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You are invited: Wednesday, 9/20, 6 am: breakfast with LASG, witness historic signing of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

September 15, 2017

This letter:

  1. Wednesday 9/20/17, 6:00-8:00 am: breakfast with LASG and witness (via UN Live Web TV) historic signing of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, LASG headquarters, 2901 Summit Place NE (map), Albuquerque
  2. Opinion piece today in Albuquerque Journal North: "On nukes, another way for the City Different?" (Greg Mello)
  3. Recommended short article: "100 Percent Wishful Thinking: the Green-Energy Cornucopia"

A few action suggestions:

  1. Refer your friends to our mailing list and events -- help us build our subscription and donor base (see September 12 letter).
  2. Be a climate and solar outreach volunteer. See July 20 and July 25 letters and Bulletin 232: "Nuclear power for your home and business," July 19.
  3. Write published short open letters to editors (LTEs) asking our senators, and representatives Michelle Lujan Grisham and Ben Ray Lujan the following two things. (You can also call or write them privately but it is much less effective; contact information is here in case you do that.). Ask them to:
    1. Speak out NOW against creating consolidated storage sites for spent reactor fuel (SNF) instead of waiting and watching what happens (see Bulletin #234, Aug. 12).
    2. Go on record NOW opposing the needless expansion of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) plutonium warhead core ("pit") production. See this fact sheet, today's Journal North op-ed ("On nukes, another way for the City Different?," Sep. 15), and much more background here.
  4. Recruit donors to support our opposition to the Obama-Trump nuclear reinvestment plan and our regional "community awakening" initiatives. See for example this appeal.
  5. Come to Study Group events (see below for this coming Wednesday's breakfast discussion about the nuclear ban; note again the October 7 talk in Jemez Springs). 
  6. Organize events. Mostly we respond to your requests, so don't wait on us.
  7. Be a regular volunteer. If you have appropriate skills and are in a position to do so, think about offering steady time to us as a volunteer. Call us at 505-265-1200.
  8. Create full-time climate activist internships in your church, business, or organization. You probably have the resources. Focus on results within the next few years only.
  9. Simplify in order to engage politically. Boycott ecocide. Harvest the "low-hanging fruit" in lowering climate footprint. Dreams of 100% renewable energy in a high-energy society like ours today are fantasies. The need for a rapid, just transition to simpler, more resilient communities is pressing.

Dear friends,

1. Wednesday 9/20/17, 6:00-8:00 am: breakfast with LASG and witness (via UN Live Web TV) historic signing of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, LASG headquarters, 2901 Summit Place NE (map), Albuquerque.

Step by step, the nuclear weapons ban treaty is coming to life. For background, see this page. The ban will live in and through those who embody its ideals, and in the concrete actions taken by governments as a result of the treaty, not in the sheet of paper.

If you live nearby or find yourself in the Nuke City, please join us for breakfast on this happy occasion.

We will send out a more detailed commentary on this event as the time approaches.

You can also watch this at home or with friends at this link!

2. Opinion piece today at the Albuquerque Journal North: "On nukes, another way for the City Different?"

This will also be published at other outlets soon. If you wish to thank Journal North for publishing it, which might be helpful for the future, you can leave a message with the receptionist at 505-988-8881.

3. Recommended short article: "100 Percent Wishful Thinking: the Green-Energy Cornucopia" (Stan Cox, Sept. 14, 2017, Counterpunch)

This follows item 3 in the last letter ("Leaders and citizens of both parties agree: a sustainable future is "'off the table'"). Why off the table? Because these parties are not really aiming at a real sustainable future, just a fantasy with too little real responsibility attached. Cox's final paragraphs:

Some in the climate movement believe in the 100-percent dogma and the dream it holds out: that the (affluent) American way of life can keep running forward in time and outward in space without breaking stride. There are others who know that to be an impossibly rosy vision but urge the movement to limit public discussion to such green dreams anyway, because talking about a regulated, low-energy economy would crush hope and enthusiasm at the grassroots.

The debate about hope ignores the relevant question: what are we hoping for? If our hope is to deploy solar and wind capacity that maintains indefinitely the current throughput of energy in the world’s affluent societies, then, yes, the situation is hopeless. But there can be other hopes that, although they’re looking dim for now, are at least within reach: that greenhouse warming can be limited sufficiently to allow communities around the world who are currently impoverished and oppressed to improve their lives; that access to food, water, shelter, safety, culture, nature, and other necessities becomes sufficient for all; or that exploitation and oppression of humans and nature be brought to an end.

There’s always hope, as long as we don’t confuse dreams with reality.

To repeat, dreams of 100% renewable energy in a high-energy society like ours today are fantasies. They lull middle- and upper-class Americans into mistaken, lazy perspectives about the depth and speed of transformation required to save a living planet, our communities, and our children. The need for a rapid, just transition to simpler, more resilient communities is pressing. Emergency action is needed. More bold grassroots leadership, with all the creativity and accountability associated with it, is sorely needed.

Thank you!

Greg and Trish, for the Los Alamos Study Group


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