Three Decades Of North Carolina Wilderness

Thanks to WUNC radio and Meghan Modafferi & Frank Stasio  for this great interview! Take a listen!

A conversation with professor Robert Cox about N. C. Wilderness

Thirty years ago today, President Ronald Reagan signed the North Carolina Wilderness Act which protected nearly 100,000 acres of wilderness in the state. Robert Cox, former president of the Sierra club, was instrumental in the law’s passage.

He toured the state showing the following slideshow on the importance of wilderness. It was digitized by the North Carolina Sierra Club as part of the project, Our Wild North Carolina.

Of course, the North Carolina Wilderness Act was controversial at the time, just as many environmental issues are today. Human industry has historically locked horns with the rest of nature.

Today, Cox is a professor of communication studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he studies the rhetoric of environmentalism and social change.


Host Frank Stasio talks with Cox about the politics of wilderness then and now.

* NeighborWoods Community Tree Planting

Want to make your neighborhood greener? Here’s a program to help preserve our tree canopy.


Applications for NeighborWoods Tree Canopy Program Are Now Being Accepted

Charlotte’s tree canopy is one of the finest urban forests in America, providing cleaner air and water, energy savings, increased property values, and great beauty.  Unfortunately the urban forest is also aging, fragile and disappearing. But you and your neighbors can help.

Charlotte City Council has adopted a goal of 50 percent tree canopy by 2050. Achieving that goal is a team effort requiring at least 500,000 additional trees to be planted. The City of Charlotte has partnered with TreesCharlotte in a collaborative effort dedicated to planting 15,000 trees annually.

TreesCharlotte’s NeighborWoods program strengthens and beautifies communities and increases environmental awareness by providing trees, education and planting supplies free of charge to neighborhoods with tree planting capacity. Neighborhood associations can apply to receive trees and planting assistance for common areas and homes in the community.

Pre-application letters of intent for the fall 2014 – spring 2015 planting season are now being accepted. Attendance at a pre-application workshop is required.

Upcoming Workshops:

• Jan. 22, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
• Feb. 10, Noon – 1 p.m.
• Feb. 13, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
• March 5, 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.

Workshops are held at Old City Hall, 600 E. Trade Street. Free parking is available. Additional workshops may be requested by calling 704-336-2929.

Learn more about NeighborWoods and how to apply here. Pre-application letters of intent are due by 4/1/2014. Participation is limited.

* Plant a Shade Tree in Time for Spring – Tree Seedling Sale Feb 22

The 43rd Annual Tree Seedling Sale will be held on Saturday, February 22, 2014.

If you have any questions, please contact Mecklenburg Soil and Water at 704-336-2455.

Benefits of planting trees are:

  1. Reduce air pollution
  2. Fight the atmospheric greenhouse effect
  3. Conserve water and reduce soil erosion
  4. Save energy
  5. Modify local climate
  6. Increase economic stability
  7. Reduce noise pollution
  8. Create wildlife and plant diversity
  9. Increase property values
  10. Look great!

Tree Seedling Sale 2014

* Sierra Club 2013 Year in Review

Thanks to everyone for the great food and fellowship last night at our monthly meeting! It was a great time to get together and reflect about our challenges and accomplishments in 2013. Again,  thanks to the many members, supporters and partner organizations that helped to make all this happen. Click below to see the presentation.

I hope that you’ll review it and think about the great work that we accomplished and how you’ll help to make a difference in 2014.


2013 Year in ReviewCPG 2013 Year in Review


* Save the Box Creek Wilderness – Dec Update

Where Things Stand: Condemnation Case

On October 1, a Superior Court judge dismissed Rutherford Electric Membership Corporation’s proceeding to condemn a power line right of way through Box Creek Wilderness. Citing due process and statutory considerations, the judge ruled that Rutherford Electric could not proceed with its petition in Rutherford County to condemn an easement through the McDowell County portion of Box Creek Wilderness. REMC’s separate petition to condemn a right of way through an additional 600 acres in McDowell County is still pending and the fight to protect and preserve Box Creek Wilderness continues.

Mark Schmerling Photography in Box Creek Wilderness

Mark Schmerling - Box Creek WildernessMark Schmerling - Box Creek Wilderness 2

Mark Schmerling - Box Creek Wilderness 3Mark Schmerling - Box Creek Wilderness 4

In November, environmental photographer Mark Schmerling spent a day exploring and photographing Box Creek Wilderness with BCW Land Manager Barry Ellenburg. The result was a gorgeous collection of photos from this unique, beautiful natural area. Schmerling uses his photography to educate the public on social and environmental issues. Thanks to Mark for his wonderful photos from Box Creek Wilderness.

Announcing: Box Creek Wilderness Road Race – January 4

We are proud to be the official sponsor of a brand new road race! The Box Creek Wilderness 5K Run/Walk and 10K Run will be presented by the Union Mills Learning Center on Saturday, January 4, 2013.

Come run or walk with us!

Registration will open at 8:30am. The 5K Run/Walk will begin at 10:00am and the 10K Run will begin at 12:00pm at 6495 Hudlow Road, Union Mills, NC. Proceeds of the race go to benefit the Union Mills Learning Center, Inc. Route descriptions and an online version of the race registration form are available on the Union Mills Learning Center website.

Participants can register for the 5K Run/Walk, the 10K run, or both. Mail-in registration forms must be postmarked by December 23. Shirts are guaranteed to all participants who pre-register.

  • 5K Run/Walk: $15 pre-registered, $20 race day, $10 kids 12 & under
  • 10K Run: $15 pre-registered, $20 race day
  • Double Race 5K+10K: $20 pre-registered, $25 race day

5K Description
Participants will start at Union Mills Learning Center on Hudlow Road, travel west towards Highway 221, turning left onto Coney Island Road, and then left onto Ferguson Ridge Road. At the dead end, runners will turn around and go back, ending the 5K at Union Mills Learning Center. Some hills, all pavement.

10K Description
Participants will start at Round Hill Church on Hudlow Road, traveling east
and turning left onto Box Creek Road. This scenic route will take runners
across the Second Broad River and alongside the CSX Railroad. At Hwy. 221,
runners will turn around and go back, ending the 10K at Union Mills Learning Center. This route contains some gradual incline, paved and gravel roads.

Awards will be given for Top Overall Male/Female (1st & 2nd); Top Male/Female in each age group; and a Finishers Award to all who complete both 5K & 10K.

* Cutting Down NC Forests for European Wood Pellets

Thanks to the great folks at the Dogwood Alliance for producing this video. Watch and spread the word about this issue!

Our Forests Arent Fuel

Southern wetlands are going ‘Up in Smoke’ so that European governments can meet their renewable energy targets and European citizens can keep their lights on!

Giant wood pellet manufacturers like Enviva, featured in our new video below, are chopping down our forests, turning them into pellets, and shipping them over to Europe for companies like Drax to burn for electricity. This madness needs to stop!

We’re at a critical point in this campaign and need your support to build national awareness around this destructive new industry as we continue the work of protecting forests in the Southern US.  Please SHARE this video with your friends and family, post a message on Facebook, and don’t forget to tweet!

Feel free to use these sample posts or ones of your own:

Facebook: Watch and share this important Dogwood Alliance video “Wetlands Up in Smoke” about the clearcutting & burning of US forests for European electricity.

Twitter: Watch/share @DogwoodAlliance #biomass video “Wetlands Up in Smoke” re:US forest destruction for electricity.