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PSR Monitor

February 23, 2021

Environment & Health

Seattle skyline

PSR Helps Win Partial Gas Ban in Seattle

Seattle, WA is the latest city to limit or ban fossil fuels in new construction.

The Seattle City Council passed, 9-0, a phase-out of methane ("natural" or fracked gas) in new construction of commercial buildings and multifamily housing of four stories or taller.

Washington PSR helped put the ban in place, and chapter member Annemarie Dooley, MD, testified before the City Council, saying, "Public health can't wait. Every day we delay means more illness and lives lost from air pollution and climate-related heat stress."

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Wind turbines

A Plan for a Clean-Energy Transition

How can we create good jobs, build the economy back to be more equitable, and transition to a 100% clean-energy future? PSR signed onto this letter to Congress that proposes how.

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Peace and Security

Ending Nuclear Weapons graphic

Sign up today: Virtual Briefing & Workshops on Nuclear Weapons Abolition

Momentum is building for total elimination of nuclear weapons, and here's an opportunity to get the tools and information you need to join in. Back from the Brink and International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) have teamed up to jointly host a virtual event you won't want to miss on Thursday, March 4, 11:00am eastern time. "Ending Nuclear Weapons Before They End Us" will include an expert panel on opportunities under the Biden administration to take action, followed by Q&A and interactive workshop sessions on a variety of topics. The panel includes Beatrice Fihn, ICAN's Executive Director and Denise Duffield, PSR-LA Associate Director. Workshop leaders include Kelly Campbell, Oregon PSR Executive Director and Allen Hester, Grassroots and Policy Coordinator for PSR's Nuclear Weapons Abolition Program. Click here to view the full program and to register.

Minuteman Launch

Should America buy new missiles in the middle of a deadly pandemic?

The U.S is planning to build new weapons of mass destruction, carrying warheads over 20 times more powerful than the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. As the country continues to recover from Covid-19, it's time for resources to be diverted from unnecessary spending to efforts that support human needs and Covid-19 recovery efforts. Tell your representatives and senators to support legislation that would cut and cancel these new weapons.

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OSU graphic

Sign Oregon PSR's petition to Oregon State University: research nuclear disarmament

Oregon State University has received a grant from the National Nuclear Security Administration to work on computer simulations regarding the safety and security of the United States' nuclear weapons stockpile. Please sign Oregon PSR's petition to encourage OSU's respected scientists and researchers to consider dismantling the U.S. nuclear stockpile in their simulations, because the safest way — by far — to secure nuclear weapons is to dismantle and dispose of them altogether.

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In Memory

Nobel Peace Prize 1985 group photoDr. Bernard Lown, second from right, with IPPNW colleagues at the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony in 1985. Photo: IPPNW

Remembering Dr. Bernard Lown, PSR co-founder

For the second time in recent months, we at PSR are mourning the passing of one of our founders with the loss of Dr. Bernard Lown. We extend our sincere condolences to Dr. Lown's family and loving friends as we remember his extraordinary life.

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Upcoming Virtual Events

PSR-Los Angeles Webinar: Health Impacts of Systemic Racism
Wed. Feb. 24, 6:00 pm PST
Join Sacoby Wilson Ph.D., M.S. for a discussion on environmental health disparities impacting Black and Brown communities; the intersectionality of Environmental Justice and systemic racism, and implicit bias in medicine and medical school training. Register here


Southeast Conversations on the Lancet Countdown
Thu. Feb. 25, 12:30 - 1:30 pm pm EST
Join featured speakers Dean James Curran, Dr. Renee Salas, PSR Board Member Surili Patel, and Stacey Abrams in a special discussion of the findings of the Lancet Countdown US Brief and what they mean for the southeastern United States. Register here


The Journey to a World Free of Nuclear Weapons – Where We Are and How You Can Get Involved
Sat. Feb. 28, 5:00 pm EST
Webinar featuring presentations by Dr. Lynn Ringenberg of PSR Florida and David Combs of the Union of Concerned Scientists. Register here


Ending Nuclear Weapons Before They End Us: Opportunities Under the Biden Administration to Take Action
Thu. Mar. 4, 11:00 am EST
Please join Back from the Brink and International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons for a virtual policy briefing and workshop series to call on the Biden administration to prioritize the complete elimination of nuclear weapons. Register here


2021 WPSR Health Justice Gala
Sat. Mar. 6, 5:00 pm PST
Register today for Washington PSR's inaugural virtual fundraising event, the WPSR Health Justice Gala. Hear from WPSR's Board President, Mark Vossler, MD; WPSR's Executive Director, Max Savishinsky; artist and activist Lauren DuPree; and a keynote address from activist Dr. Mustafa Santiago Ali. Register here


Chicago PSR Webinar: Chicago-Area Medical Student Activism
Mon. Mar. 29, 5:30 PM CDT
Join Chicago PSR and our student health professional chapters, including Loyola SSOM GEMS, Pritzker Students for Sustainability and Rush University Students for Social Responsibility, for a webinar on Health Professional Student Sustainability Advocacy. Register here


Video on Demand: "Dark Circle"
For every ticket purchased, $2 will be donated to the Physicians for Social Responsibility.
This 1982 documentary film and Sundance Grand Prize winner, focusing on the horrors of the Atomic Age, is available from First Run Features for PSR members to stream at home. View on Demand here

More upcoming events

PSR Actions

President Biden reached out swiftly to Russia to extend the New START Treaty before it expired. Please thank him.


No more oil and gas leasing on public lands!

In the news

In memoriam: Bernard Lown, innovative cardiologist, antiwar activist
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health - Feb 18
Obituary for PSR co-founder Bernard Lown, MD


Groups Concerned About Nuclear Power Want Questions Asked About Point Beach Plan
WUWM 89.7 (NPR) - Feb 18
Quotes Hannah Mortensen of PSR Wisconsin


California State Senators Wiener and Limón Introduce Legislation to Ban Fracking
Sierra Sun Times - Feb 18
Quotes Martha Dina Argüello of PSR-Los Angeles


Does Wisconsin want an 80 year-old nuclear facility?
WORT 89.9 - Feb 17
Radio interview with Hannah Mortensen of PSR Wisconsin


Timber Taxes: Revisions could earn county $5.8M
The Chronicle - Feb 17
Quotes former PSR Executive Director Catherine Thomasson, MD


Bernard Lown, Inventive Heart Doctor and Antiwar Activist, Dies at 99
New York Times - Feb 16
Obituary for PSR co-founder Bernard Lown, MD


Bernard Lown, doctor at the vanguard of cardiac care, antiwar activist who shared Nobel Peace Prize, dies at 99
Boston Globe - Feb 16
Obituary for PSR co-founder Bernard Lown, MD


How South L.A. Residents Are Shutting Down Big Oil in Their Neighborhoods
KCET - Feb 16
Quotes Martha Dina Argüello of PSR-Los Angeles


Appalachia's fracking boom has done little for local economies: Study
Environmental Health News - Feb 12
Mentions PSR's fracking compendium


Mary Nichols Was the Early Favorite to Run Biden's EPA, Before She Became a 'Casualty'
Inside Climate News - Feb 9
Quotes Martha Dina Argüello of PSR-Los Angeles


It's time to end nuclear weapons danger
Kathryn Bourgoin, MD, and Judy Kuhns-Hastings, NP, PSR Maine members, Bangor Daily News - Feb 6


Bay Area cities have banned gas to fight climate change. But not Los Angeles.
Boiling Point (Los Angeles Times) - Feb 4
Quotes Martha Dina Argüello of PSR-Los Angeles


Seattle Gets Most Fossil Fuels Out of New Large Buildings
Natural Resources Defense Council - Feb 2
Features Washington PSR's local advocacy efforts


Biden's executive order on oil and gas drilling does little to protect health in Pa.
Edward C. Ketyer, MD, PSR Pennsylvania, The Philadelphia Inquirer - Feb 2


California Governor Gavin Newsom, Despite Pledge, Signed 1,709 Oil and Gas Production Permits
Newsweek - Feb 1
Quotes Martha Dina Argüello of PSR-Los Angeles


UN nuclear weapons ban is a small step toward sanity
David C. Hall, MD, PSR Past President, Everett Herald - Jan 31


Report: Oil, gas operations in New Mexico, Colorado may worsen COVID-19
Santa Fe New Mexican - Jan 30
Coverage of PSR's new report on Covid and fracking.


Commentary right about health impacts of gas stoves
Everett Herald - Jan 29
Letter to the editor thanking WPSR physicians for their recent commentary on indoor air pollution from gas stoves


Climate change threatens our health
Michael J. Martin, MD, PSR Board Member, San Francisco Chronicle - Jan 27


Biden to bar new oil and gas leases on federal lands, citing climate change
Missoula Current - Jan 26
Mentions PSR lawsuit


SoPo residents seek tighter regulations, accountability for oil tank emissions
Maine Beacon - Jan 25
Mentions PSR Maine


All-electric homes would clear air we breathe
Mark Vossler, MD, Jonathan Witte, MD and Nancy Johnson, RN, Washington PSR, Everett Herald - Jan 17


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