While the 2018 legislative cycle was disappointing in many ways, we did have an important win on LUAF. What’s LUAF, you ask? “Lost and Unaccounted for Gas!”. The Gas Leaks Allies succeeded in getting our LUAF language into the clean energy omnibus bill that passed in August.
The new language requires the utilities to report on LUAF each year in a clearer and more uniform way, allowing us to tailor our gas leaks strategies more effectively. Until now, utilities’ LUAF numbers have been fuzzy, including a mish-mash of actual leaks, metering errors, gas the utilities use for their own operations, etc. Going forward, these categories must be separately reported in a standardized way, and even actual leaks must be further broken down – for example, how much lost gas comes from deteriorating pipes, versus pipes hit accidentally during construction, or leaking compressor stations. Just like the 2014 law that required the utilities to publicly report leak numbers and locations for the first time, this new law will give us critically-needed information to use in our work.
All of us at Mothers Out Front are holding our neighbors in Lawrence, Andover, and North Andover in the Merrimack Valley close in our hearts as we watch the disaster of gas explosions and fires unfold across their communities.
We are deeply grateful to the gas workers, first responders, and others protecting homes and caring for the injured and displaced people. We also are concerned that all affected have the resources needed to face this situation.
Mothers across the state are reaching out to ask what they can do. We welcome all ideas for how we can support the families and children evacuated from their homes, especially those who won't be able to go home. Our members around the state are standing by to help in any way they can. We are looking at different ways that Mothers Out Front members and friends may offer support, and we will keep you updated. Please check our website and social media sites often to learn what you can do.
Going forward, we hope that catastrophes like this one will be prevented by more proactive maintenance of our state's leaky gas infrastructure while we rapidly transition off gas and other fossil fuels.
We, mothers and grandmothers and allies, work hard every day to accelerate the transition we need to renewable energy so that children will not have to face disasters like this one in Massachusetts or like the hurricane in the Carolinas.
Congratulations to Arlington Mothers Out Front, exceeding their goal to get opt-ins for CCA and for being #InTheNews!
"Since CCA rolled out in August 2017, Mothers out Front set goals for the amount of opt ups they wanted to see. From August to December, their goal was 200. They ended up with 395.
'And then we thought, okay that was just because everybody got that letter so we said okay for this next year, 2018, we’ll set a goal of an additional 100 but then by April we’d blown through that so now we’ve had to up our goal again,' said co-coordinator Nili Pearlmutter.'"
Read all about it!
Mothers in Massachusetts respond to National Grid's lockout of union gas works:
To National Grid:
We at Mothers Out Front are deeply concerned about National Grid's lockout of union gas workers. As members of a national movement of mothers and others mobilizing for a livable climate and protecting the health and safety of all children, we urge you to resolve the issue quickly. While we are outside of the negotiations and can’t comment on the details of the dispute, we are concerned for the workers, their families and the communities you serve.
Mothers Out Front Jamaica Plain is keeping the pressure on!
Following a landmark 35-0 vote, the Massachusetts Senate passed a comprehensive climate bill on June 14 aimed to “promote a clean energy future.” Now the bill’s future lies in the hands of the Massachusetts House. The legislative session, and the bill’s chances for passage, end on July 31.
Mothers Out Front in Brookline #InTheNews!
The signs are the product of Mothers Out Front Brookline, a group of “mothers and others” attempting to bring attention to non-lethal gas leaks. These leaks are responsible for the death of approximately 400 trees throughout Brookline, according to Brookline Mothers Out Front. Each of the signs mark spots where trees have died due to gas leaks from Brookline’s deteriorating underground pipeline system.
“There’s no real incentive to change that for a gas company,” said Brookline Mothers Out Front member Susan Helms Daley, who helped spearhead the ghost tree initiative. “So we’re trying to bring some awareness to this issue because it’s really the public who can bring pressure to the gas companies.”
An open letter to Speaker DeLeo from a Winthrop constituent
Speaker DeLeo: You and I live in Winthrop. Our streets are flooding; the storms are fiercer, more frequent and more damaging; our insurance costs are sky rocketing; but most importantly, our health and our grandchildren’s health–yours and mine–is compromised as our state warms. Please don’t ignore the heat waves, the mold from flooding, the increase in mosquito and tick borne-disease, the allergies and asthma, the heart and lung effects, the mental stress from losing everything.
Read Suzanne's letter on line here:
In late June, the Mothers Out Front Cambridge team had a busy evening at the Central Square Soccer Nights! We engaged with lots of families and gave out 62 LED light bulbs. LEDs are 85%, or so, more efficient than incandescents and 40% more efficient than compact fluorescents.
Watch the video below!
Last week the Cambridge team held a Spanish-speaking House Party which was high energy and a lot of fun! Minga Claggett-Borne and Mina Reddy co-led the meeting. This party came together because Mina held a focus group at the Cambridge Community Learning Center and met some great women who were interested in energy efficiency.
Our Cambridge team kicked off its “Bringing Paris Home” Campaign. Our federal government may have backed away from the International Paris Climate Agreement, but “We’re still in!” was the rallying cry at the kickoff event held at the Central Square Library on Thursday, May 31. About 40 attendees, including City Councilors Sumbul Siddiqui and Quentin Zondervan, gathered to snack on French foods, sing along with Music Out Front, hear an informative presentation, and engage in spirited small-group discussions.