Category Archives: ~ the Other Washington

Washingon State News Info and Political Action

THE Plastic Bag Ban STORY …


SeattleWAthumbpix

first posted – Nov.2011

What’s the Problem?

Washingtonians use more than 2 billion  single-use plastic bags  each year, and Seattle alone uses approximately 292  million plastic  bags annually and only 13% are recycled.  Too many plastic  bags end up  in Puget Sound where they do not biodegrade.  Plastic bags break down  into smaller and  smaller pieces that remain hazardous as they are  consumed by filter-feeders,  shellfish, fish, turtles, marine mammals,  and birds. PCB levels in Chinook  salmon from Puget Sound are 3- to  5-times higher than any other West Coast  populations.

In 2010, a  beached gray whale was  found to have 20 plastic bags in its stomach!

Data source: Keeping Plastics Out of Puget Sound,  Environment Washington Report, November 2011

How would the plastic bag ban work?

by Mike O’brien

It’s simple – retailers are prohibited from offering plastic   carryout bags to customers.  Paper bags  may still be provided to  customers for a minimum of five cents – stores keep  the nickel to help  cover the cost of providing bags.  Everyone is encouraged to bring, sell  and use  reusable bags.

What bags?

  • Banned Bags Include: plasticbags provided at checkout of all  retail stores (bags less than 2.25 ml thick and made from non‐renewable  sources).
  • Exclusions: bags used by shoppers in a store to package bulk  foods, meat, flowers, bakery goods or prescriptions; newspaper, door  hanger bags and dry cleaning bags.

What stores?

  • Where the policy applies: all retail stores including but not  limited to grocery stores, corner and convenience stores, pharmacies,  department stores, farmers markets, restaurants and catering trucks.
  • Where it’s not applicable: for take‐out food where there is a public health risk if a bag is not provided.

What about paper?

  • Retailers may provide paper bags made of at least 40% recycled  paper for a minimum 5 cent pass through cost that retailers keep to  offset the cost of providing bags.
  • Low income customers who qualify for food assistance programs shall be provided paper bags at no charge.

Joining cities on the West Coast and around the world

Seattle would join cities along the West Coast, hundreds of cities  across the country and twenty nations worldwide that have already taken  action to reduce the use of single use plastic bags.

  • San Francisco, CA – Banned plastic bags in 2007.
  • Los Angeles County – Banned Plastic bags November 2010; includes a 10 cent fee on paper bags.
  • Portland, OR – Banned plastic bags in summer 2011.
  • Edmonds, WA – Banned Plastic Bags in 2009; law was implemented in August 2010.
  • Bellingham, WA – Banned plastic bags in 2011, in the model outlined in this document;  legislation to be implement in summer 2012.
  • Washington DC – Implemented a 5 cent fee on paper and plastic bags in 2009; reduced  disposable bag use by 80% citywide in first year.

Background in Seattle

Approximately 292 million disposable  bags are used in the City  of Seattle annually.   In 2008, the City Council passed an ordinance that  would have placed a 20 cent fee on disposable plastic and  paper bags  at grocery, drug and convenience stores in an effort to reduce  waste.   The ordinance passed the Council  in a 6-1 vote and then opposing  parties collected enough signatures to refer  the ordinance to the  ballot, where it was over-turned by the voters (53%-47%)  in the  November 2009 primary election.   The American Chemistry Council spent  over $1.4 million opposing the law during the ballot measure campaign.

Today, as the ban on plastic bags is implemented and or enforced most checkers are asking if you would like to buy a cotton bag because there were no flimsy plastic available. Now, after finally getting those flimsy bags out some stores, others such as the Dollar store and Safeway came up with or possibly the plastic industry came up with a heavy-duty plastic supposedly reusable bag. I was at a Safeway and needed another bag. I honestly did not want to spend $5 and while I was looking around, I spot a heavy-duty plastic Safeway logo inscribed bag with pretty colours. This was a disappointing find on so many environmental official statewide ban levels though i admit it can be reused, it is quite large and was only .25 but they tear easily. I bought one to see how it would hold up and it lasted about 2hours … so, the next question for king county is if they actually have folks checking in on stores selling heavy-duty reusable plastic bags

What plastic bags?   ugh

.beaseedforchangestickersGREEN

HUGE ruling for our planet … with the help from 8 kids- Will this win be repealed


Jay Inslee Logo

Eight courageous kids went to court to compel us adults to take action on climate change. I’m happy to say that they won.

These eight kids know that our state can do more to fight climate change — and I do, too. Their case has been a call for action to no longer ignore our climate and our kids. And now, the court has affirmed that our plan to reduce carbon pollution is the right thing to do, and now is the right time.

While we fight for better schools and an economy that works for everyone, making sure we do our part to protect our air and water for generations to come must be a critical issue for all of us.

Now, we need to stand together, along with those eight kids, and continue our commitment to taking action. Will you add your name right now in support of a strongClean Air Rule for our state?

Thanks to those eight kids, the court has affirmed our plan to act, contrary to the assertion of those who continue to obstruct action on climate change and ocean acidification. Hundreds of people have participated in the creation of our state’s Clean Air Rule and the draft will be out this month.

It’s a powerful statement that these kids took legal action to fight for the future of our planet — for their future. I’m grateful that they did. Their generation has so much more at stake when it comes to climate change. That’s why this election is so important.

We must continue to fight to reduce our carbon pollution immediately. We’re also going to build a clean energy economy — one where Washington leads.

Add your name right now to show your support for a strong Clean Air Rule worthy of our kids’ future.

This is about our future. This is about our kids’ future. Taking action is an imperative — I’m grateful to have you on my side for this effort.

Very truly yours,

Jay Inslee

ding dong the bills are dead – Working Washington …state


Well here’s some good news : our minimum wage is safe! 

On 3/8/2017 at 5:00pm , three bills that would have rolled back our state minimum wage officially “died” in the State Legislature.  

Click here to add your voice and help us celebrate this big win for workers!

  • SB 5530, which would have reduced the minimum wage to $9.53/hour for everyone who happened to work outside of King County is dead.
  • SB 5532, which would have reduced the minimum wage to $9.53/hour for everyone whose employer happens to be classified as a nonprofit is dead.
  • And SB 5541, which would have created a special sub-minimum wage for younger workers is dead too.

In other words: we did it! 🙂

Click here to add your voice and help us celebrate this big win for workers!

 

Soccer coach: Could artificial turf be causing cancer?


By Gaard Swanson Published: May 19, 2014 at 10:54 PM PDT Last Updated: May 20, 2014 at 6:30 AM PDT

a repost

Soccer coach: Could artificial turf be causing cancer?

SEATTLE — A local soccer coach is raising serious questions about the material used tomakeartificialathleticfieldsCrumbrubberis made fromshreddedtiresandis used in soccer fields all over the country. The turf is especially popular in Seattle because the tires get recycled and the reliable surface can stand up to soggy weather.But one local coach sees a troubling connection between the turf and cancer among soccer players.Soccer runs in the blood of University of Washington assistant coach Amy Griffin. She started playing goalie as a child, and now helps UW goalies stay fit and improve their skills.Griffin’s always searching for new talent and keeps a list of top players. But one list of names isn’t about recruiting. On it are 13 players from Washington who have all been diagnosed with rare types of cancer.Of those 13, 11 come from an even smaller pool of players: Goal keepers.

“Everyone says it’s just a coincidence and kind of walks away, but the ratio of goal keepers to field players is 15 to 1, 16 to 2, and I know plenty of goal keepers that have cancers and I don’t know many field players,” Griffin said.

Griffin said she can’t walk away from what she’s discovered, and she’s not alone. Former professional goalie and reality TV star Ethan Zohn, who has twice beaten non-Hodgkins lymphoma, had been keeping his own list, which he has now handed over to Griffin.

Combined, the lists name 27 players with cancer, and 22 of them are goal keepers.

Griffin can’t say why goalies are getting cancer, but she wonders if it’s the field turf and the crumb rubber used to make it. She said goalies spend a lot of time on the ground diving for balls, blocking shots and sometimes ingesting the small rubber pellets.

“I lived in the stuff,” former UW goal keeper Jorden Alerding said of the turf. “Four to five times a week I was on it for hours — bleeding sweating, everything. Looking back now I wonder could that have been the cause.”

Griffin’s first brush with the unproven connection between cancer and the pellets came when she visited Alerding, who was being treated for cancer.

“She said, ‘I just think it’s something with the field turf. I don’t know what it is, but I think there’s something in those black dots,'” Griffin said.

The former Husky was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma during her freshman year of college when doctors discovered a large, deadly tumor.

“It was about the size, a little bigger than a softball, right in the center of my chest,” Alerding said.

Alerding is now cancer free, but she still questions the health effects of crumb rubber and the lack of further research.

“If this can be prevented, I don’t know why there isn’t more effort being made to do the research and find out,” she said.

The pain is still fresh for June Leahy. Her daughter, Austen Everett, a star goalie for Seattle’s Blanchet High School and later the University of Miami, died a year and a half ago.

By the time Everett lost her second battle with non-Hodgkins lymphoma, Leahy was raising questions about the use of crumb rubber on soccer fields.

“I feel like there is a strong correlation with the turf,” she said.

This isn’t the first time people have raised concerns about the turf, either. In 2008, a goal keeper at Tacoma’s Stadium High School battled Hodgkins lymphoma. Back then, Luke Beardemphl and his family wondered if crumb rubber had played a part in his cancer.

“I’ll catch it. It’ll stop the ball but not the pellets. They’ll go into my face, go into my eyes, my mouth,” Beardemphl said in 2008.

Earlier that year, the US Consumer Product Safety Commission tested some blades of grass used in synthetic turf for lead. The commission found they did not contain enough of it to put children at risk.

The agency later stated that its “exposure assessment did not include chemical or other toxic metals, beyond lead.”

Tires do contain metals and chemicals that have been ruled too toxic to burn in Washington state. The average athletic field uses 27,000 of them.

So, can prolonged exposure to the fields make people sick? The Synthetic Turf Council says no.

The president of the trade organization was unavailable to talk about this story, but the group directed us to a statement on its website.

“For 40 years, under EPA oversight and OSHA- regulated manufacturing, not one person has ever reported ill effects related to any materials associated with synthetic turf,” the statement reads.

Those statements and tests cannot shake loose the feeling Griffin gets every time she learns the name of another goal keeper with cancer.

She also knows that feelings and suspicion do not equal evidence.

The team’s head physician, Dr. John O’Kane, says the concern is valid and has talked with Griffin about the need for scientific and medical research on the effects of crumb rubber.

He said Griffin’s list is only a starting point.

“The question you would need to ask is over that same time period, how many goalies are there that haven’t gotten cancer?” O’Kane said. “And until you understand that number, you really can’t interpret that there’s anything particularly dangerous about being a goalie when it comes to cancer.”

O’Kane said that kind of research could take years. Griffin hopes someone is willing to take on the work to provide her with an answer. She said any answer will do.

“I would love for it to be disproven or for someone to grab me by the throat and say,’These are the facts. This is why it could never be this. This is just happenstance.’ That would be great,” she said.

One former Husky — Alerding — is on Griffin’s list.

Basic Tips for saving water in Washington …from USA.gov


fixLeakFaucet_LgSaving Water Partnership

Seattle and participating water utilities

Many people think that having an environmentally friendly house means spending thousands of dollars on solar panels or planting a garden on the roof to keep the house cool during the summer time.
That’s not really the case. There are many things you can do to help the environment without having to transform your home, or even spend too much money. In fact, you might end up saving hundreds of dollars per year in the process.

For more information click on the link below
http://www.USA.gov

http://www.savingwater.org

chief victims of global warming are women

women walk miles for water and gather the firewood … and women grow the food