Sierra Club Says Thanks for a Successful 2014!

Support the Sierra Club today:

I know that many of you are already enjoying the holidays with loved ones and friends, so I won’t keep you. I just want to take a moment to say thank you. Looking back on the past 12 months has been inspiring. All of the calls, petitions, rallies — not to mention your generous contributions — each and every one of you has done something to advance this movement in a way that makes me proud to come to work each day.

In 2014 alone, we:

  • Rallied with more than 400,000 supporters at the People’s Climate March.

  • Won three new national monuments, totaling more than 900,000 protected acres.

  • Turned out a record number of supporters at the EPA’s clean power rule hearings.

  • Petitioned — successfully — for Google, Facebook and eBay to leave ALEC.

  • Blocked the Keystone XL pipeline yet again.

I could go on, but I promised I’d keep it short! Check out the video below to see more of the great work we’ve done together.

You should be so proud of what we’ve achieved, Bill — I know I am. The New Year is sure to bring more new challenges to our environment, challenges that the Sierra Club intends to take on. It won’t always be easy, but knowing we can count on you makes facing those challenges a lot less daunting. Thank you.

From my family to yours, best wishes for a joyous holiday season.

Michael Brune

Michael Brune, Executive Director
Sierra Club

Jan 28 Monthly Meeting Announcement – Backpacking 101

Jan 28 Monthly Meeting Announcement – Backpacking 101

We are pleased to have Matt Clapp introduce this 10 week introductory training course that we will be hosting this Spring. Matt is newly arrived in Charlotte from San Diego where he led their local Sierra Club’s backpacking 101 training. The course is specifically for beginners. You do not have to be a Sierra Club member to participate.

If you bought a backpack for wandering around Europe or got one as a gift and it’s still in the garage, this is your chance to get it out and learn how to use it in the wilds. Using a combination of classroom talks and practical weekend experiences, Matt will take the participants through a rigorous process to learn how to safely and comfortably enjoy going backpacking. The course is also a great refresher.

Our Jan 28th meeting will provide and introduction to and overview of this course.

As usual, our meetings are held at the Mahlon Adams Pavilion in Freedom Park. The address is 2435 Cumberland Ave, Charlotte, NC. Pizza is served at 6:30pm. The formal meeting begins at 7pm. We expect to finish up by 8:30pm. The meeting is free and open to all. And ample parking is available and also free.

Hope to see you there.

David Robinson, Chair Central Piedmont Group of the Sierra Club

New Year’s Day Hike – Jan 1, 2015

Start the New Year off with a hike at nearby Crowders Mt. State Park. We’ll hike the Kings Pinnacle Trail, about 4 miles roundtrip, with a few steep sections. Hike starts at 10 AM and we should be done by about 1 PM. If you’ve never been there, you’re missing a great local hike with a great view from the peak! The park is near Gastonia about 50 minutes from Charlotte. Limited to 20 hikers. Contact Steve Copulsky to sign up at scopulsky@mindspring.com or 704-543-7493.
All participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a standard liability waiver. You can view the waiver here:

https://nc2.sierraclub.org/sites/nc.sierraclub.org/files/SignInWaiver%20with%20photo%20release.pdf

Dec 1 Sierra Club Webinar: Supporting EPAs Critical Smog Pollution Health Protections

Child with Inhaler

As you may have noticed EPA proposed new smog pollution protections to protect children’s health the day before Thanksgiving: http://content.sierraclub.org/press-releases/2014/11/sierra-club-applauds-new-smog-pollution-proposal-children-and-elderly.  Please join us this evening at 8 PM ET/5 PM PT for an important webinar on the impact of what EPA has proposed and what we can all do to help get this critical proposal across the finish line.

Supporting EPAs Critical Smog Pollution Health Protections
Join us for a Webinar on December 1 at 8pm ET/ 7pm CT/ 6pm MT/ 5pm PT
Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at: https://www4.gotomeeting.com/register/533385639

On December 1st President Obama is expected to follow through on his 2008 campaign promise to propose a new smog standard and protect children’s health.  This decision is one of the most important opportunities to reduce pollution of his final term, rivaling the positive impact of the Clean Power Plan for our health and climate.  Join the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign for a webinar later that evening at 8:00 PM ET/5:00 PM PT to learn more about how you can help us get these critical public health protections across the finish line.

Our opposition is geared up to fight this proposed rule, including an incoming Congress that will do everything they can to derail the President’s clean energy agenda.  The National Association of Manufacturers and their allies have driven hyperbole to new levels by calling this the most expensive EPA rule in history, and they are pleading with the coal industry and the American Petroleum Institute to spend tens of millions of dollars to defeat it.  In reality, this rule will save tens of thousands of lives and let our children take a breath without worry.  It will ensure new clean energy technologies are deployed and jobs are created.  Every parent has a right to know whether or not the air is safe to breathe, and President Obama can deliver that.  But we need your help to make sure the rule is strong and final by the end of 2015.

Join us at 8:00 PM ET/5:00 PM PT on Monday, December 1st to learn more about what is in the proposed rule, and what you can do to help make sure President Obama lives up to his clean air promise.
Title:    Supporting EPAs Critical Smog Pollution Health Protections
Date:    Monday, December 1, 2014
Time:    8:00 PM – 9:00 PM EST

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

2014 Annual Report and Ballot

Thanks to our great NC Sierra Club staff for their work in preparing the 2014 Annual Report. Click below to download and read a copy.

All members with current dues paid should have received a copy of the NC Sierra Club Annual report and election ballot. This year we are encouraging everyone to vote electronically, although you can still submit a paper ballot.

2014 Annual Report and Ballot2014 Annual Report – Final

The ballot page hosts candidate information and the official ballot for the Executive Committee elections for the  NC Sierra Club.  Candidate statements are located below the ballot.

Only Sierra Club members are allowed to vote in this election and your member number is required to submit your ballot.

Member numbers are located on the address label of the NC Sierra Club Annual Report.  If you did not receive a copy of the Annual Report and need help finding your member number, please contact Janet Joye Smith at ncsierracg@gmail.com.

For any questions about this ballot or the voting process, please contact Dustin Chicurel-Bayard at dustin.chicurel-bayard@sierraclub.org.

Voting is open from November 15 – December 15, 2014.

Remember: You need your Sierra Club member number to vote!

Vote for our local Executive Committee members here: 2014 Central Piedmont Group Ballot
Vote for our NC Chapter leaders here: 2014 NC Sierra Club Steering Committee Ballot

Sierra Club Applauds Obama for Bringing Millions From the Shadows to Security

Coming Clean: The blog of Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune

Michael Brune

November 21, 2014

From Shadows to Security

Last night, President Obama announced that he will use his executive authority to take the first significant steps toward fixing what has become an increasingly dysfunctional national immigration policy. As with climate and energy policy, he has not done all that is needed, but as much as he believes he can. In the face of a Congress that routinely passes on opportunities to do anything constructive, and political ideologues who cry foul before the ball is even in play, Obama is determined to do his job.

Why should the Sierra Club care about this latest announcement? For the same reasons anyone should care. Because (again, just as with climate disruption) fixing this problem is both the right thing to do and the smart thing to do. What kind of society forces millions of people — people who are essential to its functioning — to live in the shadows?

Policy debates tend toward abstraction and depersonalization. One side talks about “illegal aliens” and the other about “undocumented workers.” Really, though, we’re talking about people. People just like us. They are moms and dads. They’re uncles, aunts, and grandparents. They may love to dance, to hike, or to spend Sunday afternoons at a big family picnic. Their kids play with ours in the schoolyard. We sit together in the same movie theatres and at our churches, mosques, and synagogues.

One thing is different for them, though. When we look to see who is being hurt most by pollution, our nation’s immigrants are the people we usually find on the front lines. Their communities are not only among the most exploited and abused by polluters but also among the most vulnerable to the consequences of climate disruption and extreme weather. Yet they have been denied even the most basic protections that would allow them to speak up and seek justice.

That millions of families in this country should never feel truly safe is both unconscionable and un-American.

Beyond the issue of justice, though, Obama is helping to restore something that has always been essential to the character and achievement of our nation. Immigrants do not want to be a burden — they want to contribute. In the past, we were proud of that fact and those contributions. When the Sierra Club was founded 122 years ago, at least 20 of our 182 original members were immigrants — including, of course, John Muir himself. Some of them had come to the U.S. because it was a land of opportunity. Some were fleeing political upheavals. All of them, though, were proud contributors to their adopted country.

After six years of waiting in vain for Congress to act, President Obama has taken an important and necessary first step toward offering temporary relief for undocumented families. In doing so, he is enabling millions of people to make their own contributions to this country by removing the threat of deportation and family separation. The result will be an America that is more diverse, more fair, and all the stronger for it.

Thank President Obama for taking action here.