Environmental Justice

The Focus Book Series (review)

The Focus Book Series 

Written by Quaker Institute for the Future

Reviewed by Carol Chatfield

With global warming’s impact of floods and droughts becoming ever more apparent, this ten-book series gives hope that, oriented by the spirit and coupled with mindful research, people can make a difference in reducing causes of environmental destruction. I read three books in this series:

Fueling Our Future: A Dialogue about Technology, Ethics, Public Policy, and Remedial Action; Ed Dreby and Keith Helmuth, coordinators; Judy Lumb, editor; March 2009.

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Quaker PopOffsets

Dear Editor: Quaker Earthcare Witness (QEW) has just approved a new program, Quaker PopOffsets. It’s patterned after a similar program in Britain (www.PopOffsets.org), which collects contributions and then disperses the money to programs that either educate about family planning or provide family-planning services. Because a “non-person” has no carbon emissions, this is a very effective way to offset one’s carbon emissions. I would also like to ask you to share with Western Friend readers the minute in support of Planned Parenthood that Intermountain Yearly Meeting approved at our annual session this June. Thanks.

– Dick Grossman, Durango Friends Meeting (IMYM)

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On Difference

A six-year-old girl in South Carolina wrote a letter this summer. “Dear Daddy: I know you were shot at the Church and you went to Heaven. I love you so much! I know you love me and I know that you know that I love you too . . . Your baby girl and grasshopper.” Take more time to feel the sadness of that. Take more time to feel the wrongness of that.

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On Reconciliation

Dear Friends: Through no fault of our own, through no feat of our own, we’ve all been born into this juncture in history together. So many of us. Too many of us. Things keep getting more and more crowded around here. Even so, it seems impossibly hard at times to say goodbye to people.

Children under the age of five die at the rate of ten million deaths per year globally. The most common reason is dehydration, caused by diarrhea, caused by impure drinking water. The story of each child’s death is a wrenching tragedy. But even though the story is told ten million times per year, we still don’t seem to learn the moral: We as a species need to learn to share our planet more fairly. And we need to share it fairly with all people and all species.

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All Against the Haul

Susan Estep is a founding member of All Against the Haul, an environmental action coalition supported by Friends in Montana. It was formed to stop the construction of a permanent industrial corridor for massively oversized loads of oil production equipment – longer-than-a-football-field megaloads – through Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana to the Alberta Tar Sands mine. Susan spoke by phone with Western Friend on October 23, 2014. Following are edited excerpts from a transcript of that interview.

Western Friend: Would you start off by filling us in on All Against the Haul – how it was formed, and why it was formed?

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