Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Weekly Announcements: "Sustainability Action Network, Lawrence Chapter, 01/June/2010"

Tuesday, 1 June 2010, 12:00noon ¤ on Kansas City Community Radio
Listen at KKFI-FM 90.1, or on web-streaming at http://www.kkfi.org/

On Eco-Radio KC this week, host Steve Mann will have a conversation with Marty Kraft about KC No-Till Gardening, it's theory and practice, and Marty's main garden project at the Niles Home for Children.

Stay tuned at 12:30 when the Bioneers radio series presents " Beyond the Bar Code: The Local Food Revolution". Because industrial agriculture is the single most destructive human activity against the environment, what we put on our collective plate and how we grow our food are going to be amont the most decisive factors impacting the fate of the Earth and public health. Few journalists have done more than Michael Pollan to serve up food for thought about our diet and food systems. He reports on the burgeoning worldwide growth of local food economies and a true Green Revolution.

Wednesday, 2 June 2010, 6:00-9:00pm - $$
12th Street Homestead, 1145 Pennsylvania St., Lawrence

Steve Moring of the Kaw Permaculture Collaborative will cover a critical component of any site design, that of maximizing water absorption and minimizing run-off. Several techniques can be used to modify the terrain as needed, and they are best done at the outset before any planting takes place. Water catchments can be roofs with tank storage, or ground basins like ponds or water gardens. Swales and Key Lines are water channels that spread run-off horizontally by gravity. Terraces are on-level contours that slow the down-hill flow of water. This lecture is the eighth in a nine-session permaculture lecture series, presented every two weeks. Interspersed with the lectures will be occasional field trips.

The lecture will be followed by a viewing of the film "Water Harvesting" by Geoff Lawton. A $30.00 admission fee will be requested at the door. The fees will support both the K.P.C. and it's parent organization, Sustainability Action Network. For more information contact Steve Moring at 785-691-7305 or


No sugar coating please. It's a rupture, a geyser, a plume. "It's a nightmare that just won't quit" as Louisiana State University oceanographer, James Cowan Jr., said. At a mile underwater with geologic pressure near one ton per square inch, oil is erupting from the well. With the failure of the wellhead topkill, BP's last hope to plug the leak, it will be two more months before the relief bore is completed. At 90,000 barrels per day, another 5.5million barrels will be injected into the powerful Gulf loop current and then the Atlantic Gulf Stream. Meanwhile, BP claims it's only 5000 bbl/day (only!), but they aren't disclosing any data because they claim it's their oil, so buzz off! Their oil?! Excuse me, but they lost this oil, the essence of their problem. It's no more their oil than a deer that flees the hunter belongs to the hunter.

Richard Heinberg of the Post Carbon Institute recently said "This is what the end of the Oil Age looks like. The cheap, easy petroleum is gone; from now on, we will pay steadily more and more for what we put in our gas tanks—more not just in dollars, but in lives and health". A cogent overview of the disaster, and the struggle for accurate public information, is provided by the TrippleCrisis Blog at BP Blowout: the Real Costs of Fossil Fuels. More info on that group is available at TripleCrisis Blog.

Thursday, 3 June 2010, 4:00pm
Public Works Conference Rm., City Hall Ground Floor, 6th & Massachusetts St.

Last month the task force gathered chapters of the draft Peak Oil Plan into a unified document. Graphics are being added as well as some new content, and an editor is creating a consistent format. The public is welcome to provide input at the meetings.

Meetings are open to the public, and the public is encouraged to attend. And the Peak Oil Task Force web page has developed an extensive list of resources (click on "resources") including other cities' action plans such as San Francisco and Portland, videos, advocacy groups like Post Carbon Institute and Transition Boulder County, and key data and reports.


Started in 1970 to bring oil from the newly tapped Prudhoe Bay oil field, Alyeska handled everything from oil field operations, building and maintaining the Trans Alaska Pipeline, filling tankers at the southern oil terminals, and sailing the oil tankers to market. One of those tankers was the Exxon Valdez. At that time, the consortium was seven oil companies, and British Petroleum held controlling interest. Today the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company is owned by five companies, BP still on top: BP Pipelines Inc. 46.93%, ConocoPhillips Transportation Alaska, Inc. 28.29%, ExxonMobil Pipeline Company, 20.34%, Unocal Pipeline Company, 1.36%, Koch Alaska Pipeline Company, LLC 3.08% (there are those Koch brothers again!). More in depth reporting is on Democracy Now! at BP had majority holding in Alyeska - Exxon Valdez.

Saturday, 5 June 2010, 9:00am-12:00noon
multiple sites

This will be a self-guided tour to any of eighteen gardens by using a brochure and map available from all the garden centers and some hardware stores. This tour will feature community gardens and home gardens, in front yards and back yards, with chickens and fruit trees and more. It is being organized by several members of SLUG "Support Local Urban Gardeners" - SLUG | Urban Garden Planting For more info, contact or .


Oil extraction and transport has always been plagued by spills, at the well head, from tankers, at refineries, from pipelines. And BP has an egregious history of "accidents", the Exxon Valdez and the Deepwater Horizon being only their worst. And for refinery operations, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration found BP to be the worst in the industry - BP: Worst OSHA Safety Violations. But pollution is ubiquitous to the industry: think Unocol in Burma, Shell in Nigeria, and Occidental in Equador.

So when President Obama says things like "prevent and mitigate the impact of any spills that result from offshore drilling", and "what lessons can we learn from this disaster to make sure it never happens again?", just how delusional can he be? Anyone with any horse sense and who is not beholden to corporate handlers would logically conclude, as Max Ajl tells us, "an answer so obvious that it seems silly: stop offshore drilling. Stop burning oil. Wean ourselves at the fastest possible pace off a fossil-fuel based energy infrastructure. Transition to sustainable energy sources immediately, recognizing that a world in which industrial accidents cause barrels of bilious oil to flood into the ocean are intolerable." - BP: Obama's Do-Nothing "Root Causes" Commission.

And to that end, Sen. Bernie Sanders has introduced legislation featuring an Offshore Drilling Ban and Stronger Fuel Efficiency - read the Guardian UK article Oil spill shows drilling is not the answer. In a related effort, British attorney, Polly Higgins, wants large ecologically destructive acts to be considered "ecocide", and prosecuted in the International Criminal Court on an equal basis with genocide, war crimes, crimes of aggression, and crimes against humanity - British lawer urges UN to classify 'ecocide' as crime. For more info on this campaign go to This Is Ecocide | The destruction of ecosystems.

Wednesday, 9 June 2010, 5:30pm
Recycling and Resource Recovery Annex, 320 N.E. Industrial Lane, Lawrence KS

The June agenda will be available soon. The S.A.B. meets monthly to discuss any and all aspects of furthering sustainability policies and practices by the City of Lawrence government and private persons. The public is welcome. Minutes are finalized in about a month after each meeting http://www.lawrenceks.org/wrr/envadvisoryboard


The only surprise here is that no one called this sooner. And if you choose to follow the boycott, remember that the full company is BP-Amoco. Oh yes, don't forget Exxon-Mobil for the full effect. Boycott BP Petition

Wednesday, 9 June 2010, 4:00-6:00pm
Mid America Regional Council, Rivergate Center 2nd floor, 600 Broadway, KC MO

The Environmental Management Commission promotes environmental awareness and resource efficiency to the City's leader and staff, to assist the progress of Kansas City toward sustainability. Members of the general public are encouraged to attend and observe meetings and to join and participate in its efforts. More information and the EMC April 2009 minutes are available at http://www.kcmo.org/manager.nsf/web/emc

Sunday, 13 June 2010, 4:00pm
Mirth Cafe, 8th & New Hampshire St., Lawrence KS

Local Solutions for Transition to a Sustainable Economy
S.A.N. organizes societal scale action for ecological sustainability both in our personal lives, and through public policy changes. "Be the change you want to see". The S.A.N. meeting agenda will include:
  • bicycle facility initiatives
  • plans for 18 July Permaculture Tour
  • S.A.N. Challenge Statement review
  • S.A.N.web site design
  • Lawrence Peak Oil Plan, draft review
Please join us

Tuesday, 15 June 2010, 6:00pm
Public Works Conference Rm., City Hall Ground Floor, 6th & Massachusetts St.

The agenda will be available soon. The Committee works to improve bicycle safety and awareness through education of motorists and non-motorists, develops bicycle plans and maps, and advises the City and County Commissions on bicycle priorities and needs. The agenda and information can be downloaded at Bicycle Advisory Comm | agendas & minutes.

Tuesday-Saturday, 22-26 June 2010
Detroit MI USA

In 2010, The World Social Forum will happen by way of a distributed calendar of geographic and thematic social forums taking place throughout the year. For only the second time, it will have a session convene in the U.S., in Detroit Michigan - US Social Forum 2010 | Another US Is Necessary. The WSF is an open meeting place where social movements, networks, NGOs and other civil society organizations opposed to neo-liberalism and a world dominated by capital or by any form of imperialism come together to pursue their thinking, to debate ideas democratically, to formulate proposals, share their experiences freely and network for effective action. Since the first world encounter in 2001, it has taken the form of a permanent world process seeking and building alternatives to neo-liberal policies. This definition is in its Charter of Principles, the WSF’s guiding document." - from the website of the World Social Forum.

The National Coordinator, Adrienne Maree Brown, provides a good encapsulation of what to expect in Detroit at Invitation to the US Social Forum. A unique attribute of the gathering is it's functioning by Open Space principles, a horizontal structure of self organizing. A related resource is Terra Viva - WSF, providing a permanent online window on the World Social Forum, with ongoing reporting in many languages from as many of the events as possible.

The SUSTAINABILITY ACTION NETWORK, Inc. is a Kansas not-for-profit organization. DONATIONS ARE APPRECIATED, and checks can be mailed to P.O.Box 1064, Lawrence KS 66044. Our mission is to advocate and organize societal scale action to address sustainability issues. The triple crises of Energy-Ecology-Economy are building so rapidly that large scale action is needed immediately and methodically to overcome institutional barriers and advance public policy that preserves ecological sustainability. Our focus is to build a relocalized economy-ecology in concert with the Transition Town movement occurring in many other communities. To join the Sustainability Action Network please contact us at

Our current projects include:
1) Transition Kaw Valley - initiating transition to a relocalized post-carbon economy, and municipal level Peak Oil response planning.
2) Kaw Permaculture Collaborative - developing skills and resources for poly-cropping sustainable food production.
3) Energy Conservation & Renewables - advancing a green economy through decentralized technologies and regulations, for conservation and renewable energy.
4) Land Consortium - organizing interested stakeholders to acquire prime farmland in the urban fringe for land-based economic development and regional food security.
5) Water Rights and Watersheds - protecting the water commons, the source of all life, from privatization and contamination, and restoring our watersheds.
6) Electric & Human Powered Vehicles - promoting neighborhood electric vehicles and utility tricycles, including infrastructure and pro-active regulations.
7) Weekly Sustainability Announcements - informing and encouraging others to become active in the Sustainability Action Network, or other action driven groups.
8) Collaboration with sister organizations - such as: The Light Center eco-village; Kaw Valley Food System farm-based economic development; Citizens for Responsible Planning; Films for Action; Kansas River Valley Growers fighting for local water rights; national efforts by the Sustainable Energy Network; KC Metro groups like the Kansas City Food Circle and the All Species Project, etc.

We welcome suggestions for items to be included. Please send items to

To subscribe to this list, please send an e-mail to with the subject line reading “subscribe to Sustainability Announcements”.

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