Weatherization and Environmental Justice Program

Weatherization and Environmental Justice Program

Provides repairs and upgrades to reduce utility bills to your home, apartment, trailer.

Our program offers repairs and upgrades aimed at lowering utility bills for your home, apartment, or trailer. We’re committed to both educating and connecting the community with beneficial programs.

Our Objective:

Our primary goal is to educate the community about environmental issues that could impact their living spaces. Additionally, we aim to provide effective solutions to these problems by facilitating community access to relevant programs, thus reducing the barriers to entry.

Why It Matters:

In the Beacon Hill community alone, there are estimated to be over 100 active heating oil tanks. Our Weatherization and Environmental Justice Program can play a crucial role in addressing this issue.

How We Help:

  • We update homes and apartments to tackle mold issues, improving overall cleanliness.
  • Our upgrades help reduce asthma triggers within living spaces.
  • We offer the possibility of floor replacements for homes and apartments.
  • By implementing updates, we assist in lowering utility bills for residents.
  • Importantly, our program is entirely free of charge.
  • We raise awareness about energy-saving programs and utility bill assistance available through the City of Seattle.
  • Through our efforts, we can reduce utility bills by up to 60% permanently, thus easing financial burdens for community members.
  • We also specialize in the removal of aging heating oil tanks, some of which may be up to 80 years old, and facilitate their conversion to electric systems.

By participating in our program, you not only enhance the comfort and safety of your living environment but also contribute to a more sustainable and energy-efficient community.

Eligibility Requirement

Requirements for Energy Discount:

  • Must live in City of Seattle, Beacon Hill, or have Seattle City Lights as service provider. For residents residing in South King County, please feel free to reach out to Ivan for alternative options.
  • Must meet income eligibility limits based on family size (Call or e-mail to check)

Requirements for Healthy Homes and Oil to Electric conversion:

  • Must live in City of Seattle, Beacon Hill, or have Seattle City Lights as service provider.
  • Must meet income eligibility limits based on family size (Call or e-mail to check)

Program Managers

Ivan Montes

Ivan is a first-generation Chicano growing up in the US. His parents immigrated from Jalisco, Mexico. He was the first person in his family to join the US Army and the first to graduate college. Ivan has over a decade of experience in Environmental work including water purification, water quality compliance, hazardous waste management and environmental remediation experience. Ivan believes that the greatest a who can do is serve people and the environment we all share.

Contact Ivan for more information or sign up!

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the program?

It is a two year program.

Environmental Justice Organizing

Environmental Justice Organizing

Please email Maria Batayola, Environmental Justice Coordinator at mbatayola@elcentrodelaraza.org and tell us how you would like to get involved.

Environmental Justice Organizing Training

Join our first ever Environmental Justice Organizing training! Through this training we aim to enable and empower our community to act and want to create grassroots community organizing to influence policy makers to improve environmental and health outcomes for Beacon Hill residents. Beacon Hill is surrounded by major roadways where Aircraft fly over us every 90 seconds causing air and noise pollution. Air pollution can cause health impacts such as asthma, lung cancer, respiratory diseases, and more. Noise pollution can lead to higher stress levels, less sleep, cardiovascular health, and reduction in learning capabilities. Yet our community is located in a spot where we are not eligible for mitigation to help manage these issues. Where you live, your income, race or language ability shouldn’t determine how healthy you are. However, that is the sad reality and low-income communities, and communities of Color continue to be disproportionately harmed by Environmental Issues that may lead to major health impacts.

Join us through this training course where, we aim to develop and promote environmental justice leadership, education, and community organizing. We will focus on topics such as the environmental justice movement, environmental racism, climate change, air and noise pollution, community organizing and more! We hope to enable and empower our community to take action and want to create grassroots community organizing to influence policy makers to improve environmental and health outcomes for Beacon Hill residents.

Environmental & Health Justice

Beacon Hill Air & Noise Pollution

Organizing and Advocating to Solve Air and Noise Pollution Health Impacts on Beacon Hill

Join Us | Donate | Health Impacts

The Problem?

Beacon Hill is 6 miles long and almost 2 miles across. We are a majority minority vulnerable neighborhood. We are surrounded by major roadways Aircraft fly over us every 90 seconds on the average at 70-90 decibels, well above the 55 decibels during the day and 45 at night standard. Air pollution impacts our respiratory health and noise impacts our stress levels, sleep, cardiovascular health and learning We cannot get mitigation because we are not a fenceline community located next to an airport. But, we are a “vertical fenceline” community because the flight paths are fixed, and we get 70% of the aircraft that land in SeaTac.

On top of this, SeaTac is planning to accommodate the doubling of international flights, tripling of air cargo and increase from 47 to 66 million passengers under SAMP (Sustainable Airport Master Plan). We gave input to the scope of the EIS (environmental impact statement). The EIS will come out this fall 2020 and we must be ready to respond.

What can you do? Volunteer, Join us.

Our work is guided by our grassroots Community Action Plan. Join us in implementing the 8 action items recommended by our 467 community members. This year, we are organizing to pass the HB 1847 Airplane Noise Abatement to include Beacon Hill. This is our best shot so far. We are also working with US Rep. Adam Smith to re-introduce Airplane Impacted Communities bill.

2017 Earth Day Blue Sky Trails: Video / Data / Photos
Cleveland HS Noise Study

More…

For anyone who missed our 2022 Earth Day Event, please enjoy the Zoom recording! If there was a specific presentation you were looking forward to, here are the time stamps of each presentation: 

  • Intro remarks: 0-9:45
  • King County International Airport Coalition: 9:45
  • SAMP Campaign, Kristina Chu: 19:07 
  • Aircraft pollution & our Health: Dr. Kris Johnson: 23:00
  • How to talk to Youth about Climate and Pollution, Climate Action families; Therapist, Megan Slade; EJ Educator & Organizer Maritza Lauriano Ortega: 1:01:09 
  • Final Remarks: 1:19:00

For any questions please reach out to Environmental Justice Coordinator, Maria Batayola: mbjumpstart@msn.com.

COMMUNITY ACTION PLAN

In 2017, ECDLR and EPA reached out to 467 community members and held 24 meetings in 6 languages (Chinese, English, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog and Vietnamese). We shared information about the Beacon Hill air and noise pollution and health impacts. We asked our community what can we do about it. The result is the Beacon Hill Air and Noise Pollution Health Impacts Community Action Plan (CAP) that guides our work today. See our 2017-2018 El Centro EPA Project Report.

1. Educate & Empower Community

We produced the “How to Protect Yourself from Air & Noise Pollution” handout in Chinese, English, Spanish, Tagalog, and Vietnamese” for your use and share the information at various community events.

2. Build Capacity To Do The Work

Our work is empowered mostly by volunteers and some grants. We have EJ allies from all sectors ranging from grassroots organizations to local health organizations to universities. People power is our best engine.

We also succeeded in getting grants from EPA (2017-2018 Problem Solving Collaboration grant), Group Health Foundation Grant (2018), and City of Seattle (2019 and 2020). We also advocated for the funding of the 2019 UW Quantitative Air & Noise Study.

3. Measure Air & Noise Pollution

In 2018, El Centro and EPA gave 3 Community Empowerment Grants to Beacon Hill community scientist efforts. The results are documented in the 2018 Air & Noise Pollution Health Impacts Project Accomplishments Report. See pages: 14 to 15 for Beacon Arts Blue Sky Trails project; Cleveland HS Noise Study pages 16-38 for Cleveland HS Environmental Club project with analysis by WWU Huxley Institute Dr. Troy Abel; and pages 39-61 for Beacon Hill Noise Measurement Project report and analysis which had been updated. The results of the UW Quantitative Air & Noise Study will be shared on 2-29-20 at Centilia Cultural Center.

4. Purpose Mitigation Funding

We have 3 policy approaches to become mitigation eligible:

1. Organize help pass Washington HB1847 this year.

2. Continue working with US Congressman Adam Smith to reintroduce Airplane Impacted Communities Bill.

3. Work with the Port of Seattle access equitably noise abatement and mitigation programs. Come join us in these efforts.

5. Change Air Routes, “Give Beacon Hill Noise Relief

This is a tough one. We will keep it in mind as we start with getting mitigation status for Beacon Hill and keeping things from getting worse.

6. Plant More Trees

It is as important to protect our current trees in addition to planting new ones because trees are strong air filters and they store carbon. We are partnering with Beacon Hill Council to:

1. Help pass a stronger City of Seattle Tree Ordinance drafted by the Urban Forestry Commission.

2. Inventory and photograph our exceptional trees in Beacon Hill with Plant Amnesty.

7. Promote Alternative Transportation

Kudos to King County for committing to converting all busses to electric. We are working with Beacon Hill Council to get more charging stations throughout our neighborhood for electric cars and supporting Beacon Hill Safe Streets identify improvements and amenities to the Beacon Hill median from Columbia to the end of Beacon Hill for safer and greater use by walkers, bicyclists and wheelchair users.

8. Reduce Noise Levels from Other Sources