Conservation Alliance Blog
Since Gregory's inception more than 35 years ago, they have placed a priority on helping to preserve the areas we all love to recreate in. This has included the giving of time, cold hard cash, and free merchandise to foster the preservation of mountain environments. One such conservation organization Gregory has supported for the last seven years has been The Conservation Alliance. Through their support, Gregory hopes to make wild places more accessible to anyone that wants to get outside and find how the trail speaks to them.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate's Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee passed the Tennessee Wilderness Act of 2013. This legislation would create one new wilderness area and expand the boundaries of five other wilderness areas already established within the Cherokee National Forest.
The act now awaits a floor vote in the Senate and introduction in the House of Representatives.
The Tennessee Wilderness Act was first introduced by U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker in 2010 after measures spelled out in the legislation were recommended by the U.S. Forest Service in 2004. The senators reintroduced the act in July.
"Tennesseans take great pride in the fact that millions of people visit our state every year to experience our incredible God-given outdoors, and this legislation would ensure the Cherokee National Forest is preserved for future generations," Corker said Tuesday. "I thank Senator Alexander for his lifelong commitment to protecting wilderness areas, and I'm hopeful the full Senate will consider and pass this legislation in the near future."
Photo: Bill Hodge
Thank you for your interest in and support of The Conservation Alliance. We are pleased to annouce the results of our Winter 2014 funding cycle. We have contributed $750,000 to the 22 organizations listed below. In 2014 we plan to award a record $1.65 million in grants. Many great conservation opportunities lie ahead, and we're pleased to be able to support these important initiatives.
Take Action Tuesday: The Nooksack River, A True Wild and Scenic River. Take Action to Get Her on the Map!
The Nooksack River is a shiny gem tucked away in the North Cascades near the Canadian border. The Nooksack River system is home to all five species of native Pacific salmon, steelhead, bull trout, bald eagles, black bears, mountain goats, and many other native fish and wildlife species that need intact, wild places to survive.
The Nooksack is also the lifeblood for the local communities relying on the river for clean drinking and irrigation water and for tourism income from visitors drawn to the river's world class whitewater boating, hiking, skiing, and other recreation opportunities.
A great deal of support for protecting the Nooksack currently exists; however, Wild and Scenic River legislation does not yet exist. We are hard at work to increase public and political support in order to make that a reality in the near future.
Photo: Rick Bower
A guest post by Renee Krysko, Yellowstone to Yukon
Rural Impact. Urban Voters. Bridging the Gap.
Stop Site C Campaign
Twice the size of California, British Columbia is a sizable Canadian province. And in a province where more than half the population resides in greater Vancouver and Victoria in the south, it's easy for northern, more rural issues to go unnoticed.
Perhaps that was what BC Hydro was banking on when it re-activated an old proposal to build a third hydro-electric dam, called Site C, on the Peace River some 600 miles (1,000 km) away from these urban centers. (Click for more information)
So far removed from Vancouver or Victoria, there was no public outcry when the dam was proposed. Few people understood that the $8 billion dollar project would skyrocket their electric bills, and that the dam would result in the destruction of some of B.C.'s best agricultural land, pose a serious threat to wildlife mobility at the narrowest point in the Yellowstone to Yukon corridor and alter a way of life for many native communities.
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y), however, helped bridge the gap.
With the support of Conservation Alliance, we launched a media campaign focused on broadening awareness of the dam and its impacts on everyday people - including those living in urban centres. Local, provincial and national media covered the intense unfolding of the environmental assessment public hearings in December 2013 and January 2013, including the breadth of opposition to the dam and a science report on the dam's impact on wildlife that Y2Y commissioned.
We've captured some of the media highlights below. To read the full article, please click on the article title:
Harry Swain said panel members said, "I can't stand it. I've read more material here than you could believe," he said. "The EIS (environmental impact statement) and its supporting documents are many times longer than the Bible. And the plot is not as good, nor is the language."
David Suzuki Foundation argues Site C would cause "irrevocable ecological harm"
...the report confirms that the cumulative effects on the region where the Site C dam would be located are "significant" and "unprecedented" in Canada, and going ahead the project would only worsen them.
Doig Councillor Kelvin Davis said he took his grandson out on his first moose hunt a week ago..."We prepared it, skinned it, but when we opened up the cavity, this moose was unhealthy," said Davis. "It had cysts on its lungs, on its liver. It broke my heart for my grandson to shoot his first moose, and have to leave everything."
Cumulative effects of development like Site C could be detrimental to some wildlife
Wildlife biologist Dr. Clayton Apps has concluded that some wildlife population in the Peace Region may not be viable or recoverable in the future due to the cumulative effects of resource development, including the Site C dam.
News update - Food security and energy security at issue at Site C hearings
"If BC Hydro's dam on Site C gets built, precious alluvial soils in a class one climate capable of producing fresh vegetables for over one million British Columbians in perpetuity will be destroyed forever," says agrologist Wendy Holm.
According to the BC Hydro Site C website, however, the dam will produce enough clean energy to power 450,000 homes per year in B.C.
Photo at Top: Larry Peterson
Photo at Left: Sarah Cox
The Infamous Stringdusters are currenty on their Let It Go Tour, and speading the good work of The Conservation Alliance and our grantees along the way.
A lyric from the album's title track rings true to one of the Stingduster's core beliefs... "If you think you can make a difference and the fire is in your soul, go ahead and take your stand and if you can't, let it go."
The Stingdusters are making a difference. They are fired up to benefit The Conservation Alliance with the Let It Go Album Release tour. From every ticket AND every copy of Let It Go sold, they are donating $1.00 to The Conservation Alliance. Our friends at Keen and Klean Kanteen are standing up with the Stingdusters, and joining them on the road to help raise funds for the Alliance and awareness of the dangers facing our natural wonders and resources.
Today we share a guest post by Stringduster Travis Book..........
I've been a Stringduster for almost a decade, but I've been an outdoorsman since birth. Early on, my father made it a priority to get outdoors. Our property butted up against National Forest and we had a spot, up the creek, where we'd sit, each on our own flat rock, and watch the light fade. At some point, just before the light failed, we'd race back to the house for dinner. 8 years in a row we spent New Years at the bottom of the Grand Canyon and every year at Spring Break we'd pack up the bikes and head to Moab. Now that I'm a father, (of one-year old Ruby) I'm beginning to truly realize the value of that early indoctrination. Ruby, just like her father, prefers life outdoors. Nothing matches the contentment she exhibits when I drop her into a backpack and take a long walk through the woods, her soft, incessant humming and the crunching of twigs and leaves under my Targhee II's the only sounds.
I'm fortunate to live near the Appalachain Trail, the George Washington National Forest and the Priest Wilderness, but many, if not most, people in the US, particularly the eastern US, live far from large, protected open spaces. Preservation for preservation sake can be a tough sell in our capitalist society, so the Conservation Alliance model of engaging business to preserve and protect open space by highlighting the economic as well as aesthetic values is as pragmatic as it is practical. For many, the collision of business and conservation is an uncomfortable space and the Stringdusters can relate; no one likes their art mixed up with profit. However, putting aside preconceptions about conservation ideals and focusing on finding new ways to conserve and protect open space will, I believe, lead to more preservation, and ultimately, result in more protected spaces.
For our Let It Go tour, we saw an opportunity to bring attention to and raise some funds for our first love; the outdoors. Each one of us engages with the outdoors in our own unique way, but universally, the five of us and everyone on our crew and in our office places outdoor experiences at the top of our priority list. We are skiers, cyclists, hikers, fisherman, boaters, climbers, runners, snowboarders, swimmers, and campers but we're none of these things without places to do them. Fresh air, clean water, and places to enjoy them, if we can help with that in any way, we're on board and we know our fans are too. Attend an Infamous Stringdusters show this spring and help The Conservation Alliance support grassroots environmental organizations and their efforts to protect wild places where outdoor enthusiasts recreate, simply by buying a ticket! You'll have an amazing time, and meet some like-minded outdoor-lovers while you're at it.