Back to Insider Archive

Having trouble viewing the Insider or clicking through on the links? View an online version of this email in your web browser at
Having trouble receiving the Insider? Try adding us ( to your Address Book.

 Sierra Club
Join! Why join?
Sierra Club Insider March 15, 2005

Surge of Activism -- and Film Screenings -- to Protect the Arctic
Oil on Ice House PartyOver the past two weeks, more than 1,100 house parties and other get-togethers took place around the country to screen Oil on Ice, a new documentary film that connects the fate of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the communities that depend on it to the decisions now being made about America's energy policy.

Juliette Crone-Willis and her husband Kelly hosted their second Oil on Ice house party in north St. Louis County, Missouri. "I was blown away by responses to the invitations we mailed out," Juliette said. "Even people who couldn't attend called to say how deeply they cared about the Arctic Refuge, and that they wanted to be involved." At Crone-Willis' party, letter-writing and postcard-signing were followed by a door prize giveaway and "Oil on Ice Cream" (vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup).

Read more about the Oil on Ice House Parties and learn about clean energy solutions that can take America towards energy freedom.

The Senate will vote on whether to include Arctic oil leases in the budget tomorrow, March 16. Call the Arctic Action Hotline today: 1-888-894-5325.

Bush Pollution Bill Killed in Senate, But...
smokestackNat Mund, the Club's clean air specialist, is thrilled about the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee's 9-9 vote last Wednesday, which effectively killed the Bush administration's Corporate Polluter Plan for the time being. (Well, Bush calls it the "Clear Skies Act," but since it would allow two to three times more soot, smog, and mercury pollution as enforcing the Clean Air Act, we don't want to reinforce that Orwellian name by repeating it.)

The administration proposal would have also let market forces, rather than public health standards, determine whether communities get relief from dirty air.

While the defeat of the Bill is definitely good news, this week, the Bush administration will release a new rule that would weaken mercury standards -- permitting three times more mercury pollution from power plants than strong enforcement of the current Clean Air Act and delaying cleanup for a decade longer.

"During the public comment period for this rule, more than half a million Americans urged the Bush administration to start cleaning up toxic mercury pollution from power plants as soon as possible, generating a record number of public comments," said Mund. "It's disappointing that the administration chose to ignore the people in developing this mercury policy."

Let the Sunshine In
Sunshine Week LogoThis week is Sunshine Week - and we're not talking about the weather, but the importance of open government. Here at the Sierra Club nothing demonstrates the need for openness more than the Cheney Energy Task Force, which, despite our lawsuit, is still keeping the public in the dark about the role energy company lobbyists played in crafting the Bush administration's energy plan. Learn more about Sunshine Week -- -- and then tell President Bush to honor our right to know.

Not a member?

View previous editions of the Sierra Club Insider at the Insider Archives.

Subscribe to the Sierra Club Insider.

Know someone that would be interested in the Sierra Club Insider? Help spread the word by using our online form to tell your friends, family, and co-workers about the Insider or simply forward this Insider on. (Some email clients strip the links out of emails when forwarded. If your email does this, you can also direct friends, family, and co-workers to our online version.)



  RKF, Jr. to Speak at Sierra Summit

Author of Crimes Against Nature, Robert F. Kennedy. Jr. has been giving about 40 speeches a year for several years now, many to conservative groups, mostly focusing on what he sees as the gravest threat to American democracy -- corporate power. But he says he gets the same reaction from Republicans and Democrats: "If you talk about these issues in terms of our national values, everybody understands it."

Other speakers at the Summit, which is in San Francisco, September 8-11, will include comedian Bill Maher, pundit Arianna Huffington, and chef/author Alice Waters. Find out more about the Sierra Summit.

Robert Kennedy, Jr.  
  Read the Book, Then See the Film

Appalachia is America's first and last frontier. Encompassing more than 195,000 square miles in thirteen states, it possesses the least-understood and most under-appreciated subculture in the United States.

Random House has published The Appalachians as a companion to the Sierra Club-sponsored PBS documentary, which will premiere in Nashville next week and in other cities in April.

The Appalachians  
  Save the Great Divide

If the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the fossil-fuel industry get their way, the Great Divide area, a unique undeveloped high desert in southern Wyoming that drains to neither the Atlantic nor the Pacific, will be industrialized by 9,000 oil, gas and coalbed methane wells. Kirk Koepsel, Club field staffer in Sheridan, Wyoming, says that the BLM plan released in December would affect more than these Wyoming wildlands -- it would be used as a pilot to see how fast gas wells can be permitted all over the West.

You can help, but comments to the BLM and key elected officials are due by March 17 -- that's this Thursday.

Red Desert  

House Party (Jill Miller) | smokestack (Photodisc) | Sunshine Week Logo ( | The Appalachians (Random House) | Red Desert (Kirk Koepsel)




Click here to change your email address