Chapter Makes Endorsements in April 3 DC Council Primary;
Jack Evans and Sekou Biddle Earn Unanimous Support
The District's Democratic primaries will be April 3, and once again the Chapter undertook its endorsement process. The endorsements made to date include:
At-Large: Sekou Biddle. In the At-Large Council primary race, Vincent Orange is running for re-election. Running for the Democratic nomination are former D.C. Councilmember Sekou Biddle and former P.G. County Council Chair, Peter Shapiro. Sekou Biddle was previously endorsed by the Club, and he had a 100% positive response rate to the Political Committee questionnaire. Orange, a former PEPCO Vice President, did not respond to the committee's invitation to complete its endorsement questionnaire. Biddle is one of the few challengers with a competitive chance at winning in the primary election.
Ward 2: Jack Evans. In the Ward 2 Council race, incumbent Jack Evans is running unopposed. Since coming onto the Council, Evans has had a 100% voting record on our issues. He responded positively to all of the Political Committee's questions and has been endorsed by the chapter in his previous races. Read more here....
With the New Year, Chapter Welcomes New Chair and New Staffer
by Bruce M. Millar
Kathy Robertson was elected Chair at a recent D.C Chapter of the Sierra Club retreat. She works at the Civil War Trust and has been an active member since 1995, in NJ, Maine and DC.
Robertson said among her principal responsibilities are to keep the chapter focused on its priorities which include increasing the number of homes that are weatherized and implementing energy efficiency strategies in DC; bringing recycling to all District public schools; working to increase compliance with D.C.'s recycling laws among private sector businesses with the dumpster-diving team is gearing up for another season of hands-on enforcement; and working to keep D.C.'s streetcar program on track. She first became interested in protecting the environmental while living in New Jersey.... Read more here.
Brenna Muller has joined the DC Chapter of the Sierra Club as Chapter Outreach Coordinator. She replaces Amanda Brinton who joined the Peace Corps in Ecuador in January.
Muller graduated from Connecticut College with a double major in Music and Government with a focus on Environmental Policy. Since then she has focused on grassroots organizing and environmental education in Louisiana, Maryland and Virginia. "I have been concerned about environmental conservation since I was very young and am interested in all aspects of living an environmentally sustainable life." Muller said.
She said she wanted to come work for the DC Chapter because "I've always admired the work of the Sierra Club and I'm passionate about working at the community level to address environmental issues," she said. Read more here.
Chapter Continues Fight for Klingle Valley Park,
Fends off Roadies' Suit to Block Hiker-Biker Trail
by Jim Dougherty
The chapter's 18-year campaign to defend Klingle Valley Park (located on the north edge of the National Zoo) from governmental roadbuilders ran into a bit of a snag last month when DCDOT Directory Terry Bellamy, in a meeting with Coucilmember Cheh and Sierra Club representatives, explained that the projected cost of building a hiker-biker trail through the Valley had increased.
Though once pegged at around $1 million, the costs of building the trail (mandated by a City Council mandate in 2008) has now ballooned to approximately $12 million. Details are lacking, but it appears sewer reconstruction is a driver. We are now working to obtain the additional needed funds. Read more here...
Say No to Tar Sands Vigil
Sierra Club activists held a candlelight vigil outside
the Canadian Embassy March 7 to protest the
development of the Alberta tar sands and the major
impact it is having on global warming and the
habitat and communities. The vigil was one of many
staged outside Canadian consulates across the U.S.
Energy Committee Sets Agenda for 2012
The Energy Committee has been working through the early part of this year to set key objectives for the year. In addition to ongoing efforts to promote residential weatherization, the committee will be working to get the Community Renewables Energy Act of 2012 passed into law. This new legislation will expand access to solar energy generation to more D.C. residents.
Building upon the Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008 passed by the D.C. Council, the Community Renewables Energy Act of 2012 is modeled on successful community renewable energy laws enacted in other cities. This bill allows renters, homeowners with shaded roofs, tenants of apartment buildings, and others, to receive the benefits of solar energy by removing some of the remaining regulatory barriers to solar. Read more here....
- Sunday, March 18, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. - Environmental Film Festival Meet-up
National Museum of American History, Warner Bros. Theater 14th St. & Constitution Ave., NW (map)
Join Sierra Club members at the Environmental Film Festival for the free screening of "The Wilderness Idea: John Muir, Gifford Pinchot, and the First Great Battle for Wilderness." We'll meet in the main entrance (the Mall side) of the American History Museum at 11:30. Optional lunch and get together after the film. Contact: Brenna Muller, 202-548-4581
- Tuesday, March 20, 5:30 p.m.-7 p.m. - Weatherization & Energy Efficiency Subcommittee Meeting
Chinatown Coffee, 475 H St NW (map)
Subcommittee meeting on weatherization and energy efficiency outreach. Contact: Nicole Williams Sitaraman
- Monday, March 26, 5:30-8 p.m. - Happy Hour with the DC Inner City Outings Program
Meridian Pint, 3400 11th St NW (near Park Rd. and Columbia Heights Metro) (map)
This will be a fun meet-up opportunity for volunteers to learn more about both the DC Chapter and the Inner City Outings program as well as meet other Sierra Club members and volunteers. Contact: Brenna Muller, 202-548-4581.
- Wednesday, March 28, 7 p.m. - March Chapter Board Meeting
Harriet’s, 436 11th St. NW (map)
This is the monthly meeting of the chapter's board members, open to all members. Contact: Kathy Robertson, chair, or Brenna Muller.
- Saturday, March 31, 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. - Eco Bike Tour
Eastern Market Metro Station (Orange/Blue Lines), 7th & Pennsylvania Ave., SE (map)
Join DC Chapter leaders on a fun mini Eco Bike Tour! We will meet at the Eastern Market Metro stop at 10:30 a.m. Jim Dougherty will lead us on a bike tour around Anacostia to visit various points of environmental controversy, past and present. Contact: Jim Dougherty, 202-488-1140, or Ryan Crowley, 202-271-0530
- Saturday, April 21, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. - Annual Anacostia River Watershed Cleanup
TBD (We'll be getting our site soon!)
We will join the Anacostia Watershed Society and other local organizations to cleanup the Anacostia River and its tributaries in honor of Earth Day. The cleanup will be from 9 a.m. to noon, followed by a celebration in RFK parking lot No. 6, from noon to 2 p.m. Contact: Brenna Muller, 202-548-4581.
Want to go on a hike? Sierra Club's Potomac Regional Outings Programs leads a wide range of hikes throughout the Metro-DC area. To find out what's coming up, check out their calendar online.
Our March Appeal Letter is Heading for Your Mailbox
Please Consider Donating to Support the DC Chapter's Work
It's March, and that means it's time for our annual appeal to our members. We ask for your support to help us as we strive to make DC a greener, more sustainable and more livable city for everyone. We couldn't do it without our volunteers and supporters. You can keep an eye out for our mailer, or you can save a stamp and simply click on the "Donate" button and make a secure contribution online right now. Either way, thank you!!