Category Archives: Smart Energy Solutions

cincy climate rally FAQ

The Cincinnati RALLY will start at noon on Fountain Square on June 10.

RSVP to attend here!  or our Facebook event.  You don’t have to register to attend but it helps with our permits and logistics if you do!

What organizations are involved in planning the Rally event in Cincinnati?

think BIG strategies, Carla Walker
Sierra Club Miami Group, Marilyn Wall & Sandy Wood
For Our Future Fund, Chandra Yungbluth
Ohio Citizen Action, Melissa English
Citizens Climate Lobby, Debbie Potochnik, Doug Bell, Chris Heckman
Rebecca Surendorff, Lynn Fields, Michele Young, and other volunteers!!

How can I or my organization get involved?

We’ll be continuing to work on Climate issues ! Follow us on twitter

Twitter.com/CincyClimate #ClimateRallyCincy @ClimateCincy

or facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/ClimateRallyCincyNKY/

You can also email us at miamigroupsierraclub@gmail.com

This sounds great — where can I sign up to volunteer?

There are lots of ways to support the march — the first step is to sign up on the volunteer form. Click here to sign up to volunteer, and we’ll follow up with more information!

Important stuff

One last very – very important – difference,  the People’s Climate Rally – Cincinnati on June 10th will ONLY be a rally at Fountain Square. Organizers have planned for all speaking and activity to occur with the crowd on Fountain Square. There will be no plans to have attendees march or process to another venue. Once the rally is over on Fountain Square, we will ask the participants to disperse, return to their cars, in a peaceful manner

This event and its participants must follow the tenants of our permit and its limits and obey all traffic laws and follow directions from the police and city officials.  This event does not sanction civil disobedience of any kind. Do not march in the street or block the sidewalk.

If you have a medical emergency or need assistance of that nature call 911.

This is a family friendly event.

Some logistics stuff about the day of the April 29th Rally:

Where can I park?

There are numerous parking lots, garages and meters around Fountain Square. The best way to check for nearby parking is to download the parking app: bestparking.com.  You can also take metro or the streetcar. Carpooling is an environmentally friendly option, too.

Can I bring a sign?

Do bring a sign.  (Walking on the sidewalk with a sign is legal, just be sure that you don’t block the sidewalk, jaywalk or interfere with traffic while coming to or leaving the event.)

Bring water in a re-useable container and any snacks in a re-useable container.  We encourage making this a recyclable, zero waste event!

My question isn’t answered here! What do I do?

No worries! Send us an email with your question, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

Cincy N Ky Climate Rally

We’re taking back the Square on Saturday, June 10 th from noon to 2 pm!
Make sure you register for the event to help us keep a count on how many to expect.

Get your signs ready,and be prepared for an event filled with real advocacy actions to impact local, state and national policies! You’ll hear from:

   

  

  

 

Emcee:  Sign Language: 

Please share this information with your climate advocate peeps and make sure they register at CincyNKyClimateRallyReg.

To put on the best event possible, we’ll need all the support we can get so we are launching fundraising campaign to raise $1,500 to offset costs. Please join us as a Climate Warrior with a contribution of $25 at ECO Paypal link and be a part of raising Cincinnati’s voice in the fight against climate change.

Some tips for the day: 

  1. We will have recycling bins onsite (thank you City of Cincinnati Office of Environmental Sustainability) we encourage everyone to bring reusable containers with them to cut down on waste.
  2. Parking in and around the Square could be tight so make sure to check out other locations. You can scout out available spots (and costs) here.

Looking forward to seeing everyone on June 10th!

Thanks to all our sponsors and donors ! Alice Emmons, Annette Schuster, Benchmark, Beth Stutler, Bill Stiver, Brewster Rhoads, Muddhdev Mukherjee, Carla Walker, Carol Harvey, Chandra Yungbluth, Citizens Climate Lobby, Community Shares of Greater Cincinnati, D.David Altman Co. a legal professional association, David Hulefeld, Deanna Spatz, Debbie Clark, Debbie Potochnik, Dena Morris, Diane Adkinson, ECO:Environmental Community Organization, Elizabeth Dimling, For Our Future Fund, Gerald & Monica Bonecutter, Ginnell Schiller, ICON Solar, Jennifer Wagner, Jenny Fisher, Joanne Gerson, Jocelyn Gibson, Joseph Salvato, Joseph Wiley, Judith Strong, Kentuckians for the Commonwealth, Larry Falkin, Linda Purdy, Lynn Fields, Marci Koch, Marilyn Wall, Mary Khoury, Maureen Shaw, Melissa English, Metro, Midwest Chapter of the Congress for the New Urbanism, Mt Auburn Presbyterian Church, Muslim Contractor, NOPE Neighbors Opposing Pipeline, Northern Kentucky Women’s Network, Ohio Citizen Action, Ohio Environmental Council, Peggy A Berry, Peter Seidel, Peter Simon, Rebecca Surendorff, Renee Stenger, Rhoda Brooks, Richard Kassar, Sandra Matlow, Sandy Wood, Sharmayne Townley, Shomrei Olam Jewish Environmental Advocates of Cincinnati, Sierra Club Miami Group, Socialist Alternative, Sue Magness, Terrell Copelin, think BIG strategies, William & Mary Weber, William Ball, Sustainergy Coop, Flequer Vera, Hugh Thompson, Carol Karlewicz, Greg & Susan Bechtel. Sue Demuth, Ken Wright

and thanks to all our volunteers!

cincy climate march FAQ

What is the People’s Climate Movement?

The People’s Climate Movement is a project of dozens of organizations working together to solve the climate crisis. It started with the historic People’s Climate March on the eve of the UN Climate Summit in September 2014 when 400,000 people from every walk of life marched through the streets of New York City demanding climate action. You can read more about our history here.

What is the People’s Climate Rally – Cincinnati?

In solidarity with the National People’s Climate March in DC, the People’s Climate Rally – Cincinnati is the sister event at the local level on April 29th to express concerns about climate change, environmental protection, biodiversity loss, national park protection, etc. under the current President’s administration. This is our chance to voice these concerns to our President in the hopes that he will reevaluate his stance on the protection of our environment, public conservatory lands, endangered species, water quality, and air quality, etc.

Climate impacts people globally and climate justice affects us all.  Even if the federal government isn’t promoting solutions to climate change, we can do so at the state and local level.

The Cincinnati RALLY will start at noon!  Music will begin at 11:30 and there will be bands after the speakers.

RSVP to attend here!  You don’t have to register to attend but it helps with our permits and logistics if you do!

What organizations are involved in planning the Rally event in Cincinnati?

think BIG strategies, Carla Walker
Sierra Club Miami Group, Marilyn Wall & Sandy Wood
For Our Future Fund, Chandra Yungbluth
Ohio Citizen Action, Melissa English
Congress for the New Urbanism, Jocelyn Gibson
Citizens Climate Lobby, Debbie Potochnik, Doug Bell, Chris Heckman
Rebecca Surendorff
Lynn Fields
Michele Young
and other volunteers!!

How can my organization get involved?

The People’s Climate Movement is a project of dozens of organizations working together to solve the climate crisis. Your organization can be a part of the People’s Climate Rally – Cincinnati event by emailing us.

Do you have a Facebook event?

Absolutely! You can find it here! Click here to RSVP and invite your friends!

This sounds great — where can I sign up to volunteer?

There are lots of ways to support the march — the first step is to sign up on the volunteer form. Click here to sign up to volunteer, and we’ll follow up with more information!

Why are you organizing a rally, and why on April 29th?

At the end of April, Donald Trump will have been in office for 100 days. We plan to mark that day with a rally in Cincinnati as part of a national demonstration that shows that our resistance is not going to wane or fade away.

So far, our resistance has been beautiful — and it’s beautiful because at its heart is a vision of a future that inspires us and gives us hope. It’s a vision that protects our families, our communities, and our climate. Most importantly, it’s a vision that we are building together.

The People’s Climate Movement is another part of that resistance. Join us in April, and let’s make it clear that our resistance is here to stay.

What’s the difference between the People’s Climate Rally and the March for Science?

The election of Donald Trump has sparked an unprecedented outpouring of public mobilization across the United States and around the world. From the Women’s March to rallies against the Muslim Ban, people are finding creative and powerful ways to take action in Washington, D.C. and across the country to resist Trump and fight for the world they want.

Long before the election, the People’s Climate Movement, a coalition of groups that came together around the first People’s Climate March in 2014, started planning for a mass mobilization on April 29th focused on themes of climate, jobs and justice. We picked that date because it was the 100th day of the new administration, a good time to look back at what they had done and what needed to happen next.

After the election of Donald Trump, our mission became even more clear. We needed a mass mobilization to stand up against Trump’s attacks on our climate and communities and fight for a new economy that works for people and planet. We held actions across the country during Trump’s first 100 hours, are continuing to mobilize during his first 100 days, and on the 100th day, April 29th, we will demonstrate in D.C. and towns and cities across the country.

This January, alarmed at the attacks on science by this administration and others, a group of scientists called for a March for Science in Washington, D.C. and across the country. They decided to host the march in conjunction with the Earth Day Network on April 22. In Washington, D.C., activities will include a march, rally and teach-in on the Mall.

Both marches and events are important, and have their own focus — the March for Science is focused on the funding and accessibility of science, while the People’s Climate March is focused on standing up for social, economic, and climate justice. You can read more about our mission and history here.

One last very – very important – difference between the March for Science on the 22nd and the People’s Climate Rally – Cincinnati on April 29th is that the April 29th event will ONLY be a rally at Fountain Square. Organizers have planned for all speaking and activity to occur with the crowd on Fountain Square. There will be no plans to have attendees march or process to another venue. Once the rally is over on Fountain Square, we will ask the participants to disperse, return to their cars, in a peaceful manner

This event and its participants must follow the tenants of our permit and its limits and obey all traffic laws and follow directions from the police and city officials.  This event does not sanction civil disobedience of any kind. Do not march in the street or block the sidewalk.

If you have a medical emergency or need assistance of that nature call 911.

This is a family friendly event.

Why don’t you just combine the events?

While climate change is a top issue for many March for Science organizers (and their sister March events around the country), The March for Science strives to be non-political. The People’s Climate Movement, however, believes strongly in the need to call out the politicians who threaten our climate, communities, and jobs, and put forward an alternative vision for an economy that works for people and planet. The People’s Climate Movement cares deeply about science — but social, economic, and climate justice are the heart of our work.

Ultimately, the two events complement each other. On April 22, the March for Science will stand up for science and help educate the public (and all of us!) about the threat of climate change. For the next week, organizers of the People’s Climate March in Washington, D.C.  will drive media attention to advocate for climate, jobs and justice. And then on April 29th, the week will culminate in the massive People’s Climate Mobilization where hundreds of thousands of people will step into the streets together to put forward our own vision that works for our communities and the climate – both in DC and at sister events around the country.

Educate, organize, mobilize. It’s a path forward for all of us who care about our communities, climate, and the future we need to build together.

What should I do if I want to attend the March for Science-Cincinnati on April 22 and the People’s Climate Rally-Cincinnati on April 29? The short answer.

If you are in Cincinnati on both the 22nd and the 29th, we encourage you to attend both!

Where can I donate to support the rally?

You can donate to the march by clicking here. Thanks for your support! It goes a long way towards making sure that April 29th is as powerful as possible.

Some logistics stuff about the day of the April 29th Rally:

Where can I park?

There are numerous parking lots, garages and meters around Fountain Square. The best way to check for nearby parking is to download the parking app: bestparking.com.  You can also take metro or the streetcar. Carpooling is an environmentally friendly option, too.

Can I bring a sign?

Do bring a sign.  (Walking on the sidewalk with a sign is legal, just be sure that you don’t block the sidewalk, jaywalk or interfere with traffic while coming to or leaving the event.)

Bring water in a re-useable container and any snacks in a re-useable container.  We encourage making this a recyclable, zero waste event!

My question isn’t answered here! What do I do?

No worries! Send us an email with your question, and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

 

 

Ohio Legislature Attacks Solar Jobs

New Ohio Solar Job Numbers Demonstrate Economic Value of Clean Energy

Job data highlights Columbus and DC lawmakers votes against public interest

(Columbus, OH) – Today the Sierra Club released a new solar jobs report from the Solar Foundation. According to the report, Ohio is now home to 5,831 solar jobs, an increase of 21% from 2015. This includes 3,255 installation jobs and 1,002 manufacturing jobs. Additionally, Ohio outperforms our neighboring states in both the total number of solar jobs and the number of solar jobs per capita. However, the findings are not all positive.

Two of our neighboring states, Michigan and Indiana, experienced significantly larger job growth in the last year at 48% and 72% respectively. Furthermore, when looking at the solar industry nationally, Ohio’s solar industry is significantly less dominate – ranking only 25th for the number of solar jobs per capita. In addition, 34 states saw greater solar job growth last year than Ohio. Of those, 25 states experienced job growth at 40% or higher, nearly double Ohio’s growth rate. The findings demonstrate the enormous job potential in the clean energy industry in Ohio.

We also know that clean energy is also good for public health. Retaining our state’s Clean Energy Standards would result in significant benefits. Research shows that by 2027 Ohio’s Clean Energy Standards would preventing over 44,000 asthma attacks, over 4,000 heart attacks, and nearly 3,000 premature deaths among other health benefits.

“The findings of the Ohio’s job census highlight the opportunity Ohio has to create good paying jobs and grow our economy. Although Ohio is a leader in the region, we are at the middle of the pack nationally.” Said Kristen Kubitza, Energy Program Coordinator for the Ohio Chapter of the Sierra Club. “Now is the time to embrace a 21st century energy policy, which is not only good for Ohio’s environment, it’s good for public health, good for Ohio workers, and good for Ohio’s economy.”

The effects of bad state energy policy have impacted the development of clean energy jobs. Past legislation (SB 310 and HB 554) and the currently proposed HB 114 send detrimental signals to business investors and create market instability. HB 114, like others before, would essentially repeal Ohio’s Clean Energy Standards. And to add insult to injury, HB 114 attempts to further prevent renewable energy development in Ohio by making it more difficult for Ohio’s utilities to to receive cost-recovery for renewable energy projects. The result is fewer jobs in the clean energy industry sector in Ohio.

“Ohio lawmakers constant attacks on Ohio’s Clean Energy Standards have been bad for clean energy businesses in Ohio. These attacks send cautionary signals to business investors which have resulted in significant cutbacks in investments. ” Said Al Frasz, Owner of Dovetail Solar. “These are real people, real jobs, real family incomes that have been cut, not just at my company but many others across the state.”

Attacks on clean energy are also being waged at the federal level. We expect President Trump to sign an executive order today to dismantle the Clean Power Plan (CPP), which sets the first ever limits on carbon pollution from power plants. Power plants contribute nearly 40% of all us carbon pollution. The CPP is expected to prevent 3,600 premature deaths and 90,000 asthma attacks in children by 2030. Additionally, the CPP will create an estimated $54 billion in public health and climate benefits by 2030. Furthermore, in his first budget proposal President Trump’s Department of Energy Budget proposes cuts to the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy and eliminates the State Energy Program that provides funding for states. The outlook for US EPA is event bleaker with a number of climate programs completely eliminated or cut – including the Clean Power Plan, Energy Star Grant Program, and air quality grants to states, among many other cuts.

“President Trump has doubled down on his negligent disregard for the environment, public health, and even economic opportunity.” Said Kristen Kubitza, Energy Program Coordinator for the Ohio Chapter of the Sierra Club. “Gutting the Clean Power Plan is nothing more than putting polluter profits above the public health of our communities.”

While lawmakers at the state and federal level are working to hinder clean energy investments, many cities are pursuing clean energy and energy efficiency which saves money for the city and taxpayers. Locally, Columbus had 661 solar jobs in 2016, an increase of 6% from 2015. Columbus is investing in solar energy sources including, a solar array at their fleet headquarters which produced 750,000 kwh in 2016, building LEED certified buildings, and converting public transit to run on electricity instead of fossil fuels.

“The City of Columbus is constantly looking to improve energy efficiency, reduce air pollution, and support strategies and policies that create jobs and reduce emissions.” Said Willie Overman, Energy Manager with the City of Columbus. “The City is excited to see the solar job numbers from the Solar Foundation. Columbus experienced incremental growth in 2016 and we hope to continue to grow this industry.”

The findings from the Solar Foundation demonstrate the enormous potential for job creation through renewable energy sources. Ohio lawmakers at both the state and federal level should be looking out for Ohioans and supporting smart clean energy policies that preserve our environment, protect public health, and create good paying jobs.

View the video of the press conference here: facebook.com/progressohio/videos

The Full Solar Foundation Report is available at: https://dev-brad.keva.la/tsf#states/solar-jobs/2016
Ohio State Fact Sheet is available at: http://www.thesolarfoundation.org/solar-jobs-census/factsheet-2016-OH/

About the Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is America’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization, with more than 8 million members and supporters nationwide. In addition to creating opportunities for people of all ages, levels and locations to have meaningful outdoor experiences, the Sierra Club works to safeguard the health of our communities, protect wildlife, and preserve our remaining wild places through grassroots activism, public education, lobbying, and litigation. For more information, visit www.sierraclub.org/ohio.

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See coverage in http://www.dispatch.com/news/20170328/news-that-solar-jobs-are-up-in-ohio-comes-as-bill-weakening-clean-energy-progresses

Kristen Kubitza, MPA
(614) 634-1847
Kristen.Kubitza@gmail.com

DP&L’s Six Year Settlement to End Ownership of Coal Generation Power in Ohio

According to North American Clean Energy, The Dayton Power and Light Co, a subsidiary of the AES Corporation and the Sierra Club along with a list of parties who agree in principle to a six year settlement. This agreement will strengthen DP&L’s infrastructure, end it’s ownership of 2,093 megawatts of coal fired generation power and begin more integrated renewable generation.

DP&L has asked for an extension of the February 8, 2017 hearing date to allow more time for parties not joining the settlement, including the PUCO staff, to file testimony. The final decision on the matter is expected on March 31, 2017. If the PUCO agrees to the settlement,  the average DP&L customer can expect a rate increase of $2.39 per month.

This settlement includes a five year Distribution Infrastructure Rider (DIR) that enables the implementation of a smart grid and advanced metering. A Distribution Modernazation Rider (DMR)  will be dedicated in “continuing DP&L’s debt repayment to enable the Company to make additional capital expenditures to modernize and maintain”  their distribution and transmission systems. In the sixth year of the plan, both DMR and DIR amendments will expire and will no longer be collected.

If approved by the Public Utility Commission of Ohio, the plan calls for DP&L to exit 100 percent of it’s interest in 2,093 MW of coal fired generation. Specifically the Company will close two co-owned, coal-fired plants in Adams County, Ohio. The Stuart and Killen plants are scheduled to close in mid-2018. In addition, DP&L agrees to begin the process to sell ownership shares in the Conesville, Miami Fort and Zimmer plants. In part, this agreement begins a procurement of solar and wind generation, economic development funding for communities near the Killen and Stuart plants, funds for low income customers and a commitment from DP&L to maintain the headquarters for the Company in Dayton Ohio.

Look to the link below for more reference from North American Clean Energy’s online website from where I received much of the content, some verbatim.

http://www.nacleanenergy.com/articles/25523/dp-l-reaches-agreement-with-various-intervenors-in-electric-security-plan-case

Scott Bushbaum – Sierra Club Miami Group Executive Committee – “Dayton Connections”

 

Wayne National Forest Fracking Strategy Session Fixed for 1/17/2017

According to the Ohio Environmental Council, a strategy session to address the concerns of oil and gas fracking in the Wayne National Forest is scheduled in Columbus Ohio for Tuesday January 17, 2017. The Bureau of Land Management opened an auction of leases between seventeen  and twenty one parcels of the forest on December 6, 2016. The auction is scheduled to begin March 23, 2017 and is open to 1,186 acres in the Marietta Unit of the forest.

The Notice of Competitive Oil and Gas Lease Sale is available at the BLM-ES website. The posting of the lease sale begins a thirty day protest period of the proposed leased parcels. Protests must be delivered in hard copy via postal service or fax, not emailed or by hand. The BLM received consent from the US Forest Service to offer these parcels in accordance with the revised 2006 Land and Resource Management Plan and the 2012 Supplemental Informational Report. In addition, resource specialists in the BLM Northeastern States District completed an (EA) Environmental Assessment During the process at the Athens Ranger District, public meetings were held in Athens, Ironton and Marietta Ohio. The final EA was released on October 13, 2016.

The March 23, 2017 lease sale will not authorize the successful bidders to develop their leases, according to the Bureau of Land Management, rather they are purchasing a lease which allows them to develop the parcel of land within ten years of the sale date.Because the sale does not authorize drilling, a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) was released at the same time as the final Environmental Assessment (EA). Although the lease holder will need further authorization before drilling or developing a well, the leases do contain some stipulation, mostly due to risk mitigation that are specific of the parcel. The risks can include soil erosion during construction, sensitive habitat disruption to the Threatened and Endangered Species Act, impairment of archeological research and detriment due to authorized recreational use.

Before any ground disturbing activity may begin on the auctioned parcels, operators must submit an Application for Permit to Drill (APD) to the BLM-ES. At that time, the BLM will initiate a site specific environmental analysis with the Wayne National Forest to determine the feasibility of the drill plan. The Ohio State of Department of Natural Resources will concurrently evaluate the APD for operational risks to groundwater.

The Bureau of Land Management oversees more than 245 million acres of public land, more than any Federal agency. The land is also known as the National System of Public Lands located in twelve Western states, including Alaska.  The BLM also administers to 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the USA. The BLM’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.

This collaboration between the Ohio Environmental Council, Ohio Revolution and a long list of interested organizations is scheduled at the Northwood High Building at 2231 N. High St. Columbus OH 43201. The event, hosted by Ohio Revolution, begins at 6:30 pm and ends at 8:30 pm. Off street parking is available for attendees.

Scott Bushbaum – Sierra Club / Miami Group – Executive Committee

 

Ohio Energy Update – SB 320 & HB 554

Clean energy standards are moving quickly through the Ohio legislature, according to Jen Miller, Sierra Club Ohio Chapter Director. Here is what to look for:

SB 320 – This bill is said to provide unenforceable, voluntary renewable energy and energy efficiency standards. The renewable energy standards have no requirements to demonstrate standards until 2021. Energy efficiency standards eliminate consequences for meeting requirements until 2020. SB 320 also decreases the energy efficiency requirement from 22% to 17% by 2027. Also, the bill is said to remove OEPA authority to cost effectively meet the Clean Power Plan and requires the OEPA and PUCO to pass legislation through the legislature before Ohio can participate in any carbon allowance or carbon rating to meet the CPP. This undermines Ohio’s opportunity to be cost effective in meeting carbon emission requirements.

HB 554 – This bill makes energy standards unenforceable and voluntary for 2017, 2018 and 2019. It includes the Mercantile opt-out provision and does not include Clean Power Plan or expanded energy efficiency language.

No action was taken by the Ohio Senate Energy and Natural Resource Committee this week on SB 320. The House of Representatives did not meet and there was no movement on HB 554. The Senatorial Committee above will meet on November 29th at 4 pm to hear all testimony, introduce any amendments and a vote on the bill is expected. The House Public Utilities Committee will meet on Wednesday November 30th at 4 pm in hearing room 121 for a hearing on HB 554 to do the same.

Action items for Sierra Club include making in person or submitting written testimony, attending the Nov. 29th and Nov. 30th hearings, asking your Ohio Senator or Representative to vote NO on SB 320 and HB 554 (encouraging your networks to follow suit) and in writing a letter to the editor of your local newspaper asking the Ohio General Assembly to vote NO on SB 320 and HB 554 and to move Ohio forward on a clean energy economy.

Scott Bushbaum – Sierra Club Miami Group Executive Committee / Ohio Chapter Executive Committee / Dayton Connections