Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Today is Earth Day

Today, as most of you know, is Earth Day - the day where many Americans go out into their communities to work for a healthy planet and the day when the Bush administration pretends to care about the environment.

If you're looking for a few chuckles, Grist Magazine has compiled an interesting Earth Day list that's worth checking out.

If you live in East King County, in or around the communities of Redmond, Woodinville, Duvall, or Carnation, and you want to make a commitment to try out organic food (good for you, good for the environment) PCC Natural Markets is making things a whole lot easier for you. Their new Redmond store, to be located at the corner of Avondale Road and NE 116th Street, is set to open soon. Find out more.

You can support renewable energy by signing or getting others to sign Initiative 937, the Energy Security Initiative. Sponsors are working to get I-937 on the November ballot so that the right wing doesn't have a monopoly on ballot measures - and so Washington State can make progress in transitioning away from fossil fuels.

The Washington State Department of Ecology has a list of Earth Day events if you're interested in taking action and doing something for the environment.

Finally, we want to leave you with a few words from Paul Roberts, the author of "The End of Oil: On the Edge of a Perilous New World".
The American lifestyle is twice as energy-intensive as that in Europe and Japan, and about ten times the global average. The United States is thus the most important of all energy players: its enormous demand makes it an essential customer for the big energy states like Saudi Arabia and Russia. Its large imports hold the global energy market in thrall. (Indeed, the tiniest change in the U.S. energy economy - a colder winter, an increase in driving, a change in tax law - can send world markets into a tailspin.)

And because American power flows from its dominance over a global economy that in turn depends mainly on oil and other Fossil fuels, the United States sees itself as having no choice but to defend the global energy infrastructure from any threat and by nearly any means available - economic, diplomatic, even military.

The result of this simultaneous might and dependency is that the United States is, and will be, the preeminent force in the shaping of the new energy economy. The United States is the only country with the economic muscle, the technological expertise, and the international standing truly needed to mold the next energy system. If the U.S. government and its citizens decided to launch a new energy system and have it in place within twenty years, not only would the energy system be built, but the rest of the world would be forced to follow along.

Instead, American policymakers [cough, the Bush administration] are too paralyzed to act, terrified that to change U.S. energy patterns would threaten the nation's economy and geopolitical status - not to mention outrage tens of millions of American voters.
We highly recommend that book, by the way, and encourage you to get your own copy from Powell's and read it.

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