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Archive for November, 2012


December 6th: Come Support Clean Rivers!

Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 12:36:18 PM EST

by Chris Weiss, Executive Director, DC Environmental Network


This Sunday: Recommit to Save the Planet

Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 08:26:37 AM EST

by Chris Weiss, Executive Director, DC Environmental Network

“Global warming happens just slowly enough that political systems have been able to ignore it.”

– Bill McKibben, Writer & Climate Activist, The New Yorker, November 19, 2012 Issue

DC Environmental Network:

I am guessing you, much like myself, are pretty tired of decision makers not taking global warming seriously. With local and national elections behind us, many hope that the attention of our countries leaders can now start to focus on the survival of our planet and the societies that live on it.

The incremental change advocated by most decision makers, even in the District of Columbia, might be okay for some, but we all know the planet is trying to tell us something. We witnessed the over $50 billion dollars of impacts Hurricane Sandy,the largest Atlantic hurricane on record, wrought upon our country. We even felt a little of the pain here in Washington, DC. But the truth is most of us already believed the science of climate change and we are scratching our heads wondering why we as a people and country are not already doing more.

I believe we who live in Washington DC, our nations capital city, have a unique responsibility to engage in the fight against global warming. Not just at the local level, but to use our hearts and minds to represent the interests of every being on the planet who cannot get face to face with those, the President and Congress, who are arguably the ones that make decisions that impact all of us. Here’s how we can do this!

This Sunday, November 18th, we all have an opportunity to regroup, re-commit and re-engage our personal and professional efforts on behalf of the planet. The Chesapeake Climate Action Network (CCAN), local chapters of the Sierra Club and (and others) have organized a number of opportunities for all of us to re-commit.

Here are the details:

1. ECO-BRUNCH/MCKIBBEN,350.ORG WARMUP: On November 18th at 11:00 AM, please join the Sierra Club, Earthjutice and the DC Environmental Network (and others) for an informal gathering of DC enviros prior to Bill McKibben’s “DO THE MATH” show at the nearby Warner Theater. Mostly we’ll be socializing and enjoying Harriet’s’ $11 brunch buffet.  Vegan choices will be offered. Want to give a speech, present a spoken poem, or do stand-up comedy (on a relevant topic) for up to 60 seconds?  This is your big chance. This event will be at Harriets Restaurant, 436 11th Street NW in Washington, DC. RSVP Here!

2. DO THE MATH TOUR W/BILL MCKIBBEN, 350.ORG: On Nov. 18th at 1:00 PM at the Warner Theater (513 13th Street NW), Bill McKibben will be in Washington DC to present the terrifying new math of climate change and unveil a plan for how we can rise to this planetary challenge. Bill will be joined by friends from across the climate movement and beyond to explain how together we can confront the fossil fuel industry, using lessons from the most successful movements of the past century and the past year of dramatic new actions against the industry across the country. Following Do The Math at the Warner Theatre, we will also march and rally at the White House to stop the Keystone XL pipeline. Get more info or sign-up HERE!

It’s time to stop our political system from ignoring what should be obvious. Let’s make our decision makers “Do the Math” then take meaningful action to save the planet. Hope to see you this Sunday!

Chris Weiss
Executive Director
DC Environmental Network


DC Elections Green Voter Guide!

Sun Nov 04, 2012 at 12:53:08 PM EST

by Chris Weiss, Executive Director, DC Environmental Network

Report on DC Environmental Networks Open Election Forum!

The DC Environmental Network invited candidates running for office in the District of Columbia to sit down with some environmental leaders and talk about how important a green DC is to our neighborhoods and economy.

We had decent candidate participation for the At-Large DC Council race (Grosso, Wilcox, Cooper) and a spattering of candidates running for United States Senator (Schwartzman), Delegate to the House of Representatives (Stracuzzi) and United States “Shadow” Representative (Aikin) elected positions. We also had presentations from the Campaign Manager of the Mendelson for Chairman effort and allowed a candidate for Advisory Neighborhood Commission, 3DO1 (Slowinski), an active environmental activist, to present his platform.

Some of these candidates shared their endorsements by environmental organizations. You can read about the Sierra Club’s endorsements here. (This is shared for educational purposes and in no way suggests an endorsement by the DC Environmental Network.Our event was designed solely to educate.)

In the spirit of an open discussion we also allowed a supporter of the Jill Stein for President (Statehood Green party representative), to spend a little time explaining what Stein’s positions were on important issues and why we should consider this third party candidate. This was truly an open forum.

It was certainly an unwieldy and maybe not so entertaining process to listen to this diverse variety of candidates but it was an important opportunity for the green community to make the statement that these elections are very important to our efforts.

We finished our numerous presentations with an open discussion giving a number of forum participants an opportunity to share what they were thinking.

You can take a look at the quick report and overview (PDF) of the previous DCEN brown-bag and agenda for the open election forum. Click Here!


For those who have not yet made a decision or voted early we have compiled a bit of information, including a five minute video of each DCEN forum participant. Here are the videos and links for the candidates or campaign managers who participated in our discussion:

At-Large Member of the Council

– David Grosso (Independent)


David Grosso talked about his environmental roots. His campaign has had some success in getting the attention of voters and Grosso is considered a frontrunner. Voters can pick two candidates for the At-Large race. Candidates not represented at the forum included frontrunners Vincent Orange and Michael Brown who could not attend our forum. Watch David’s Video!


– A.J. Cooper (Independent)


A.J. Cooper talked about his diverse educational history and the experiences he has had working on issues of concern to District residents. His website highlights the importance of clean energy. Cooper talked about the District becoming an environmental leader. Watch A.J.’s Video!


– Ann C. Wilcox (Statehood Green)


Ann Wilcox talked about her background including holding office with the DC Board of Education. Wilcox has received the endorsement of the DC Chapter of the Sierra Club. Watch Ann’s Video!


Chairman of the Council

– Phil Mendelson (Democrat) (Represented by Campaign Manager Josh Gibson)


Josh Gibson, representing Chairman Mendelson, talked about Phil’s elective history and how his candidate spends a lot of time connecting with people in every corner of the District. He shared Mendelson’s commitment to the environment. Mendelson received the endorsement of the DC Chapter of the Sierra Club. Watch Josh’s Video!

United States Senator

– David Schwartzman (Statehood Green)


David Schwartzman talked about his background including describing himself as an “environmental scientist.” Schwartzman has extensive experience as a candidate for office. He has participated in studies dealing with health issues that impact children. Watch David’s Video!


Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives

– Natale Lino Stracuzzi (Statehood Green)


Natale Stracuzzi very ably described his positions on numerous issues of importance to District residents. He expressed positions supportive of the challenges students face to get a degree and then find a job. He talked about environmental issues including oil spills in the U.S. and Brazil. Watch Natale’s Video!

United States “Shadow” Representative

– G. Lee Aikin (Statehood Green


G. Aikin talked about many of her life experiences that led to her current outlook on District issues and her campaign. She spent time describing working for a congress person during the Johnson presidency and her work on food issues. Watch Aikin’s Video!


Advisory Neighborhood Commission 3DO1

– Kent Slowinksi

Kent Slowinski focused on the issues he has worked on that impact the environment. He talked about his many experiences including growing up in the District and working as a landscape architect. He talked about his work to clean up munitions buried in Spring Valley. He also talked about his work with Global Green USA and other organizations in the District. Watch Kent’s Video!


President of the United States

– Jill Stein (Statehood Green) (Represented by supporter Steve Seuser)


Steve Seuser talked about Jill Stein’s campaign for President of the United States. He described Jill Stein as the “climate change candidate.” He shared information about Jill Stein’s green new deal and how it is an attempt to avoid business as usual on the environmental front. Watch Steve’s Video!


It is hoped that our little effort to give Americans, and candidates for public office, a chance to share their views and positions in an open discussion, pushes back a bit against Alexis de Tocqueville observation that:

“I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.”

NOTE: Obviously this is not a complete guide of all the candidates running for office. All candidates running for the major offices in contention in the District were invited.


DC Candidates Talk Environment!

Thu Nov 01, 2012 at 08:51:25 AM EST

by Chris Weiss, Executive Director, DC Environmental Network

Today at Noon, the DC Environmental Network Invites All Metro-Based Environmentalists to a Brown-Bag Discussion:

Today at NOON the DC Environmental Network will be holding our monthly brown-bag networking opportunity. We will be hosting an open discussion about the upcoming elections on November 6th.  Our brown-bag will be at the headquarters of the DC Environmental Network, 1100 15th Street NW, 11th Floor.

RSVP Here!

CALL-IN INFORMATION: To join the audio portion of this meeting, choose your dial in method – Dial-in Number: +17759963560 or Skype: fuzemeeting (When prompted enter the room number: Room #: 399602 and press the # key.)

Although this will not be an official candidates forum, any candidate or campaign representative who attends and wants to make a 3-5 minute statement at the beginning of the discussion are welcome to do so. Candidates or campaign representatives are also welcome to participate in the discussion segment of our brown-bag.

We have signed-up candidates and campaign representatives representing numerous races including the competitive At-Large and important Council Chair efforts.

This discussion will be designed to educate DC Environmental Network participants about what is at stake in this election cycle and possibly inform our network about the environmental records of some of the candidates. To learn more about the upcoming election click here!

There will be no endorsements associated with this event but groups who make endorsements are welcome to share their rationale for endorsing one way or another.

All are welcome.

RSVP Here!