In a fabulous display of people power,forces both for and against the Clear Skies ordinance, which would prevent export of tar sands from the port, filled South Portland City Hall to overflowing and the meeting had to be rescheduled for Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. in the gym of the South Portland Community Center! If you are a resident of South Portland, please try to attend. If you live in the area or you are passionate about stopping tar sands in Maine, come to show our strength but step back so that residents can speak. The oil industry proponents were there on Monday, matching our blue shirts with their red ones (check our Facebook album and WCSH 6 coverage and oil industry influence is beginning to appear as ads in local papers again. We need you! Hope to see you in the gym on July 9! (Image credit: Kelly Bouchard/ Portland Press Herald)
Tell the Governors What We Want—A Tar Sands Free Maine
The tar sands invasion continues to threaten Maine, and we have an opportunity to make a difference. Join the Tar Sands Free North East Coalition in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire at the annual New England Governors' Conference—for an inaugural People's Conference this Sunday, July 13 at 12:30 p.m. Let’s remind our politicians that they are beholden to “We the People” and not to Big Oil, and show our governors that the people will now allow dangerous tar sands to pollute our beautiful state. We'll be performing fun street theater to redeem our leaders and rallying to support those most affected by tar sands exploitation. Our message will be clear: creativity and democracy will always defeat dirty money—no tar sands in Maine! Sierra Club-Maine and Natural Resources Council of Maine are sponsoring a bus to Bretton Woods, NH (ticket $10/seat) and some seats are still available; reserve yours here.
No More Lac-Mégantics; No Oil-by-Rail in Maine
Nationwide there were many stop oil-by-rail events from memorials and vigils to rallies and demonstrations on July 6, the date of the 2013 Lac-Mégantic disaster. Maine held six events with from 15 to 50 participants. Visit the 350 Maine Facebook site to see Lac-Mégantic memorials held in Belfast, Brunswick, Damariscotta/Newcastle, Portland (press coverage) and Waterville. The WABI-TV coverage of the Waterville event nails the message. The Stop the Oil Trains Teach-In in Alton presentation was packed with information, empowering people to become active in resisting oil-by-rail in Maine—and the US. Attendees called for taking DOT 111s (the substandard tank cars that the National Transportation Safety Board deemed unsafe in 1990s) off the rails. Join in the action by signing the national petition to call for removing these substandard cars from our system.
350.org Prepares Us to Cast a Wide Net for People’s Climate March
Exciting news! 350.org has set its sights on having 250,000 committed citizens be at the Peoples Climate March, September 21, 2014, to greet the world leaders at the U.N. This could be an event that “bends the course of history.” 350.org has asked 350 Maine to help get folks to the march by holding a special “train the organizers” workshop on July 31 and August 1 in the Portland area (site TBD). This training will prepare us to reach out beyond the choir and move a wider spectrum of people to NYC for the march. If you or anyone you know, regardless of organization affiliation, can commit to turning people out for the People’s Climate March, please reserve July 31 and August 1 and contact Lee Chisholm (207-776-3746; firstname.lastname@example.org).
Save the Date:
Bretton Woods, NH; July 13: People’s Conference concurrent with Northeast Governors and Eastern Province Premiers Conference, arrive by 12:00 p.m. for 12:30 p.m. start.
- South Portland, July 15: South Portland Planning Board meeting to review “fresh air” ordinance and make recommendations for the city council @7:00 p.m. South Portland City Hall (25 Cottage Street). FMI see this link.
Tuesday, July 15: Tar Sands campaign call @ 7:00 p.m. Conference number: 1-213-550-2200; Access Code: 317-1692#.