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IslandWire: February 20, 2020

Groundbreaking Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act

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Thanks to the support of hundreds of member organizations that make up EII's  Break Free From Plastic, a comprehensive new bill that seeks to address corporations' role in the plastic pollution crisis was introduced in the US Congress this month. The Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act of 2020 (Senate Bill 3263, HR 5845) was sponsored by Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.),  Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Calif.) and others. Watch the video of the moment the bill was introduced!

Earth Island's Plastic Pollution Coalition is asking the public to support the bill by sending a letter to your representative with one click here. Every year, the United States alone burns or buries 32 million tons of plastic and 8 million tons of plastic escapes into the world's oceans. The new bill will tackle the exploding crisis of plastic pollution and transform waste and recycling management in the US.

ALERT At Sundance, Announces EPA Lawsuit

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The Cost of Silence, a film documenting the aftermath of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil disaster and featuring the work of Earth Island's ALERT Project, premiered at Sundance Film Festival on January 27. In the documentary, director Mark Manning presents a searing expose of human illnesses following the 2010 BP disaster response when over 2 million gallons of hazardous chemical dispersants were released on over 210 million gallons of spilled oil. Amidst the week of screenings, ALERT announced its new campaign #WhatsThePlanEPA, which includes a lawsuit against the EPA over its failure to update the nation's 26-year old emergency response plan for oil disasters. The lawsuit was filed by The Berkeley Environmental Law Clinic and Center for Biological Diversity with the help of Earth Island Advocates.

A Concerned Citizen Screening in SF Bay Area

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A new documentary by Bullfrog Films, A Concerned Citizen: Civics in Action, features the lifework of Earth Island's Ultimate Civics Director Riki Ott. The film, which shares the project's Activating My Democracy lesson set geared for classroom screenings, will be shown at the Poppy Jasper International Film Festival on April 4 at the Morgan Hill Community Playhouse. Ultimate Civics  is inviting groups working on environmental contaminants and public health to table at the event.

Celebrating 20 Years of Summer Camp

photo of kids and a teacher outdoors with a fish

KIDS for the BAY hosts summer camp for youth to explore the San Francisco bay and ocean shorelines, kayak on the bay, hike in local nature preserves, discover amazing animals, enjoy twilight hiking and camp fire adventures, and much more! Team building activities and games help to build a fun-loving summer camp community of scientists and environmentalists for every week of camp. The Earth Island project offers multiple one-week-long sessions with a variety of themes for ages 5-18. Register now.

Killing Games Screenings in Colorado


Earth Island's Project Coyote will be co-hosting the event, Banning Wildlife Killing Contests in Colorado on February 26 in Denver. The event will raise awareness about contests where participants compete to kill animals for prizes. It features a screening of Project Coyote's documentary KILLING GAMES ~ Wildlife In The Crosshairs and will include remarks by First Gentleman of Colorado Marlon Reis. The Colorado Environmental Film Festival will also show the film on February 22. The Colorado Parks & Wildlife Commission may soon consider a citizen petition to ban killing contests for coyotes, prairie dogs, and other species statewide. Learn more here.

Join the Next Food Shift Kitchen Class

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Earth Island's Food Shift is now opening up their celebrated culinary program to the public. The program covers food safety and cooking techniques, and includes a month-long catering internship where students gain valuable production experience. Class graduates receive food handler certification, $500 worth of groceries for the month, and a culinary program certificate. The deadline to apply is March 6th for the March 9 start of the program. Scholarships available. For more information email: with subject line "Culinary Program" or call (510) 239-7087.

Apply for the 2020 Brower Youth Awards


Each year, Earth Island's New Leaders Initiative selects six Brower Youth Award winners for leading campaigns, projects, and activism in the environmental and social justice movement. The winners attend a weeklong leadership training and are honored in a ceremony in San Francisco, California. Youth environmental activists ages 13 to 22 living in North America are encouraged to apply. Deadline for applications is May 1, 2020. Details here.

The Best of Earth Island Journal

Get the latest environmental news from Earth Island Journal. Here are our favorite stories from the last month

photo of dolphins swimming

Most Popular: The Roving Dolphins of the Potomac River. Decades of restoration work on the Potomac River has facilitated the return of bottlenose dolphins to their riverine home, writes reporter Malee Baker Oot.

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Editors' Pick: Deadly Fungus Could Decimate Salamanders in the US Southeast. Reporter Kyle Ritland explains that it's only a matter of time before a new fungal disease known as BSAL arrives in Appalachia, a hotspot of salamander biodiversity.

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