of LNG facilities to 45 days.

Haven’t they been reading the headlines? The same problems we’ve been telling them about for more than a year are starting to get some notice.

Pallone & Cantwell Request Expanded FERC Investigation of Rover Pipeline & Its Parent Company

Court Rejects Pipeline Rubber-Stamp, Orders Climate Impact Review

Federal court rejects Constitution Pipeline’s lawsuit against NY

Rushed approvals, refusal to consider climate impacts, approvals with insufficient information. And Congress wants to expand FERC’s authority?

No way! Unacceptable!

Will you help us send that message to FERC and Congress on September 20th?

Here’s how YOU can help!

Organizations – please endorse our action here

Individuals – sign up to attend the rally and the other actions on the 20th here

Everyone – share the Facebook event here

RALLY, 8:30 a.m. at FERC, 888 First St NE, Washington, DC 20426

Program TBA – Stay Tuned!

FERC Meeting,10 a.m.

Lobbying on the Hill, meetings being scheduled – Be sure to indicate that you’re interested in lobbying on the sign-up form.

BXE’s Statement on the Restoration of FERC’s Quorum

Standing alone in the Well of the Senate on Thursday night, just after 6pm and moments before the Senate adjourned for August recess, Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski committed a deft coup d’etat on behalf of the oil and gas industry. The vote to confirm Neil Chatterjee and Robert Powelson to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was anything but un-controversial, and was a serious breach of regular order.

Just hours earlier, seven activists were arrested in front of Senator Chuck Schumer’s office. They had refused to leave until the Minority Leader spoke out about the dangers of FERC nominees and an energy bill that would dramatically expand FERC’s powers. The activists, including several of Schumer’s constituents, had delivered a letter backed by more than 30,000 comments of support asking him to vote no on FERC nominees and no on the energy bill. Hours later, Schumer and every member of the Democratic Caucus, including 3 senators who had previously voted against the nominees in committee, stood silent as Murkowski rammed through the nominations on a voice vote with no other members present, no accountability, and no opportunity for citizens to call or contact their senators to voice concerns.

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For years, we’ve worked to expose and fight FERC’s corruption, the harms it inflicts on communities and the climate,  its ties to the gas industry,  and its arcane procedures that shut out the public and empower corporations. Senators like Schumer, Cardin, Warner, Whitehouse, Sanders, Hirono and Merkley have sympathized and offered statements of support. On Thursday night, August 3rd, when it actually mattered, they stood aside and let violence be done on our communities. As we warned Senator Schumer, they must now expect our growing rebellion. We cannot forgive and will not forget this utter betrayal, and pledge outright resistance in every way we can peacefully muster it to stop FERC from meeting, rubber stamping permits and engaging in further communicide.

–Drew Hudson and the Beyond Extreme Energy crew

RESISTANCE GROWING AS 180 GROUPS CALL FOR A “NO” VOTE ON TRUMP’S FERC NOMINEES

RESISTANCE GROWING AS 180 GROUPS CALL FOR A “NO” VOTE ON TRUMP’S FERC NOMINEES

FERC’s Industry Bias Puts Communities at Risk From Pipeline Explosions. Over 200 Groups Call for Senate Hearings on FERC Rubber Stamping of Pipelines

Washington DC//June 28, 2017 – Faced with the growing scourge of pipeline expansion nationwide, 180 groups — including Sierra Club, Food & Water Watch, Green America, the Center for Biological Diversity, and community-level organizations — are calling for the full Senate to vote “no” on President Trump’s nominees to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.  The full list of 180 groups is available online at http://bit.ly/2r1xSSk.

The coalition of organizations is opposing the nominations of Neil Chatterjee and Robert Powelson because both nominees would increase FERC’s bias towards the fossil fuel industry and further marginalize communities that oppose pipelines and other fossil fuel infrastructure that damage people’s homes, livelihoods and communities.

Natural gas pipelines and infrastructure represent a clear danger to communities nationwide, and in just the past two years, explosions at transmission pipelines have caused 12 deaths and 10 injuries, as well as extensive property damage (http://bit.ly/2tSeI0h). In addition, the construction process puts communities at risk. Recently, the Rover pipeline, under construction and approved by FERC, resulted in two million gallons of drilling fluids leaking into Ohio wetlands.

Community opposition to pipelines, based on data documenting the real risks, is regularly rejected by FERC, which has approved all but one pipeline under review in the past 30 years. FERC’s rubber stamping of industry pipelines has been documented in a People’s Dossier: FERC’s Abuses of Power and Law created by Delaware Riverkeeper Network that has been presented to all US Senators (http://bit.ly/DossierofFERCAbuse).

In a related development, over 200 groups nationwide are calling on senators to hold hearings into FERC’s rubber stamping of natural gas pipelines and infrastructure nationwide and the need for reforms (http://bit.ly/2sOmUQN).  With the White House designating this week as Energy Week, including a renewed call for US “energy dominance” in fossil fuels, and increased fracking and natural gas exports, communities nationwide face increased threats to their lives and livelihoods. Members of these groups, representing millions of people nationwide, have been calling their senators and took part in two days of lobbying in May to raise awareness of FERC’s failure to regulate pipelines.

“While Democrats and Republicans in the Senate bemoan the lack of a quorum at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), Beyond Extreme Energy joins with frontline communities across the nation that are fighting fracked gas pipelines, compressor stations and gas export terminals [CUT to celebrate] [ADD in relief] that no new infrastructure can be approved without that quorum,” said Melinda Tuhus of Beyond Extreme Energy.  “We carried out non-violent direct action every month at FERC for more than two years, interrupting its rubber stamping meetings, and we did it again at both the Senate hearing and the committee vote for Trump’s two nominees. This is a climate crisis and a health and safety crisis for frontline communities and we will not accept the status quo.”

“Communities in the crosshairs of natural gas infrastructure projects get educated very fast about the potential adverse impacts, yet their valid concerns are ignored by FERC,” said Karen Feridun, founder of Berks Gas Truth.  “When disasters occur like the Texas Eastern pipeline explosion in Pennsylvania last year that nearly killed a man, they are reflections of not only problems with the infrastructure itself, but of problems with the process that allowed the infrastructure to be built in the first place. It is that broken process that has brought hundreds of organizations together to pressure Congress to vote no on two FERC nominees who will make one of the worst Commissions much worse.”

“FERC is a regulator in name only,” said Todd Larsen, executive co-director of Green America. “The reality is that FERC routinely ignores the very real risks of pipelines to communities and approves pipelines and infrastructure that can cause death, injury, and millions of dollars in property damage, all while accelerating fracking in the [ADD periods U.S.] and contributing to the climate crisis. That is why the Senate needs to vote “no” on FERC nominees and instead hold hearings into FERC’s abuses.”

Media Contacts:  

Natalie Watson, (703) 276-3256 or nwatson@hastingsgroup.com.

About the Groups:

Paul Gierosky is a successful businessman and homeowner in Medina, OH, who is a leader of the Coalition to Reroute Nexus (CoRN), a group focused on re-routing the Nexus pipeline away from vulnerable homes.

Marvin Winstead is a farmer in NC whose farm is bisected by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.

Delaware Riverkeeper Network (DRN) is a nonprofit membership organization working throughout the four states of the Delaware River Watershed including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and New York. DRN provides effective environmental advocacy, volunteer monitoring programs, stream restoration projects, public education, and legal enforcement of environmental protection laws. http://www.delawareriverkeeper.org/.  

Green America is the nation’s leading green economy organization. Founded in 1982, Green America (formerly Co-op America) provides economic strategies and practical tools for businesses and individuals to solve today’s social and environmental problems. http://www.GreenAmerica.org.

Beyond Extreme Energy is an activist network of organizations and individuals that came together in the summer of 2014 to organize a successful, week-long nonviolent direct action campaign in Washington DC from November 1-7. Through those campaigns and other actions, we can build the people power that leads to a political tipping point that seriously sets back the fossil fuel industry’s efforts to keep the world dependent on fracking, nuclear reactors, mountaintop removal coal extraction, tar sands oil and other dirty and dangerous forms of energy. https://beyondextremeenergy.org/.

Berks Gas Truth is a grassroots citizens’ group fighting to bring an end to unconventional natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania.

Press Release: Three Arrested Attempting to Block Fast-Tracked FERC Commissioner Approvals

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jimmy Betts, info@BeyondExtremeEnergy.org, 515-708-2463

Three Arrested Attempting to Block Fast-Tracked FERC Commissioner Approvals

WASHINGTON, DC: The week following Trump’s announcement that he will pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord, three individuals representing a coalition of nearly 170 groups opposing Trump’s nominees to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) disrupted a committee vote to advance the candidates. Three individuals were arrested during the committee vote.  They stood up and spoke out about FERC’s abusive practices and disregard for the environment.

The coalition, made up of local and national groups focused on various issues, is demanding that senators vote no on Trump’s nominations until the Senate holds investigations into FERC’s the abuses of power and law. The campaign has been building for more than five months and has included call-in’s, letter-writing drives, Twitter storms, lobby days, and civil resistance focused on educating senators and pressuring them to oppose the nominations. The coalition has extensive documentation of FERC’s abuses of power and law to back up their demands.

So far, the Senate has showed an unwillingness to protect the public from pollution, climate change, and eminent domain seizures of land that result from FERC’s mandate to rubber stamp fracked-gas infrastructure. Now that Trump is pulling the United States out of the Paris Climate Accord, the coalition says it’s even more unacceptable for senators to approve Trump’s nominations, one of whom, Mitch McConnell energy staffer Neil Chatterjee, is a climate denier.

This disruption followed a similar one the coalition carried out two weeks ago when the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources  met to question Trump’s nominees. The coalition has vowed to continue the fight to Resist FERC and the abusive, exploitative world it represents and perpetuates.  

“As a New York City resident I am outraged by FERC,” said Jess Rechtschaffer, who was arrested this morning. ”It is criminal that that FERC approves wholesale land grabs so that the fossil fuel industry can install pipelines via eminent domain in the vicinity of the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant.  FERC has never seen a dirty energy project they didn’t like from the Dakotas to NY.”

“FERC approves fossil fuel infrastructure; fossil fuels worsen climate change; the world loses and the fossil fuel industry profits. The Senate needs to overhaul FERC.” said Sid Madison from New Jersey, also arrested this morning for disrupting the vote to call attention to FERC practices.

“Climate leaders don’t support fracking or fracking infrastructure buildout, and true conservatives don’t support eminent domain for corporate gain,” said Ted Glick, an organizer with Beyond Extreme Energy and another who was arrested for disrupting the committee vote. “Senators should vote no on both of Trump’s FERC nominees, big supporters of 20th century energy sources in the 17th year of the 21st century. We need a Federal Renewable Energy Agency, not a fossil fuel industry-controlled FERC.”

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https://beyondextremeenergy.org/2017/06/06/press-release-three-arrested-attempting-to-block-fast-tracked-ferc-commissioner-approvals

Images & Video from this action (check for updated content throughout the day):

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B9au4UKSykxhN2ZxSnUtSTI5aEk