DC Environmental Network

DC Environmental Network The DC Environmental Network, founded in 1996 is working toward a vision of rebuilding Washington, DC’s neighborhoods and communities for long-term economic stability — accomplishing this by protecting and restoring DC's urban environment.

Operating as usual

Casey Trees
11/02/2020
Casey Trees

Casey Trees

The article may be from Baton Rouge, but the sentiment rings true here: city beautification through trees is great, but the real benefits come from the transition to native species that are treated as green infrastructure *and* essential infrastructure

Electrify Metro buses by 2045! (well sooner if possible but 2045 is the current target for advocates)
10/21/2020
Katharine Hayhoe

Electrify Metro buses by 2045! (well sooner if possible but 2045 is the current target for advocates)

Electric buses are quiet and good for the environment - but that’s not what inspired officials in Greensboro, North Carolina, to add ten electric buses to the city’s fleet. Their motivation was primarily financial.

Adam Fischer, Greensboro’s director of transportation, says even after accounting for the higher upfront cost of the buses, “we conservatively think we’ll save $300,000 to $350,000 per bus over the life cycle of an electric bus due to reduced maintenance and operating cost.”

Read more here:

https://yaleclimateconnections.org/2019/04/greensboro-n-c-invests-in-electric-buses/

Does the District's Attorney General have all the same powers and independence other AG's have? Should the Executive res...
09/30/2020

Does the District's Attorney General have all the same powers and independence other AG's have? Should the Executive restructure its agencies so that agency lawyers can engage more independently to better represent the interests of DC government?

Here is an issue from 2013 we may want to re-visit. To a degree, over the last 3 years, the DC AG has worked successfully with DC DOEE to promote environmental concerns. Mostly on issues that would not have necessarily called for a more independent AG. The idea would be to assess whether or not we have lost opportunities to protect and defend the environment since 2013 and to see if its the right time to more fully empower the AG's office. DC continues to have an AG office that does not have all the bells and whistles that other AG's around the country have. DCEN thinks the DC AG could do more but is appreciative of the slow but meaningful progress they have made to incorporate environmental concerns into their workload.

Our pandemic economy demands that the District's Department of Public Works not waste taxpayer dollars. Learn how DC can...
09/15/2020
DC DPW, Zero-Waste, and Our Pandemic Economy!

Our pandemic economy demands that the District's Department of Public Works not waste taxpayer dollars. Learn how DC can literally stop burning taxpayer money by adopting zero-waste policies that sustainably divert more trash from landfill and incineration!

Learn how DC can literally stop burning taxpayer money! DCEN briefing on September 22nd at Noon: DC DPW, Zero-Waste, and Our Pandemic Economy! (February 15, 2019) DC Department of Public Works Directo

“We filed this lawsuit to force the EPA to do its job, protect decades of environmental work and billions of dollars inv...
09/11/2020
Three states and D.C. sue EPA, saying the agency failed to enforce plan to reduce Chesapeake Bay pollution

“We filed this lawsuit to force the EPA to do its job, protect decades of environmental work and billions of dollars invested, and ensure all the watershed states work together meet pollution reduction goals,” said D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine (D) in a statement."

Lawsuit alleges EPA neglected to penalize New York and Pennsylvania for falling short of requirements outlined in 2010 plan.

The nexus between climate change, fossil fuels, and plastics. This industry plan is so unethical. Our policy responses i...
08/30/2020
Big Oil Is in Trouble. Its Plan: Flood Africa With Plastic.

The nexus between climate change, fossil fuels, and plastics. This industry plan is so unethical.

Our policy responses in DC need to be more than just creating more programs to pick up plastic bottles.

"According to documents reviewed by The New York Times, an industry group representing the world’s largest chemical makers and fossil fuel companies is lobbying to influence United States trade negotiations with Kenya, one of Africa’s biggest economies, to reverse its strict limits on plastics — including a tough plastic-bag ban. It is also pressing for Kenya to continue importing foreign plastic garbage, a practice it has pledged to limit...Pivoting to plastics, the industry has spent more than $200 billion on chemical and manufacturing plants in the United States over the past decade. But the United States already consumes as much as 16 times more plastic than many poor nations, and a backlash against single-use plastics has made it tougher to sell more at home."

Faced with plunging profits and a climate crisis that threatens fossil fuels, the industry is demanding a trade deal that weakens Kenya’s rules on plastics and on imports of American trash.

Germany is banning the sale of single-use plastic straws, cotton buds and food containers, bringing it in line with a Eu...
08/16/2020
Germany bans single-use plastic straws, food containers

Germany is banning the sale of single-use plastic straws, cotton buds and food containers, bringing it in line with a European Union directive intended to reduce the amount of plastic garbage that pollutes the environment.

Germany is banning the sale of single-use plastic straws, cotton buds and food containers

Nice vehicle to get the solar energy story out to the world.
07/24/2020

Nice vehicle to get the solar energy story out to the world.

PRESS RELEASE: DOEE Announces #DCSolarStories Web Series Is Vying for Emmy Award Eight-Part Documentary Series, Tells How District Solar For All Program Fights Climate Change, Helps Residents 🍿🎬☀️♻️💚
Full Release: http://ow.ly/WDyC50AHs2k
Watch: http://ow.ly/jWVy50AHs2l

This is out of control. Let's try and reduce our use of plastic and push industry to find alternatives and stop flooding...
07/23/2020
SF Environment

This is out of control. Let's try and reduce our use of plastic and push industry to find alternatives and stop flooding the world, and our parks, with this poison.

This scientist found that more than 1,000 tons of microplastic were being deposited across 11 national parks and wilderness areas in a year. That's equivalent to 123-300 million ground-up plastic water bottles.

Skip the plastic and choose a reusable water bottle!

#PlasticFree #PlasticFreeJuly

Congressman Salud Carbajal
07/17/2020
Congressman Salud Carbajal

Congressman Salud Carbajal

The President is continuing to use the global COVID-19 pandemic to enact his anti-environmental agenda. This finalized rule threatens to end 50 years of progress meant to protect the environment and our communities.

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) gives communities across the country an opportunity to make their voices heard, and stop pollution in their own backyards. This rollback sidelines the public and gives corporate polluters a green light to cut corners, exploit our communities, and risk our health.

SF Environment
07/17/2020
SF Environment

SF Environment

Kudos to Vermont for tackling food waste and becoming the first to implement statewide composting! 👏 👏 👏

Know your fledglings!
07/13/2020

Know your fledglings!

It's fledgling season. Those shaggy, frizz-headed preteens are hopping around everywhere! Many can't fly yet, but this is normal. Their parents are usually close by and feeding them. If you see one in a dangerous spot, you can gently move it to a safer place very nearby and keep watch from a distance. But don't birdnap! If the bird is even a little naked, it's a NESTLING and *does* need help. Please contact us if you're not sure. Here are some of NYC's most familiar fledgling faces.

SF to lift ban on reusable shopping bags amid complaints about waste
06/30/2020
SF to lift ban on reusable shopping bags amid complaints about waste

SF to lift ban on reusable shopping bags amid complaints about waste

San Francisco and most other Bay Area counties banned reusable shopping bags at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic because of concerns the bags could carry the virus into stores. Now, public health officials say, there’s little risk of such transmission, and the bans are being lifted.

"The paints are “a whole new source that hasn’t really been discussed before.” "Brahney found a lot of tiny fibers, like...
06/12/2020
Plastic dust is blowing into U.S. national parks—more than 1000 tons each year

"The paints are “a whole new source that hasn’t really been discussed before.”

"Brahney found a lot of tiny fibers, likely from clothes, carpets, and other textiles. She also found minuscule particles, about 30% of which were brightly colored spheres. Smaller than the plastic microbeads that have been used in cosmetics and other personal care products, the spheres are components of paints that might be released to the atmosphere during spray painting, she says."

New study begins to trace a global “plastic cycle”

“Overall, more food is going to waste than usual right now. With almost the entire restaurant and foodservice sector clo...
05/28/2020
How the Pandemic is Affecting Home Food Waste | Civil Eats

“Overall, more food is going to waste than usual right now. With almost the entire restaurant and foodservice sector closed, entire supply chains have found themselves without a market. This is leading to millions of pounds of produce being tilled into the ground, many thousands of gallons of milk poured into lagoons, and huge amounts of seafood being thrown out. Because grocery sales are up, there is likely less food going to waste in that sector for the time being, but it’s not enough to make up for all that’s going to waste on the foodservice side. In homes, we don’t know for sure, but my guess is that all the hoarding and change in habits has led people to waste slightly more food than normal.”

As more people are cooking than ever before, an expert offerts tips on how to waste less food.

DC is listed as #2. Something to celebrate, sure, to a point, but there is much that is not factored into this rating. L...
05/21/2020
Minneapolis Named Best City Park System in U.S. on Trust for Public Land’s Annual ParkScore Index - Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board

DC is listed as #2. Something to celebrate, sure, to a point, but there is much that is not factored into this rating. Lack of maintenance and other issues, in some of our most under-served communities, keep our city from fully deserving this rating.

A DC parks expert, Steve Coleman, of Washington Parks & People recently made this statement at a DC Environmental Network meeting:

"On the front lines of COVID recovery and resilience around the world, parks are more critical than ever for the health of city people everywhere, providing essential wide-open natural areas for people to get fresh air without contaminating each other. Yet DC's parks beyond
the rec centers are suffering from a severe lack of environmental stewardship and accountability that has plagued them for many years. The frightening deterioration in our parks is sharply exacerbating social compression inside, especially in the most underserved communities east of the Anacostia River, in DC's biggest municipal parks. Now more than ever, DC needs a strong natural resource management agency. In the same way that urban agriculture functions recently shifted from DGS to DOEE, could we work with the Mayor and Council to fund and establish a DOEE office on parks and natural resource management?
Just as stepped-up parks investment has made a major difference in countering COVID in New York City, this could dramatically boost nature-based health across the city."

Annual ParkScore® Index Reports Sharp Increase in Park and Trail Use, but Experts Sound Alarm over Park Inequities and Risk of Budget Cuts As the world weathers the COVID-19 pandemic, The Trust for Public Land announced that Minneapolis, Minn., reclaimed its position as the nation’s best park sys...

Ocean Conservancy
04/29/2020
Ocean Conservancy

Ocean Conservancy

Big News 📢 the Break Free from Plastic Pollution Act was introduced by Senator Udall & Congressman Lowenthal to reduce plastic waste and prevent it from entering our ocean.

On Friday, May 1st @ 11:00 AM, join the DC Environmental Network (DCEN) for a special briefing by The PEW Charitable Tru...
04/23/2020
DCEN Briefing: How do we protect our cities from climate crisis flooding?

On Friday, May 1st @ 11:00 AM, join the DC Environmental Network (DCEN) for a special briefing by The PEW Charitable Trust's Flood-Prepared Communities initiative, on reducing flood risk in the United States.

DCEN asked PEW to share their expertise as DC based environmental organizations and advocates are preparing comments in response to the DC Department of Energy & Environment's proposed floodplain regulations. We hope this briefing will help contribute to a broader and more creative understanding as to what's possible as communities prepare for climate crisis flooding.

Thank you Councilmember Cheh! DCEN feels good about our efforts to help get this ban over the finish line. Work is still...
04/22/2020

Thank you Councilmember Cheh!

DCEN feels good about our efforts to help get this ban over the finish line. Work is still necessary to make sure MPD does its part to implement this requirement no later then a year from now.

On this #EarthDay2020 , I'd like to thank the many advocates and partners who helped the Council (FINALLY!) pass the Ivory & Horn Trafficking Prohibition Act of 2020.

It has taken us 5 years to pass this legislation, but, thanks to your tireless efforts, the District of Columbia will no longer remain the nation's hub for the ivory trade.

04/22/2020
Humane Rescue Alliance

Just another example why wildlife rehabilitation is a critical need in our nation's capital city!

Yesterday, we received a call about a bald eagle trapped in a parking garage at the US Coast Guard headquarters. Officers Ingle and Best arrived on scene to assess the best way to capture and rescue the eagle. With the help of several officers from the US Department of Homeland Security, they were able to safely get the eagle into a large dog carrier.

The eagle is being examined by City Wildlife to make sure he is healthy and ready to be returned to the wild.

Covid-19 is disproportionately affecting black and brown communities in New York and elsewhere. Air pollution seems to b...
04/12/2020
The deadly mix of Covid-19, air pollution, and inequality, explained

Covid-19 is disproportionately affecting black and brown communities in New York and elsewhere. Air pollution seems to be one reason why.

Covid-19 is disproportionately affecting black and brown communities in New York and elsewhere. Air pollution seems to be one reason why.

"During the coronavirus pandemic or not, D.C. sees a wide variety of birds throughout the year thanks to its location al...
04/09/2020
You're Stuck Inside, But The Birds Aren't: Tips To Start Watching From Home | WAMU

"During the coronavirus pandemic or not, D.C. sees a wide variety of birds throughout the year thanks to its location along the Piedmont’s fall line and the Atlantic Flyway, an important corridor for migratory birds.

“Right now, there are millions of birds coming up from Central and South America,” Rauch says, noting there are 240 species seen in the city annually on average. That’s more than a quarter of the 800 species observed across all of North America, according to the National Audubon Society. Cavigelli says the District’s protected lands, wooded suburbs, and open-water areas bolster this biodiversity."

For some, there's therapeutic power in beholding feathered friends at a safe social distance.

03/10/2020
Environmental Working Group

Environmental Working Group

URGENT: The EPA is refusing to take action to stop bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides from devastating honeybee populations. We need 146 more people to sign our petition before midnight tonight in order to reach our goal of 50,000 people DEMANDING the EPA restrict these toxic pesticides - but we're missing your signature! Add your name now to save the bees!

Healthy Yards
03/01/2020

Healthy Yards

In a healthy natural yard, you are never alone! Does that mean you will have more ticks and mosquitos? Yes, maybe, but you will also have more volunteers that will be happy to eat them. It is all about balance. Don't be afraid to 'let go' of some areas in your yard. Just remember to give the beneficial species a better chance by removing the invasives. Other than that? Lay back and enjoy the company.😀

02/26/2020
DC Voters for Animals

Thank you Committee on the Judiciary for moving this ban of ivory and rhino horn sales forward. Now we have two more votes before the DC Council, and a signature from the Mayor.

Charles Allen and Mary Cheh share their reasoning for supporting a ban on ivory and rhino horn sales before the Judiciary Committee voted to approve the bill on 2/25/2020. Video courtesy of Chris Weiss, DC Environmental Network.

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The DC Environmental Network, founded in 1996, is working toward a vision of rebuilding Washington, DC’s neighborhoods and communities for long-term economic stability — accomplishing this by protecting and restoring DC's urban environment.

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Eating Up Easter Thursday, June 18th at 6:30pm Join us for an online screening of Eating Up Easter followed by a live discussion More than just a picture postcard of iconic stone statues, Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, is a microcosm of a planet in flux. Native Rapanui grapple with a booming tourism trade that rakes in money, but brings about a changing climate that threatens the fragile ecology on the island. Rapanui filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu and producer Elena Rapu introduce viewers to artists, ecologists, and developers who balance their strong cultural heritage with modern-day challenges. Join us for an online screening of Eating Up Easter followed by a live discussion to set our goals for the next 50 years following the Earth Day commemoration with *Andy Shallal (Moderator), owner of Busboys and Poets *Rev. Lennox Yearwood, president and founder, Hip Hop Caucus *Sergio Rapu and Elana Rapu, Filmmakers
Hello! PAKKE has it's opening climate change exhibit event in Adams Morgan this Thursday called Glacial Momentum. There will be a VR experience and a VERY large block of ice signifying arctic melting. Tickets are sold on our website @ https://pakkesocial.com/
Be Progressive! Be a solar champion! Did you know that the federal government gives 30% tax credit to homeowners that go solar? Additonally, State of Maryland gives $1000 bonus upon solar installation. https://www.facebook.com/sunlighttotherescue/
Please come support local teens working on the environment!
The Green New Deal is coming to Congress! In the next few weeks, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Senator Edward J. Markey (yes, as in the 2009 Waxman-Markey bill) will introduce a Green New Deal bill. We're in the business of shifting our society and economy, and now Congress will see that only a proposal this big & bold is an adequate response to the climate crisis. Senator Markey’s support signals that all types of Democrats are recognizing the value of the Green New Deal. Bills like these live or die in the first few weeks, so we need people from all congressional districts and time capacities turning up the heat on Congress! We are hosting 400+ #GND parties across the country to launch our game plan! Please RSVP here, and feel free to invite a friend or a coworker. We’ve been invited to stay afterwards and join the Woman's National Democratic Club for their official State of the Union (and Stacey Abram’s response). This event will be free, donation suggested, and with a cash bar. It’s also open to ALL ages and genders.
DCEN has the following upcoming opportunities for sustainability advocates to participate in briefings, conversations, and strategy sessions with experts and activists on a number of important issues including: • DISTRICT BUDGET: The District's budget is important to most DC focused environmental advocates and we need to prepare ourselves for next year. Come be part of the first DC budget campaign meeting and help influence the Fiscal Year 2019 budget. • LED STREET LIGHTS: DC street-lighting policy can impact the health and quality of life of District residents and wildlife and the District is moving quickly towards making changes to over 71,000 lighting fixtures. Join us and get briefed by Jim Dougherty of International Dark-Sky Association and other DC green lighting advocates. • CLEAN RIVERS & WATER RATES: In tandem with important upgrades to our water and sewer infrastructure in the District, and the projected result of a cleaner, healthier Anacostia River, Potomac River, and Rock Creek, District residents are starting to notice utility fee increases. DCEN is leading a discussion on ways to protect low-income ratepayers and others from some of the impacts of these increases. Join us and get briefed by representatives from DC Water on current programs. Then join in the conversation on what needs to be done. Participating in these DCEN discussions will help us all hit the ground running in 2018!