Topic

environmental protection

428 petitions

Update posted 10 hours ago

Petition to Berkeley City Council, Berkeley Zoning Adjustment Board, Berkeley Asphalt, Lehigh Hanson, Bay Area Air Quality Management District, California Air Resources Board, Mayor Jesse Arreguin, Councilmember Rashi Kesarwani, Berkeley City Manager

Demand air pollution controls at Berkeley Asphalt

Berkeley Asphalt has been operating without required air pollution controls since 1999.  That year they settled a lawsuit with their neighbors and agreed to specific measures to control odors, dust, and noise.  Over twenty years later they have yet to complete these mitigations.  Their pollution has increased.  Starting in late October 2020, their pollution started subjecting large areas of the City of Berkeley to stinky and unhealthy sulfurous emissions.  Neighbors complain of headache, nausea, stinging eyes, sore throat, and aggravation of asthma and other chronic illness.  In addition to the odors, other concerning asphalt plant emissions reported by the EPA include carcinogens, teratogens, respiratory irritants, and environmental pollutants such as: sulfur and nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), phenol, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), metals, and particulates.  These pollutants contribute to global warming, acid rain, birth defects, acute and chronic illness and disease. Berkeley Asphalt is owned by Lehigh Hanson, a huge multinational corporation based in Texas.  Lehigh Hanson touts environmental stewardship, safety, and being a good neighbor.  We demand these practices at their Berkeley facility. We demand that Lehigh Hanson cease polluting operations at Berkeley Asphalt, install required and state of the art pollution controls, monitors, and sensors, and not resume operations until these systems are tested and shown to be protective of community and environmental health. We demand that the City of Berkeley suspend the asphalt plant's Use Permit until the above conditions are met.  And going forward, annually inspect and enforce permit conditions pollution controls. We demand that the Bay Area Air Quality Management District adequately enforce its regulations to protect air quality.

Clean AIR Berkeley
839 supporters
Update posted 12 hours ago

Petition to Arctic Slope Regional Corporation

Protect polar bears. No oil drilling in the Arctic Wildlife Refuge

Right now, a company you’ve probably never heard of is lobbying the Department of Interior to speed through environmental impact surveys so they can drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Home to polar bears and caribou, and the Gwich'in Athabascan Native Americans. It’s the last untouched slice of nature in the United States. If there’s an open season on oil and gas in ANWR, it will be yet another instance of public lands being parcelled off by the Trump Administration. Tell the Arctic Slope Regional Corporation to get out of ANWR. In 2017, Arctic Slope spent $590,000 lobbying the federal government to open ANWR up to oil and gas development. Ryan Zinke even appointed one of Arctic Slope’s top executives to a major post at the Department of Interior. Zinke’s office isn’t alone, in 2017 Arctic Slope lobbied the Senate to allow drilling in ANWR’s 1.5 million acre coastal plane. But before oil companies can buy leases, environmental impact surveys have to happen. Under Ryan Zinke, these surveys have been cut to ram the process through as quickly as possible. Lease sales could start as early as 2019! The size of South Carolina, since 1960 ANWR has been protected from oil and gas development. There are no roads and no towns; only the occasional hiker. The Gwich'in Athabascan Native Americans have relied on migrating caribou in ANWR for millennia. There are also 900 threatened polar bears who call ANWR home. Climate change is peeling away ice sheets that restrict their ability to find food. If oil and gas companies start drilling in ANWR, it could be the end of the Gwich’in Native Americans and America’s polar bears. Wildlife and communities shouldn’t be put into harm's way for nominal profits, tell Arctic Slope that ANWR is off limits! Communities across the U.S. are still reeling from decades old oil spills like Exxon Valdez and Deepwater Horizon, if an oil spill happens in the Arctic, it would have devastating consequences. Tell Arctic Slope ANWR isn’t for oil and gas.

Frank Escalona, Michael Cianos and Susan Schmid
1,419,484 supporters
Update posted 2 days ago

Petition to Laurie Cumbo, Eric Adams

Save The Brooklyn Botanic Garden!

Action Alert : Press Conference Against Brooklyn Botanic Garden Rezoning Date: Wednesday, December 16, 2020 at 12 pm (rain or shine) Location: City Hall at intersection of Chambers St. and Centre St. Speakers Community activists from all over New York City are demanding an end to the rezonings that are currently being conducted, including the largest residential complex being planned against the Brooklyn Botanic Garden. ________________________________________________________ In the above photo the orange buildings are developments being proposed.  The big one the right would be the largest residential development in Brooklyn if built. This is an update to the original petition! Please Support Our Fundraiser efforts! In 1991 The Brooklyn Botanic Garden "BBG" got a rezoning along its perimeter to protect itself against tall buildings that would cast shadows and destroy the visual integrity of the Garden. In 2017 a developer, Cornell Realty, wanted to break the height limits of 6/7 stories (60/70 feet) and build buildings as high as 23 stories (230 ft) which is over a 300% increase. In December Laurie Cumbo approved this project and we filed a lawsuit against it and got a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) until our Hearing set for May 3rd, 2019.  An even larger development is being proposed by developer Bruce Eichner, who wants to build 42 stories in a height limited zone of 6/7 story, that is even closer than Cornell Reality to BBG. This development is currently being "assessed" by our City government, elected officials and concerned residents.  This is the most crucial time to put political pressure on the city, so you support is really needed at this time. Please sign our petition and let our Elected officials know that we care about our sunlight, our air, our public spaces and the Brooklyn Botanic Garden.  Tell them to say NO! to this development.  Let them know that we will fight this both in the streets and in the courts.  That we vow to only support elected officials that support our causes and protect our public assets. Help us preserve and protect this valuable public greenspace, where over 900,000 people a year visit! If you want more information about this, please go to http://mtopp.org/bbgfund.html Or call (718) 703-3086. Further Things You Can Do to Support Please support Our Fundraiser. We need to prepare our own Shadow Study and prepare for a legal challenge.  For more information please click here. Please write an email to Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo telling her to say NO to this proposed development at  mabend@council.nyc.gov Come to Town Hall Meeting Being Conducted by Council Woman Laurie Cumbo Thursday, December 13- 6 pm - Medgar Evers College Preparatory school 1186 Carrol St, Brooklyn N.Y. 11225 Volunteer Your Time!  Call (718) 703-3086 - Find Out What Else You Can Do!  Please make a Donation New Directions in Healing is taking contributions on our behalf and all of your donations are tax deductible.  

FLAC - Flower Lovers Against Corruption
12,548 supporters
Update posted 3 days ago

Petition to Santa Cruz County Planning Commission

Felton Quarry Permit Letter of Concern and Opposition

We, the undersigned citizens of Santa Cruz County, wish to express our opposition to Granite Construction's proposed amendment to the Felton Quarry usage permit expanding their operations five-fold, from 20 to 100 "off-hour operations" per year.  For all the following reasons, we ask that the current permit amendment be denied and that a full Environmental Impact Report be completed prior to expansion. With road paving largely restricted to the summer/fall seasons, this could result in heavy truck traffic every night of the week throughout these seasons.  Since these are the seasons when residents leave their windows open for cooling, the impacts are further magnified:  they either close their windows to reduce fumes and noise and suffer uncomfortable heat, or they leave them open and suffer truck noise and fumes.  Though technically a quantitative change, this proposed increase is so great that it would have a permanent qualitative impact on our communities, our citizens and our planet. The effects could be considered in three categories – noise, pollution, and traffic - which are discussed more fully below.   We believe that granting the proposed permit, without a full Environmental Impact Report, would be in violation of the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”) (California Public Resources Code, Sections 21000 - 21178, and Title 14 CCR, Section 753, and Chapter 3, Sections 15000 - 15387).  We strongly disagree that this permit can be issued based on a “Negative Declaration” pursuant to CEQA.  That is, we disagree that there is no significant impact.  In light of the whole record before the agency, we believe that the project may have a significant effect on the environment and the right to quiet enjoyment and safety of the residents along the truck route and users of Empire Grade. Courts have interpreted CEQA to afford the fullest protection of the environment within the reasonable scope of the statutes and its purpose is to prevent or minimize damage to the environment through development of project alternatives, mitigation measures, and mitigation monitoring. No projects which would cause significant environmental effects should be approved as proposed if there are feasible alternatives or mitigation measures that would lessen those effects.  It is a significant concern that Granite Construction proposes this huge increase in traffic without suggesting or agreeing to any mitigating factors.  In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the use of Empire Grade by a variety of activities including the use of Twin Gates as an entrance to Wilder Ranch State Park, increased use of the Waldorf School during weekends and evenings, and the upcoming opening of Coast Dairies National Monument and San Vicente Redwoods State Park.  There has also been a major increase in large truck traffic as a result of the CZU Lightning Complex Fire and work to both mitigate the destruction and rebuild more than 200 homes, which will continue for a number of years.  Any changes in existing regulations should be considered only when all previous requirements have been met and in the context of up-to-date comprehensive analysis of the use of Empire Grade that includes site visits, neighborhood concerns and detailed traffic analysis that includes both traffic numbers and road structure. There is also a significant concern regarding the proposed project affecting the quiet enjoyment legally mandated to homeowners along the affected travelled route, and decreasing property values of the same.  This concern however is minor compared to the danger the proposed increase in traffic will cause to bikers, joggers, families and students of the neighborhood residents, UCSC and the Santa Cruz Waldorf school and to the overall noise and pollution. I.          NOISE The trucks are among the noisiest vehicles on the road, both uphill and downhill.  When they operate all night, it is clearly disruptive to nearly all of the households in Cave Gulch and on Bay St.  II.        POLLUTION Many of the trucks carry hot paving material that gives off both smoke and offensive odors.  This affects not only the residents but any other vehicles in close proximity to the trucks. III.       TRAFFIC This may be the most significant negative factor, as it affects everyone who uses the roads, not only the residents who live in the area.  1) As a result of the fire, there is already a major increase in traffic, including heavy truck traffic on Empire Grade, which continues from early mornings to the evenings and on the weekends.  Any increase in quarry traffic and the impacts described below must be considered in this context. 2) Empire Grade is used not only by residents who live along the route travelled by quarry trucks but by many residents who live in upper Bonny Doon.  It is also used for transportation to the Waldorf School, who hold many meetings on weekday evenings and a number of large events on weekends.  3) In addition to residents and schools, Empire Grade is used by a large number of non-residents.  This is particularly true on weekends.  These users include both cars and motorcycles, the latter often being motorcycle clubs with 20 or more riders.  Weekends are also a favorite time for large numbers of cyclists and joggers. 4) The location known as Twin Gates just north of Cave Gulch has become a primary entrance to Wilder Ranch State Park.  Visitors include hikers, bikers, and horseback riders. They come as individuals, groups, and families (including small children) who park on the side of the road and walk along the road to reach the entrance to the park trails.  This has generated considerable congestion and conflict with through traffic that has already been noted numerous times by Bonny Doon residents who drive through the area. 5)  Heavy truck traffic has further degraded the paving through Cave Gulch and up to the quarry.  Regions have been patched recently, but increased heavy load transport will continue to degrade the road surface. Damaged road surface contributes greatly to the noise factor as the large trucks drive over cracks and bumps in the road surface. 6) Finally, it needs to be emphasized that this multi-use traffic is on a road that has few shoulders and no bike or jogging lanes for much of its length between the quarry and UCSC.  Between UCSC and Cave Gulch and through Cave Gulch, the road is particularly narrow and steep with a number of blind tight curves, and there are areas where cliffs are along one side of the road and steep drop offs on the other with no shoulders.   Large trucks occupy essentially the entire width of the road, and their going around the curves is already problematic even in the absence of any additional conflicts such as bikers or joggers. Tandem skidmarks across both lanes in the Cave Gulch area are testament to these dangers.  Residents already report frequent close calls with these trucks, and the increase in quarry traffic on weekends and during the nighttime would be especially dangerous.  This section of the road is also heavily wooded, and there have been numerous fires in the area in recent years.  In addition to the inherent danger of accidents themselves, the threat of a fire resulting from any accidents would be very dangerous in this region of the road and well as the area around Twin Gates, where there are numerous grass fields on both sides of the road.  It is important to emphasize that there are many problems with any increase in quarry traffic along this section of Empire Grade.  Our concern and opposition is clearly not just another example of NIMBY-ism from the residents of the area.  There is a serious danger to a wide range of users along several sections of the road, which will only get worse as more people discover the area, and as plans for expansion at UCSC continue. We also recognize the public value of the infrastructure improvements and value good neighborhood relations.  The quarry is, will and has been a neighbor who we wish to work with and with whom we wish to find mutually agreeable solutions to our shared problems.  Moving forward on the basis of a “negative declaration,” with the presumption that the quarry expansion  will have NO environmental impact will not work with us to mitigate the impacts including noise, smell, road damage, traffic hazards, road safety for pedestrians, motorists and bicyclists, equestrians, land value and nighttime disturbance.  We ask that the current petition amendment be denied and that a full Environmental Impact Report be completed prior to expansion. Thank you.

Tanya Harmony Ridino, JD
812 supporters