February 2018    
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In This Issue


 
Advocacy Update

1/8/18 Joined Food & Water Action and many other environmental organizations in a sign-on letter to Endorse the Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act ( HR3671) Summary: The sign on letter supports the OFF Act to place a moratorium on new fossil fuel projects and move our electricity and most transportation systems to 100% renewable energy by 2035. It would also provide for a truly just transition for environmental justice communities and those working in the fossil fuel industry.  View Letter


Nourish: Food + Community
Film of the Month

At RI IPL, we are always adding new films to our Film Lending Library. All of our films are available for member congregations to borrow. Many of them come with discussion notes as well. You can easily bring a movie to your congregation, just contact Kristen Ivy at 

By providing a big-picture view, Nourish reveals the many ways that food connects to our environment, our health, and our communities. Most importantly, Nourish offers specific steps that individuals and groups can take to create a sustainable food future.  Hosted and narrated by Cameron Diaz. Features Michael Pollan, Anna Lappé, Bryant Terry, Dr. Nadine Burke, Jamie Oliver, and Alice Waters.

BOARD of DIRECTORS
 
The Rev. Dr. Anita Schell
Emmanuel Newport
Newport
 
Ray Frackelton, PhD
Newman Congregational
Rumford
 
Marty Davey
St. Gregory the Great
Warwick
 
Christine Muller
Baha ' i Community
Kingston
 
Christine Cassels
St. Luke's
East Greenwich

Sarah Atkins
Emmanuel Newport
Newport
 
The Rev. David Helfer
Unitarian Universalist  
Congregation of
South County
Peace Dale

Steve MacAusland
Emmanuel Newport
Newport

   
STAFF
 
Kristen Ivy Moses
Executive Director
First Unitarian Church
Providence

 

I thank You God for most this amazing  day:
for leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky;
and for everything  which is natural
which is infinite which is yes.
- E.E. Cummings

 

2018 is a year of ACTION. There are many local and national opportunities for you to take part. Over the next few months, there are a lot of environmental events in our little state. On February 20th, RI IPL is co-sponsoring a screening of the documentary Awake: A Dream from Standing Rock. Our Upcoming Events Section highlights several other local events. 

What events is your congregation planning for Faith Climate Action Week and Earth Day? Let us know and we'll share it on our calendar and in our newsletter.  If you'd like to host a film screening, remember that RI IPL members have access to our film library. For Faith Climate Action Week, we recommend Racing Extinction or Beyond The Flood. Contact us to reserve your film.

RI IPL is working with several other local environmental groups to organize the RI Climate Action Summit. The Summit will take place the weekend of September 8th - 9th. We need volunteers to join the planning committee.

Each month our newsletter will offer at least one Advocacy Action Opportunity. This month, we are excited to introduce the Off Fossil Fuels Act.

Here at RI IPL, we have big plans for the upcoming year. We are seeking volunteers to support our vital work. Please join us!
Blessings,
Kristen Ivy Moses
Executive Director
Rhode Island Interfaith Power & Light
Save The Date
 
RI IPL Annual Meeting
featuring The Rev. Dr. Jim Antal
Minister and President of the Massachusetts Conference of the United Church of Christ
Monday, April 16, 2018
6:00 - 8:00 PM
Westminster Unitarian Church
East Greenwich , RI

For more information and to register please CLICK HERE.

Climate Resolutions
By Marty Davey, RI IPL Board Member

Greetings, and Happy New Year!! Yes, I know this is the February 2018 newsletter, but I am writing this in late December. I can't help but be a bit reflective.
My usual resolutions are to eat less junk food and try harder to curb my sharp tongue. (The latter is soooo hard - the junk food thing is easier.) Other than things that I should be able to control, this year I need to think BIG.
Things I can control - that is the key, but it doesn't mean that they are solo endeavors.  Someone wise once said, "Strength in numbers", so, let's think about what we can each do so that our collective impact is BIG.
I've got it! Help us put our strategic plan into action!! (If you haven't read it yet, you can find it HERE.) What, exactly, am I talking about - and what can you do to help make this happen?
1) EDUCATE - We are busy creating new tools for ourselves and our members. These tools will help us educate others on the FACTS about climate change, including the causes, the impacts, the steps individuals can take. This can be a dense, complicated message. It is important to make it as accessible as possible.
Do you have a special skill set in this area to offer? Can you help us design, develop, or edit our content? Do you have ideas on how we can best connect with others, or ways and places in which we can best make ourselves heard? Will you host an event? What do you have to offer that can help educate fellow Rhode Islanders on climate change?
2) GET SERIOUS ABOUT ENERGY EFFICIENCY - Energy efficiency is an ongoing process. Changing your light bulbs to LED, or having a utility program energy audit, is just the beginning. I work in the energy efficient and sustainable building field. It continues to evolve, we continue to learn. One thing that I have learned is that you MUST pay on-going attention because things fall apart. We aim to work with our membership to benchmark their energy use and look for opportunities to save. Houses of worship should always lead by example - and they always need to save money. Faith leaders should invest in energy efficiency in their congregation. Discussing energy efficiency with your congregants will help motivate them to act.
Do you understand how your building(s) should perform energy-wise? Are you good with computers? Data? Can you work with others to track energy efficiency for our member congregations? What can you do to help put your buildings on a carbon diet?
3) GROW OUR MEMBERSHIP - We are a membership organization. It is the people that belong to our member organizations that can take action and make an impact. We offer membership to houses of worship and to individuals - we need both, without a doubt. Most importantly, we need to increase the engagement of our current members. This is among the most serious issues in our lifetime. We need 'all hands-on-deck' to keep the ship from sinking.
Do you know how to run successful membership campaigns? Can you offer your experience to us, even for a short time? Can you simply help us with some of the leg-work?
I am not denigrating the work my fellow board members and our very capable executive director do. We're on task and working hard. But we are always open to new ideas, new involvement, and good old-fashioned help.
So - sum this all up and it pretty much says that this is the year to GET INVOLVED!! There are many ways, both big and small, mundane and creative, one time or on-going. Every bit helps. Do what you can, when you can - and push yourselves a little. Just like you might be doing now in the gym.
Am I a little late with this message? Have you already made your New Year's resolutions? Maybe you have already broken them! Please make room for one more. Let's resolve to work together to make something BIG happen on climate change in Rhode Island. Why do I need to think BIG this year? It's simple - if we don't work our tails off to address climate change now, our future 'New Years' won't be as happy.

CommitteeRI IPL Committee Members Wanted

RI IPL needs your help to broaden our advocacy work, strengthen our education programs, increase our membership base, and further our energy conservation efforts. We are  seeking volunteers to serve on the following committees:
  • Advocacy
  • Education
  • Membership
  • Energy Conservation and Implementation
  • Climate Action Summit Planning Committee
Most commitments run between 5 - 10 hours a month, involve email correspondence and in person participation, depending on the tasks and interest. If you are interested in serving on a committee, please contact Kristen Ivy for committee descriptions and further information.

AdvocacyAdvocacy Action Opportunity
Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act
 
We are so excited about The Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act (HR 3671, Gabbard, HI-02) Link Also known as the OFF Act, the bill is the most aggressive piece of climate legislation ever introduced in Congress . It would place a moratorium on new fossil fuel projects. It would also move our electricity and most transportation systems to 100% renewable energy by 2035 . It would provide a just transition for environmental justice communities .

We need our legislators to be thinking about these issues. We are eager to hear either that they are signing on to the bill, or details about how else they might be leading in the important ways we've outlined .

The latest climate science makes it clear that we need to take bold action in the next ten years if we are to avoid the worst impacts of climate change . This bill sets an aggressive timeline to do that by moving us to 80% renewable energy by 2027 and 100% by 2035. It does this by phasing out all fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure development. It also mandates massive deployment of renewable energy. The OFF Act protects people and communities affected by the existing fossil fuel industry . The act requires that people in affected communities lead the development of clean energy plans and regulations . It also establishes a fair transition fund and workforce development center. These will be funded by closing an offshore tax loophole and repealing federal tax breaks for fossil fuels .

It is often said that the tools to address climate change are available now, all we lack is the political will to act. If we are ever to pass the bold climate solutions we know we need, there's no time to wait. There are millions of lives at stake and serious climate action can't wait. By pushing our members of Congress to sponsor the bill, we build consensus for 100% clean energy by 2035. We also help make moving off fossil fuels a top political issue. Awareness of the bill makes space for further state and local action. For instance, passing strong renewable portfolio standards right here in Rhode Island. Click the button below urge your member of Congress to support and co-sponsor this urgent bill.
 
AwakeAwake: A Dream from Standing Rock
Film Screening, Discussion, and Call to Action



What began in North Dakota has become a worldwide rallying cry of resistance to corporate power... If we are to survive this century, it is the indigenous people who will lead the way forward." James Spione, Co-Director

FREE & Open TO THE PUBLIC
6:00 pm on Tuesday, February 20th (Doors open at 5:30)
The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of South County (UUCSC)
27 North Rd, Peace Dale, RI

Discussion after the film with Standing Rock veterans:
  • John Gonzalez (Taino/Cree) via LiveStream on Standing Bear Network
  • Hartman Deetz (Mashpee/Wampanoag)
  • Christian Hopkins (Narragansett)
  • and Film Co-Director Myron Dewey (Paiute-the Trout Eaters/Shoshone).
Moderated by Lorén Spears (Narragansett) Director of the Tomaquag Museum.

Donations to the Water Protector Legal Collective will be gratefully accepted to help cover legal fees for 300+ Water Protectors who are awaiting trial.

Sponsored by UUCSC Green Task Force
In Partnership with the Tomaquag Museum
Co-Sponsored By Fossil Free RI and
RI Interfaith Power & Light and
the South County Action Team

Contact: Lisa Petrie by Email or phone 401-364-3002

Action Faith Climate Action Week will encompass nine days in April surrounding Earth Day. It will focus on how we can take action to protect our climate. All major faith traditions call on their supporters to be good stewards of Creation. Join IPL in highlighting this calling.

The week's theme Charged with Faith: Leading the way to a clean energy future will include many events. Some examples include celebrations, sermons, service projects, workshops, and nature walks. We will focus on ways we can green our facilities and homes. We will take local action and advocate for positive steps towards a 100% renewable energy future. Join us for a whole week of Creation celebration and carbon-cutting activities.  

To learn more about how you can host a Faith Climate Action Week event at your congregation CLICK HERE.

The Faith Climate Action Kit includes:
  • Prayer Flag Project
  • Postcards to Senators
  • Fact Sheets and organizer guides
  • Action Sheets
  • Photo Project
SIGN-UP now to receive information  on how you can plan for Faith Climate Action Week and take part in urgent actions .

What it means to be a member
of Rhode Island Interfaith Power and Light

RI IPL individual membership involves more than just reading our newsletter and attending our events. Here are 5 simple steps to being an active RI IPL member:
  1. Give  a portion of your financial resources to RI IPL for our vital work. You may give online here, or by check.
    Annual Membership Dues
    Student/limited    income    $30
    Regular  Membership   $50
    Sustaining  Membership   $100
    Sponsoring  Membership   $150-249
    Circle  of  Friends   $250-$999
    Lifetime Membership   $1000+
  2. Pledge Take the RI IPL Membership Pledge to increase your awareness of global climate change. You can download your pledge form here.
  3. Be Aware Stay current with information about the science of climate change and the human role in such change, as it evolves. 
  4. Speak Out Support and advocate for public policies that further these goals and communicate with local, state, and national elected representatives
  5. Take Action Follow through with one or more of the ideas from our pledge sheet. Challenge yourself!
Your support allows us to continue our crucial work. To learn more about the benefits you receive with RI IPL membership click here.
UpcomingEventsUpcoming Events
 
Jan. 31, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM, Providence

Solar Makes Sense!
Jan. 31,  6:00 PM - 7:30 PM,  South Kingstown 

Jan. 31, Live-streamed at 8:00 PM or find a local viewing party

Jan. 31,  7:00 PM, Newport

Feb. 10, 2:00 PM, Providence


Mar. 3, 8:30 AM - 4:00 PM, Kingston

Mar. 8, 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM, Providence

Mar. 10, 7:45 AM - 4:30 PM, Kingston


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Is your congregation or organization planning a climate change or environmental event? We want to know about it! Email us the details of your event and we'll share it on our webpage and in our newsletter. Please send newsletter submissions by the 15th of the month.  Send RI IPL related events or announcements to Kristen Ivy Moses, executive director, at kristenivy@ri-ipl.org .

 
Rhode Island Interfaith Power & Light
PO Box 15043, Riverside, RI 02915
(401) 324-9142  inquiry@ri-ipl.org