Jane Catherine Lotter wrote her own obituary. It’s beautiful. What a cool lady. (“I was given the gift of life, and now I have to give it back. This is hard. But I was a lucky woman, who led a lucky existence, and for this I am grateful. I first got sick in January 2010. When the cancer recurred last year and was terminal, I decided to be joyful about having had a full life, rather than sad about having to die. Amazingly, this outlook worked for me. (Well, you know, most of the time.) Meditation and the study of Buddhist philosophy also helped me accept what I could not change. At any rate, I am at peace. And on that upbeat note, I take my mortal leave of this rollicking, revolving world-this sun, that moon, that walk around Green Lake, that stroll through the Pike Place Market, the memory of a child’s hand in mine.”)
Bill McKibben’s divestment project—which is aiming to get city governments and universities to divest their pension funds from fossil fuel companies—is gaining some traction. They’re now up to 10 cities that have pledged to pursue divestment, plus four institutes of higher ed. The goal is to get the largest pension funds in the country to divest. You can see if there is a campaign in your city or school here. (You can also divest your own investments but that’s basically meaningless unless you have ONE ZILLION DOLLARS. Better to work for a campaign. More here.)
The ten cities: Seattle, Wash. Madison, Wis., Bayfield, Wis, Ithaca, N.Y., Boulder, Co., Rochester, Minn., Eugene, Ore., Richmond, Calif., Berkeley, Calif., and San Francisco, Calif.
The four colleges: Unity, Hampshire, Sterling, and College of the Atlantic
Grist outlines everything that can and will go wrong one day in Phoenix, at it’s a lot. “As you might expect, academics have come up with a name for such breakdowns: infrastructure failure interdependencies. You wouldn’t want to use it in a poem, but it does catch an emerging theme of our time.”
KUT public radio in Austin named fracking as one of their top stories of last year (earthquakes, contaminated drinking water, ya know, nbd) and things are just going to get MORE exciting in 2013. Via Naked Capitalism, here’s Midland, Texas Mayor Wes Perry explaining why he’s allowing fracking within city limits and within 150 feet of people’s homes: “People are still not really happy when an oil well turns up in the backyard, but we are an oil town. We can’t be hypocrites.”