Together we Exceeded our End of Year Appeal Goal!

It is with great excitement and joy that we announce that together we have met and exceeded our year end fundraising goal!

After a year of uncertainty and transition we set a bold goal of raising $75,000 in individual contributions and we asked you all to imagine that another world is possible with us. We told you how we and our campaign members are imagining more for Delevan Grider, Tonawanda, Seneca Babcock and the Tesla workers. We shared our personal stories of what motivates us to organize for justice and health for our communities. We developed our skills and trained me

mbers on the necessity of funding our own movements through grassroots fundraising so we can be independent and accountable to our mission. You delivered and joined us in imagining more and raising a total of $76,250!

Meeting this goal has put Clean Air in a stron

g position to continue our grassroots organizing and leadership development of our members this year. We have a small but very capable, passionate, and motivated staff and have been busy planning great things for 2022. We cannot wait to see you and share more at our Virtual Annual Meeting for which we will be announcing a date very soon.

Thank you for imagining a new world with us!



American Axle Community Advisory Group this Wednesday!

Join us for the second American Axle Community Advisory Group meeting!

This Wednesday, January 12th at 6pm, members of our community will meet with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) and property owner East Delavan Properties for an update on the slow going cleanup work at the former American Axle site on East Delavan.

The Delavan-Grider community has been organizing for decades to see real action on the contaminated site in our backyard. The CAG meeting will give community members a chance to ask their questions and give their feedback directly to those in control of the speed, scope and openness of this historic cleanup.

The meeting will be held on Zoom. You can access the meeting by clicking the link below or by calling in with the number, meeting ID and passcode provided.

Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87105154904?pwd=OWFQQTlhVzhqRGZaSmZFZS9adkU1Zz09

Call: 1 929 436 2866 US

Meeting ID: 871 0515 4904

Passcode: 506600



“At Clean Air, I’ve gotten to meet visionary, courageous people I will learn from for the rest of my life.” -Linnea Brett

Dear Clean Air community,

At the end of this year, I will step down from my role as Community Organizer with Clean Air. In the nearly three and a half years I have been a staff member, and the 7+ years I’ve been part of the organization’s work, I have had the privilege to work alongside some profoundly talented, visionary, and courageous people I will appreciate and learn from for the rest of my life.

 

It’s been a chaotic ride – particularly as we’ve adapted to the pandemic, but for folks who’ve been in this fight for the long haul, we know the work has never been easy: I’ve been inspired, angry, grief-stricken, hopeful, and everything in between. I’m deeply proud of the work we’ve done together, building a powerful movement for justice through rigorous organizing, caretaking, and principled struggle. The time I’ve spent working alongside Clean Air leaders and members has been a gift.

In early October, my partner and I (and our dog and two cats) relocated to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she hails from. Since then, I have continued to work remotely for the organization as we’ve onboarded new staff (welcome Bridge and Chris!) and as I’ve gradually started a new beginning in the midwest, the Clean Air staff has emerged as a powerful and exciting new formation. 

I know the Clean Air staff and members will continue to organize with care, joy, vision, and determination, creating the world we’re fighting for along the way. I’m eagerly awaiting updates on the creative and brilliant ways our powerful movement and small-but-mighty organization will be holding feet to the flames and winning justice, dignity, health and so much more. We’re currently fundraising for 2022, and for the duration of the campaign, every dollar you give will be matched twice, making your donation go three times as far! Will you join me in making a gift of $10, $25, or $50 today?

In love and rage and motion, 

Linnea Brett

P.S. Please consider making a sustaining gift of $5, $10, or $20 a month to ensure Clean Air is always ready to take on the challenges ahead. Thank You!



We Imagine More at Huntley

We Imagine More at Huntley! 

This email comes to you via Clean Air’s Huntley team in Tonawanda. We believe that another future is possible for this site.

We believe that the future of Huntley includes public waterfront access and a Just Transition for all the workers.

Our vision extends far beyond the bounds of this site alone, as we outlined with our partners at Tonawanda Tomorrow.

 

Our team member Jim Jones summarizes where our Huntley team stands at the close of 2021 thusly –

Working towards fundamentally clean air has always been at our core at the

Clean Air Coalition of WNY and we have seen much improvement since we first began to shine light on the

harsh air quality conditions in Tonawanda.

We seemed to be one of New York’s ground zero, so to speak, for 53 Title V air permit facilities along a concentrated area along our Niagara River waterfront. Since then, we have triumphed on our lung’s behalf, at retirements of Tonawanda Coke, Huntley coal fired power plant and the removal of the Grand Island toll booths.

However, our work is still imperative to help provide a Just Transition from extractive manufacturing processes and, horrendous land and water stewardship practices. Now the custodial work to help our section of earth heal and our lives prosper has begun. If we do not work together on this, the scars will continue to ache. Please become part of the change we want to make.

This past year, we continued to monitor the ongoing property ownership plans and implementation of the Tonawanda Tomorrow plan, and helped keep you in the loop. As things presently stand as far as we understand, NRG Energy still owns the shuttered facility and ostensibly is going through the motions of soliciting redevelopment partners, but has not offered any public updates to their progress in recent months. The southern portion of the 100 acre site still waits for remediation while the remaining building sits idle, and NRG continues to draw revenue from the raw water intake that they own and distribute to neighboring industries.

We imagine so much more for Huntley than it’s presently mothballed state, and we plan to share that vision with NRG in the coming year!

We imagine winning – you can help us bring our waterfront back to us to enjoy while ensuring a Just Transition. Your contribution towards our annual goal of $75,000 will help us expand upon this work in 2022, when we anticipate this campaign will pick up at a more rapid pace as we leverage public pressure on NRG to make a final decision on the property.

Please click here to donate today or click here to become a member by donating any amount. With the help of our members, as of this morning, December 13th, we’ve raised

$13,350 towards our $75,000 goal!

We also hope you can join us tomorrow at 6pm for our Grassroots Fundraising Training, in which we will train you on methods to raise funds from peers, and, more importantly, build stronger relationships to bring more participants into our work. Click here to register for the Zoom.

Much love and solidarity,

The Huntley Team – Diana Strablow, Maria Tisby, Sue Kelley,

Tom Morahan, Jim Jones, Ray Vaughan, and Bridge Rauch



We Imagine More at Tonawanda Coke

When you inhale and when you exhale

breathe the possibility of another world

into the 37.2 trillion cells of your body

until it shines with hope.

Then imagine more.

Passage from V’ahavta, by Aurora Levins Morales

We Imagine More at Tonawanda Coke

We have much to celebrate about our 2021 work related to Tonawanda Coke, including, most notably, a great deal of

progress on the ongoing site remediation!

We came together on June 5th to watch and cheer as the smoke stacks, which had stood since 1917, belching toxicities

into our community for a century,

were brought down in a controlled demolition!

A win of this magnitude was unimaginable just a few years ago – truly a moment to

imagine more”, as Aurora Levins Morales encourages us to do.

The stacks came down because the people rose up.

Tonawanda_coke_towers_come_tumbling_down.gif

In the days and weeks prior we also educated ourselves and the public on the potential dangers and risks associated with the demolition, advising area residents through a public meeting and an information campaign on steps they could take to protect themselves against any dust or debris that might be carried into nearby areas which would have put people at risk.

This education campaign came as a direct result of our prior win in securing a Community Advisory Group for monitoring the site remediation.

Our role as a watchdog amid the ongoing remediation was further tested when a fire broke out on the site on August 10th and then again just a few weeks later when a thick cloud of dust from the demolition of the former coal house was seen rising from the site. We helped our members contact the DEC to notify them of these environmental hazards and of the risk to the community, and also shared what we learned from the workers on site with our members.

Our watchdog role will continue in 2022 and for years to come.

Our team member Maria Tisby summarizes this work thusly –

“Corporate greed at Tonawanda Coke has caused irreparable harm to residents from toxic emissions negatively impacting parameters of health. Political aspirations have caused a conflict of interest with residents’ health concerns always taking a back seat. We deserve an environment clean of toxicity in the land and air. Brownfield cleanups enrich the corporate owners and are not conducive to truly effective clean up. This is a health issue as well as an ethical concern. Residents need to be an integral part of the clean up process with a legitimate seat at the table.”

Team member Sue Kelley further adds

“Clean Air has made the area around the Huntley and Tonawanda Coke plants a healthier and cleaner area to live in.”

Your contribution towards our annual goal of $75,000 will support and strengthen our work in 2022 – please click here to donate today, or click here to become a member

by donating any amount.

Much love and solidarity,

The Tonawanda Coke Team

Maria Tisby, Sue Kelley, Kristen Cascio,

Jim Jones, Tom Morahan, and Bridge Rauch

InstagramFB each campaign _5_.png

P.S. Please consider making a sustaining gift of $5, $10, or $20 a month to ensure Clean Air is always ready to take on the challenges ahead. Thank You!



Triple Your Impact On Our Mission!

Thanks to our incredible network of supporters we were able to secure a 2-1 match donation for any dollar of giving to our end of year appeal “Another World is Possible” through December 31. That means that $100= $300, $25=$75 and so on. Can you help us raise the $12,000 we need to meet our match  goal? Right now, your donation can have triple the impact on our work for health and justice! 

Grassroots Fundraising with numerous small dollar donations is what allows our organization to remain an independent voice in the fight for racial and environmental justice! This is a great opportunity to join our work through giving to make a big impact!

Donate online today! https://www.cacwny.org/donate/



Why I organize with Clean Air

 

Dear Clean Air community, 

On June 5th, 2021, I gathered with people that I love, respect and admire to watch the three infamous smokestacks at Tonawanda Coke topple down. I brought two of my children with me as we battled sandflies to watch those three brick mountains topple to the ground. We all know that those stacks weren’t just an eyesore, but a symbol of the pain, grief, loss and anger that our communities have felt for decades.

 

The emotions I felt on that day and the months after are honestly still hard for me to put into words. Waves of grief, of joy, of trepidation, of pride and anger flowed through me as we stood together on the banks of the Niagara River.  I lost my mother and my grandmother to cancer, both of whom lived and grew up less than two miles from those nasty stacks. My sisters and I breathed in chemicals from those stacks and those like it for our entire childhoods. Members of my church filled the pews time and time again to mourn the losses of those we knew. My fellow Clean Air members and I were called radical, crazy and too emotional for wanting the site cleaned up to the highest possible standard. It was all so much. 

 

Those stacks came down because the people rose up. It’s so much more than a catchy little phrase; it is the god’s honest truth. I choose to do this work, this hard, exhausting work, because we are organizing for a new world, and we’re winning.  A world where babies won’t ever breathe in benzyne. A world where we can plant gardens and make mud pies in our backyards without fear of poisons mixed with clay and dirt. A world where no one has to have a bake sale or basket raffle to fund a funeral, because the people we’re mourning will have never experienced the suffering that comes from someone else’s greed and oppression. I choose to organize with Clean Air because I believe that our members’ visions for a new world are possible, and we’re building the power we need to get there. 

You have heard from two of our incredible environmental justice campaigns this week on how they are building and leading a new world and you will be hearing from more in the coming weeks. I have the honor and privilege to work alongside our membership as we stop the bad of someone else’s wildest dreams and build justice, liberation, health and dignity in our world. 

 

Will you join us this holiday season by investing in our members’ visions? Our grassroots fundraising work enables us to be bold, visionary and get to the roots of our interlocking systems of oppression that are killing us. 

 

With bread and roses,

 

Emily Terrana 

 

Director of Leadership Development and Organizing



Fundraising Workshop!

Do you want to build up your grassroots fundraising skills? Join us on Tuesday December 14, 6-7:30 PM on Zoom for a Clean Air Member Fundraising Training!
We all have a complicated relationship with money, but fundraising for an organization you care about like Clean Air isn’t just about money, it’s about building the relationships and power we need to run and win our bold and visionary campaigns. Join us to explore your relationship to money, how to build relationships and power through fundraising, and more!

 



We’re imagining more in Delavan-Grider

Clean Air members, supporters and friends,

In the Delavan-Grider community, we are making the impossible possible. Ten years ago it felt impossible to dream of a neighborhood where residents could safely drink their own water or plant gardens in their backyard. It felt impossible to think that the State of New York would hear our calls for justice, accountability and action at the former American Axle site in our backyards. It felt completely ridiculous to imagine a world where our elected officials would put their necks out to support our community’s health, dignity and joy. And yet, we persisted, and we are making the impossible possible.

Our American Axle Steering Committee knows that another world is possible because we show up to build it each and every day. In 2021, each of us have taken risks to have our voices heard and have tried new things to build the power that we need to live in a world where our health and joy matter more than the status-quo.

Our team didn’t give up when the NYSDEC denied us a seat at the table in the form of an American Axle Community Advisory Group. We leaned on one another and held onto the burning truth that we deserve to be heard, seen and respected…and we won. When we won a CAG for American Axle, we didn’t stop there.  In 2021 we built Clean Air’s first “Lunch and Learn” Facebook Live program that shared our team’s knowledge, wisdom and experiences with the broader community. We continued to build deep trust and relationships with people living in Delavan-Grider and former workers at the American Axle plant. We put our dreams into action; we imagined more.

Our team will continue our work into 2022 and beyond to ensure that all of our friends, family and neighbors live in a healthy, dignified and just community. We want our babies to play in their backyards, we want to plant gardens with healthy food and flowers, and we want to drink our water without fear. When you support our work, you are joining with us in building the world that we all deserve.

This holiday season, we hope you will join me in making a gift to Clean Air and commit to supporting smart, effective organizing. Join us so we can all imagine, and win, more. 

 

Thank you!

 

Ms. Della, Ms. Shirley, Ms. Shelda, Ms. Blue, Sydney Brown, Niasha Hamilton, Emily Terrana and Chris Murawski

 

P.S. For more information about Clean Air’s campaigns, check out their website: (https://www.cacwny.org/) or like them on Facebook (www.facebook.com/cleanairwny).



We’re imagining more in Seneca-Babcock

Dear Clean Air Members, Supporters and Friends,

In our community, we are sick and tired of being sick and tired. For us, the quality of life in our neighborhood isn’t just about stopping trucks from barreling down the street, it is about our community’s legacy for our children and grandchildren. In Seneca-Babcock, we put in the work to make our community safe and healthy. We imagined more. 

When we first started organizing, it felt impossible to stop the silica dust and diesel trucks coming to and from the Battaglia Concrete Crushing facility on Peabody Street. It felt impossible that a judge would listen to regular people over big money and political connections to bring us justice. It felt impossible to get our lives back, but little by little, we are. But we aren’t done yet. 

In 2021, our team had some big wins and huge setbacks. We’ll be honest, we got thrown under the bus this year by agencies and institutions that should have been on our side, but we aren’t going to let them stop our fight.  We are still fighting for the harm that was done to us by years of neglect and abuse from big money to be healed. We are still fighting for the land that we maintain to be rightfully transferred to our Land Trust. We are still fighting for the burnt out building behind our homes and the acres and acres of toxic soil to be cleaned up and replanted. We want justice for our community and we are going to keep building the world we all deserve despite it all. 

We need you to support our fundraising work so that we can keep fighting, keep dreaming and keep building. In 2022, our team will keep fighting for justice for our neighborhood and look out to the larger City of Buffalo and Erie County for ways that we can make sure that all communities are healthy and safe. We know that what happened to us is horrible, but it is not unique. When you support our work, you are supporting our vision and our leadership to get us all closer to the world we need.

This holiday season, we hope you will join us in making a gift to Clean Air and commit to supporting smart, effective organizing? Join us so we can all imagine, and win, more. 

 

Thank you!

In solidarity,

The Diane’s Land Campaign Team:

Diane Lemanski, Lemanski, Jackie & Norm Weaver, Jack

Wagner, Ed & Jean Loucks, Leonard Lemanski, Jarrett Steffan, Linnea Brett and Emily Terrana

 

P.S. For more information about Clean Air’s campaigns, check out our website: (https://www.cacwny.org/) or like us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/cleanairwny).

P.S. Please consider making a sustaining gift of $5, $10, or $20 a month to ensure Clean Air is always ready to take on the challenges ahead. Thank You!