Thursday, May 4, 2017

Eastern 'Burbs Sustainability Huddle!

Join us this coming Sunday, May 7, 2017 from 1:00 to 3:00 PM in the downstairs program room of the Monroeville Public Library in conjunction with the Eastern Burbs Huddle and Monica Joyner to learn about easy ways we can all move into our beyond Sustainable Future. YES.WE. ARE!

No worries, No R.S.V.P. necessary. Come on over with some family and friends, or by yourself!

Facebook Link to the event is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1752078305122487/

May is exploding with Sustainability events at the Monroeville Public Library!
Please note, Sustainable Monroeville will NOT meet on Monday evening, May 8, 2017 as we will be collaborating with the Eastern Suburbs "Huddle". 

MPL sponsored programs in May, 2017 are listed below. I hope to see you in May:) Elisa Beck :)

Backyard Composting
7:00 p.m. - 8:15 p.m.
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
Cosponsored by the Garden Club of Monroeville
Join us for a presentation about turning your kitchen scraps and pesticide/herbicide-free lawn clippings into treasure! Since 1998 Ellen C. Keefe has been passionate about teaching others how to recycle and reduce waste by making healthy compost. She also discusses the microscopic structures of compost and recent research regarding the benefits of it.
Ellen Keefe is Executive Director of the nonprofit Westmoreland Cleanways and Recycling in Latrobe, PA. Ellen is also a Derry Township Municipal Authority Board Member and was Board Chair for the Latrobe Municipal Authority. She attended Robert Morris University’s School of General Business Administration and Management and is a Certified Recycling Professional. Last year Ellen spoke at Monroeville Library regarding the work of Westmoreland Cleanways and Recycling.
Gallery Space

Climate Change: Challenges and Responses
7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Tuesday, May 16, 2017
The scientific community is essentially unanimous in its conclusion that human activity, especially the burning of fossil fuels and release of other greenhouse gases, is responsible for a rapid and significant increase in the average global temperature. This warming is leading to retreating glaciers and melting polar ice sheets, phenomena that will threaten water supplies and put coastal regions at risk from rising sea levels. Other environmental changes will disrupt ecological systems and agriculture. We are already seeing more extreme storms, droughts, floods, and outbreaks of disease that only will become worse without a change in our collective behavior.
For the past six years, Dr. Bob Mitchell has been informally researching the science and politics of climate change. He has taught several short courses on the subject, including in the Pitt and CMU Osher programs, and is an active member of Citizens’ Climate Lobby. In this talk, Bob will review Earth’s remarkable climate history and provide insights into its likely future. He will then examine the human consequences of a changing climate. Finally, he will discuss technological and policy approaches that offer hope for the future, including meeting the goals of the 2015 Paris climate accords.
Dr. Mitchell has an MS in physics and a PhD in electrical engineering from CMU. His early career work on gas lasers and circuit breakers used much of the same fundamental physics that applies to climate modeling. Later he managed engineering research on automated image analysis with applications in radar, sonar, medicine, and robotics. He retired in 2014 as the industry director of the Army’s collaborative research program in robotics.
Gallery Space

Meet the Beekeeper!
7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Wednesday, May 17, 2017
Come spend some time with Monroeville beekeeper John Yakim. John will show everyone inside a real beehive and answer questions about honeybees, including how they make honey and how the honeybee helps improve our community. We’ll also learn what we can all do to help the bees survive and thrive!
Gallery Space

Elisa Beck:) 

LIKE Living Building Challenge Collaborative-Pittsburgh, Sustainable Monroeville, and Transition Pittsburgh on Facebook!


Sunday, April 30, 2017

Solarize Allegheny and Conservation Consultants, Inc. on Solar Installation for your home!

Join us for our May gathering in conjunction with the Monroeville Public Library!

WHAT: Shining Light on Solar Energy in Monroeville
WHEN: Wednesday, May 3, 2017 from 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Solar energy is the fastest growing energy source in the world. While the Pittsburgh region has a reputation as a cloudy place, we receive much more sun than Germany – a leading solar nation. There are already more than 12,000 solar installations in Pennsylvania. Solar electricity is now as affordable as your electric bill and can save you thousands of dollars over the lifetime of the system, creating a sound investment for your home. Join Solarize Allegheny for a presentation on solar energy, meet pre-qualified solar installers and solar owners, and get information you need to consider going solar. Pittsburgh non-profit Conservations Consultants, Inc. will also be on hand to provide information about the Sound Home Plan, a one-stop-shop to help Pittsburgh-area homeowners identify and help make their homes more healthy, safe, and energy efficient (www.getenergysmarter.org). Solarize Allegheny is a project funded by The Heinz Endowments and Allegheny County Health Department to inspire the use of solar energy in Allegheny County. More information about Solarize Allegheny can be found at www.SolarizeAllegheny.org. Light refreshments provided. RSVPs appreciated, but not required at: www.monroevillesolar.eventbrite.com.
-- 
Mark Hudson, MA, MLIS, Head of Adult Services
WHERE: Monroeville Public Library, 4000 Gateway Campus Blvd., Monroeville, PA 15146
412-372-0500x113

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Keeping Sunoco Logistics Accountable

There's lots to keep up with as we transition from fossil fuels to our Regenerative Fossil-Free Future! If you have questions about the information below, contact Deirdre Lally, Pipeline Organizer, Clean Air Council
570-854-2288

KEEP SUNOCO LOGISTICS ACCOUNTABLE

  • Do you live on or near the Mariner East 2 Right of Way (ROW)?
  • Is Sunoco staking the ROW or have they started construction of ME 2/2x?
  • Do you wonder if Sunoco Logistics may be working outside of the limits of your  easement agreement?
  • Regardless of whether or not you signed a new easement agreement YOU HAVE RIGHTS!  
  • Make sure Sunoco is not using more land than you agreed to or that the court imposed on you.
LANDOWNER CHECKLIST

  1. Have your house, all structures, well, sewer or septic  inspections done immediately; before Sunoco begins construction.  Document their integrity.   Ask a local realtor  for recommendations for home inspectors.  Sunoco has publically stated they will pay for your independent studies.
  2. If you can afford a survey ($800-$1300), get an independent survey of:
    1. The existing ROW
    2. The proposed ROW
3. If you can’t afford a survey :
    1. Ask surveyors for a group rate (with your neighbors) or:
    2. Take careful measurements of your property yourself: see below for guidelines*
    3. Mark your easement boundaries with yellow caution tape to clearly document work outside the limits.  Marking properties along the project with yellow caution tape sends a message to Sunoco that landowners are watch-dogging Sunoco Logistics’ construction on their property.  If you need help buying the tape, call (215) 567-4004 x121.
    4. Make a copy of your most current easement agreement - it may supersede or add on to older agreements.  Sit down and read it thoroughly to understand what the easement agreement allows Sunoco to do and what Sunoco is NOT allowed to do on your land.  Need help on that? Call 484.340.0648 or email a copy to PSC @ lynda@pscoalition.org. It will remain confidential.
  1. You have the right to post no trespassing signs outside the permanent & temporary ROW.
  2. You have the right to press trespassing charges if the contractor is unwilling or unable to confirm that they are not trespassing.
  3. Introduce yourself to the construction crews.  Surveyors, construction crews, welders, are going to be working on your land.  They are not responsible for decisions made by regulators nor for this project being initiated by Sunoco.  They are responsible for the safe and accurate installation of the pipes and for respecting your property.  Introducing yourself and others in your home puts a face to the project.  Personalizing who this work is impacting will help you get best results.

PERMANENT ROW EASEMENTS  
  1. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT to ensure that Sunoco is staying within the boundaries of the existing or new signed easement agreement.  Sunoco may not construct a pipeline nor use temporary workspace outside the bounds of your signed ROW agreement without your written permission and compensation.  They may not extend the limits of the easement, temporarily use more land than you agreed to, or add any component to the project that is not specific to your easement (such as temporary bridges or entrance roads).  Remember this project has gone through route changes.  Make sure your agreement matches where they are constructing.  
  2. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT to ask for a copy of the map the contractor is using and compare it your easement agreement.  The contractor may only have one copy - take a cell photo - ask that they bring a copy for you when they come back - or ask for their copy before they leave as they have more.
  3. If the contractor claims it’s the same map that is on your agreement, tell them there have been so many changes in permitting that you want to make sure.  Surveying is OK at this point - it will help you determine if the work will be compliant to your agreement.

TEMPORARY WORKSPACE EASEMENTS  
  1. If you have not signed a new easement or have not had one imposed on you and your circa 1930’s or circa 1960’s does not provide a temporary easement (work space) Sunoco does not have a right to use your land outside their existing ROW without negotiating an agreement with you.  That agreement must be in writing  to protect your rights.
  2. Temporary work space may apply to both open-cut trenching and HDD (underground drilling) properties.
  3. Most temporary easements are effective for the limited time stipulated in your easement.  For example, if you have a 40’ wide permanent easement and a 20’ wide temporary easement on each side of the permanent ROW, the 20’ temporary work space typically has a use limit of 36 months - check your easement agreement.    
  4. If Sunoco tells you their circa 1930 or 1962 easement allows them to use land beyond your ROW, they are likely wrong.  Some older easements state that the operator “release(s) from the terms of the aforesaid rights of way and easements all of the lands lying outside the said forty feet wide strips of ground, reserving unto itself all rights and privileges…in said right-of-way which are not specifically released by this agreement.”  If this language in your easement, make a copy and show it to Sunoco.

If you believe work is being done outside of allowed boundaries - or environmental conditions are not being adhered to, you should take these steps:
  1. Call the PA Department of Environmental Protection Statewide complaint hotline @ 1-888-723-3372
  2. Call regional offices at the following numbers:
    • Southeast: (484) 250-5991
    • Southcentral: (717) 705-4709
    • Southwest: (412) 442-44184
    • Ask them to come out immediately if you suspect and environmental issue  - wait for them if you can.
  3. Call your police department and your township officials
NEIGHBORING PROPERTIES NOT DIRECTLY ON THE PIPELINE EASEMENT
  1. Adjacent or adjoining properties may suffer property damages.  Depending on how close a property is to construction, structural damage can occur beyond the construction site.
  2. Neighboring properties should have their house, all structures, well and sewer inspections done immediately; before Sunoco begins construction.  Document the integrity of each.   Ask a local realtor for recommendations for home inspectors.  Sunoco has publically stated they will pay for independent studies. They may pay for studies on neighboring properties depending on proximity.
  3. Don’t try to be a good guy by allowing use of your land without a written agreement for compensation and specific details about use and remediation.

Need help knowing what to do?  Let us know:  
Pipeline Safety Coalition: (484) 340-0648
Clean Air Council Staff Attorney: (215) 567-4004 x118

*Measuring your ROW:
  1. Sunoco will mark their ROW, usually marking the centerline of the existing pipeline or pipe to be placed. The below Uniform Color Code Chart will help you determine what has been marked on your land.  Surveyors are required to mark the pipeline and other pipes such as water, propane, sewer.  If you think they’ve missed something, tell them!  This is also a good opportunity to take photos for your records.
  2. Measure from the pipeline marker out 50 feet on each side to determine your total Permanent ROW / Permanent and Temporary ROW / Existing ROW.  Install tape along the entire length of your property.  Engage your neighbor in doing the same.

--
Deirdre Lally
Pipeline Organizer
Clean Air Council
570-854-2288

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Way We Live Documentary Screening with Tom Jefferson LIVE! Monday evening, March 6, 2017 at 7:00 PM. Whole Food Plant Based Pot Luck at 6:00 PM!

Hello and Happy Full Moon! Mark your calendar for the next meeting of Sustainable Monroeville on Monday, March 6, 2017. Get ready for an AMAZING EVENING!

At 6:00 PM we'll have a whole food, plant based pot luck dinner. Please bring your own plate and utensils and we'll pack in, pack out and have a zero waste event! Beginning at 7:00 PM, we'll screen the documentary. The Way We Live, filmed and produced by local Pittsburgh documentary filmmaker and photographer, Tom Jefferson. Mr. Tom Jefferson has been involved in filming and educating the world wide community about climate change and social justice related to EcoWarriorship for a very long time. Here's the link to the trailer for the film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P0YDgBxLz3s Tom will join us for Q&A and brief discussion before and after the film. We'll also explore local ACTION opportunities.

Sustainable Monroeville meetings are free and open to the public. There is a $5.00 or more suggested donation for this meeting to compensate Mr. Jefferson for his amazingness.

Blessings again and again for a Happy Healthy 2017 for all of us!

Elisa Beck:)
LIKE Sustainable Monroeville on Facebook!


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

We LOVE YOU Royal Dutch Shell and our Regenerative Spirit Meeting and Name Change on Monday, January 9, 2017 at 7:00 PM

What, we LOVE YOU, Royal Dutch Shell? Yes, we do! Why? I have taken to saying thank you each (spell check changed each to ouch!) and every time I use or wear a piece of plastic or something that has plastic in it. Like what? The plastic Apple keypad I'm typing on, the coating on the zipper on the jacket I'm wearing. The table my computer rests on. The pen sitting on my desk, the cover of the holiday cards I sent out, and the list goes on and on. I've taken to saying Thank You Shell each and every time I throw away a piece of plastic....a plastic bag, a plastic carry out food container.
The first job we have is to raise our awareness about how plasticized our entire culture has become...., thank Shell for this plastic production, and then as we shift into the REGENERATIVE Future which is NOW, we will see clearly what our work is.

We have the technologies for our Regenerative Future. WE MUST HAVE the WILL AS WELL. So let's get this party started with the New Year of 2017, with Joy, Gratitude, and most of all Deep Deep Compassion for ourselves and for all others, including Royal Dutch Shell for providing us with the now old and outdated technology called "Cracker" Plants and Plastic Production. From now on, Shell will be researching and Producing our Regenerative Future as Collaborators with those of us who know how! Let's Go!

Happy New Year y'all. May we be blessed in this coming year with an instantaneous shift towards our REGENERATIVE FUTURE NOW! Not simply Sustainability, but Regeneration! The next meeting of Sustainable/Regenerative Monroeville (name change budding:) will be on Monday evening, January 9, 2017 in the downstairs program room of the Monroeville Public Library at 7:00 PM. We'll be welcoming in the New Year with a Regeneration of the Spirit Yoga Gathering and Regenerative Intentions Session that we'll all participate in facilitated by the founder of Regenerative Monroeville, Elisa Beck. Free and Open to all...Donations graciously accepted to be donated to a charity of our choice :) 
Wear loose comfortable clothing, and bring along a Yoga Mat if you'd like to join us on the floor! :)

Mark your calendar for Wednesday, January 11, 2017 at 6:00 PM and plan to make your voice heard with your opinion of the proposed Shell Oil "Cracker" Plant at the next Potter Township government meeting in Monaca, PA. Carpools will be happening. If you are leaving from Monroeville and would like to carpool, contact us at sustainablemonroeville@gmail.com

Blessings and more Blessings for all of us in this amazing New Year! Here's a BIG toast with wheat grass juice to our Regenerative, Resilient Future NOW!

Elisa Beck:)
sustainablemonroeville@gmail.com (yup, the old name is still in the logo and e-mail.....ya know any graphic artists who'd like to help out for updates?!:)

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Free Spirit Yoga and Great Intentions Setting on Monday, January 9, 2017. :) You Are Invited!

Happy New Year y'all. May we be blessed in this coming year with an instantaneous shift towards our REGENERATIVE FUTURE NOW! Not simply Sustainability, but Regeneration! The next meeting of Sustainable/Regenerative Monroeville (name change budding:) will be on Monday evening, January 9, 2017 in the downstairs program room of the Monroeville Public Library at 7:00 PM. We'll be welcoming in the New Year with a Regeneration of the Spirit Yoga Gathering and Regenerative Intentions Session that we'll all participate in facilitated by the founder of Regenerative Monroeville, Elisa Beck. Free and Open to all...Donations graciously accepted to be donated to a charity of our choice :) 
Wear loose comfortable clothing, and bring along a Yoga Mat if you'd like to join us on the floor! :)

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Our Regenerative Future Musings, Thanks, and Happy December y'all! :)

Hello there and Happy December from all of us at Sustainable Monroeville! Sustainable Monroeville meets the first Monday evening of the month in the downstairs program room of the Monroeville Public Library. Be sure to check this blog regarding specific meeting dates. Meetings are free and open to the public.

We are excited as we move farther into the 2000's. Happy 2017 everybody! This will be a year of Collaboration and Action. A year of knowing we are going to create this New Economy and New Earth with one another. How exciting! Thanks and Blessings to Lois Drumheller, former Monroeville Councilwoman who hatched the Monroeville Food Garden a number of years ago that supplied 500 pounds of fresh produce to four local food banks for three years. Thanks to Jeff Newman and Elizabeth Lynch for consulting on the design of the garden. Thanks again to Lois Drumheller for turning the garden for the past few years into a pollinator garden for birds, bees, butterflies and beyond, knowing the vegetable garden can come back any season once we have a few more volunteers lined up. How about it Mr. Pottinger at Gateway High School?! Thanks to all of the wonderful volunteers and speakers that have graced us with your presence over the past seven years. Thanks to Pam Barroso for working on the Monroeville  Certified Sustainable Community piece. We still have a long way to go on that one, so if you or anyone you know is interested in spearheading that effort, we will be grateful! Contact us at sustainablemonroeville@gmail.com.

Thanks to all of you who attended our December 2016 meeting. The whole food plant based pot luck dinner was absolutely delicious! Thanks Adam Tuznik of Clean Water Action for educating us about all of the projects Clean Water Action is involved in and about the issues occurring in Potter Township, Beaver County, PA one half hour north of Pittsburgh, PA and sharing the same AIRSHED as Pittsburgh regarding the proposed Shell Oil Petrochemical "Cracker" Plant. Comments regarding this project and the AIR and WATER permits can be made until December 26 and submitted to Nora Alwine, the Social Justice Coordinator at the PA DEP office in Homestead. Go to the Clean Water Action web site for submission details.

We continue to embrace these challenging times as a gift from the universe. There can be dissonance as with paradigm shifting and change comes shifting energy.
Some observations about technologies from the 1900's that seem to be lingering....On a recent visit to Beaver County, PA about seven miles from the proposed Cracker site also along the Ohio River we came upon the Shippingport Community Park just across the street from stacks from one of the chemical plants and the cooling towers of the Shippingport Nuclear Power Plant.

This playground is adjacent or perhaps part of the Shippingport Community Park. The playground has a CLOSED sign on the very tall fence surrounding it. We wonder why this playground is closed? Could it be that the area is too toxic for children to play in the smokey clouds of two chemical plants and a nuclear power plant?


The image on the sign of the Shippingport Community Park includes the nuclear power plant cooling tower in the scene. The playground on this site is closed. We wonder why?

The view from the park entrance.

When is the last time you took a field trip? I've been told we've probably taken enough field trips to Potter township this past month, yet I feel deep in my heart and soul, we are just beginning to get to know our northern neighbors. Take a look at the PublicHerald.org website to learn about what is going on with the PA DEP regarding the Marcellus Shale Industry and water pollution in our area in Western Pennsylvania. Two investigative reporters analyzed complaints that have come in to the DEP since 2010 and their observations have been eye opening to say the least.  Take a look at the PA DEP web site and look at the documents Shell Oil has submitted to the PA DEP for approval. Beware, you may be astounded. I certainly was even after spending three days and many hours in hearings and field trips to Potter Township this past month. The old paradigm corridor in Beaver Township must be a thing of the past. Moving into the Regenerative Restorative future, let's work together to forge, to reacquaint ourselves with Panchamama, Mother Earth. We are a part of nature, no longer apart from nature.

As we move into 2017, may we all be blessed with abundant health and wellness and the ability to understand that for the near future we must all be detoxifying our inner ecosystems on a daily basis as our outer ecosystem here in Western PA, aka the "environment" is way more polluted than we realize. Here in Western PA, some types of Air and Water pollution have been reduced, but there is so much more to do. So, the addition of another polluting plant, the one being PROPOSED by Royal Dutch Shell, one that would be the largest in North America, is not part of the Regenerative, Restorative equation.

May we all have the intestinal fortitude to feel all we are grateful for deeply and to work together as we move into 2017 :)

Blessings and More Blessings,

Elisa Beck :)
Sustainable Monroeville, Founder
LIKE Sustainable Monroeville on Facebook!


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

PROPOSED Shell Oil Cracker Plant DEP Permit Hearing Meeting: December 15, 2016 PA DEP meeting and So Many Thanks!

We are so blessed to live in Western PA. The landscape of our region is naturally beautiful. We enjoy the benefits of a city with the charm of many, many small towns and friendly people in and surrounding Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. We are blessed. My family is blessed. We are healthy, vital and all participate fully in life!

Within our blessings there is some dissonance. Perhaps I notice this dissonance a bit more, as I am not a Western PA native. I was born in Washington D.C. and grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland, a suburb of the D.C. area. I've lived in Western PA for my whole married life, that's 26 years. I've chosen to let loose and talk about what I've been feeling. Juxtaposed with the beauty within us and surrounding us is a veil. Just below the veil sits not only a legacy of raped land and waters and surely raped people. That legacy has not ended. It is happening in the present moment and is real right now. It is still happening today and we are all to some degree unknowing participants. We sit and stand in the same room as others disassociated from our fellow human beings while focussing on our electronic devices. We forget about the beauty and necessity of simply BEING in the landscape, the great outdoors and we stay inside for most of our days. We are addicted to oil and gas. We drive our cars, fly in planes, wear plastic vegan shoes and clothing, eat meat, chicken, fish, and dairy foods. We poop and pee into a piped system that was designed a long time ago and does not work. It carries what leaves our bodies away, away into the rivers. What is away anyway? We're about to support a billions of dollars new "pipe" system to comply with a consent decree that makes no sense in our new world.

Our new world? What do you mean by that? We are living at this moment in time at the end of a 26,000 year cycle. The end of the Mayan calendar and the end of many eras according to many spiritual and religious traditions. We have the opportunity right NOW to shift our awareness and consciousness in ways that were not possible at other times in history or herstory.

We have the opportunity to change the story to one of complete gratitude, peace, and abundance. The opportunity to repair the world beginning with ourselves, our own inner ecosystems and working outward into our landscape. Some of us are BEING the CHANGE we with to see in this world NOW!
How? Glad you asked!

We are beginning to connect the dots in the Pittsburgh region. Those of us who have been working under the radar, away from what some could consider 'real' jobs, outside of the institutions of health care, education and government, those of us who have been working on Transition Town (check out Rob Hopkins and the Transition Town Movement he spearheaded in Totnes, England in 2005, perhaps the white man and women's version of re-discovering all of our indigenous roots?!:) projects are arriving. A few of these projects I have been directly facilitating. Two example projects are Sustainable Monroeville (sustainablemonroeville.blogspot.com) and the Schwartz Living Market (http://1317eastcarson.blogspot.com out of which has just hatched the For One Peace Artist Cooperative) process. These Transition Town, Regenerative, Independent processes along with other processes in the area after about six years have reached critical mass and are bearing fruit. Greg Boulos and his wife's Blackberry Meadows Farm are producing fresh Community Supported Agriculture for community and teaching people how to grow their own food. Mark Dixon of YERT.org fame has been active in numerous projects in the region including creating a film for Rachel Carson's 50th Anniversary last year with Mayor of Forest Hills' Patricia de Marco. Jeff Newman has started a cooperative called Steel City Soils in Braddock, PA and is demonstrating how organic produce can be turned into the best black gold there is on the planet! Kate O'Brien is showing how that black gold compost is used on a private Mckeesrocks, PA household lawn to grow some of the largest and most productive gardens including the most enormous sunflowers I ever did see! Maren Cooke's monthly Sustainability Salons just keep getting better and better and are educating more and more people about our Regenerative Future. Many more examples are exploding all around the Pittsburgh region!

And we are figuring out as a culture how to move beyond our addictions and heal from the inside out.  As a neurodevelopmental optometrist specializing in optometric vision therapy, I understand deeply what is transpiring and what is possible with the WILL of our Human Spirit, and I am super excited about this moment in time as we are lifting the veil of dis-ease and morphing ourselves and the planet into the EDEN our planet is!

What is the secret? Positivity! Centering in our hearts, taking care of ourselves in ways we used to think were selfish, and sharing all we can with others all the time. That's it. That simple. That profound!

And now the deep, deep thanks for what is happening now to those that continue in the trenches for the short term. We'll shift now to work with one another on a major issue in this Western PA region. A situation that is about to transform our region into a true REGENERATIVE town!

Thank You Matt Mehalik, formerly of Sustainable Pittsburgh for organizing the meeting in Beaver County PA on Thursday evening, December 1, 2016 regarding the PROPOSED Shell Oil "Cracker" Plant where 150 concerned citizens met in Beaver County to hear many amazing speakers and see a documentary on how this type of plant affects community.  Two amazing women spoke from their hearts about Cancer Alley, Louisiana where there is a "Cracker" Plant.  We learned that this Cracker Plant proposal for Beaver county, PA is NOT a done deal. In other words, this plant does NOT need to be constructed and may not be constructed even as Shell Oil acts as if the installation of this plant is inevitable. We learned that what the industry tells us is not the truth. We also heard some of the facts from Clean Water Action's Adam Tuznik. Thank You! Go to CleanWaterAction.org to the PA tab for updates on Actions.

 Thank you Nora Alwine of the PA Department of Environmental Protection for answering a few questions related to the proposed Shell Oil Ethane "Cracker" Plant one half hour north of Pittsburgh, PA in Beaver County, Potter Township at the intersection of Routes 376 and 18. Thanks for being available for questions at 412-442-4137 or nalwine@pa.gov. Thanks for providing the contact information for both the Water and Air Permit reviewers for this proposed site. The Water Permit Reviewer is Ryan Decker, rydecker@pa.gov, 412-442-4144. The Air Permit Reviewer is Alan Binder, 412-442-4168 ABinder@pa.gov.

One or more permits have been issued and Shell Oil is now going for an amendment to the current permit which will allow them to construct the Cracker Plant on the designated site in Potter. It is VERY IMPORTANT that ALL of us (yes that means YOU as you are reading this article!! :) attend the DEP of PA Hearing on this issue Thursday, December 15, 2016. SAVE the time between 5:00 PM and 9:00 PM that evening, register with Nora Alwine of the DEP (see contact information above) if you'd like to speak for three minutes, and let's carpool to Beaver County together! Following the meeting on December 15, 2016, there will be a comment period open until December 26, 2016. Yes, right smack in the middle of holiday season!

There is an extensive fact sheet on the PA DEP.PA.gov web site. Follow this trail to get there:
1) Go to the dep.pa.gov web site 2) On the front page of the site, click on Regional Resources 3) Scroll down and click on Southwest Regional 4) Scroll again and click on Community Information 5) Scroll again and click on Shell and you'll see the extensive FACT SHEET describing what Shell Oil is asking for.

Now I will share much of what I plan to say in my testimony at this upcoming DEP Hearing:

Hello Community members and Shell Oil Company members. Thanks for the opportunity to speak to you for a few minutes this evening. I am feeling so blessed that the opportunity has arisen for so much of the community to come together and unify around our Regenerative Future which is NOW! I am feeling so much compassion for all of us and feeling gratefulness to be standing before you. I know how lucky and blessed I am. I juice each and every morning for myself and for my family. It's our morning detox. As we go inside and detoxify our inner ecosystems, our brains and hearts become clearer and we start to understand. I understand why spirit has guided us to visit Beaver, the site of this proposed Shell Cracker plant. The paradigm shift from 1957 when the Shippensport Nuclear Power Plant was installed a few miles up the Ohio River from this former Zinc Smelter Plant Site (that still carries the toxic load of Mercury and Lead) was the Extractive Paradigm. That it's OK to take from (a.k.a. RAPE) the Earth, our Mother, our Mother Earth, and give nothing in return.

As 2016 comes to a close, many of us are waking up in a new reality. At this moment, at this time, we understand Mother Earth, our Mother, is exhausted from being raped so brutally and so consistently. She is ready for deep, deep compassion and deep recovery. All of us are!
Shell Oil executives and workers who have so carefully prepared the infrastructure for this proposed   plant. Thank You! Mother Earth has a Regenerative, Rejeuvenative proposal for you. Employ yourselves and your workers in the Regenerative, Rejeuvenative business of the NEW EARTH. Give back more than you take. Double the number of workers to 12,000 people who will be permanently employed at the site of this former Zinc Smelter Plant.  Replace the Cracker Plant plans with a REGENERATIVE Plant that will produce energy in a REGENERATIVE WAY and restore the Earth in its operation. Build a LIVING BUILDING CHALLENGE Campus on that 400 acre site. Use all of the locals who have built or are registered to build Living Buildings in Pittsburgh such as The Center for Sustainable Living and the SEED classroom at Phipps Conservatory, the Frick Environmental Center and The Schwartz Living Market as resources in the Pittsburgh region. Teach your workers Permaculture, teach them how to take care of themselves from the inside out. Teach them both inner ecosystem cleansing, outer ecosystem (air, water, spirit, emotional clarity) cleansing and then maintenance to show the planet how one of the most toxic places on Planet Earth can not only be restored to its original beautifully magnificent self, but can exceed everyone's wildest expectations and become the EDEN inside and out that we were all meant to be in amazing cooperative, collaborative  and regenerative community. Thank you Shell Oil for giving us this opportunity for paradigm shifting just upstream from the POINT~ the sacred union of the Four Rivers in Pittsburgh, PA. So many of us are so very excited! May we all be blessed as we work together as ONE!~:)