Clean Air for All Communities

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At the beginning of 2020, Oregon PSR began a campaign aimed at closing the waste incinerator that has been in operation for 34 years in Brooks, Oregon, just north of Salem. This incinerator has been burning not only residential waste but also out-of-state medical waste which, when burned, releases toxic chemicals into the air that our communities breathe. We know that not only is spewing toxic fumes harmful to the environment and the health of our communities, but that there are more efficient and truly clean solutions to waste reduction and energy production. We also know that, in order for our waste and energy solutions to be truly equitable, we must include the communities most affected in the conversations as we move towards better solutions.

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Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons Enters Into Effect

50th_ratification_of_TPNW_graphic.jpgOn July 7th, 2017, a United Nations conference adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. On October 24th, 2020, Honduras became the 50th country to ratify the treaty, which will begin to take effect in 90 day. This historic treaty was led by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), which received the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for their work. Oregon PSR is the local affiliate of ICAN and in 2019 secured support for the treaty from the Oregon legislature and the City of Portland.

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Oregon PSR Ballot Measure Endorsements for November 2020 Election

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Oregon PSR endorses the following ballot measures in the November 2020 election. Also, please note that our lack of endorsement doesn’t necessarily mean that we oppose a ballot measure, only that our Board of Directors has decided not to make a formal endorsement.

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Oregon Prisons Must Prioritize Public Health

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On September 17th, health professionals and public health advocates with Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility issued a plea to Governor Kate Brown and the Oregon Department of Corrections (ODOC) to prioritize public health in state prisons and to work collaboratively with health experts to avoid continued loss of life and dignity in Oregon prisons. The call comes amid many suspected COVID-19 deaths, outbreaks in nine Oregon prisons, and inhumane conditions experienced by adults in custody who were evacuated due to fast-spreading wildfires.

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Support Oregonians Impacted by Wildfires

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Our hearts are heavy with the enormous loss and destruction Oregon and other Western states have endured this past week from devastating wildfires. Unhealthy air from wildfire smoke continues to blanket our region. The cities of Talent and Phoenix in the Rogue Valley have been decimated, including the main offices of our valued partner, Rogue Climate. Communities in Clackamas County, Marion County, Lane County, and Jackson County have been displaced and are in urgent need of support. Meanwhile, intense hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico and typhoons in Japan confirm that climate chaos is upon us.

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Stop the World’s Largest Fracked Gas-to-Methanol Refinery

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The fracked gas industry wants to build the world’s largest fracked gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama, WA. Kalama lies on the Washington side of the Columbia River less than an hour north of Portland, and if constructed, the facility would threaten the health of our entire region. The proposed refinery would consume a staggering amount of fracked gas, more than all of Washington’s gas-fired power plants combined. It would convert the fracked gas to methanol, which would be shipped overseas to be burned as fuel or used as feedstock to make plastics.

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Testimony to Oregon Legislature on Police Accountability

Oregon PSR's Board President, Dr. Patrick O'Herron, submitted testimony on behalf of Oregon PSR about police accountability legislative concepts to the Oregon Legislature's Joint Committee On Transparent Policing and Use of Force Reform on September 3rd, 2020. Read our testimony below. 

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Report: Problems with UAMPS' Proposal to Construct NuScale Small Modular Nuclear Reactors

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NuScale Power, a small modular nuclear reactor development firm based in Oregon, is seeking approval from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission for the design of their initial reactor model. The company has an agreement with the Utah Association of Municipal Power Systems (UAMPS), a collection of small publicly-owned municipal utilities in Utah, California, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, and Wyoming, to deploy a first-of-its-kind plant of a dozen 60-megawatt (MW) pressurized water reactors grouped in a common containment facility at the Idaho National Laboratory site, assisted by a proposed power purchase agreement to sell some of the output to the US Department of Energy. As of August 2020, UAMPS has not found subscribers for all the power that this plant would produce if constructed.

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Oregon PSR Mourns Passing of Longtime Member Bob McFarlane, MD

photo_20200828_OR0020650_0_20200828.jpgOregon PSR mourns the death of longtime member Robert "Bob" McFarlane, MD earlier this year. Bob was a committed activist and leader in the peace and justice community. He was deeply involved with Oregon PSR, the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the nuclear freeze movement, and was a member of the Hanford Advisory Board, among his other peace and social justice work.

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Take Action to Stop Chlorpyrifos, a Harmful Pesticide

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The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) has proposed new rules to strengthen protections for Oregonians from chlorpyrifos pesticides. Chlorpyrifos are an extremely harmful insecticide that causes neurological harm, risk of cancer, and damage to bees, butterflies, and birds. It’s important to show the ODA that you care about protecting human and environmental health from chlorpyrifos exposure. See the full 2020 Chlorpyrifos proposed rules here. 

Other states including Hawaií, California, and New York have taken steps to ban or severely restrict chlorpyrifos. Oregon had a bill in the state legislature in 2020 that Oregon PSR submitted testimony in support of that would have taken steps towards limiting chlorpyrifos and protecting public health. Since the Republican walkout stalled many important bills, the ODA is moving forward with new proposed rules to reign in this dangerous pesticide. The proposed rules, OAR-603-057-0545, are good but need to be even stronger.

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