WISCONSIN FOCUS: Blogs, Biodiesel, Alternative Energy, Groups and Events
WISCONSIN 2010: I now have my Wisconsin 2010 Act Blue Page up. Act Blue is a way for many small political contributions to add up to some serious political impact. For 2010 I am highlighting several local (county-level) Democratic Party organizations in key districts, and highlighting the Wisconsin secretary of state (to prevent election fraud!), WI-8 and 2010 Senate races. These are all defensive races we need to fight to keep reform going. I particularly want to see Democrats do well in Wisconsin because, in genral, I have found Wisconsin Democrats (like Russ Feingold!) to be among the best in the country and Wisconsin actually tends to be among the most progressive states when push comes to shove. Give a donation or two to keep momentum going.
LeftyBlogs Wisconsin is the place to find out what's happening in the progressive blogosphere across Wisconsin.
Blogging Blue covers progressive issues in Wisconsin.
Urban Milwaukee: seeks to provide a informative and open dialogue on the issues, events, and people affecting Milwaukee’s most urban neighborhoods, and to promote urbanism within the city of Milwaukee.
Milwaukee Rising covers local issues in Milwaukee
Watchdog Milwaukee is another local Milwaukee blog of note
Liz Jones for State Assembly - District 29 (Challenger)
Progressive Majority is an organization with an excellent track record of helping good, progressive candidates get elected. They have about a 50% success rate in getting candidates elected year after year. For an organization focused on electing progressive candidates, many of whom are challengers going up against incumbents, that is a damned good track record.
Currently, Progressive Majority has endorsed one candidate in Wisconsin:
Candidate for State Assembly - District 29 (Challenger)
St. Croix County
Liz Jones is a dynamic progressive running for state assembly in WI. As a single parent who graduated from college and earned a Master's Degree, Liz understands how important it is to work hard and remain devoted to improving the lives of people around her. She's the former Executive Director of a domestic abuse shelter and currently works in a law firm. Liz is running in a swing district in Western Wisconsin and has an active and enthusiastic base of supporters committed to helping improve the lives of the people of her district.
Click here to support and learn more about Liz.
And Liz Jones isn't afraid to get her hands dirty helping her community. Here is a picture of Liz Jones working on a Habitat for Humanity house:
Here are some Wisconsin Democracy for America Groups:
Democracy for Wisconsin - Madison
Meets first Wed. of each month, 7 PM, Madison, WI
Join us in building a brighter and more progressive future for our country.
For more information (including where) email: russwallac_at_aol.com or go here.
DFA Northeast Wisconsin
DFA - Northeast Wisconsin (DFA-NEW) meets the first Wednesday of each month to discuss issues, promote progressive candidates and actively work to bring democracy to the political process locally, regionally and nationally. Sign up here to get information on their meetings.
Democracy for America-Greater Milwaukee
Sign up here for information on this group.
Democracy for SE Wisconsin
Join this Yahoo Group to get information on this group.
Democracy for Stevens Point:
A group of progressive, concerned citizens in the Stevens Point, WI area who are interested in political change as described in Democracy for America, and organization originally begun by Governor Howard Dean.
Join this Yahoo Group for more info on this group.
And for those who like to combine social events with politics, here are the Drinking Liberally Groups in Wisconsin:
o When? Every Wednesday of each month, 8:00 pm
o Where? The Joynt, 322 Water Street
o Hosted by Aaron Brewster | Collin Hawkin | Armon Tabrizi
o Subscribe to the Eau Claire mailing list
o When? Third Wednesday of each month, 7:00 pm
o Where? Sugar Maple, 441 E Lincoln Avenue
o Hosted by Jason Haas
o Subscribe to the Milwaukee mailing list
o When? First and Third Tuesday of each month, 8:00 pm
o Where? Kristin's Riverwalk, 1140 Clark St
o Hosted by Josh Bolotsky | Grant Dobbe
o Subscribe to the Stevens Point mailing list
Biodiesel in Wisconsin:
Biodiesel is an American produced fuel that is cleaner than traditional diesel. Up to B20 (a 20% blend of biodiesel and traditional diesel) any diesel engine, car or truck, can run on it. Above B20, some older engines may have problems but newer diesel engines should be ok. Here are some Biofuels co-ops...below that I list regular gas stations that carry biodiesel.
PrairieFire BioFuels: a member-owned cooperative creating access and building infrastructure to support vegetable oil-based fuels sources and usage.
1894 East Washington Avenue
Madison, WI 53704
Co-op and non-profit: (608) 441-5454
Shop: (608) 441-9566
Business Office and Diesel Repair Shop hours:
Monday - Friday 8am-5pm
The Wisconsin Biodiesel Association (WBA) is a membership trade organization that promotes the commercial development, production, marketing, distribution, and utilization of biodiesel and other renewable biofuels.
It is the vision of WBA that Wisconsin biodiesel producers, marketers and distributors will provide, through a network of readily accessible retail outlets, biodiesel fuel that consistently meets recognized quality standards so that all Wisconsin citizens benefit from the economic returns, improved air quality and energy independence achieved through use of renewable biodiesel fuels.
Membership info here.
For a list of biodiesel stations around Wisconsin, go here (PDF). Remember, ANY diesel engine can use up to B20 biodiesel, so most of these stations can fuel any diesel truck or car. Here is a partial list:
Meffert Oil: 300 S Division St, Waunakee, WI 53597, 608-849-8010. Offers B5 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
PrairieFire Biofuels: 2231 S Stoughton Rd, Madison, WI 53704, 608-441-5454. Offers B100 (good in newer engines, not good for some older engines). Open 8-5 M-F (see also above)
Cenex: 203 W. Cottage Grove Road, Cottage Grove, WI 53527, 608-839-8222. Offers B5 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Smart Station: 1637 4th Avenue, West Monroe, WI 53566, 608-329-3900. Offers B20 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Lyndon Station BP: 470 N Wisconsin St, Lyndon Station, WI 53944, 608-666-3771. Offers B10 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Cenex Supply Company: 401 Elm Street, Boscobel, WI 53805, 608-375-4801. Offers B5 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
New Horizons Supply Cooperative: 770 Lincoln Ave. Fennimore, WI 53809, 608-822-3217. Offers B2 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
E.H. Wolf and Sons, Inc.: 414 Kettle Moraine Drive, S. Slinger, WI 53086, 262-644-5030. Offers B2 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
New Horizons COOP: 728 State Highway 131, Gays Mills, WI 54631, 608-735-4308. Offers B2 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Zzip Stop: 217 W Main St, La Farge, WI 54639, 608-625-2203. Offers B20 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
New Horizons COOP: 12143 State Highway 35, Patch Grove, WI 53817, 608-994-2756. Offers B5 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Camp Douglas BP Travel Center: 215 US Highway 12, Camp Douglas, WI 54618, 608-427-3365. Offers B5 (good for any diesel engine). Open 24 HRS.
Alternative Energy in Wisconsin:
Some stats from Repower America:
* The Glacier Hills Wind Park, a 207-megawatt wind farm with the potential to power 45,000 homes, is in the approval stages. The proposed wind park would be located 45 miles northeast of Madison.
* Governor Doyle's recent directive to purchase 92,000-megawatts of clean power from solar, wind, and landfill gas systems for government buildings will take the state halfway to meeting his goal of powering the state government with 20% renewable energy sources by 2011.
* Wisconsin's energy efficiency programs save enough electricity to power over 40,000 homes for a whole year, save more than $36.1 million in energy costs, and prevent the greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking over 52,000 cars off the road. Although great progress, the state still has much more potential to increase its energy efficiency.
Alternative energy and YOUR energy bill: YOU can be part of the solution for America by signing up to purchase your energy through a Green Power Provider. My wife and I have been doing this in NYC for years. All our energy usage is provided through wind energy generation on American farms. So we use clean energy AND help American farmers. It costs us three cents per kilowatt-hour more per month, but we feel great about it. Although our actual energy may come from anywhere, we are paying to purchase wind energy for the energy grid. Each state has different programs available, usually through yuor existing energy provider right on your existing energy bill. To find such options in Wisconsin, go here and pick your energy provider from the list. If you need help, you can email me and tell me who you get your bill from (don't give me any other info!) and I can tell you who to contact to go green through that energy provider. Or you can do the same thing using Renewable Energy Certificates through an organization that works with utility companies, though in this case it is a separate bill. One off the cheapest (.4-1 cent per kilowatt-hour), but still e-Green certified, ways to do this is through Good Energy. Or, for about half a cent per kilowatt-hour you can purchase renewable energy certificates through Carbonfund.org. ANY of these ways you do it, you are helping the environment, helping America, and helping cut carbon emissions.
RENEW Wisconsin is a nonprofit organization headquartered in Madison, promotes clean energy strategies for powering the state's economy in an environmentally responsible manner.
Madison Peak Oil Group meets on the first Thursday of every month for a brown bag lunch from noon to 1:00 p.m. in the lower level conference room at 222 S. Hamilton Street.
Renewable Energy Milwaukee: A renewable energy blog for greater Milwaukee, moderated by RENEW Wisconsin
THE MadiSUN PROGRAM: The City of Madison was recently awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy through the Solar America Cities Program. MadiSUN’s goal is to double to number of solar electric and hot water solar installations in the city. The City of Madison, along with Madison Gas and Electric, Focus on Energy and UW Extension will be working on this project for the next two years. A major component of the grant is to provide the community with a consultant who can help interested residents and businesses install a solar system. The consultant is on board to provide technical expertise and to answer questions regarding design, permitting and rebate programs. Contact (608) 243-0586 or solar_at_cityofmadison.com
Alternative Energy Resources in Wisconsin: a short summary of alternative energy resources for Wisconsin. For more information on each technology, visit the State Energy Alternatives Technology Options page.
Wisconsin Organizing for Healthcare:
Fight for Healthcare reform in Wisconsin: sign up here to volunteer for the Health Care for America Now campaign in Wisconsin. About Health Care for America Now:
Health Care for America Now (HCAN) is a national grassroots campaign of more than 1,000 organizations in 46 states representing 30 million people dedicated to winning quality, affordable health care we all can count on in 2009. Our organization and principles are supported by President Obama, Vice President Biden, and more than 190 Members of Congress.
We are building a national movement to win comprehensive health care reform by helping mobilize people in their communities to lobby their U.S. Senators and Representatives in Congress to stand up to the insurance companies and other special interest groups to achieve quality, affordable health care in 2009.
Sign up to fight for health care reform in Wisconsin now. Or contact:
Brian Rothgery, Citizen Action of Wisconsin (USAction)
Here are some other Wisconsin Groups and Events:
Progressive Majority Wisconsin: Over the years, Wisconsin has proved to be the ultimate swing state. It is a battleground state that must be protected as a progressive stronghold because of its history as a "laboratory of reform," which has historically tested new public policies and set examples for the nation.
Wisconsin is a state with progressive urban areas and politically diverse rural areas. Progressive Majority's state-based approach to candidate recruitment and development is well-suited to adapting to unique political environments such as this.
Progressive Majority Wisconsin believes values-centered campaigns are winning campaigns. That's how Progressive Majority succeeded in flipping control of the state senate in 2006. Kathleen Vinehout won because she thinks everyone deserves affordable health care. Jim Sullivan took a suburban Milwaukee district on the strength of his commitment to good public schools. John Lehman wants a government that cares about people instead of corporations - Racine agrees. Pat Kreitlow knows that people want and deserve a healthy environment. And Kim Hixson squeaked out a win, by focusing on the hopes of local voters. We will continue nurturing local candidates to build a deeply-rooted progressive coalition in the state. In addition, Wisconsin staff will focus on incumbent protection efforts for progressive candidates that will face tough re-election bids in 2008.
Click here to visit the Progressive Majority Wisconsin website for more information
Ozaukee First Friday Forum
First Friday Forums - public affairs breakfast forums co-sponsored by MATC-Mequon, UW-Extension and the Ozaukee County Board.
Held on the first Friday of every other month from 730am to 900 am at MATC-Mequon. $5 registration fee per session.
Additional information: Sandra Webster 262-238-2205/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Milwaukee County Democratic Club:
We meet on the fourth Monday of most months, 7 PM in the Hall of Fame Room of the Pettit National Ice Center at Wisconsin State Fair Park. We look forward to seeing you there!
Petitt National Ice Center
500 S. 84th St
Milwaukee, WI, 53214
For the bicycilists in Madison, here's Critical Mass Madison:
Critical Mass is a movement (not an organization) that advocates for better transportation alternatives. Meets 5:30 PM, the last Friday of Every Month, no matter the weather. Gather where West Washington meets Capitol Square. Where the ride goes after that is decided by whoever shows up.