20 years ago today, Lithuania was the first nation to declare independence from the Soviet Union. Word up to peoples movements, global revolution, and our generations role in this incredible political moment.
My Lithuanian Powershift Story!
Happy Independence Day y’all; see ya in DC!
Ohio students have wasted no time in registering their disenchantment and disapproval of our recently-inaugurated Governor, matching the speed with which John Kasich began undermining Ohio’s recovery, environmental progress and industrial sector-development with a slew of austerity measures, anti-environmental policies, and conservative attacks on public services, upper education, and organized labor. Even before being formally inaugurated as one of the least popular starting governors in our state’s history, Gov. Kasich was overseeing the wreckage of our infrastructural aspirations Continue reading
Driving through the night across Ohio and up through Michigan from Cleveland to Detroit on Friday with four of the most amazing women I have ever met, I was stunned and awed by the industry and power production surrounding us on all sides. Bright lights, flares and billowing smoke flooded the otherwise peaceful, moonlit night as we rocked out to Lady Gaga and Blondie barreling down interstates 90 and 75. Continue reading
As I rang in the new year with friends and many thousands of others in the East Village of Manhattan, I found my thoughts drifting upward and westward of the hip, drunk masses to my beloved Northeast Ohio: friends, memories, college, my favorite bar — all so geographically distant but all so close to my heart. Despite growing up in Massachusetts in and around Cambridge, I really feel at home in and dig NEO. My more recent homes of Oberlin and Cleveland are now central to who I am and, more importantly, how I see the world. Northeast Ohio is, after all, where I became an environmentalist. As a result, the process of developing new years resolutions and thus thinking about how I will spend the next year of my life both tugs at a heart string and beckons a panic attack. I am an environmentalist. I love NEO. I need a job. Where will I be in a year or even five months? (If you have a job for me in Cleveland, let me know!) Will all of these things mesh together? I certainly hope so, but I also acknowledge that my new years resolutions must be more durable than the Northeast Ohio job market.
- Power Shift + 100
Not only am I resolving to attend Power Shift 2011 in Washington D.C. (duh!), but I feel that, given the extent to which the 2009 conference was a motivational turning point for me as an environmentalist, it is important that I bring along as many people as possible. So, Power Shift + 100 will be the name of the game at Oberlin this spring, or perhaps Power Shift 101? Yup, it’s what it sounds like. I plan to work with others on campus to bring at least 100 Obies to Power Shift in April in addition to myself. Who’s with me? And how many people are you going to bring from your campus?!
- Grow my gub
After working with community members in Cleveland to make local produce a reality in Detroit-Shoreway, I want to do it for myself too. As I finish my final months at Oberlin, I will be nurturing seedlings forward into the world. These seedlings will come with me as I move on to the next chapter in my life and they will take root in new soil along side me, be it in Cleveland or elsewhere. Come harvest, I will be eating salads and hearty potatoes from my yard and thinking back to the messy process of planting seeds on my kitchen floor. (Look out house mates, it might get muddy!)
- Live to Love Transit
The past few months of working with OSEC folks to learn about the 3C rail proposal and transit access issues in Lorain County (concerning the mostly inactive Lorain County Transit) has helped me to realize how epically important transit is to the durability of our communities and state. Thus, no matter where I am in a year, I resolve to think about, talk about and advocate for just and equitable transit access. Ensuring that sustainable transit options exist within and between urban centers is such a crucial piece of making sure that all people, regardless of privilege, are able to get themselves to work, school, the grocery store and health clinics. Rail and public transit systems create jobs and encourage safe, connected and accessible community development. Food, jobs, sustainable transportation, health and justice all in one — what could be more important???
- Stay Engaged and Engage Others
For me, environmentalism has been a very central part of my time in college. As an environmental studies major, a member of OSEC and a member of Headwaters Magazine at Oberlin, my environmental work has defined my academic and extracurricular college experiences. Thus, when I graduate, I resolve to stay engaged with the environmental movement by getting involved in my new community. I also resolve to continue engaging others, both before I graduate and in the next chapter of my life. At Oberlin, so many beautiful experiences and realizations have come out of my environmental work, and I care deeply about encouraging others to get involved with and shape the organizations that have shaped me. In the next chapter of my life, I want to remember that building the movement is an active process and I need to make the effort to meet new people with whom to work and continue growing my passion.
- It’s not just about green
Building a truly sustainable movement is about more than living locally, fighting dirty energy and growing the clean energy economy. Thus, I am going to take at least 30 minutes every day to do something for myself — read a book, go on a bike ride, spend time with friends, take a nap. I am also going to remember to support others in the movement by taking the time to check in about what else is going on in people’s lives. If we can all learn to actively support and respect the beautiful, passionate and inspiring people with whom we work, our movement will only grow stronger.
The coming year will, undoubtedly, be one of much change. I do not know where I will be living or what I will be working on in 12 months, but I do know that staying true to these five resolutions will be a pretty solid guiding light as I face my final semester of undergrad and then post-collegiate life. If in a year I can say that I have stayed true to my values as an environmentalist, I think I will be doing pretty well for myself!
Check out Elisa Young this Thursday at 8:30 pm in West Lecture Hall at Oberlin College. She’s talking about the very relevant topic of Coal Ash and this event is open to the public. Continue reading
Over the past few months Free The Planet! OSU had its efforts heavily focused on events for the Beehive Collective. Check out the event photos from the benefit show “Hivestock” and the photos from the actual Beehive Collective show! Now Free The Planet! is redirecting its energy on new campaigns focused around establishing a Green Fund at OSU, getting the 3C rail project built, and an Anti-Monsanto campaign to get Monsanto out of OSU. Continue reading
Hello friends and collaborators,
Thanks to Erika, Gabe, Nora, Phoebe, Justin and everyone else who has been working on this website and other OSEC evolution stuff.
OU Beyond Coal is going to rock the house this year. We will have our own website soon, where all our updates will be posted.
For starters, we are planning the following events: Continue reading
Want to learn more about OSEC history? Maybe check out a couple photos or a video of past highlights? Like Power Shift, OASES, a steering committee retreat or the recent Power Vote electoral training?
Well now you can: Continue reading
The summer project (aka The Urban Defense Project) was totally rockin’, if I do say so myself!
Planting our first garden of the summer!
As some of you may remember, during spring semester Tim Krueger (the OSEC coordinator at the time) and some members of the steering committee decided we wanted to have a summer internship program. What started as the “OSEC Summer Internship” quickly turned into The Urban Defense Project, an initiative in Cleveland that is going to continue focusing on neighborhood revitalization projects for months and years to come.
At any rate, this summer was totally awesome. Along with Hannah Simonetti from OU, Pat Kennedy from BGSU, Eliana from Oberlin and sixteen others, I spent my summer up by the lake in Cleveland in the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood. What can 20 young people do in one summer? A lot! Continue reading