Dear FACS Community:

We are so grateful to all of you for your passion and persistence through your actions, advocacy and commitment. Thank you! We’ve had a busy month and you’ve been right there with us. We look forward to continuing to walk together.

In Case you Missed It

Over 400 people attended FACS’ Virginia Climate Crisis Forum on September 18th. Gathered in Vienna, Virginia, we heard from the 2018 candidates for U.S. Senator from Virginia, Tim Kaine and Corey Stewart, and from Samantha Ahdoot, MD, FAAP, Chair and Co-founder, Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action; Major General Rick Devereaux, USAF (Ret.), Former Director of Operational Planning, Policy, & Strategy, U.S. Air Force; Advisory Board, Center for Climate and National Security; and Fairfax County Supervisor Dan Storck. View media coverage of the event.

Watch the event on Facebook (You do not have to have a Facebook account to watch the video. When prompted to log in or create an account, click “Not Now”.) 

Dr. Samantha Ahdoot, Major General Rick Devereaux, Rev. Jean Wright and Fairfax County Supervisor Dan Storck.

You can still send in your comments on climate change to Governor Ralph Northam!

Rev. Stephanie Allen

On Sunday, September 23rd, FACS hosted Reverend Stephanie Allen, of the Church of the Nativity and founder of Zero Waste Church, at Peace Lutheran Church. 15 Congregations attended and learned about different programs and initiatives they could bring back to their congregation. Additionally, congregations talked to each other about advocacy, working with clergy, and problem solving. Missed the event? You can watch her presentation here!  

Living our Commitments

Plastic Free Fairfax

Join FACS in advocating for a Plastic Free Fairfax. From October 1st to 31st FACS is joining forces with other groups across Fairfax County to ask individuals, organizations, and congregations to reduce their single-use plastic. Sign up to take the pledge! After a service have congregation members sign the pledge and learn why plastic is harming the planet.

Plastic Free Fairfax October Events

Tour of MOM’s Organic Market

When: Thursday, October 4th, 3pm – 4pm

Where: MOM’s Organic Market, 1901 Veitch St, Arlington, VA 22201

Join EcoAction Arlington for a tour of MOM’s Organic Market in Arlington to get an overview of some of the items that can be purchased to help reduce your plastics while shopping and for every day use. Browse the aisles of MOM’s with a staff member who will show how to shop plastic free. RSVP required. RSVP here.

Annual Trash Summit: Business Solutions for Plastic Pollution

When: Tuesday, October 16, 9am – 5pm

Where: GMU Founders Hall, 3351 Fairfax Drive, Arlington, VA 22201

This year’s Trash Summit will bring together hundreds of community members, business leaders, elected officials, non-profit partners and municipal staff to explore private sector leadership on issues of plastic pollution prevention. Join the conversation at the 12th Annual Trash Summit, and help shape regional solutions to the issue. This one-day event will feature presentation from experts, topical panels, networking with local leaders, discussion roundtables, best practices, information sharing, and more. Register here.

Waste and Recycling Symposium

When: Wednesday, October 17, 9am – 3:30pm

Where: Northern Virginia Community College, Ernst Center Theater and Forum, 8333 Little River Turnpike, Annandale, VA

A full day of waste talk, including screenings of Wasted!, Styrofoam Mom, and The Clean Bin Project. Find more details and register here.

Raglan Road Park Stream Clean-up

When: Saturday, October 20, 10am – 12pm

Where: 8590 Raglan Rd, Vienna, VA 22182

Ready to tackle plastic pollution in your backyard? We’ll tag along with Clean Fairfax for a stream cleanup near Tysons Corner. And probably get a bit to eat together afterward. RSVP to

American Recycling Center Tour

When: Tuesday, October 23, 10am – 11:30 am

Where: 10220 Residency Rd, Manassas, VA 20110

Ever wonder where your recyclables go after you toss them in the bin? Join us for a tour of the American Recycling Center in Manassas. Spaces are limited. RSVP is required. RSVP here.


On Tuesday, September 25, the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors voted on the 2019 carryover budget package, which included $4.5 million to implement the first year of the recently approved County Operations Energy Strategy. FACS Executive Director Meg Mall testified in support of funding the plan, also emphasizing that the county must strengthen the plan and move to quickly develop a community-wide climate action plan. The funding was approved, marking a significant milestone for Fairfax County. Watch FACS’ testimony here (1:25).

Meg Mall, FACS executive director, giving testimony at meeting.


Upcoming Events

Military Preparedness in a Changing Climate
Monday, October 22, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m.
Vinson Hall Retirement Community
Kathy Martin Community Building
What does climate change mean for our national security? And what is the military doing to prepare for it? The event will begin with the award-winning, 40-minute film Tidewater, which tells of the challenges faced by the 13 military bases and 17 municipalities in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, where water is rising and land is sinking. After the film, a panel of retired senior military experts from the Center for Climate and Security will outline challenges our military must meet to protect our nation in a changing climate, with an opportunity for audience questions. Then we’ll discuss how concerned citizens can encourage Congress to take action to mitigate climate change in order to protect our national security and economy. 

For more information and to RSVP, visit

Environmental Justice and Northern Virginia
Tuesday, October 23, 6:30 – 8:30 pm (6:30 pm snacks, 7:00 pm presentation)
Oakton Library
How does environmental justice relate to our community/group? Join Sierra Club Virginia’s Environmental Justice Chair Alexis Szepesy and Program Coordinator Gustavo Angeles to facilitate a discussion to talk about environmental justice in Virginia. This is an introduction to environmental justice and includes GIS maps of our region including: Ethnicity, health (asthma, COPD, cancer cluster, per cent of population with health care), power plants, pipelines, coal ash sites, prison locations, coal mine, etc. RSVP
CONTACT: Susan Bonney at

Virginia Solar Congress

The Virginia Solar Congress is a free public conference that brings together the diverse solar community to learn, discuss the current state of solar energy, and talk about Virginia’s solar future. Topics will include: solar 101 information session, solar + battery storage in the residential setting, grassroots solar advocacy, electric vehicles, and much more! The event is free and open to the public. Register and learn more about the conference here. 

When: Sunday, October 28th, 10 AM – 4 PM

When: George Mason University, Alan & Sally Merten Hall 4441 George Mason Blvd. Fairfax, VA 22030

Virginia Rally for the #TrialoftheCentury

Come to the Virginia Rally for the #TrialoftheCentury. Youth plaintiffs are taking the federal government to court for violating their constitutional rights by knowingly contributing to climate change. The science-based National Climate Recovery Plan the plaintiffs seek, would end the reign of fossil fuels and lead to swift decarbonization. This lawsuit could change everything. In fact, this landmark case could become the Brown v Board of Education case for the environment! Our Children’s Trust is spearheading rallies at federal courthouses across the country so that we can stand with these brave young people as they head into the courtroom and amplify their message that we all deserve the right to clean air and a livable future. Find out more information here.

When: Monday, October 29th 2 PM – 4 PM

Where: 401 Courthouse Sq, Alexandria, VA 22314-5701

FACS’ next Community Council meeting will be on Friday, January 11th from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. We will be doing a deep dive into our local advocacy, prepare for the Virginia General Assembly, and provide training opportunities. 

Partner Spotlight

Food for Others is a food distribution nonprofit in Northern Virginia with a variety of

programs for low-income families. Approximately 600 families are served each day, Monday – Friday. Food for Others has nine employees but relies heavily on volunteers to help run their programs. In a step towards sustainability, Food for Others is taking the Plastic Free Fairfax Challenge this October and is encouraging its staff and volunteers to ditch single use plastics at their warehouse. Grace Plihal, an AmeriCorps VISTA, noted that a big culprit in the office was single use plastic water bottles. An email was sent out to the Food for Others volunteer list encouraging them to bring reusable water bottles and introducing them to the Plastic Free Fairfax Challenge. Food for Others also spruced up their recycling area, made it clear what can and can’t be recycled, and most importantly highlighted how collective recycling efforts of staff and volunteers can make a large difference.

Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions helped Food for Others brainstorm ideas to take part in the challenge. Does your congregation want to take part in the challenge but doesn’t know where to start? Send an email to to talk through ways for your congregation to get involved. Click here for more information about the Plastic Free Fairfax Challenge.


Resource Corner

Looking for a prayer on climate action to read at your service? Consider this prayer written by Rabbi Arthur Waskow, of The Shalom Center, in honor of Yom Kippur and following the aftermath of Hurricane Florence. This prayer was read by Rev. Dr. Jean Wright at the beginning of the Virginia Climate Crisis Forum.

Environmental Justice

Read how rural communities, low – income communities, and communities of color are affected most by natural disasters on the FACS blog!

In Peace,
Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions

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