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Oakland City Council Votes to Ban Coal Exports in Big Win for Local Advocates

Councilmembers cite strong concerns about public health and safety

The Oakland City Council took a strong stand against coal last night. Following a long and often emotional city council meeting — during which whistles and cheers were at times met with boos and yelling — the council passed an ordinance prohibiting…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – June 28, 2016

Environmental Justice Activists in Alabama Fight $30 Million Defamation Lawsuit

ACLU cites First Amendment, files for dismissal of suit that has ‘chilling effect’ on free speech

Free speech is enshrined in the American ethos. It is a core principle of the Constitution, protected by the First Amendment, and has been defended for centuries in the courts. In Uniontown, Alabama, however, a group of concerned citizens-turned-environmental justice activists are…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – June 9, 2016

One Valley, Many Dreams

Jumbo Wild
by Nick Waggoner
2015, 52 min

Jumbo Wild gets right to the point. The documentary film, released in October 2015, opens with piercing footage of British Columbia’s Jumbo Valley and the haunting image of a conductor standing over the Jumbo Glacier conducting an invisible orchestra. As the camera pans over the magnificent Purcell Mountains, an orchestra, accompanied by poignant audio clips, set up the debate at the heart of the movie: Keep the Jumbo Valley wild, or open…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – Summer 2016

Accidental Ranger

Betty Reid Soskin

When Betty Reid Soskin speaks, you can’t help but listen. The oldest full-time park ranger in the United States, Soskin has a compelling presence and captivating voice, not to mention 94 years worth of stories.   Soskin’s path to the National Park Service is unique, or as she says, “accidental.” She didn’t grow up going to national parks, and first became aware of plans for a waterfront national historical park in Richmond,…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – Summer 2016

Wielding the Law to Safeguard the Land

Goldman Environmental Prize winners use legal strategy, grassroots organizing to defend human health and Indigenous land rights

Legal work isn’t usually glamorous. In movies, lawsuits are portrayed as epic, exciting battles — in practice, legal work can be a slow and arduous process. Thankfully, as two of the 2016 Goldman Environmental Prize recipients well know, it can also bring…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – April 17, 2016

Head in the Clouds

Communing with nature high up in a redwood canopy

I grew up among the redwoods. My parents’ house is nestled in a unique Bay Area neighborhood built among these giant trees. Redwood roots burst through the concrete roads and sidewalks, and branches shade the narrow streets that have been paved around…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – April 6, 2016

In Death Valley, A Carpet of Colorful Life

A last minute trip to see rare wildflower super bloom was well worth the long haul

Years ago, when I first read about the desert “super blooms” that explode some of the world’s most arid places into riots of colorful flowers, catching a glimpse of the rare phenomenon immediately jumped to the top of my bucket-list. The contrast…
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by: Zoe Loftus-Farren – March 10, 2016

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