Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Democrat/Gazette December 21, 2009, editorial advocating saving sale-barn land for Fayetteville National Cemetery pleases majority of veterans and neighbors, but the problem is that saving Town Branch homeowners from flooding downhill from the cemetery is still being ignored: VA already at work preparing to dredge and fill wetland and pipe stormwater directly to Hill Avenue and thus to the 11th Street bridge on the Town Branch

Please click on individual photos to ENLARGE view of wetland area along the north edge of the Fayetteville National Cemetery being prepared for dredging and filling for grave sites. The depressional wetland developed over centuries because it is above a bedrock karst area where groundwater sinks into the underground caverns and aquifers and reduces surface-water flooding. When it is piped to the Town Branch it will further aggravate the flooding danger between Ellis and Van Buren avenues already created by the University of Arkansas' failure properly to manage stormwater on the campus and by paving and development along Martin Luther King Boulevard and on the Aspen Ridge/Hill Place project.

Save acres for vets

Now buy the land for the cemetery

Monday, December 21, 2009
LITTLE ROCK — LIKE WARM Arkansas Christmases, dry eyes after It’s a Wonderful Life, and little boys from the Natural State scribbling “LSU gear” on their annual wish lists, some things are just not meant to be. That’s the way it seems with the controversial student apartments that apparently won’t be built in south Fayetteville. You know, where Washington County’s historic livestock auction house operated until June.
A lawsuit that sought to override the city’s denial of a rezoning request seems to be kaput. Campus Crest developers of North Carolina wanted to buy the property from the auction house’s owner, Bill Joe Bartholomew, and build 500 apartments on the property. But the drawn-out legal ordeal surrounding this purchase became just too much to bear. Mr. Bartholomew now wants his suit dismissed.
The proposed sale to Campus Crest became a flashpoint for veterans and others last summer. They wanted to secure the site across Government Avenue from the city’s National Cemetery so they might preserve the sacred nature of that location. They basically argued that more student apartments in an overbuilt Fayetteville wasn’t an appropriate use of the land. They had a point. The former auction barn parcel does provide an ideally located space to enlarge this rapidly filling cemetery.
Fayetteville’s council denied Mr. Bartholomew’s request to rezone his property. The rezoning would have sealed the sale and enabled Campus Crest to purchase and develop the property. That’s when Mr. Bartholomew filed his suit against the city.

This latest development means the corporation that oversees the cemetery’s operation, Congress, the national office of Veteran’s Affairs, and veterans’ organizations need to find a way to purchase this property. The space needs to be preserved and protected as a final resting place for our veterans in the decades to come.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

CCTF meeting at 1 p.m. December 20, 2009

CCTF Meeting from 1-3pm Today.‏
From: joanna pollock (ggg73@hotmail.com)
Sent: Sun 12/20/09 9:43 AM
To: liz@1sky.org; gillian@1sky.org; alex@1sky.org

Good Morning! Join us at the OMNI house at 3274 Lee Street in Fayetteville from 1-3pm (we will adjourn earlier if possible). Robert McAfee will briefly share the importance of climate change preparedness. Ryan Denham will share the main talking points and action items from 1sky. Jacob Holloway will address agriculture and the importance of organic farming for sustainable living. Nick Brown will share outcomes from the 25x25 meeting in Little Rock and news from the CEW campaign. Please join us if you can and carpool as much as possible. We need your help to make this movement strong so organizers are not just talking to each other.

See below the 1sky press release from founder Gillian Caldwell.

Joanna Pollock
Climate Change Task Force, OMNI
Climate Precinct Captain, 1sky

World Leaders Fail to Deliver a Critically Needed Deal to Tackle Global Warming
1Sky Campaign Calls for Climate Leadership from Obama and the U.S. Senate
December 19, 2009
Contact: Liz Butler; (202) 487-4908, liz@1sky.org
Gillian Caldwell; (202) 446-8811, gillian@1sky.org
As the United Nations climate change talks in Copenhagen staggered on, it became clear that they will conclude without reaching the bold and binding global agreement needed to stave off climate catastrophe. In response, 1Sky Campaign Director Gillian Caldwell called upon President Obama and the U.S. Senate to lead by ensuring the passage of bold and comprehensive climate and clean energy legislation as soon as possible.
“Events continue to unfold as we speak, but it is clear that the Copenhagen talks will not result in the fair, ambitious, and binding global treaty that the world desperately needs,” said Caldwell. “The 1Sky campaign pushed hard for President Obama to join the Copenhagen negotiations and we were pleased that he did, but unfortunately the proposals offered by the Obama Administration fell short of what was needed. The hopes of grassroots advocates and civil society leaders for a successful outcome have been dashed largely because the U.S. has yet to take bold action to tackle the climate challenge.”
“Our work is clearly not done yet -- the science calls for much more urgent action than what we’ve seen to date, and President Obama has acknowledged that,” Caldwell continued. “Delay only benefits the fossil fuel industries that are reaping record profits while destroying our future. We call upon President Obama and the Senate to take bold action as soon as possible in 2010 to secure our future.”
1Sky and its many partners in the growing movement for real climate solutions had flagged three key points to determine whether the Obama Administration’s efforts in Copenhagen could be deemed a success:
Acknowledging U.S. responsibility for climate change by making substantial financial investments in the transition;
Setting goals for short term emission reductions that are consistent with science;
Using the prominence of the Copenhagen conference to push the U.S. Senate for real action in the coming months.
Caldwell noted that the U.S. Senate’s failure to pass a strong climate bill in 2009 presented a significant roadblock to progress in Copenhagen. “Every day the U.S. Senate delays undermines the U.S.’s negotiating position and diminishes our potential to lead the way in the clean energy economy of the future,” Caldwell said. “President Obama must step up to the challenge and rally the American public behind bold climate legislation and secure a strong bill from the U.S. Senate. The longer we wait, the worse it gets: the International Energy Agency tells us that every year of delay costs $500 billion.”
Caldwell called for the U.S. to significantly increase its weak proposed emissions reduction of 4% below 1990 levels by 2020, which falls far short of scientific recommendations of 40% reductions. She also called upon the U.S. to ensure significant investments in international climate finance. “The most vulnerable communities need clean pathways out of poverty and humanitarian assistance for climate disruption that they did little to cause,” said Caldwell. “Financial commitments from developed nations are essential to ensure our national and global security, to boost our economy by opening up new clean energy markets and partnerships, and to ensure that poor nations can adapt to climate change while developing sustainably.”
“The Copenhagen talks failed to produce the substantive outcomes the world desperately needs. We are more determined than ever to secure strong U.S. climate legislation and a fair, ambitious and binding global treaty,” Caldwell concluded. “More than 12 million people across the world, including 600,000 in the U.S., raised their voices for strong action before and during the conference. This rapidly growing global grassroots movement will not be denied. We won’t stop short of the real solutions that science and justice demand.”
1Sky is a collaborative national campaign for strong federal action to tackle global climate change and invest in building the clean energy economy of the future. As one of the largest national campaigns in the country, 1Sky combines the force of 540 allied organizations, 184,000 committed climate advocates, 3,300 volunteer Climate Precinct Captains covering more than 394 congressional districts in 50 states, and a team of 43 including 33 organizers in 23 states working to mobilize constituent support.
For more information on 1Sky contact Alex Posorske at (301) 270-4550 x230 or Alex@1sky.org

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1Sky Campaign Director Gillian Caldwell on Copenhagen

Friday, December 18, 2009


Greetings on this last day of the Copenhagen "negotiations." We are at a pivotal point in human history. We have actually reached a precipice of fundamental social change largely due to unjust global economic practices that have been escalating since the industrial revolution. What I am speaking of in the simplest of terms is a fundamental characteristic of human nature, albeit in varying degrees from person to person. That quality is Greed.

I speak boldly today because this is a moment of chairos in each of our lives. Climate change is the global ecological outcome of social injustice. Social injustice is inherently ecological because the earth is the source of our resources. Don't misunderstand me, I am not blaming or suggesting maliciousness by any given society. I am speaking of something insidious we will all need to join together as a human people to remedy. We shall see by tomorrow morning, but citizens may need to take the lead.

Regardless, of what world leaders do or do not do, lifestyles, as we have known them will be transformed. Those of us in nations that have over-consumed resources, needed to sustain life on our planet, will begin to notice droughts, floods, severe storms and mass migrations like we have not known before. Many nations of the global South already do experience those daily. The way we produce food and what many of us eat will eventually change.

Leaders of the global South are telling us that bribery and the failed debt programs of the past (IMF) will not work this time. The global South is already feeling the outcomes of a warming earth and will continue to feel them more severely at first. Scientist tell us that they will reach the North. (the Union of Concerned Scientist and the IPCC report of 2007 are excellent resources).

What else am I talking about though? I am really joining in the discussion regarding cultural transformation. The best part of this transformation is that it will actually make us in the more “developed” nations healthier, emotionally, spiritually and physically. Recently I was speaking with a female friend from the Middle East, who has lived in the states for sometime, and we agreed that all cultures have illness. Cultural sickness is generally symptomatic through various forms of oppression. In the United States we are oppressed by corporate socialism (not true capitalism) and his little sister consumerism. We are socialized to believe that we need more stuff and that our value as people is measured by the amount of stuff we can accumulate. Our culture tells us that without the accumulation of luxury and things (and yes cheap food) then we cannot be happy. But what is the more difficult challenge is that our infrastructure makes it difficult to survive without burning fossil fuels.

Humans want their basic needs met and they want community, family and to contribute to their tribe creatively. People want to be accepted by those they love. They want to be appreciated and encouraged. These are the “things” that actually give us a sense of well-being.

Some of you know I am studying counseling to specialize in eco-therapy, but also because I believe as we see more disasters, crisis counselors will be greatly needed. I only hope I can finish fast enough!

Bottomline: We are going to have to reduce our emissions, which will take lifestyle change. Will our local, state and especially federal government help us by creating the green economy and infrastructure we really need? We can only keep telling them to do just that. In the meantime, we can start to revolutionize our own lives and help each other do it. I know I need a lot of help! Making these changes isn’t easy and we all start at varying baselines.

The G-77 (I prefer to think of them as the lower emitters per capita and there are actually 134 of them) is asking the global North leaders to reduce our emissions by 45-60% so that they can go on living. The G-77 comprises 80% of the world population according to Ambassador Lumumba Stanislaus D-Aping. He also reminds us that we are ultimately one human family. See:

Ironically I feel the need to quote John Locke today. “All mankind…being all equal and independent no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty or possessions.” Well, that is precisely what NAFTA and CAFTA have done. Now the global South is calling us on our “Climate Debt.” Climate debt is what many of the global South believe we owe them for our disproportionate release of green house gas emissions that is wreaking ecological havoc on them already. They don't want our money. They want us to live in respect of their rights and the planet we all share.

Greed does not just harm those it directly denies. Greed hurts us all.

Can you feel it? The tide is turning.

I hope you will join us at the CCTF meeting on Sunday (December 20th) from 1pm-3pm at the new OMNI house 3274 Lee Street in Fayetteville. Dr. Nick Brown with the Clean Energy Works campaign will join us to give us an update on the 25x25 meeting that occurred in Little Rock this week. He will also bring suggestions of how we can more effectively work together to mitigate climate change.

Other topics we will cover:
· After Copenhagen, Where do WE go from here?
· Why organic farming matters.
· Lifestyle changes we are making and more that can be made to improve quality of life and reduce emissions.
· Preparation for the inevitable impacts of a world with already 390 parts per million.
· Progress of current, awareness raising projects: The book forum, counter tea-bagging literature.

Joining together and doing what we can no matter how big or how small is good for our health. Life is short. We improve the quality of our lives by helping one another wrestle with the anxieties these overwhelming social and ecological realities can give us. We would love for you to come talk with us.

Do NOT miss the interview Amy Goodman gives us with the Bolivian president, Evo Morales. (http://www.democracynow.org/2009/12/17/bolivian_president_evo_morales_on_climate)

I have watched several world leaders speaking on these issues online and in my opinion no one captures these broad, sweeping human realities better than President Evo Morales. In general eye-opening footage of COP-15 at www.democracynow.org/

If you have time let me know if you can attend our meeting. Thanks so much and I do hope you enjoy your winter solstice. Thank you for letting me share my thoughts with you.


Joanna Pollock
Climate Change Task Force Facilitator, OMNI
Climate Precinct Captain, 1sky

World water supply subject of video underground for December 27, 2009

Video Underground
is happy to share an evening with you to watch
a film that makes and in depth analysis of the
the responsibilities and injustices surrounding the ownership of world water supplies, as well as the conflicts caused:
Blue Gold
Sunday-- December 27at 7 p.m., 2009
at the
OMNI Center for Peace Justice & Ecology
Bennet House
3274 NORTH LEE AVENUE in Fayetteville
next to Nibbles Academy of Cooking


Video Underground meets the second and fourth Sundays of the month. Offered by members of the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice & Ecology.
Donations provide refreshments and carbon offsets.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sustainable-lighting ceremony in Springdale canceled for tonight


I just spoke with Ben Davenport of Sierra Club who informed me that the renewable energy tree lighting service scheduled for the Episcopal church in Springdale for tonight at 5:30pm has been CANCELED. Unfortunately transportation for the renewable energy equipment fell through at the last minute. Please forward or otherwise communicate this to anyone you know who may have been planning to attend who may not be on the CCTF listserve. Thank YOU!

Joanna Pollock
CCTF Facilitator, Omni

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Fasting activists inspiring others in Copenhagen to hang tough and demand Climate Justice NOW!

"I support Climate Justice Fast!" sent you a message on Facebook...‏
From: Facebook (notification+pu1pu1md@facebookmail.com)
Sent: Sun 12/13/09 4:23 PM
To: Aubrey James Shepherd (aubreyshepherd@hotmail.com)
Anna C Keenan sent a message to the members of I support Climate Justice Fast!

Subject: Hunger for Survival - Thursday 17 December 2009

Hello, Climate Justice Fast supporters,


During the COP15 conference, the Climate Justice Fast here in Copenhagen has inspired people around the world to higher levels of activism, and has generated a huge number of media hits from Turkey to Japan to Greece to Korea and all around the world!

Due to the inspiration that the fasters have provided to - in particular - the 1000-strong youth activist contingent at the conference, the youth groups and a number of large environmental organisations have decided that they would like to invite their members to fast for one day - THIS THURSDAY 17 DECEMBER - in support of the CJF, and solidarity with the millions who have and will lose their lives due to the preventable and involuntary hunger, disease and conflict resulting from climate change.

We have created a facebook event here - sign up if you are willing to join the day of fasting and reflection: http://www.facebook.com/anna.c.keenan?ref=profile#/event.php?eid=227106867068&ref=mf

Many notable climate and sustainability leaders, including Vandana Shiva, will also be joining in this fast and moral call.

“If not us then who, and if not now then when?”

One day before the Heads of State arrive to finalise the deal in Copenhagen, we are calling for all people, everywhere across the world, to join a single global day of fasting – voluntarily going without food – and personal reflection on the climate crisis, and what we as humanity need to do to solve it.

Commit to join the day of fasting by joining this facebook event - and inviting all of your friends!


Now, we must be done with trying to persuade politicians with debates and intellectual argument. They have heard it all already. Now they face a decision about what is simply morally right.

On Thursday 17th December, we will therefore not yell, but instead quiet our voices and raise up our hearts in silence, not telling our leaders what they should do, but instead use the historically symbolic and powerful act of the fast to ask our leaders to reflect on the gravity of the choices they are about to make.


*** UPDATE on the fasters ***

Sara Svensson, Anna Keenan and Paul Connor are all now on the 39th day of their fast, having started on the 6th of November. Matthieu Balle, a solar panel installer from Paris who joined us immediately after hearing about us on French radio, is now reaching his 22nd day. Daniel Lau and Michael Morphett have both bravely decided to end their fasts, following medical advice, after both passing 30 days without food - a heroic feat.

The fasters are all in high spirits and good health, and are under appropriate medical supervision.


CCTF meeting reset for December 20, 2009; Climate Change vigil participants appreciated

CCTF Tentative Meeting for Today Cancelled.‏
From: joanna pollock (ggg73@hotmail.com)
Sent: Sun 12/13/09 11:30 AM
To: ryan bancroft (rpbancroft@gmail.com)


We will not have our meeting today, but rather Sunday the 20th from 1:30-3pm at the New Omni House, 3274 Lee Avenue.

Thanks to everyone who came out of the 350.org/1sky/CCTF climate change vigil on Friday night. Even though our toes almost froze off, we had a meaningful time together and we were one of 3000 such vigils around the world! Way to go CCTF! Thank you Ryan Denham for your diligence in planning and publicizing this worthwhile event. (Donna, you sure can put out a fire in a dixie cup!)

Copenhagen talks continue and I am sure you have seen the protests of island nations like Tuvalu. Good article at Now Public:


Richer nations want other nations to have emission caps, but some of those countries want the "developed" nations to do more, since they are using more than their share already. Here is a quote from a report of The Daily Climate from Chinese Ambassador Qingtai Yu:

"Despite all this broad range of proposals ... it boils down to one issue quite clearly: this emissions space – whether as human beings we are all entitled to the same amount of emissions space. For developed countries, when it comes to emissions space, their fundamental position is 'what is mine is mine, but what I've taken away from you I've got to keep.' For us, the developing countries, our position is our emissions space is under occupation, and we want it back."

Next week we will discuss our achievements of the past month, discuss progress on ongoing projects, such as, the book forum and the counter-literature campaign. We will discuss our role with the CEW (Clean Energy Works) campaign and whether to be more involved with CEW.

Fresh task ideas are welcome at CCTF so we can better do our part to raise consciousness and sequester green house gases! No fresh ideas? That's alright, come and participate in discussion and evaluation.

Thanks to everyone for your passion and involvement with CCTF.


Joanna Pollock
Climate Change Task Force Facilitator, Omni
Climate Precinct Captain, 1sky

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Audubon Arkansas open house from 4 to 7 p.m. today; Environmental Action Committee at 5:30 p.m. in Room 326 of city hall

Audubon Arkansas open house from 4 to 7 p.m. today; Environmental Action Committee at 5:30 p.m. in Room 326 of city hall
The Holiday Season is a busy time so here's a little reminder about our Holiday Open House! If you have not yet RSVP'd don't forget to drop us a line and let us know your are coming! We are looking forward to seeing everyone there!

Please Join Us

Thursday, December 10, 2009
From 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at
34 East Center Street
Fayetteville, Arkansas

For the
Audubon Arkansas
Holiday Open House

The staff and board of Audubon Arkansas invite you to join us for food, refreshments, conversation and conservation. Spouses, children, and friends welcome.
Please RSVP to mviney@audubon.org
Wishing You Happy Holidays!!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Vigil Friday night

Copenhagen Conference is under way. The people of the earth hold their breath, waiting and praying for world leaders to find wisdom through the coming days. Join OMNI, 1Sky, and others for this vigil of hope.
Gladys Tiffany

--- On Mon, 12/7/09, joanna pollock wrote
At the behest of our great ally Bill McKibben of 350.org, the OMNI Center's Climate Change Task Force & 1Sky Arkansas are collaborating to bring a meaningful candle light vigil to our community on Friday, Dec 11th- 7pm at the Fayetteville Town Square near the Towncenter's Peace Fountain. The vigil will feature speakers & a moment of silence for the current & future victims of climate change throughout the world.
Please join us for this commemoration to those of us already suffering the outcomes of climate change, such as, West Africa, the Phillipines, Thailand and the Gulf of Mexico, just to name a few. There will be vigils around the world on December the 11th. These vigils call attention to the global citizens' cry to our global leaders in Copenhagen. This cry is for decisive, compassionate, bold objectives that will protect humanity's future. We can't afford to compromise for the benefit of the fossil fuel industry's bottomline.
Climate change is a social justice and a peace issue. We will share the light of our candles symbolizing our shared global future and...shared hope.
Joanna Pollock
Climate Change Task Force, Omni
Climate Precinct Captain, 1sky

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Greetings CCTF,

The Climate Conference in Copenhagen is from 12/6-12/18...so we sure don't have long before the world leaders will really be starting the process towards...what? Sustainable social systems for the whole planet? Well, let's hope so.

If you want to show your support for strong climate action in public policy the world over...then you CAN rally tomorrow with other passionate folks that want to keep our climate human friendly! (and other creatures too!)

From 12-1PM in front of Blanche Lincoln's office (4 South College Ave.)
Bring a sign or just show up!
Wear warm clothes for a rare cold day in December.

Let's try to have our next CCTF meeting on December 13th from 1-2:30pm at the Omni House if available and feasible for enough of us. Let me know how this date/time is for you.

I participated on the CEW call today, which is always informative about all the Climate Actions going on by activists around the state from grassroots to grasstops! On December 17th in Little Rock there will be a significant meeting of agricultural and energy business representatives, as well as, environmental advocates. Our allys Ken Smith of Audubon and Nick Brown of the University of Arkansas are both speakers. I will send more later.

OH, let me share this announcement. During the Copenhagen meeting, there will be a need for people who are willing to conduct quick, immediate actions...like calling our senator. This is because as negotiations reach significant milestones in the process there could be a need for politicians to hear from citizens. And..even if they aren't listening, we still need our message to be down in human history records. 1sky is providing guidance for this process (called Rapid Responder) so if anyone that would like to serve in this important capacity during the treaty negotiations...Please call Ryan Denham. This is a great way for CCTF members to get involved in a meaningful way to keep our climate the way we like it. Ryan Denhams's 1sky number is: 479-685-4348.

Just a quick reminder too about the candlelight vigil on December the 11th from 7-8pm by the Kaminsky Peace Sculpture outside in the Townscenter Plaza. Bring a candle or two and an open heart for the global South. We will commemorate the struggles that are already escalating for them because of climate change. This is also encouragement to regional and world leaders to do the right thing in Copenhagen to protect the people they represent and one another.

And I save the best for last:
Please watch this important speech from Annie Leonard. I promise it will enrich your life.
(Thank you Dr. Nick Brown).


Joanna Pollock

Climate Change Task Force Facilitator, OMNI

Climate Precinct Captain, 1sky


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