Saturday, April 29, 2017

March on Washington for climate change

As an EcoBroker, I am very connected with what is going on with the environment and also any environment political actions. Everything has a trickle down effect to the housing market. Unfortunately with recent politicians, there have been various "rollbacks" to environmental protections and climate policies that President Obama put in place.

Today a Climate March took place in Washington DC, where 200,000+ people marched with signs to bring awareness to these pertinent issues. Coincidentally, the heat in Washington DC was uncharacteristically high at 91 degrees.

I strongly believe everyone needs to do their part in reducing their carbon footprint, such as reduce/reuse/recycle, and more policies need to come about to protect our land and resources. It's very unfortunate that the current president has weakened environmental protection agencies, it's groups like these that help to collect environmental data and regulate what's going on!

We only have 1 planet to live on, we must love and protect it.  🌏

Link to a Washington Post article about the march is below:

Climate March draws massive crowd to D.C. in sweltering heat


On a sweltering April day, tens of thousands of demonstrators assembled in Washington on Saturday for the latest installment of the regular protests that punctuate the Trump era. This large-scale climate march marks President Trump’s first 100 days in office, which have already seen multiple rollbacks of environmental protections and Obama climate policies.
The Peoples Climate March, which originated with a massive demonstration in New York in September 2014, picked a symbolically striking day for its 2017 event. The temperature reached 91 degrees at D.C.’s National Airport at 2:59 p.m., tying a heat record for April 29 in the district set in 1974 — which only amplified the movement’s message.
On the eve of the march, the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it was beginning an overhaul of its website, which included taking down a long-standing site devoted to the science of climate change, which the agency said was “under review.”
“Hang on EPA, the midterms are coming. 2018,” read one sign carried by Kathy Sommer of Stony Brook, N.Y, as the protest assembled on the National Mall Saturday morning.
“There is no Planet B,” read another sign by Eva Gunther of Washington, D.C., displaying one of the most popular and oft repeated messages of the event (and of last week’s March for Science).
Hillary Clinton tweeted praise of the marchers Saturday afternoon, writing, “Great to see ppl take to the streets & combat climate change, protect the next generation & fight for jobs & economic justice.”
President Trump was not at the White House on Saturday, but instead was in Pennsylvania for a rally, and did not tweet any immediate reaction.
Many of the signs at Saturday’s climate march were dark and ominous, warning of climate catastrophe, dying oceans, crop destruction and planet degradation. But the mood of the marchers was anything but somber. Tens of thousands gathered all morning in the lush green National Mall in front of the U.S. Capitol carrying signs, singing and chanting as they prepared to march to the White House. It was a racially diverse crowd with marchers of all ages.
The marchers came prepared with water bottles, hats and sun screen. They also arrived with sunny dispositions. “It’s beautiful,” said Allison Dale, a geologist from Conshohocken, Pa. “it’s so well organized and everyone is really friendly and in a really good mood.”
Impromptu concerts broke out as protesters waited for the march to begin. A brass band played as a stiltwalker danced past. Tambourine shakers and drummers added to the joyful cacophony. Their reason for marching was serious but they were determined to have a good time too.
The climate event differs from last week’s March for Science in its focus and also its participants — only 1 out of 8 contingents of Saturday’s protest featured scientific researchers. The rest included labor activists, indigenous people already facing severe effects from climate change, and children and young people who will live with the effects of climate change longest as the Earth continues to warm.
But there’s plenty of overlap between the marches. Ken Hunter, 78, traveled from Charlestown, W.Va. for this morning’s march. He also came to Washington for the March for Science last weekend and the Tax March on April 15 — and attended a Women’s March in Florida.
“Hell, I haven’t marched this much in years,” Hunter said with a laugh. “But these are all very important issues and it was important to be out here.”
The motivation for the current climate march is clear: The young Trump administration already has moved to roll back former president Barack Obama’s signature climate initiative, the Clean Power Plan, and Trump and his team have taken many other actions to weaken environmental protections of air and water, and to enable fossil fuel exploitation on public lands and waters.
The administration is grappling with a major climate policy decision: whether to remain in the Paris climate agreement. Several of Trump’s Cabinet picks are advising against following through on his campaign pledge to “cancel” the accord.
It all adds up to a big contrast with the original People’s Climate March in 2014. That event was aimed at rallying support for climate change action and preceded by about a year the Paris climate agreement. This event is much more targeted at resisting rollbacks of climate efforts. Celebrity attendees include Leonardo DiCaprio, Al Gore and Richard Branson.
The focus on Trump was not necessarily intentional: In a press statement, Paul Getsos, national coordinator of the People’s Climate Movement, said the event was planned “before the election.”
For Ethan Fekete, Saturday’s climate march was the first protest he has taken part in.
“Ironically we march to get rid of our carbon footprint,” said the 13 year-old Virginia Beach resident who attended the march with his dad and a friend.
“It’s so much more than just a bunch of people walking around,” Fekete said. “The signs are so creative and everyone is here for a good cause.”
Marchers on Saturday gathered at the Capitol and marched along Pennsylvania Avenue. They covered the entire width of the avenue and its length from the Capitol to 14th Street. The crowd filled Pennsylvania Avenue and the sidewalks carrying signs decrying the president and his actions on the environment.
The marchers unleashed their anger as they passed directly in front of the Trump hotel where they booed loudly and chanted “Shame!”and “We want a leader, not a creepy tweeter!” and “we will not go away, welcome to your 100 days!”
As the march streamed toward the White House, Freedom Plaza, an open area along Pennsylvania Avenue, provided an off-ramp for sweltering protesters. At the far end of the plaza a series of six large water tanks awaited. Activists lined up to refill their bottles and, in a few cases, douse their heads.
Just before 3 p.m., temperatures at Washington, D.C.’s National Airport hit 91 degrees but the heat index was even higher at 95.
The protesters were vociferous but peaceful. Interactions with the phalanx of police officers who stood at barriers in front of the hotel were friendly, with many protesters stopping to get pictures of themselves with officers.
They planned to “surround” the White House, according to the march website, and “make a loud sound demanding climate justice and good jobs that will drown out all of the climate-denying nonsense that has been coming out of this Administration.”
At 15th Street, where the march began to turn north to begin the loop around the White House, the movement encountered a pro-life protester with a bullhorn. “Abortion is destroying human life,” he said.
The protesters sat on the concrete and began clapping as they steadily chanted, “My body, my choice.”
On the western side of the White House near the Old Executive Office Building, the march changed character as it completed a loop around the center of U.S. presidential power. Instead of being densely packed and full of energy, the protesters grew more widely spaced out and slower in their strides. Some took a detour behind the White House and paused to sit in the shade on the grass between the South Lawn and the Ellipse.
It was clear that the heat was taking its toll.
Organizers told the National Park Service that they expect 50,000 to 100,000 attendees. By late afternoon, they were claiming to have greatly exceeded that and reached 200,000. More than 375 satellite marches were planned around the United States and even more around the world, from Manila to Amsterdam.
Getting to the march proved frustrating for many who chose to use public transportation. Metro officials did not make changes to their planned maintenance schedule, which affected several downtown stations that would normally be used by riders headed to the National Mall. In some instances, shuttle buses replaced trains. Many marchers complained the service was slow and were confused about where to board shuttle buses.
“Classic #wmata greatness while there are major events going on at once,” tweeted on disgruntled rider who included a screenshot that showed a 37-minutes wait for a Shady Grove train.
Those who used the Red Line also ran into problems Saturday morning when smoke from an arcing insulator at the Woodley Park stop forced the agency to single-track trains between that station and Van Ness, causing midmorning delays. Those delays were in addition to previously planned single-tracking between two downtown stations, Judiciary Square and Farragut North. But officials said they planned to resume full Red Line service between Judiciary Square and Farragut North around 3 p.m. to accommodate people leaving the Climate March and those headed to the Capitals playoff game.
Even so, Metro officials said they did not anticipate significant problems.
“We believe that planned service will be more than adequate to accommodate ridership demand,” said Richard L. Jordan, a Metro spokesman.
Apart from tying an all time heat record for April 29, this month is the warmest April on record for the District.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Earth Day

Earth Day was Saturday! 🌿 What a beautiful day to send extra love and appreciation for Mother Earth and all her resources. What did you do to celebrate?  (I was at a wedding! ;) 

Here is a list of 9 things you can do on Earth day, or any day:
  1. Take a Hike
  2. Get Involved in a Community Garden
  3. Do a Home Energy Audit
  4. Clean Out Your Closet and Donate to a Charity
  5. Write a Letter to Your Government Representative
  6. Plant a Tree
  7. Volunteer for an Environmental Charity
  8. Throw a Green Party
  9. Go Vegan or Vegetarian for the Day

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Solar energy on the rise

I found this article on USA today in regards to energy sources and solar power. I'm thrilled California is setting this example for utilizing natural energy, and that the industry is continuing to grow!

Wholesale energy prices dip below zero because of California’s solar power

USA TODAY NETWORK, USA TODAY9:52 a.m. ET April 11, 2017

Solar power shines bright in California, and wholesale energy prices prove it.
Last winter and early spring’s dependence on solar drove wholesale energy prices to negative prices, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
Solar power in the California Independent System Operator accounted for nearly 40% of net grid power for three hours on March 11, 2017, the administration reports —a major first.
These figures don’t translate for the consumer into retail prices, which are based on averages. But the move will likely cause energy companies to pay more attention to green energy options.
Solar represented 13% of California’s power last year, according to the administration.
America's solar industry now employs more than a quarter of a million people after a breakneck year that saw employment grow by a record 25%. That growth is expected to continue into 2017 as low-cost solar panels nudge coal and natural gas out of the electricity marketplace.
California led the country with 100,050 solar jobs in 2016, according the nonprofit Solar Foundation. That was up from about 75,600 solar jobs in 2015. The nation's solar workforce grew from 209,000 in 2015 to more than 260,000 last year, the fastest growth the Solar Foundation has seen in the seven years it's published such data.
"The solar industry currently has more (U.S.) workers than Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon combined," said Andrea Luecke, the Solar Foundation's executive director.
Others around the nation are taking note of solar’s successes, too. Solar panels are showing up in the most unlikely places, even atop the Kentucky Coal Museum.