September 2023 Newsletter

     If you are looking for ways to become involved in climate action, this month’s newsletter is for you.  Be sure to read the many entries below under “Community News.”  
     We are excited to announce our own chapter’s new initiative on local electrification.  A lively discussion at our August 15 monthly meeting elicited a wide array of possibilities for action.  The meeting concluded in a vote that chose electrification as our chapter’s focus for this coming year.  I hope you will join us at our monthly meeting on September 19 to begin implementing our next steps.  Dick Jones offers more detail.  

Our Local Electrification Emphasis

     A Steering Committee has been formed to direct work related to our chapter’s Local Electrification Initiative. At the August chapter meeting, local electrification was voted as the activity our chapter wanted to focus on for the next several months, at least. At the next chapter meeting on September 19, you will have the opportunity to choose to help with several areas of emphasis. These include:
—Development of and contributions to a Google landing page that will serve as a central resource for our work.
—A letter campaign to the Governor and selected Pennsylvania legislators to encourage the Commonwealth to quickly finalize the rebate and fund distribution procedures of the Inflation Reduction Act so that citizens can start taking advantage of its many electrification benefits. Another topic: the need for Pennsylvania to make community solar legal.
—A sub-committee to research and create a list of local firms that do installations of heat pumps, hot water heat pumps, and other devices that qualify for rebates and tax incentives.
—A group interested in organizing, creating and possibly delivering presentations to residents, local businesses, and non-profit organizations about how they can benefit from the I.R.A. and utility rebates by electrifying. 
—Support the local GET Solar Campaign that reaches out to businesses and nonprofit building owners to encourage solar adoption.

Let’s keep the momentum going from our August meeting!  Join us on Sept. 19 in the Fellowship Hall at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship.
—Dick Jones,

Monthly Chapter Meeting
Tuesday, September 19, 2023, 
5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Fellowship Hall
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
780 Waupelani Drive
State College, PA 16801

Electrification Resources

Our first step is to educate ourselves on the Inflation Reduction Act and electrification.  Here are some resources that you might want to look at:
     –  Read what CCL has to say on electrification
     – CCL’s resources and trainings page on the Inflation Reduction Act
     – Become familiar with Rewiring America’s website
     –CCL’s Electrification Action Team meets regularly and offers presentations and information that you would find useful.  Join the group to receive notices of their events.
     –Webinar on heat pumps.  The Department of Energy is offering a free webinar on the status of the government’s program to encourage residential heat pumps.  It will take place at 1 pm on Thursday, September 14.  You can sign up for it here.

 Community News

DEP Commercial Induction Cooking Workshop
September 15 from 10am – 1pm at the RE Farm Café at Windswept Farm. 
A  rebate program to help nonprofits, higher education institutions, K-12 schools, and restaurants modernize their commercial kitchens is available through Pennsylvania DEP’s Cooking in Healthy Electrified Commercial Kitchens (CHECK) rebate program. Up to $8,500 in rebates are available for a number of energy efficiency and electrical improvements. This in-person demonstration workshop also satisfies an eligibility requirement for the rebate. Application deadline for the rebate is December 31, 2023.  Register here for the workshop
GET Solar grant info sessions in September
Solar can provide a big boost to your business or nonprofit.  Learn more in a free informational meeting on ways your company or organization can benefit from solar, including tax credits, grant programs, and more. Join PA Solar Center and a local group of community leaders (GET Solar Communities Centre Region) on September 14, 19, or 20 for this free resource!  Learn more and register here:
National Drive Electric Week will be held this year from Sept. 22 to Oct. 1.  Their webpage lists in-person and online events, as well as an introduction to EVs.
Climate Convergence, Oct. 1
The Moshannon Group of the Sierra Club is organizing a bus from State College to Harrisburg for the Pennsylvania Climate Convergence rally on October 1.  You can sign up for the bus here:   Bus trip to Harrisburg for the Pennsylvania Climate Convergence.
Solar grant for State College church
Fairbrook United Methodist Church on Whitehall Road in State College will be able to install a ground-mounted solar array thanks to a grant from West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund (WPPSEF).  The solar installation will save them money and reduce emissions.  Here are the details. 
Films from Penn State’s Sustainability Institute
The next film in the Intersections Film Series sponsored by the Sustainability Institute will be “Beyond Zero” on Sept. 20 at 7 pm.  You can register for this virtual event here.
Input for State College’s Mobility Plan
Matt Herndon reminds us to take part in a community survey and comment Map on a proposed Next Gen Mobility Plan for State College.  The draft plan is scheduled to be distributed at the end of October.  So people who want to encourage more biking, walking, and public transit to make our area more sustainable should respond soon. 
Course on “Resilience and Acceptance in the Face of Collapse”
Kelle Kersten and Bob Flatley will be offering a nine-session course that meets weekly starting on Sept. 24 at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship.  This course offers an in-depth exploration of “what is happening within and around us–individually and collectively–in this time of Unraveling.” It will offer resources on how best to live as natural and human systems are collapsing.   Click here for a flyer with details.  Write to with any questions.  Here is the syllabus for the course

 CCL Members in Action

Last month’s OpEd in the Centre Daily Times highlighted the importance of CCL’s national goals.  “Climate Watch: 4 Steps Toward Meeting Our 2030 Paris Climate Goals” was written by Dick Jones and appeared on August 13. 
CCL member Margie Swoboda wrote a letter to the editor on spreading the word about the benefits in the Inflation Reduction Act.  The letter appeared in, as well as the Centre Daily Times and the Scranton Times-Tribune.
News from Susquehanna Valley chapter of CCL – On August 7, the Selinsgrove Borough Council voted to approve the formation of a Task Force for Climate Action.  Susquehanna Valley members Michele Mitchell and Kay Cramer were especially important in working to bring this about.  The chapter is also working on electrification of school buses.  

 ICYMI — In Case You Missed It 

The Guardian has an article that brings together the views of many climate scientists on the meaning of the extreme events of this summer:  “Off-the-charts records”:  Has humanity finally broken the climate? 
Kenneth Davis, professor of atmospheric and climate science at Penn State, will lead a team of 23 investigators from 13 research institutions in a new field campaign supported by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to study surface-atmosphere interactions around Baltimore, Maryland, to see how they influence the city’s climate.  Here is the link to the article on this study, called CoURAGE.
In a possible hint at what is in store for vehicle charging in the future, Tesla has bought a wireless charging company.  This Canary Media article explores the benefits of wireless EV charging and the barriers to its implementation.

August Newsletter
October 2023 Newsletter

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