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Northwest supports Green Sports Alliance launch at Safeco Field
While everyone who attends a sports game enjoys a hometown victory, Pacific Northwest fans may have another reason to cheer. Their local professional teams have teamed up to create the Green Sports Alliance, a joint venture of professional sports teams - initially Portland's Trail Blazers, Seattle's Mariners, Seahawks, Sounders, and Storm, and the Vancouver Canucks - who have reduced their environmental impacts in an effort to encourage Americans to do the same.
According to a GSA press release, "The Green Sports Alliance has been endorsed by the teams' respective league commissioners as well as U.S. EPA. The alliance hopes to use the wide appeal of sports to reach out to fans and business owners about the need for conservation and waste reduction... [and] hopes to involve teams from across the country on multiple levels."
E2 members had a chance to view the E2-sponsored launch of the alliance on March 22 at Safeco Field in Seattle. E2's participation was led by Pacific Northwest Chapter Directors Van Katzman and Alex Wall.
Using Events to Promote Advocacy: Recapping Events
E2 Pacific Northwest hosted three successful events in February that attracted full houses. On February 24, the chapter hosted a panel of cleantech entrepreneurs at a lunchtime focus meeting. More than 25 E2 members and special guests attended the event despite the winter storm that arrived that morning. Panelists included Cameron Hewes (President, General Biodiesel), Chris Husband (CFO, Cleanscapes), Rick Luebbe (CEO, EnerG2), and Bryce Smith (CEO, OneEnergy Renewables). Rick LeFaivre (OVP Venture Partners) moderated the panel and led a lively discussion of the unique challenges and advantages of launching a cleantech business in the Pacific Northwest. The meeting was generously hosted by Fenwick & West in Seattle and organized by E2 Northwest director Van Katzman.
The next day, E2 Pacific Northwest held a TeleSalon featuring Ralph Cavanagh, co-director of NRDC's Energy Program, who led a discussion on how supporting energy efficiency policies will spark the Oregon economy. Ralph urged the more than 50 E2 members and dial-in guests to support policies that have a positive impact on our environment and on the economic prosperity of Oregon.
Following Ralph's presentation, Jana Gastellum, Global Warming Program Director for the Oregon Environmental Council, discussed one such policy, the state's Jobs & Prosperity Bill, HB-3535, now before the Legislature.
Oregon House Bill 3535 is projected to be revenue-neutral to the state general fund and to create several hundred Oregon jobs. Its main provisions include an energy performance score, an incentive system to reward high-performing buildings and a statewide energy efficiency prioritization standard. E2 Pacific Northwest members have already supported the bill in a letter they sent to the Oregon House Energy, Environment and Water Committee.
Coal Export Terminal
With major export terminals proposed in Longview and Bellingham, Washington, Pacific Northwest deepwater ports continue to be targets for coal companies looking to ship U.S. natural resources to China. Opponents won a small victory in Longview, as internal Ambre Energy documents surfaced showing the company's plans to expand capacity to 80 million tons per year, more than 14 times what they had publicly acknowledged and what was reflected in their original environmental impact documents. The disclosure has forced Ambre to withdraw their original permit application.
The company has announced its intention to re-apply for a permit after conducting a new environmental study. E2 will continue to monitor the situation, as we remain concerned that the economic benefits of this project in the state of Washington are limited, and far outweighed by the burdens imposed by substantially increased coal train traffic on health, recreational businesses and property values.