GASP, Energy Alabama Appeal Alabama PSC’s Approval of $1+ Billion Gas Expansion

GASP, Energy Alabama Appeal Alabama PSC’s Approval of $1+ Billion Gas Expansion

GASP, Energy Alabama Appeal Alabama PSC’s Approval of $1+ Billion Gas Expansion

Energy Alabama and GASP, represented by the Southern Environmental Law Center, are appealing the Public Service Commission’s approval of Alabama Power’s petition for its single largest capacity increase ever, with a price tag for customers of over $1.1 billion.

The groups have filed an appeal in state court challenging the Commission’s decision allowing Alabama Power to increase its natural gas capacity by over 1800 megawatts, including building a new gas plant at the Barry Electric Generating Plant in Mobile County, while failing to approve a proposal to add 400 megawatts of solar plus battery energy storage projects.

In September, the groups petitioned the Commission to reconsider its determination that this capacity increase is needed, especially in light of the economic slowdown caused by the pandemic; its decision to saddle customers instead of utility shareholders with the risk that the assets will become stranded; and its denial of the solar plus storage projects, which the utility’s own analysis showed had the most value for customers. The Commission denied the petition.

Starting January 1, Alabama Power’s electric rates are increasing for all 1.48 million residential, commercial, and industrial customers, raising the average residential monthly bill by about $4. As a result of the new natural gas capacity, bills are expected to increase further starting in 2023.

“Alabamians already pay some of the highest energy bills in the country and the pandemic has only worsened the financial hardships many are facing,” said Keith Johnston, Director of SELC’s Birmingham office. “Now the Commission is allowing Alabama Power to go forward with an unjustified, massive amount of new capacity that will further increase electricity rates, putting added strain on customers.”

The Alabama Attorney General’s office raised concerns in the Commission proceedings that the proposed gas plants could become stranded or uneconomic as a result of new emission standards or changes in technology, and recommended that the Commission impose a condition requiring that Alabama Power and its shareholders bear any stranded costs associated with its proposal instead of customers.

In its final order, the Commission ignored the Attorney General’s recommendation and failed to set any conditions on its approval, concluding it would be “inequitable” to burden Alabama Power shareholders with stranded asset risk, even though shareholders reap substantial profits from self-build assets like Barry Unit 8.

“The Commission failed to act in the public interest by approving unnecessary, expensive projects while leaving more affordable options on the table,” said Daniel Tait, Chief Operating Officer of Energy Alabama. “To make matters worse, the Commission has rubberstamped an enormous transfer of risk from utility shareholders to customers.”

Alabama remains the only state in the Southern Company territory, which includes Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi, that prevents the public from any meaningful participation in the energy planning process.

“Alabamians deserve to have an open and transparent regulatory process, more information around how their energy decisions are being made, and the opportunity to provide input to ensure decisions are made in our state’s best interest,” said Michael Hansen, Executive Director of GASP. “When that transparency is missing from the energy decision-making process, we end up with unjust results where utility profits are given priority over people.”

BACKGROUND

In early March 2020 the Alabama Public Service Commission heard testimony from 15 witnesses concerning Alabama Power’s request to increase its total power-producing capabilities by almost 20%, despite the utility’s previous assertions that it wouldn’t need new electric generation sources until 2035.

On behalf of Energy Alabama and GASP, the Southern Environmental Law Center intervened in the docket to advocate for responsible, cost-effective investments to meet any need for additional capacity on Alabama Power’s system.

Energy Alabama and GASP’s experts exposed significant flaws in the planning and forecasting methods Alabama Power used to justify its claimed need. In written and oral testimony, the experts pointed to the utility’s long-standing efforts to profit from unnecessary and expensive new generation assets that increase costs for customers.

The groups also made the case that Alabama Power’s plan lacks significant detail about the cheapest, least cost resources, such as solar and energy efficiency.  Alabama Power’s own analysis showed that solar plus battery storage are the least cost resources in its proposal and provide more value to customers.

Energy Alabama and GASP’s proposed order details their position based on the record developed during the hearing.

The groups also filed a motion for permission to file supplemental briefing regarding how the Covid-19 pandemic may impact the need for and timing of the resources proposed in Alabama Power’s petition. These issues were not addressed during the March hearings, which was limited to testimony filed long before the pandemic took hold.

Energy Alabama and GASP filed a supplemental brief arguing that the Commission should not rush forward with a decision without fully assessing the pandemic’s impacts and resulting economic fallout on the utility’s petition.

Following the PSC staff’s recommendations to approve the majority of projects that Alabama Power is seeking to build, buy or contract, the Commission voted unanimously in June 2020 to adopt the staff recommendations in their entirety.

The only resources the Commission refused to approve were the proposals for solar plus battery storage, by far the most economic options according to Alabama Power’s own analysis.  Instead, the Commissioners signed off on the staff’s recommendation to evaluate the solar and battery proposals in another existing docket. The Commission issued a final order in August.

GASP and Energy Alabama filed a petition for reconsideration and rehearing in September, urging the Commission to reconsider Alabama Power’s need determination and to grant a rehearing to consider updated testimony in light of the changed circumstances resulting in lessened electric demand. The Commission denied the groups’ motion for reconsideration and rehearing in December.

Press Contacts:

Emily Driscoll, Southern Environmental Law Center, [email protected], 404-641-8108

Daniel Tait, Energy Alabama, [email protected], 256-812-1431

Michael Hansen, GASP, [email protected], 205-746-4666

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About GASP

About GASP

GASP is a nonprofit health advocacy organization based in Birmingham, Ala. Our mission is to advance healthy air and environmental justice in the greater-Birmingham area through education, advocacy, and collaboration. We strive to reduce exposure to air pollution, educate the public on the health risks associated with poor air quality, and encourage community leaders to serve as role models by advocating for clean air and clean energy. GASPgroup.org

About Energy Alabama

About Energy Alabama

Energy Alabama is a membership-based non-profit organization accelerating Alabama’s transition to sustainable energy. We accomplish our mission by educating at all levels, informing smart energy policy, building the next generation workforce, and providing technical assistance to deploy more sustainable energy. We believe in sustainable energy for all. energyalabama.org

About Southern Environmental Law Center

About Southern Environmental Law Center

For more than 30 years, the Southern Environmental Law Center has used the power of the law to champion the environment of the Southeast. With over 80 attorneys and nine offices across the region, SELC is widely recognized as the Southeast’s foremost environmental organization and regional leader. SELC works on a full range of environmental issues to protect our natural resources and the health and well-being of all the people in our region. www.SouthernEnvironment.org

 

We’re Hiring: Development (Fundraising) Director

We’re Hiring: Development (Fundraising) Director

We’re Hiring: Development (Fundraising) Director

Summary

GASP is hiring a Development Director. Working in tandem with the organization’s staff and volunteers, this person will execute GASP’s fundraising strategies and tactics, and will provide basic communications support. Fundraising duties include overseeing GASP’s major giving, sponsorships, grants, membership program, and fundraising events. Communications duties include basic support for marketing, public relations, and social media activities related to fundraising and membership. The Development Director reports to the Executive Director.

Key Information

  • Schedule: Full-time (35+ hours per week). Must be able to maintain a flexible schedule to work longer hours when needed.
  • Salary: $40,000 to $55,000 (commensurate with demonstrated qualifications)
  • Benefits: Health insurance (100% paid), very generous time-off policy, and flexible work schedule
  • Location: Birmingham, Ala.
  • Start Date: TBD/negotiable
  • Deadline: January 31, 2021
  • COVID-19: We are currently working from home until further notice. When in the office or in the field, staff are expected to follow all CDC, ADPH, and JCDH recommended guidelines and regulations.

GASP is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, disability, genetic information, age, veteran status, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression or marital status. Black, Indigenous, and people of color; women; LGBTQ+ people; and members of other historically disenfranchised populations are strongly encouraged to apply.

Qualifications

  • At least three years of fundraising experience, including foundations and individuals
  • A track record of proven results
  • Excellent interpersonal and communications skills
  • Experience worth with the news media
  • Knowledgeable about social media and digital media
  • Dynamic and effective networker
  • Strong strategic thinker
  • Excellent organizational and interpersonal skills
  • Proactive self-starter
  • Follows through on tasks and goals
  • Highly organized and conscientious
  • Naturally curious, outgoing, and resourceful
  • Wants to get out of the office and build strong relationships
  • Proficient with Google Suite, Microsoft Office, and other publishing software
  • Experience with fundraising software (e.g., EveryAction)
  • Familiarity with Adobe Creative Cloud programs and other design software is helpful but not required
  • Is committed to the GASP’s mission, vision, and values (see below)

Job Duties

The job duties described below are not exhaustive. They are also not the sole responsibility of any one person. We work as a team. One of our core competencies is asking for help. No one can do everything alone in a vacuum.

Development Responsibilities

  • Work with Executive Director and the Development Committee to develop and execute an annual fundraising plan, which will include:
    • Acting as point person for GASP’s Membership Program.
    • Coordinating periodic membership drives.
    • Communicating regularly with members, including thank you letters, invitations to events, newsletters, etc.
    • Coordinating quarterly and annual membership appeals.
  • Work with Executive Director to secure Board “Give-Get” Pledges and ensure 100% Board Member contribution to the organization.
  • Oversee grants program including research, proposal writing, and reporting requirements.
  • Develop a planned giving program with a focus on deferred gifts such as bequest expectancies.
  • Develop and execute capital campaigns and other major fundraising initiatives.
  • Assist with planning, organizing, and promoting the organization’s special events.
  • Solicit corporate sponsorships for events and programs.
  • Write and send acknowledgement letters to donors in accordance with federal and state 501(c)(3) requirements and Fundraising Policy.

Communications Responsibilities

  • Produce content for brochures, mailers, one-pagers, and other development materials.
  • Contribute to and solicit articles for quarterly member newsletters.
  • Assist in producing an annual report, including preparing written content and design.
  • Help manage digital and social media accounts, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat.*
    • Maintain fundraising web pages.**
    • Create and publish engaging digital content (e.g., graphics, memes, videos, GIFs, etc.) for fundraising campaigns and membership recruitment.
    • Oversee peer-to-peer (P2P) and social media fundraisers.
    • Utilize social media and digital advertising to solicit donations and recruit new members.
  • All staff are expected to help execute GASP’s overall brand strategy.
  • Publish monthly blog posts.

Other Responsibilities

  • Attend bi-weekly staff meetings.
  • Assist with programmatic, communications, and administrative tasks as needed.
  • Keep track of performance metrics and submit reports in a timely manner.
  • Communicate regularly with everyone on the team utilizing email, Workplace, and other tools.
  • This position will occasionally require hours outside of the typical 9–5 (e.g., nights and weekends).
  • Provide honest and straightforward feedback to staff and directors.
  • Hold the organization accountable to its mission and purpose.

*all staff are asked to help manage social media collaborative
**this candidate does not require website design or development experience (though that is a bonus)

 

How to Apply

As of January 11, we are only accepting applications via ZipRecruiter and LinkedIn. Applications will be accepted through January 31, 2021. If we haven’t received sufficient applications by then, we may re-open the job posting at our discretion. Use the buttons below to apply at your preferred site. (Please choose one.)

About GASP

Founded in 2010, GASP is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission is to advance healthy air and environmental justice in the Greater-Birmingham (Ala.) area through education, advocacy, organizing, and collaboration. We envision a healthy, just, and sustainable Alabama for everyone who lives, works, learns, and worships here. GASP strives to reduce air pollution, to educate the public on the health risks associated with poor air quality and to encourage community leaders to serve as role models for clean air and clean energy development. Learn more at gaspgroup.org.

Our Core Values

  • Fairness. We treat everyone with respect and dignity.
  • Justice & Equity. We put justice first, and work towards just and equitable outcomes.
  • Audacity. We are not shy about dreaming big.
  • Servant Leadership. We aim to be useful to the communities we serve.
  • Transparency. We do not hide our intentions or our objectives, and we insist on the same from others.
  • Accountability. We expect all stakeholders to hold us to our word, and we’ll do the same.
  • Friendliness. We want to be kind and helpful to those seeking our help.
  • Sustainability. We try to always walk the walk and act in ways that are regenerative.
  • Data-driven. We value information, including qualitative and quantitative data points.
  • Scientific evidence. We also value both the modern scientific method and traditional ecological knowledge.
  • Health. We put the health of our staff, board, volunteers, donors, and constituents first.

What We Believe

🌤 Every Alabamian has the right to breathe clean, healthy air. 

🌤 Health should be a top priority for lawmakers, regulators, and businesses.

🌤 Clean, renewable energy is essential to a healthy, just, and sustainable Alabama.

🌤 All levels of government must be transparent and accountable to the people.

🌤 Alabamians deserve a healthy life no matter their race, ZIP code, or socioeconomic status.

🌤 Elected officials and regulators have a moral duty to protect public health and act in our long-term best interest.

Meet Katie Mesa, Fall Intern (Wheaton College)

Meet Katie Mesa, Fall Intern (Wheaton College)

Meet Katie Mesa, Fall Intern (Wheaton College)

What is your major at and why did you choose it?

I am majoring in environmental science with minors in math and Spanish at Wheaton College. I chose to major in environmental science because of its intersectionality with other fields and because of my passion for sustainability.

What do you hope to do after you graduate?

Still trying to figure that out, but I hope to continue working in public health and environmental justice.

What is your dream job?

My dream job is running my own sustainable fiber farm and making/selling handspun yarn and textiles.

What do you hope to learn while interning with GASP?

I hope to learn more about community engagement within the environmental policy process as well as to see what environmental justice looks like at the grassroots level.

Why is our mission to reduce air pollution important to you?

Air pollution is an inescapable kind of pollution. There are ways to gain access to clean water and clean food, but people do not get a choice in what quality of air they breathe. This is what makes the polluting of minority communities so insidious. Everyone has a right to breathe clean air.

What is your favorite food?

Katsu curry, dragonfruit, Thai iced tea, and pretty much everything my brother cooks

What are your hobbies?

I enjoy doing a multitude of different crafts such as knitting, crochet, embroidery, needle felting, and jewelry making. I also have a passion for music; I’ve played harp for 16 years and I am a verified hand bell choir veteran.

Who or what are your influences?

My Catholic faith is very important to me. As such, my main influences are St. Francis of Assisi and Dorothy Day, the founder of the Catholic Workers movement.

What are some other fun facts about yourself?

  • In high school I worked at a reptile sanctuary with very large snakes.
  • I have dyed my hair every color of the rainbow.
  • In my middle school production of Wizard of Oz I played a tree.
Michael Hansen

Michael Hansen

CEO

Michael joined GASP as communications specialist in April 2013 and now serves as the Executive Director. Previously, he was director of public relations for The Modern Brand Company where he managed communications for the Jefferson County Health Action Partnership’s Champions for Health campaign. Before joining The Modern Brand, Michael served as public relations and marketing coordinator at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Michael has years of experience and extensive training in the areas of public health and environmental protection. He is a member of the board of directors for the Southeast Climate & Energy Network. Michael worked tirelessly for years to pass Birmingham’s Non-Discrimination Ordinance, which passed in 2017 and led to the creation of the Birmingham Human Rights Commission in 2019.

Contact Michael
[email protected] | 205.701.4270

Meet Ugo Ejidoh, Fall MPH Intern (UAB)

Meet Ugo Ejidoh, Fall MPH Intern (UAB)

Meet Ugo Ejidoh, Fall MPH Intern (UAB)

What is your major at and why did you choose it? 

My major is in public health, and I have chosen it because of the growing concerns regarding global environmental issues and disease epidemics. Let me also add that I am a Nigerian trained pharmacist. I have realized that pharmacists’ role has gradually moved from the traditional function of just dispensing medication to more direct patient care and disease management practices, hence my reason for getting a master’s in public health.

Where do you go to high school?

I went to a Turkish high school in Nigeria named the Nigerian Turkish International College. I studied there from grade 7 through grade 12. In the Nigerian school system grade, 7-9 is referred to as Junior high school, and 10-12 is referred to as senior high school.

What do you hope to do after you graduate?

After completing my master’s degree in public health at UAB, I hope to get a job at a governmental agency or health care organization where I can put my knowledge to good use. After that, I plan to further my education to the Ph.D. level.

What is your dream job?

As a pharmacist and public health professional, my job intersects at a point, and so I would like to use both degrees to my advantage. Besides dispensing medications, I would like to be a medical counselor, an educator, and an environmental advocate.

What do you hope to learn while interning with Gasp?

Gasp is an organization that is concerned with advancing healthy air and promoting environmental justice. I believe that the organization’s mission is in line with some of my goals. I hope to learn how they strive to achieve their goals and hopefully use it to bring environmental justice to certain disadvantaged communities in Nigeria.

Why is our mission to reduce air pollution important to you?

I come from a country where people think it is normal to live in a polluted environment, so it is not just about the minority communities suffering disproportionately but also the whole country. As a child, whenever I went on vacation outside Africa, I always noticed that other countries’ atmosphere was clear. I would ask my parents why the atmosphere always looked dull back home, but they will laugh and say, “because this is a white man’s land.” Little did I know that reason for the hazy atmosphere was industrial pollution, generator fumes, uncontrolled bush burning, broken transportation systems, untarred roads, etc. I think it is safe to say that majority of the population in Nigeria is exposed to unhealthy air. My goal is to reduce air pollution in Nigeria through education, advocacy, and policy amendment.

What is your favorite food?

My favorite food is spaghetti. I enjoy it however it is being made.

What are your hobbies?

  • I love playing board games
  • I enjoy cooking sometimes
  • I love traveling

Who or what are your influences?

I like to have positive people around me because I am easily influenced by people or the things I watch on TV. I notice that I pick up a few habits after spending time with some of my close friends.

What are some other fun facts about yourself?

  • I speak a bit of Turkish, which I learned in high school.
  • My favorite color is white.
  • I have never tried eating a crab as much as I want to.
Michael Hansen

Michael Hansen

CEO

Michael has been with Gasp since April 2013 and now serves as the Executive Director. Previously, he was director of public relations for The Modern Brand Company where he managed communications for the Jefferson County Health Action Partnership’s Champions for Health campaign. Before joining The Modern Brand, Michael served as public relations and marketing coordinator at Birmingham Botanical Gardens.Michael has years of experience and extensive training in the areas of public health and environmental protection. He is a member of the board of directors for the Southeast Climate & Energy Network. Michael worked tirelessly for years to pass Birmingham’s Non-Discrimination Ordinance, which passed in 2017 and led to the creation of the Birmingham Human Rights Commission in 2019.

Contact Michael
[email protected] | 205.701.4270

Love Thy Neighbor: Building Grassroots Power the Old-Fashioned Way

Love Thy Neighbor: Building Grassroots Power the Old-Fashioned Way

Love Thy Neighbor: Building Grassroots Power the Old-Fashioned Way

In early 2019, I joined with about 15 other climate activists in a series of meetings to study nonviolent direct action and movement theories of change with the goal of building a new approach to climate change at the scale of the crisis. Our work culminated in a January retreat in Washington, DC, where we finalized plans to launch this campaign in May. The retreat was the week after the first reported case of coronavirus in the United States. Little did we know that that virus would upend life as we knew it six weeks later.

The outcome of that project, I should mention, is a movement called Arm in Arm. The goal of Arm in Arm is to ignite a transformational era to end the climate crisis by centering racial and economic justice. Through months of rigorous research and debate, we developed a concept we call “disruptive humanitarianism,” which is this idea that we can do civil disobedience in a way that both highlights the injustices and absurdity of the status quo while also helping communities. We are using disruptive humanitarianism to build autonomous hubs throughout the United States with the hopes of mobilizing millions of Americans to engage in sustained nonviolent direct action.

The Arm in Arm frontloading team met throughout 2019 to study nonviolent movements and develop a model at the scale of the climate crisis

But, as I mentioned, coronavirus had other plans. The world as we knew it changed when, just six weeks later, the coronavirus brought our economy to a standstill. Conflicting reports about the coronavirus and the illness it caused (Covid-19) led to a whole lot of confusion. Months into this pandemic we still don’t know everything we need to know about the coronavirus, but we knew even less then.

If you’re anything like me, you remember those first few weeks vividly. Growing up in Memphis, I loved playing and watching basketball. So I suppose that’s why the first time I remember thinking, “oh wow, this is bad,” was when the NBA shut down mid-game on live TV. Schools, offices, and retail stores followed suit.

There was a real sense of confusion, which resulted in panic-buying and hoarding. (Remember when, for some reason, toilet paper was nowhere to be found?) Disinfectants, hand sanitizer, alcohol, and other items sold out in stores and online immediately. Grocery store shelves were wiped out.

Then the layoffs started — massive, unprecedented layoffs of millions of American workers.

As the world ground to a screeching halt and families began to shelter in place, systemic inequalities shone through more pronounced than ever. The people most vulnerable to Covid-19 — seniors, poor people, people of color, and people with underlying health conditions — struggled to get the personal protective equipment (PPE) they needed to keep themselves and their families safe.

Everyday people couldn’t get tested when they needed to, and when they did get tested the results often took days and even weeks to get back. Meanwhile, politicians and wealthy elites were able to get a PPE, rapid tests and health care pretty much on demand.

It was maddening.

The U.S. Congress eventually passed some relief bills aimed at aiding unemployed people, vulnerable groups, and struggling families and businesses. (Unfortunately, they also gave huge bailouts to mega corporations that didn’t need them — at least not as badly as we, the people. But that’s a topic for another day.)

It was in these early months that I texted my friend Keisha Brown who lives in Harriman Park in North Birmingham. We were checking in with each other and Keisha mentioned that folks in the community didn’t have what they needed … things like masks, disinfectants, hand sanitizer, soap, and healthy food. But before I get to that, I need to provide some context.

The view from Erwin Dairy Road looking south towards Collegeville, Fairmont and Harriman Park. Downtown Birmingham, in the background, is only a couple miles away.

Harriman Park is part of the 35th Avenue Superfund Site in North Birmingham. The EPA has been digging up contaminated soil in the community for the past six years, while several factories still pollute the air day-in and day-out. Keisha’s home is just a few yards away from Bluestone Coke, a cement plant, a concrete plant, an asphalt plant, a quarry, and other polluting facilities. The 35th Avenue Site also happens to have been caught up in a massive political corruption scandal involving a coal company, a law firm, and a former lawmaker.

Many of Keisha’s neighbors are very old and/or very sick, due in part to lifelong exposure to toxic pollution. In other words, places like Harriman Park are extremely susceptible to pandemics like this one.

We have been working with the North Birmingham community for about a decade trying to reduce the air pollution while helping to organize the community for what they want and need. Last year, our Climate & Environmental Justice Organizer Nina Morgan helped to develop a new program that we call the “Community Listening Sessions,” which is essentially just a community meeting to talk about hopes and dreams for the neighborhoods and how to get there. We serve food and fellowship. We laugh. We’re really honest with each other. (As Keisha says, “we keep it real.”) It really is all about listening, hence the name!

Our Community Listening Sessions are an opportunity to folks living in the 35th Avenue Superfund Site and their allies to put together a vision for a healthy, vibrant North Birmingham.

During these meetings, residents told us about their desires for a vibrant community with clean air, thriving small businesses, green spaces, and access to fresh food (among many things). When the coronavirus shut down our economy and threatened the health and well-being of the North Birmingham community, Keisha was quick to remind me that she and her neighbors had already told us what they want and need. Those needs had only become more urgent.

Luckily, we were able to bulk order some face masks and hand sanitizer online. We started collecting fresh produce (thanks to the federal Farmers to Families USDA program) as well as other grocery store items and necessities. Keisha got on the phone and called some neighbors and put together a distribution list. And we started delivering groceries, masks, and other necessities to folks in Harriman Park. After the first few distributions, we realized we could do this bigger and more efficiently. I suggested setting up a produce stand to let everyone come and pick out what they want instead of deciding for them. We identified a vacant lot in Harriman Park near Keisha’s home to set up shop.

The first North B’ham Pop-Up Market in May was tiny compared with today.

We reached out to Jones Valley Teaching Farm, churches, volunteers, and other partners to help us source products. Keisha got the word out to the community and we held the first North B’ham Pop-Up FREE Market in May in a vacant lot in Harriman Park. In July we expanded to Mt. Hebron Baptist Church in Acipco-Finley on the west side of North Birmingham. Each market is basically an impromptu grocery store where the main attraction is fresh, local produce and socially distant fellowship.

“The Pop-Up Market has been a blessing to hundreds of people, including unemployed people, senior citizens, and big families,” Keisha said. “You save an extra $200 or more on fresh produce and personal items!”

This project grew organically from texts and phone calls between two people checking on each other during a truly scary time. There’s something beautiful about finding solutions in old-fashioned organizing and community caring. And at the end of the day, this is what “loving thy neighbor” looks like. I also believe this is the kind of community organizing that North Birmingham needs to build the power necessary to overcome decades of environmental racism and political corruption.

This is disruptive humanitarianism in action.

The Pop-Up Market on August 8 at Mt. Hebron Baptist Church in Acipco-Finley

Below are just a few of the highlights from the past five months.

  • Jones Valley Teaching Farm has graciously provided more than 2,000 pounds of fresh, healthy produce.
  • Churches and volunteers helped us collect more than 3,000 pounds of canned goods and other non-perishable food items.
  • Volunteers from Bham Masks provided more than 1,200 homemade face masks.
  • Dozens of volunteers have helped sort donations, load cars, set up tables, and staff the Market each week.
  • Hundreds of families served and relationships strengthened.

We would like to keep this project going. If you’d like to support the North B’ham Pop-Up Market, please contact Michael Hansen. We need volunteers, financial support, and items for the market.

If you’re concerned with climate change and want to do something about it, I highly recommend you check out Arm in Arm. It’s not a project of GASP — but we do support it and hope you’ll join a local hub.

 

Keisha hands out coupons for a free dozen Nest Fresh Eggs

 

Keisha Brown and volunteers set up for the North B’ham Pop-Up Market in Harriman Park.

 

Michael Hansen

Michael Hansen

CEO

Michael has been with Gasp since April 2013 and now serves as the Executive Director. Previously, he was director of public relations for The Modern Brand Company where he managed communications for the Jefferson County Health Action Partnership’s Champions for Health campaign. Before joining The Modern Brand, Michael served as public relations and marketing coordinator at Birmingham Botanical Gardens.Michael has years of experience and extensive training in the areas of public health and environmental protection. He is a member of the board of directors for the Southeast Climate & Energy Network. Michael worked tirelessly for years to pass Birmingham’s Non-Discrimination Ordinance, which passed in 2017 and led to the creation of the Birmingham Human Rights Commission in 2019.

Contact Michael
[email protected] | 205.701.4270