In case you missed our September Club meeting, here are some of the key takeaways about the Farm System Reform Act, a measure introduced in the U.S. Senate and House that could dramatically change factory farming. And mark your calendar for our October 20th Club meeting, which will include friendly incumbent endorsements for District 4 City Council member Monica Montgomery Steppe and County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher.

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California coastline in Big Sur
Greetings Environmental Democrats,

Thanks to everyone who turned out for our September Club meeting, where we covered environmental topics of both local and national importance including the Farm System Reform Act. A special thank you to featured speaker Rebecca Wolf, senior organizer with Food & Water Watch, who provided an outstanding and incredibly eye-opening presentation about the environmentally devastating impact of factory farms. More information on her presentation below, including how you can get involved in helping to support adoption of this critical legislation.

We'd also like to express our gratitude to Noah Harris, from the Climate Action Campaign, and JP Theberge from Grow The San Diego Way, for their informative presentation about the County Board of Supervisor's efforts to implement Senate Bill 743, which initiated updates to CEQA Guidelines. 


How You Can Support the Farm System Reform Act

Over the past half century, our nation's agricultural system has transformed from one based mostly on smaller farms and pastures, to one increasingly consolidated under the control of a handful of giant corporations like Smithfield, Tyson, Cargill, and Perdue.

The devastating results of this shift were the focus of the featured presentation at our September Club meeting. Rebecca Wolf, senior organizer with Food & Water Watch, outlined how the emergence of CAFOs, concentrated animal feeding operations (commonly referred to as "factory farms") has brought 99 percent of farm animals in the U.S.--some 10 billion farm animals--under the management of these large-scale industrial agricultural facilities, whose focus is solely on producing the most products at the lowest cost.

This change has resulted in the rise of
horrific animal cruelty, pollution into our waterways and rural landscapes from animal waste, increased GHG emissions, exploitation of factory workers, zoonotic diseases such as the avian and swine influenza viruses, and widespread blanket use of antibiotics and growth hormones. 

The Farm System Reform Act aims to overhaul our harmful and broken agricultural system by moving us toward a model that's more humane with higher standards for animal welfare, worker safety, and addressing industry consolidation and unfair practices.
  • Of critical importance, the Farm System Reform Act would place an immediate moratorium on new and expanding large concentrated animal feeding operations and require existing large CAFOs to cease operations by January 1, 2040.
  • The measure would also offer voluntary debt forgiveness and provide a Transition Assistance Program for animal feeding operations, including authorizing $100,000,000,000 over 10 years for a voluntary buyout program for owners who wish to transition. The funding can be used to pay off debt or cover the cost of moving toward alternative agriculture activities.

Passing this measure is vital to a healthier future. We need everyone's help to send a message to Washington D.C., urging adoption of this pivotal legislation. We urge each of you to take a moment to reach out to your elected officials in our nation's capitol to express your support for this measure. Only legislation will force change in the factory farm industry, corporations will not enact needed changes on their own.

Pacific Beach Democratic Club Meeting to Discuss Sea Level Rise and Coastal Resilience
At its meeting tomorrow night, Thursday October 7, the Pacific Beach Democratic Club will host an very timely discussion about sea level rise and coastal resilience. A crucial issue for our region and the state as a whole, the meeting will feature two expert guest speakers:

  • Darbi Berry, Director of Climate and Environmental Programs at The Nonprofit Institute at USD & Program Manager, San Diego Regional Climate Collaborative, will dive into their organizations' work in coordinating regionally to address issues such as climate mitigation and adaptation efforts.
  • Laura Walsh, Policy Coordinator at the Surfrider Foundation San Diego County, will speak about Surfrider and their wide array of work helping to craft and advocate for policy to preserve our natural coastlines and protect our water, beaches, and ocean.

The Club's meeting is slated to start at 6 p.m. To RSVP and obtain the Zoom link, visit the club's website page here.
Friendly Incumbent Endorsements At October Club Meeting

Finally, at our October 20th  Club meeting we will be hearing from District 4 San Diego City Council member Monica Montgomery Steppe and District 4 County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, who will each address the club in seeking our friendly incumbent endorsement. Both were endorsed by this Club during the 2018 election cycle.

More details about the October meeting and our feature presentation for the evening will be released over the coming weeks. We hope you can join us!

Environmentally yours!
Richard Ram
Interim President

Mia Taylor
Communications Director

Board Members
Richard Ram, interim president;
  vice president for programs and outreach

Kevin Lourens, vice president for political action
Bridger Langfur, vice president for policy
Courtney Ransom, membership
Galena Robertson, treasurer
Mia Taylor, director of communications
Rick Guerrero, board member at-large
David Engel, board member at-large
Brandon Coopersmith, board member at-large
Czeska Cabuhat, board member at-large
Vianna Ledesma, board member at-large
Cody Petterson, immediate past president
Photo Credits
Big Sur Coastline by Mia Taylor
Chartered in 2014, San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action seeks to foster active interest in the Democratic Party, encourage greater support of the California Democratic Party environmental platform, contribute to party leadership and responsibility, provide a constructive role for volunteers in Democratic politics, promote an activist base, and assist and enable Democratic candidates to run, and win, on environmental and conservation principles.
Copyright © 2021 San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action, all rights reserved.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 16254, San Diego, CA 92176

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San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action · P.O. Box 16254 · San Diego, CA 92176 · USA

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