NOT IN MY BACKYARD...AGAIN!!!
by Lawrence Rives
As this article goes to press, the fate of another Alabama river hangs in the balance. A,Canadian high-risk venture capital company plans to auger-mine a 3000 acre section adjoining the Locust Fork River in North Alabama. As mining companies always do, McCoal promises to be a good neighbor and not allow any toxins, sedimentation or siltation to enter the river from their operations. In fact, they say they will put the land back better than they found it. And the Alabama Department of Environmental Management takes them at their word. On September 15, the Alabama Surface Mining Commission will hear concerns from the general public and those whose properties will be most directly impacted by this project. After this hearing, ASMC will decide whether to permit the mining operation. In almost all cases, permission is a given.
In concert with the national Sierra Club initiative to take Big Coal to task for its disregard of the environment, the Coosa Valley group has chosen to support The Friends of the Locust Fork River in their efforts to prevent damage to the watershed. This particular stretch of the river has recently begun to show signs of recovery from strip-mining in the 1970's. This was prior to the Clean Water Act and the river and its flora and fauna were dealt a serious (and in some cases fatal) blow. Our feelings are summed up in the phrase " Not in my backyard..Again!"
In August we appealed to the state Chapter for help in securing legal counsel to make sure existing laws are enforced to protect our land and water. They, in turn, have presented our cause to the national leadership. Now we ask for your help. First, familiarize yourself with the issue by going on-line to www.rosamine.org. Then contact our national office by email, letter, or phone so that we may at least establish some precedent for resistance to environmentally destructive mining operations in Alabama.
Write to: Bruce Niles, Sierra Club 85 Second St, San Francisco, CA 9410
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: Bruce Niles at (415) 977-5500
In many ways, Big Coal is treating Alabama as a sacrifice zone. When TVA had a big coal ash spill in Tennessee, where did they send the toxic sludge? Alabama, of course. With our efforts, we hope to change the public attitude of passive acceptance to one of active resistance. Join us and stay tuned....
Nature Notes: GREEN, CLEAN, AND SUSTAINABLE IDEAS
by John Ackerman
Green entrepreneurs and innovators are tearing up conventional, old-fashioned ways of doing business and setting new standards for green, clean, and sustainable plans, processes, and designs. There are many potential examples, I am only going to discuss a few but challenge each of you to search out more and share them with your friends. So, let’s look at Engineers Without Borders, robot farmhands, solar energy in Ethiopia, and the coming RIY movement. more>>>
Annual Retreat: November 6, 7, 8.
Shocco Springs • Talladega, Alabama
EMBRACE THE CHALLENGE: EXPLORE, ENJOY, PROTECT OUR PLANET
Our speaker list includes:
• Dr. Joyce Lanning from the Climate Project
• Joe Cuhaj, author of A Guide to Alabama’s Greatest Hiking Adventures
• Jim Lacefield, paleobiologist and author of Lost Worlds in Alabama Rocks: A Guide
• Dave Lindon, the City of Hoover’s Biofuel program
• Jay Hudson, teacher and guide for the Pinhoti trail challenge
• David Pope, director of Southern Environmental Law Center
Don't miss a change to really get outside, meet like-minded folks and reconnect with old friends. Come join us on the trail, in the water or just out for a stroll down the street! more>>>
October on the Farm
by Peggie Griffin
Now that we’ve eaten the last of our summer squash, peas, cucumbers, and okra, I’m looking forward to those cool weather veggies. At the time I am writing this column, I have young beets, spinach, turnip greens, Romaine lettuce, kale, broccoli, and cabbage plants in my garden. I hope by the time you are reading this article that I will begin to harvest some of these delicious veggies. more>>>
Pinhoti Challenge Hikes are back!
by Jay Hudson
With the weather cooling off again, summer behind us, and the fall leaves turning, we are once again resuming our Pinhoti Challenge hikes. Normally on the 3rd weekend of each month, we are starting off October right with two hikes – one on the second weekend (10/10) and another on the fourth weekend (10/31)! more>>>
Notes from Around Alabama's Sierra Club Groups
From Bears in the South Cumberland, Roadside Spraying in Alabama, and Members of the Mobile Bay Group participating in the annual Coastal Cleanup, find out what's happening with Sierra Club Groups all around the state! more>>>