350 Humboldt likes to bring people together, and this coming week — the week of Earth Day — we’ve got some big climate events for you to join.

Our first in-person event in more than a year comes up on Friday, April 23. At a safe social distance and masked, we’ll meet at 4:30 PM on the sidewalk in front of Chase Bank in Eureka (337 F St).

Chase is the largest funder of climate change in the world, lending more than $51 billion dollars to fossil fuel projects in 2020 alone. Our rally will make the point to Chase customers and the public that banking with Chase is banking on disaster.

We hope you’ll join us, but to be sure we follow county guidelines on public events we ask that you first register here. The rally is limited to 50 people, and when you register you’ll receive further details including advice on sign-making. Then the rally will move three blocks to the County Courthouse where we’ll continue to raise the spirit of Earth Day, which calls on us to do what we can to ditch banks that poison our climate.

Another opportunity for us to join together, this one online, begins on Earth Day itself. 350 Humboldt has joined Cooperation Humboldt to partner with a group of organizations presenting The Post Capitalism Conference: Building a Solidarity Economy, on April 22-25.

The conference offers 21 sessions facilitated by veteran activists, practitioners and scholars. Panelists include Humboldt State University’s Kaitlin Read along with Rick Wolff (Democracy at Work), Emily Kawano (US Solidarity Economy Network), Chase Iron Eyes (Last Real Indians), Nati Linares (New Economy Coalition), Kali Acuno (Cooperation Jackson), David Korten (Yes! Magazine), Margaret Kimberly (Black Agenda Report), Ramon Tores (Cooperativa Tierra y Libertad) and more.

Click here to register for the free conference.

Now for a question: has the sunny weather inspired you to get out for a walk down the street? Oh, you’ve read that Humboldt is California’s most dangerous county for pedestrians and you’d rather stay home and watch YouTube?

None of us should be stuck on the couch because we’re afraid for our safety, but we shouldn’t be stuck having to drive a CO2-belching vehicle either. And the safer our streets, the more people will bike or walk to work or the store, cutting climate emissions. (Driving is Humboldt’s biggest emissions source.)

Local governments are preparing an update of the county’s Regional Transportation Plan. Early indications are the update will build on momentum to do some good things: reduce miles driven, make roads safer and less stressful to drive.

To get involved in this process, contact the County Association of Governments, which is leading the update, or transportation activists at the Coalition for Responsible Transportation Priorities.

Now, some not-so-good news. In each of the past two years bills have been introduced to the California Legislature to bring common-sense safety to siting oil and gas wells — like not drilling next door to hospitals, schools, and houses. This past Tuesday the second of those bills, which also banned fracking, was defeated in a State Senate committee. Like last year’s bill, we can blame Democratic legislators who joined Republicans in defeating these totally reasonable measures. See this appropriately scathing editorial from the San Francisco Chronicle.

Luckily we have a local congressman who stands up for the climate and the environment. See this on Rep. Jared Huffman’s push for the U.S. Postal Service to take EVs seriously in replacing their fleet of gas-powered trucks.

Speaking of EVs, if you attended our recent presentation on EV charger access, you’ll be interested to hear that California’s Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is updating state building codes for EV chargers at new apartments and other multi-unit dwellings. One might think that with Gov. Newsom ordering an end to sales of new gasoline vehicles by 2035, HCD would be moving at breakneck speed to provide EV chargers for renters of that near future. Unfortunately their proposal allows developers to provide chargers at a rate as low as five per hundred dwelling units. A two-day hearing on this matter comes up April 28-29; learn more here or contact EV activist Sven Thesen ([email protected]) for more information.

Finally, we want to thank all who sent messages or turned out for last month’s Humboldt County Planning Commission hearing on the Hatchery Road solar project. Your speaking up certainly had an impact on the Commission’s approval of this much-needed project that will bring renewable electricity to Humboldt!

Pat Carr for 350 Humboldt