Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT)

At A Glance

Contact: 

Jane Winn

Location: 

Pittsfield, Massachusetts

Primary Issue Area:

  • Environmental Health
  • Climate Change & Energy

Active since:

2002

Grants Received In:

  • 2017
  • 2016
  • 2010
  • 2009
  • 2004
  • 2003

Tax Status:

501(c)(3)

Core volunteers:

75

Community Size:

44,168

Our Purpose

Berkshire Environmental Action Team, Inc. (BEAT) is an action-oriented environmental organization based in western Massachusetts whose goals are to protect the environment for wildlife, educate citizens about the environment and their role in protecting it, and work collaboratively with a broad range of organizations, agencies, and individuals to achieve these goals. Our work necessarily and naturally involves us in issues related to the impact of energy generation, distribution, and use on the environment. We have become increasingly involved in providing technical support and conducting outreach and education in our region through our watchdogging program in opposition to destructive, polluting, and unjustifiable fossil fuel infrastructure projects, especially through our No Fracked Gas in Mass program. And thus, we advocate for 100% clean, renewable energy. We believe that an informed, empowered citizenry is the environment’s best protection. BEAT reaches out to the community to engage people in appreciating our environmental assets, understanding the laws designed to protect them, and taking action to ensure their protection.

Summary of Projects

The group received a Grow grant in 2017 to conduct outreach and education, and provide organizing assistance to volunteers in Berkshire County who are working to move their municipalities to 100% renewable energy

In spring 2017, BEAT received a Partner Grant to serve as a Steering Commitee for the Mass Power Forward Campaign and to support their regional energy & climate activities.

BEAT received a grant in 2010 to fund a coordinator stipend for Jane and a local organizer to train and organize volunteers in Adams and North Adams, the northern Berkshire region where BEAT does not currently have a presence. Citizens in the area, noticing potential wetland violations and opposing the siting of a big box store, have asked BEAT for organizing help.

Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) received a grant in 2009 to form and help support Grassroots Action Teams throughout Berkshire County and beyond. BEAT has started and and continues to hold gatherings to find out what issues are important to people, and with NEGEF's help, they were able to explore how these people could form Grassroots Action Teams to take action to make a real difference in their part of the world. BEAT fostered these teams by holding meetings of their own with BEAT attending whenever that would be helpful.

In 2004, BEAT received a grant for basic support including river clean up expenses, copying, and newsletter costs.

BEAT received a grant in 2003 to watchdog the town of Pittsfield's conservation commission. Members of the Conservation Commission (CC) are appointed by the town Mayor, and they have been rubber-stamping development proposals in the community. BEAT members are videotaping the Conservation Commission meetings and highlighting its actions to the town, holding the commission accountable to community members.