Tag Archives: environmental justice

Students tour Mariner East 2 pipeline

Twenty-five students from the Peace and Conflict Studies / Environmental Studies course “Climate Disruption, Conflict, and Peacemaking” toured the route of the Mariner East 2 pipeline (ME2) construction that runs near Swarthmore College.

Mariner East pipes like along the route.
Mariner East pipes lie along the route.
A ship is docked at Marcus Hook near the terminal where natural gas liquids are transferred.
A ship is docked at Marcus Hook near the terminal where natural gas liquids are transferred.

The ME2, a Sunoco project, runs through highly populated neighborhoods in Delaware and Chester counties and beyond. It will carry compressed propane, ethane, and butane from fracking operations in the Marcellus shale fields of western Pennsylvania to the port of Marcus Hook, for shipping, mostly to Europe for the production of plastics (enough to produce 1 billion single-use bottles every day).

SP-mariner-east-pipeline-map-010218-2-01-1024x797

The ME2 pipeline carries highly flammable liquefied gases under pressure through populated suburban neighborhoods, often only feet from homes, schools, residential facilities, detention facilities, and businesses. The gases are odorless, invisible, and heavier than air, raising concerns about the possibility of evacuation in the event of a leak. The pipeline has generated significant and growing local opposition and has raised questions about risk and regulatory processes.

map indicating trip route

Our tour took us to Marcus Hook and its refineries, Hershey’s Mill Village, a large retirement community in the potential blast zone of the pipeline, and an elementary school near a valve station, where we met with a local resident and activist. We are immensely grateful to our guide, George Alexander, author of the Dragonpipe Diary, where you can find more investigative work on the pipeline and local campaigns to stop or regulate the pipeline.

For information from Sunoco on the pipeline, visit their websiteState Impact PA reporting, and the Dragonpipe Diary.

Join us on Wednesday November 13 at 7:00 p.m. for a screening of the film, Half-Mile, Upwind, On Foot, about resistance to the Atlantic Sunrise Pipeline (that we toured in 2017) and the Mariner East 2 pipelines.

 

Infographic Session – Climate Disruption course

Please join the students in Climate Disruption, Conflict, and Peacemaking (PEAC 055 / ENVS 031) for an infographic session (similar to a poster session) on Monday morning December 10 at 10:30 a.m. in Shane Student Lounge.

Refreshments provided.  This is a zero waste event.

sustainability poster

 

 

With thanks for support from the Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility

No Empires, No Dust Bowls: Lessons from the first Global Environmental Crisis with Dr. Hannah Holleman

Announcing an Upcoming Lecture!

Download and share a flyer.

No Empires, No Dust Bowls: Lessons from the First Global Environmental Crisis

Dr. Hannah Holleman
Assistant Professor of Sociology at Amherst College

Monday, December 3, 2018 from 4:15 pm – 5:30 pm in the Scheuer Room, Kohlberg Hall, Swarthmore College
This event is free and open to the public. (Campus map)

The 1930s Dust Bowl has become one of the most prominent historical referents of the climate change era amongst scientists and writers. This lecture offers a significant reinterpretation of the disaster with implications for our understanding of contemporary environmental problems and politics. Based on award-winning research and theoretical development, Prof. Holleman reinterprets the Dust Bowl on the U.S. southern Plains as one dramatic and foreseeable regional manifestation of a global socio-ecological crisis generated by the political economy and ecology of settler colonialism and the new imperialism.

She establishes key antecedents to present-day ecological developments and brings the narrative forward to today, explaining the persistent consequences and important lessons of this era for our current struggles to address the planetary challenges of climate change, environmental injustice, and new threats of dust-bowlification.

Hosted by Peace and Conflict Studies with Co-Sponsorship from the Lang Center for Civic Engagement and Social Responsibility, Environmental Studies, and Sociology and Anthropology

Contact: Molly Lawrence at mlawren1@swarthmore.edu, 610-328-7750

Climate Justice and Civil Rights

Please mark your calendar for an exciting event serving as the capstone for Black History Month and the opening for Women’s History Month:

March 2, 2018

Public Lecture
“Climate Justice and Civil Rights”
1:30-2:30pm: Swarthmore Meeting House

Reception and Gathering
3:30-5:00pm: Black Cultural Center

You are invited to a public lecture and conversation with Jacqueline Patterson, the Director of the NAACP’s Environmental and Climate Justice Program.

Jacqueline Patterson NAACP poster

 

 

 

A national leader who bridges civil rights and environmental justice, Patterson heads the NAACP’s initiatives to advance an inclusive, “just transition” to a renewable, green economy. At the heart of this initiative is Patterson’s commitment to ensuring that communities of color and those who are the most impacted by the harmful effects of climate change are at the center of the movement to create an equitable and sustainable future. Patterson’s long history of leadership has led her to serve as coordinator and co-founder of Women of Color United, and to advocate for the intersection of issues relating to women‘s rights, violence against women, HIV&AIDS, racial justice, economic justice, and environmental and climate justice.

This event is co-sponsored by: Environmental Studies, Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility, Black Studies, Black Cultural Center, Gender & Sexuality Studies, Diversity, Inclusion & Community Development, Religious Studies, Peace & Conflict Studies, Political Science, Philosophy, Sociology & Anthropology, Office of the President, Health & Societies Initiative, and the Sustainability Office.

Events Near Swarthmore This Weekend, 12/1/2017-12/3-2017

This weekend, December 1-2, Pendle Hill, the Quaker retreat center on the other side of Crum Wood is holding a one-day (and one evening) workshop:

Right to Refuse: When Community Rights and Corporate Rights Conflict and What to Do Next
Featuring: Chad Nicholson, Malinda Harnish Clatterbuck, Dianne Herrin, and Paula Kline
https://pendlehill.org/events/right-refuse-community-rights-corporate-rights-conflict-next/

Whether it is a pipeline, a fracked gas well, or an incinerator, there are countless examples of corporations moving projects forward despite community resistance and environmental impact. Why? How has law evolved to protect corporate interests and what are a community’s options? What is a Home Rule campaign and why is it necessary? Explore these questions and more with a weekend with front-line organizers from across Pennsylvania. This is a workshop for those engaged in protecting their community from environmental threats for education and strategic planning.

Right to Refuse - Pendle Hill

On Sunday, December 3 at 11:45 AM in Whittier Room,  George Alexander will speak on The Mariner East 2 pipeline: how it came to be, why it is so bad, and what we can do about it. 

Perhaps you have heard about the Mariner East 2 pipeline, which is under construction in Delaware and Chester Counties. In full operation, this would be by far the most dangerous pipeline in the state of Pennsylvania. A rupture and explosion would destroy structures thousands of feet away and, depending on where it happened, could kill hundreds of people. How was this permitted to happen, and what can we do about it now? George Alexander will present background on the pipeline and outline what can be done. Rich and Claudia Aldred will speak about their experience as homeowners in the “blast zone” of the pipeline.

From Enemies to Partners: Vietnam, the U.S. and Agent Orange – A Book Talk with the Authors

On Thursday, November 2, Peace and Conflict Studies will welcome the authors of From Enemies to Partners- Vietnam, the U.S. and Agent Orange. The lecture will take place at 4:15 PM in the Scheuer Room of Kohlberg Hall.

Flyer for Book TalkDownload and print a flyer.

Dr. Charles Bailey (Swarthmore ’67) is Director Emeritus of the the Aspen Institute Agent Orange in Vietnam program. Dr. Bailey was the Ford Foundation representative in Vietnam from 1997-2007.

Dr. Le Ke Son is the former Vice Director-General of the Vietnam Environmental Administration. He is also a medical doctor with a PhD in toxicology and served as a medic in the Peoples Army for 25 years.

The authors will cover a range of topics, most notably the great power of technology and military hubris to alter the environment and impact humans even decades later. 

Book cover

Download Information on the Book Release

This event is cosponsored by Asian Studies, Sociology and Anthropology, the Office of Alumni and Parent Engagement, Environmental Studies, and the Global Affairs Program at the Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility. 

 

 

West Virginia Statesman, Author Ken Hechler ’35 dies at 102

December 12th, 2016
Swarthmore News and Information

Washington Post: Ken Hechler, W.Va. congressman and author of ‘Bridge at Remagen,’ dies at 102

Ken Hechler '35

Ken Hechler, an urbane historian who carpetbagged his way into West Virginia’s gritty politics, where he battled destructive coal-industry practices, unsafe mining conditions and felonious county officials, died Dec. 10 at his home in Romney, W.Va. He was 102. …

During 18 years as a Democratic congressman, 16 more as West Virginia secretary of state, and a final act as a do-gooder without portfolio, Dr. Hechler never tired of crusades.

“I used to be an agitator, then an activist,” he wrote at age 94, in 2009. “Now I am a hellraiser.” This was soon after he was arrested while protesting mountaintop removal.

Read the full article.

In 2001, Hechler received an honorary degree from Swarthmore. He sang his acceptance speech to the tune of the College’s alma mater, which he rewrote for the occasion (lyrics below). Hechler last spoke on campus in 2011 about mountaintop removal coal mining and the struggles of Appalachian communities to stop the practice.

As we leave old Swarthmore College
and this campus fair;
Join the fight for racial justice,
show the world you care!

You will be remembered one day,
not for wealth or power;
But your work for all the people,
that’s your finest hour.

There’s a need for more crusaders,
give your heart and soul;
Fight against the special interests,
that should be your goal.

We must get along together,
with all peoples too;
Differences should be respected,
and their points of view.

Mother Earth needs conservation,
can’t you hear her cry?
We must work for preservation,
or the earth will die.

Peace and freedom for all nations;
feed and house the poor.
Hail to thee, our Alma Mater;
Hail, All Hail, Swarthmore!

Report on Tri-college trip to PJSA 2012

Fifteen peace and conflict studies and environmental studies students and faculty from the Tri-Colleges (Swarthmore, Haverford, and Bryn Mawr) attended this year’s Peace and Justice Studies Association meetings at Tufts University October 4-6, 2012.

[Tri-College Trip to the 2012 Peace and Justice Studies Meeting at Tufts University from Swarthmore Peace Studies on Vimeo.]

This year’s theme was “Anticipating Climate Disruption: Sustaining Justice, Greening Peace”, offering a perfect opportunity to team up with the Environmental Studies Program and our Tri-college peace studies partners for a joint trip. The opportunity also aligned well with President Chopp’s leadership on climate issues and Swarthmore College’s long commitment to peace and social justice concerns. In fact, a write-up about our trip appeared in the conference program. You can also read more about the trip in a story by Taylor Hodges that appeared on October 11 in The Phoenix.

We would like to express our deep gratitude to our co-sponsors: The President’s Office at Swarthmore College, The Dean’s Office at Swarthmore College, The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship at Haverford College, The Peace and Conflict Studies Program at Swarthmore, Peace and Social Justice Program at Bryn Mawr, Peace Conflict and Human Rights at Haverford, and the Tri-College Environmental Studies Program. Thanks also to George Lakey of the Peace and Conflict Studies Program at Swarthmore and Chloe Tucker of the Center for Peace and Global Citizenship at Haverford who also went on the trip.

The conference organizers were very helpful in organizing homestays for our students with Tufts students, many of whom take Swarthmore alum Sa’ed Atshan’s ’06 course at Tufts, “Introduction to Peace and Conflict Studies”!

Students speak for themselves about their experience at the conference in a story that appeared in The Phoenix and in the video interviews above.

In order to bring some of the flavor of knowledge of the conference back, we have also curated tweets from the conference below (in reverse order).

Prof. George Lakey to begin week-long fast over coal mining

As I write this, Visiting Lang Professor, George Lakey has begun a week-long fast (with only water) from April 7-13 for the people of Appalachia, with a concern for PNC Bank’s funding of mountaintop removal coal mining. This is part of a 40-day fast conducted by Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT), leading up to the annual shareholders meeting in Pittsburgh.

The students of Peace Studies and Action (PEAC 077) will hold class on Tuesday at 2:45 with Professor Lakey

George Lakey EQAT

A Fast for the People of Appalachia,

with a concern for PNC Bank’s funding of mountaintop removal coal mining

 George Lakey

Week-long fast with only water, April 7-13

A Message from Professor Lakey: 

On April 7 I expect to start a week-long fast on behalf of the people of Appalachia who continue to suffer from the relentless actions that destroy their mountains, livelihoods, health, and culture.  The mining also contributes to climate change, which hurts us all.

The fast will largely be conducted at my workplace, Swarthmore College, with public opportunities to engage with students, faculty, and staff

EVENTS:

  •  The first public event will be Monday at the Quaker Meetinghouse, 11.30-1pm.
  • The last event will be at the Swarthmore PNC Bank branch on Saturday, 10.45-12.
  • In between I will be on the first floor of Parrish each day for some period of time. Classes of students will visit me during that time as well as the
  • Swarthmore Gospel Choir singing at 8pm Thursday.

For the latest schedule email: glakey1@swarthmore.edu

WHY FAST?

This is part of a 40-day fast conducted by Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT), leading up to the annual shareholders meeting in Pittsburgh.  The fast is a tool for spiritual preparation and outreach. EQAT has for three years been in dialogue with PNC Bank as well as nonviolent action which shines the light on the bank’s role as a leading funder for blowing up mountains.  EQAT plus allies will take action at the shareholders meeting.

WHAT YOU CAN DO:

  •  Green your money: if you bank at PNC, move it to a community bank or credit union and tell EQAT.org.  Over $3 million has already been moved.
  • Join the fast by skipping one meal or many, and tell EQAT.org.
  • Come to Pittsburgh to shine the light on PNC’s board of directors.
  • Join EQAT’s project of shadowing PNC board members when they make public appearances.
  • Research on PNC and the health effects of mountaintop removal available at EQAT.org.