A night with Sierra Club

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(August 21, 2014)

Just a day before the day, I got an email from Chandalin, my supervisor in WFI, about an invitation to a regular discussion in Sierra Club. This environmental club established in 1892 and has its regular discussion once in a month at 3rd Thursday. It's interesting that the discussion always open to public. And in August, the theme of discussion was about Willamette River, the river that I'm interested most in USA! So, even it was a last minute invitation, I made it! I felt that I need to come to this event. And I was right!

Last minute e-mail invitation

The theme was "Protecting the Willamette and Environmental Justice: the Portland Harbor Community Coalition". There was a presentation from Portland Harbor Community Coalition (PHCC), presented by Cassie Cohen (the executive director of Groundwork Portland) and Faduma Ali (Community Organizer for Groundwork Portland). Both Cassie and Faduma are amazing women. They are so young and spiritful. They presented about the Willamette river regarding the big project of Portland Harbor Superfund and their work with the coalition. It was the first time I heard about this coalition. Furthermore, we discussed about the pollution in Portland Harbor, concern toward the people affected by the river condition, and the work of government agency in the project (EPA). It was a really fast discussion and sometimes I felt confused. There were too many abbreviations and terms that I didn't know. (And of course they talked really fast. :0 )

At least there were 20 people that came in that Wednesday meeting. It was a very lively discussion where most of the participants were very enthusiast about the topic. They asked many questions that the presenters often cut them. :) . The meeting ended at 9 pm. I had not any chance to ask any questions but I had contact with Faduma. She's lovely girl and I'd like to know about her work more. (I met her again a week after that!).

I need to write more about the discussion but it's too complicated right now and I don't want to be more confused or maybe make you that read this note confused. Haha...

One thing that I know, "I need to know more about the big project of Portland Harbor Superfund!". It's a big project that many parties in this city really concern both from government, environmental organization, public, and community. Why? It's a super big money, big issue, and big impact to the lower Willamette river.

That night, I went back home alone, take a bus from 1821 SE Ankeny Street to Barness and Cedar hills blvd. It was almost an hour drive and in the middle of the way I knew that I forgot my keys (I left them in my room).. Still lucky, at least my landlord was awake so I didn't have problem to enter the house. :)


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