Victory in the Fight for Clean Air in Baltimore
Following escalation of protests, Maryland Department of Environment denies Air Quality Permits for Trash Incinerator
Baltimore, MD - Today, Margaret Flowers, MD, candidate for US Senate seeking the Green Party nomination in Maryland, applauded a decision by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) to deny the air quality permits for the construction of the largest trash incinerator in the nation in Curtis Bay, a community in Southwest Baltimore. The permit was sought by New York-based Energy Answers International.
For the past 4 years, residents of Curtis Bay, led by students at Benjamin Franklin High School and United Workers who together formed a group called ‘Free Your Voice’, have fought to stop construction of the incinerator, which would be located less than a mile from the high school. Over the past year, they have escalated their tactics including occupying the MDE’s Baltimore office and overwhelming the CEO of Energy Answers International with factual information at a recent community meeting.
"This is a tremendous victory for advocates with Free Your Voice and the people of South Baltimore who have organized to stop this incinerator from going forward. Maryland already has terrible air quality, receiving an ‘F’ from the American Lung Association in and around Baltimore. This incinerator would have greatly increased air pollution and the resultant cancer, cardiorespiratory disease and asthma in Curtis Bay,” said Dr. Flowers. “Although the O’Malley administration allowed the incinerator to be classified as clean renewable energy, the community saw through that and won through persistence and having the truth on their side.”
Baltimore District 10 City Council candidate Amanda Maminski, who is seeking nomination by the Baltimore Green Party, lives in Curtis Bay and organizes with Free Your Voice. She was one of the community members who left the CEO of Energy Answers International speechless at the recent meeting. She studied their 465-page certificate of need request to the Maryland Public Service Commission. It was clear at the meeting that he had not.
Maminski explains, “By revoking the Air Quality Control permits that expired in 2013, the MDE is upholding our community’s basic human right to clean air and enforcing the terms of their own agreements.” She added that there is still more to do to stop the construction permit for the project. And she has developed an alternative proposal for the land where the incinerator would be built that includes a solar farm and job training on how to build and maintain it so that community members could be hired.
It is the combination of direct action such as the resistance against this incinerator and the development of plans that both move us towards the 21st century clean energy future we require and are based on the needs and desires of the community that set Green Party candidates apart from Democrats and Republicans.
The Baltimore Green Party Primary is coming up May 1st and now is crucial time to learn about your candidates.
We have a contested mayoral primary with three candidates vying for the Green Party nomination:Joshua Harris, Emanuel McCray, David Marriott
This Saturday March 19th, from 4-7 PM we are hosting the Baltimore Green Party Meet and Greet at our office located at 100. E 23rd St, Baltimore MD.
Baltimore's Three Green Party Mayoral Candidates Agree To Participate In Two Forums Open Society Institute Reconsiders and Includes the Green Party
Baltimore, MD: Yesterday, the Open Society Institute and additional co-sponsors and hosts of two upcoming mayoral debates reversed themselves and decided to include the three Green mayoral candidates in their two forums. All three candidates, Joshua Harris, Emanuel McCray and David Marriott have agreed to participate.
"We applaud the sponsors decision to take democracy seriously and ensure that all candidates are heard. Democracy cannot work if closed debates are where only two parties are allowed to participate. The sponsors of these two debates, along with the sponsors of a previous debate the Mt. Vernon Belvedere Association looked at the law and reached the same conclusion -- all candidates must be included under the law," said Andy Ellis, co-chair of the Baltimore Green Party. "Baltimore is facing multiple crisis situations and the same old ideas of the Democratic Party will not solve them. We need new ideas and the Green Party will provide those."
The schedule of the debates is:
February 24th, 7:00 PM at Pleasant Hope Baptist Church, 430 East Belvedere Ave.
Hosted by Rev. Heber Brown and moderated by E.R. Shipp and Marc Steiner
March 16th, 7:00 PM at Union Baptist Church, 1219 Druid Hill Ave.
Hosted by Rev. Alvin C. Hathaway, Sr. and moderated by Karen Houppert and Lester Spence
The Green Party primary system is a combination of mailed ballots with in-person voting at a convention on May 1.
For more on the Baltimore Green Party candidates see Baltimore City Green Party To Hold Contested 3-Way Mayoral Election
Baltimore Green Party Press Release-Green Party US Senate Candidate, Margaret Flowers, Endorses Plan to Prosecute Wall Street
As of the 2/3/2016 filing deadline these are the candidates seeking the Green Party nomination to run in the general election November 8th.
Mayor- Emanuel McCray & Joshua Harris & David Marriott
President of the City Council- Connor Meek
City Council District 3- Andreas Spiliadis
City Council District 6- Richard T White
City Council District 9- Jamie Frierson
City Council District 10- Amanda Maminski
City Council District 12- Ian Schlakman
In addition to the Baltimore City races there are Green Party candidates for
US Senate- Margaret Flowers
US House of Representatives 3- Nnabu Eze
US House of Representatives 7- Myles Hoenig
Registered members of the Green Party in Baltimore City will have the opportunity to participate in our Baltimore Green Party Primary. Information can be found here http://www.baltimoregp.org/bgp_primary_process_2016
The Baltimore Green Party is growing fast and needs your support! 2016 provides us with tremendous challenges but also tremendous opportunity. People are ready for a new option and new solutions, and the Baltimore Green Party is well poised to build on that energy. We are focused on three main objectives for 2016:
- The 2016 Election: Elections Matter- In the current election year, Baltimore City voters will participate in a general election in which Green Party candidates are listed all the way down the ballot. In a city where it is often said “The (Democratic) primary is the election,” we seek to transform that reality in races across the city. We will contest the dynasty that Democrats have in Baltimore with candidates who show voters that there is an alternative and that the general election matters. The Party will be supporting an election that includes the following offices: (*=pending)
o President of The United States
o United States Senator
o United States House of Representatives
§ MD 3
§ MD 7
o Baltimore City Mayor
o President of the Baltimore City Council
o City Council District
- Issue Based Organizing: Elections matter, but so does organized pressure on elected officials. We want to build on a strong network and train a new generation of community organizers in order to create the kind of power that puts people over profit. Green Party values serve as an essential moral compass when addressing the many problems Baltimore faces. We want to organize for a better future around those values and build the political power to back them up.
- Voter engagement: We need to foster a culture change in the way that Baltimore city residents are included in government. We want to create social, cultural, and educational events that invite all city residents to engage in the discussion about the future. We recognize that we are fighting against a powerful set of forces that have created a two(one?) party system. We believe that when we have the opportunity to explain Green values and Green solutions to Baltimore voters, many will join us in the fight for them.
The Baltimore Green Party and our candidates only take donations from individuals, not from PAC’s or corporations. We need individuals like you to support us. We accept donations in two ways: recurring and one-time. The recurring donations sustain us and the one-time donations help us achieve specific goals quickly. Our main priority at this point is recurring sustainer donations of $10 per month. Funds go toward:
- The Baltimore Green Party Headquarters- In order to build the kind of movement that can bring about real change in Baltimore, we need an office where we can hold meetings, welcome voters, work together, phone bank, train volunteers, and more. We have located a space that will allow all us to do all of this, but we need support in sustaining it.
- Campaign and Election Materials- Visibility matters! We need signs, buttons, T-Shirts, pamphlets and stickers. Citizens in Baltimore need to know that the Green Party is not only an option but an agent of change. We will source our material needs locally and in accordance with party values and sustainer support helps us do it right.
- Member Outreach- There are about 1100 registered Green voters in Baltimore City and we want to be able to reach out to each of them and let them know about the work the local party is doing. We will need at least one mailing in order to do this!
- Social, Cultural, and Educational Events- Movements are not built just around the best candidates and the best issues; they also require a social element. When people spend time together doing things they like, the movement becomes stronger. We want to be able to bring in speakers, host meetups and happy hours, book spaces for art and cultural events, and more. Sustainers help us to be able to develop and expand this program.
- Fundraisers- Throughout the election season and beyond we will need to do additional fundraising events and campaigns. On a shoestring budget these are hard to plan and develop effectively. Recurring payments from sustainers give us the ability to cover any costs that may be associated with fundraising.
Monthly sustainers will receive:
- Invitation to tour our new office and discuss the Baltimore Green Party
- Invitation to a sustainers event at our new office
- Thank you email and call
- First notice about all Baltimore Green Party Events
- Recognition in our office and on our website
One time donors will receive:
- Thank you email and call
- Invitation to tour our new office and discuss the Baltimore Green Party
- Recognition on our website
Authority, Baltimore Green Party, Vincent Tola, Treasurer