Catawba Wildflower Glen Service Outing – Nov 1st

A great opportunity to learn, experience and give back! For more information or to RSVP, contact Central Piedmont Outings Chair Linda Alley.

Join us at this Catawba Lands Conservancy preserve to help Mary Stauble, Land Stewardship Volunteer, remove invasive plants and contribute to protecting this important natural landscape.  The Wildflower Glen is one of the conservancy’s crown jewels due to its rich ecological diversity and proximity to Charlotte.

We’ll meet at the property at 9 a.m. for an orientation where we’ll learn about the history and importance of the preserve.  Then we’ll spend some time pulling out invasive plants.  Afterwards, Mary will lead us on a walk through the glen.  Mary frequently visits the Glen and she is very knowledgeable about the local flora.

Please bring work gloves, clippers (optional), water, and a hat.  The Glen is located in Northwest Charlotte.

Saturday, November 1
9:00 AM

Catawba Lands Conservancy Wildflower Glen
12001 Riverhaven Drive
Charlotte, NC

You can learn more about why and how to control non-native invasive plants here:

http://nceppc.weebly.com/

http://ncbg.unc.edu/uploads/files/ControllingBooklet.pdf

All participants on Sierra Club outings are required to sign a standard liability waiver.

Why Lisa Cried When Eric Dumped ALEC

Great piece by Michael Brune about why we need to stand up to ALEC!

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

Michael Brune

October 7, 2014

Exactly 54 days after Lisa B. Nelson, the new CEO of the American Legislative Council (ALEC), started her job, Eric Schmidt, the chairman of Google, dropped the bomb: Google wanted out of its relationship with ALEC. “That was some sort of mistake,” Schmidt said on The Diane Rehm Show when a caller asked why Google was supporting the organization. “We’re trying to not do that in the future.”

It’s like breaking up via text with your girlfriend when you’re 16,” said Nelson, presumably before throwing out the mixtapes and Google hoodie Eric gave her and unfriending him on Facebook. Wait a minute, she couldn’t do that, because Facebook is also leaving ALEC. Well, then maybe she could post a picture of her trashed hoodie and mixtapes to Yahoo’s Flickr site? Nope, Yahoo’s ditching ALEC, too.

How about leaving mean reviews of Google, Flickr, and Yahoo on Yelp? Sorry, Yelp already gave ALEC the thumbs down. And before she opens Outlook to send some “actually-I’m the-one-who-broke-up-with-YOU” emails, she might recall that even Microsoft has Ctrl-Z’d its relationship with ALEC.

Any way you look at it, Lisa B. Nelson’s first 60 days on the job were, as they say, character building. But, really, she shouldn’t take it personally. It’s not her — it’s ALEC.

What is it about ALEC that has given so many Big Tech firms cold feet? For that matter, what is ALEC, exactly? It calls itself a nonpartisan organization that focuses on the principles of limited government, free markets, and federalism. Not quite. The New York Times, reporting on Google’s defection, described ALEC as “a conservative-leaning group that has urged repeal of state renewable power standards and other pro-renewable policies.” And the Times was being kind.

ALEC is actually one of the most brazen attempts to steal our democracy that corporate interests have yet conceived. The “council” is composed of representatives from corporations, along with state legislators. Corporations like Exxon Mobil and Koch Industries pay fees along with other generous financial contributions. The legislators pay nominal dues but are forced to bring their families on all-expenses-paid vacations, where they mingle with their corporate benefactors and receive “model” bills (written by the corporations for the corporations). The rested-and-relaxed lawmakers can then take these Stepford bills home and introduce them in their state houses. The only way to make this easier would be to cut out the middleman and just let the corporations pass the laws themselves.

Because this all happens at the state level, it tends to fly under the national radar. It’s also aimed dead at the heart of our absolutely critical local campaigns to develop clean energy and combat climate change.

ALEC exists solely to do the will of the corporations that bankroll it, which is how technology firms got seduced into supporting it in the first place. They hoped ALEC could help them with issues aligned with their own values, such as an open Internet.

What changed? The Climate Movement, which reared its head and roared on September 21 around the world, has made it a lot harder for some companies to keep turning a blind eye to the harm that ALEC does by undermining clean energy and funding climate denial.

Eric Schmidt was blunt: ALEC is “literally lying” about the reality of climate change, he said. “[They] are really hurting our children and our grandchildren and making the world a much worse place. And so we should not be aligned with such people.” I can see how that would be a problem for a company whose official corporate motto is still “Don’t be evil.”

“Our citizens keep marching,” said President Obama at the UN Climate Summit last month, one day after hundreds of thousands around the world mobilized to demand climate action. “We cannot pretend we do not hear them.”

That is the strength of a movement like this one. It blazes a light that makes it impossible to miss the difference between what is good and what is evil. And here’s how strong we have grown: Last week, Occidental Petroleum — an oil company! — announced it was leaving ALEC rather than be associated with its positions on climate change and EPA regulations. Other tech (and non-tech) companies that have severed ties with ALEC include Amazon, General Electric, Apple, Coca-Cola, General Motors, Bank of America, and Proctor & Gamble. Many of these companies left a few years ago after Color of Change and other grassroots organizations called out ALEC for its support of voter-suppression and “stand your ground” laws around the country.

Unfortunately, ALEC still has plenty of corporate funders who are willing to ignore the difference between what’s good and what’s evil. Perhaps Lisa Nelson shouldn’t have been so quick to toss that Google hoodie — she could have sold it on eBay!

That’s right: eBay is still supporting an organization that Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, Yelp, Yahoo, and Facebook have all unfriended.

Send a message to CEO John Donahoe today and tell him that it’s about time eBay, too, opened its eyes and saw the light.

Outing: Huntington Beach State Park Car Camping and Kayaking Weekend, Nov 14-16

Spaces are limited for this great Sierra Club outing! RSVP on our Meetup site today.

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Huntington Beach State Park Car Camping and Kayaking Weekend

Nov 14 – 16 (Friday to Sunday)
Huntington Beach State Park
16148 Ocean Hwy
Murrells Inlet, SC

Huntington Beach State Park, located about twenty miles north of Georgetown, SC is a great beach state park to visit anytime of the year. The park is located right on the coast of SC, and has many amenities to offer the visitor. Camping in cooler weather, walking on the beach, and hiking the park trails without the heat and insects of warmer weather, can be a pleasant experience. This is a great park for bird watching, hiking, and biking.

Group campsite #P2 has been reserved for our tent camping weekend. This site has plenty of room for tent campers, with picnic tables, a fire ring with benches, and a modern park restroom nearby. There is a large parking lot next to the camping area. A short boardwalk leads from the parking lot to the beach. There also is a 13-mile paved bike trail which runs through the park, and into nearby neighborhoods. We will tent camp in our campsite, just pick a place and pitch your personal tent. You will also need to bring your personal camping gear to the campsite, a short walk from the parking lot.  Each participant will also be responsible for bringing their own food and snacks.  This will be a combined outing with the South Carolina Sierra Club that promises to be a lot of fun!

Weather permitting; there will be an optional kayak trip.  Tentative location is Conway Riverwalk.  Anyone wishing to go on the kayak trip needs to let me know in advance so we can get that lined up.  There will be a limited number of boats available for rent, so people who have their own canoe or kayak are encouraged to bring them.

Also, there will be an optional Low Country Boil at the campsite Saturday night.  There is a fee for this, $6,  and I need to know who is interested in advance so we can get a count.

Group size is limited to 25.  Each participant on a Sierra Club Outing has 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

COST: $5 per person/per night.  Kayak rental is an additional fee.

Please – NO PETS.

For additional information, contact our Outings Chair Linda Alley.

Spaces are limited for this great Sierra Club outing! RSVP on our Meetup site today.

 

Show Solidarity on Global Frackdown Day!

Sierra Club - Explore, enjoy and protect the planet

Tell President Obama to protect our communities and public lands from fracking.

Take action!

Take action!

Today, hundreds of communities around the world are hosting events in celebration of Global Frackdown Day. Thousands of messages will be sent to our world leaders demanding they take action to protect our climate and our communities from dirty fossil fuels like fracked oil and gas. Add your voice and be part of Global Frackdown Day, too!

There’s no question about it — fracking near our homes, schools, and on our public lands is detrimental to our health as well as our air and water quality. When a drilling rig is just hundreds of feet from your backyard, we have a problem. When drilling rigs light up the night sky on our public lands, we have a problem. When a community’s drinking water is polluted with fracking chemicals, we have a problem. The answer is simple, though — we must keep dirty fuels like fracked oil and gas in the ground.

Tell President Obama to protect our communities and public lands from dirty and dangerous fracking.

On Global Frackdown Day, you can join the thousands of people who are demanding that their interests — clean air and water and protected lands — be the priority for every elected official and governing agency. Together, we can send a strong message: we are more important than the fracking industry. Please take a moment to send your message to President Obama today.

Thanks for all that you do,

Lawson LeGate
Co-lead, Dirty Fuels Campaign
Sierra Club

P.S. Six letters are even better than one! Please share this email with five of your friends and family so we can send a strong message to President Obama.

Over 25,000 Sierra Club Members Take Action at the People’s Climate March

David Scott at PCM

Among the 400,000-plus people who participated in the People’s Climate March in New York City on September 21 were more than 25,000 Sierra Club members — the largest gathering of Club members in the organization’s history. The Board of Directors set the stage months ago for the Club’s deep involvement with the march, and over 100 buses from 35 states were organized and funded by the Club.

“We made an emphatic statement to global leaders and the world,” says Club president David Scott (pictured above). “And we were involved from the get-go.

Thanks to all the Charlotte area and N.C. Sierra Club members and supporters that made the commitment to speak out on the Climate Crisis!

Make Polluters Pay for Their Toxic Waste!

Take Action: Polluters Must Pay for Superfund Sites Take Action: Polluters Must Pay for Superfund SitesCongress enacted the Superfund toxic waste cleanup program in 1980, following the discovery of toxic waste seeping into homes and harming health in Love Canal, New York. Even though the Superfund program has been responsible for the cleanup of hundreds of toxic waste sites, more than a thousand sites continue to threaten health and water.

When the polluter pays fees stopped in 1995, the Trust Fund quickly dried up — leaving taxpayers to pay the full cost of cleaning up abandoned Superfund sites.

Take Action
Contact your senators today and tell them to support the Superfund Polluter Pays Restoration Act of 2014 (S 2679) to make polluters pay for their toxic waste!


Take Action: No More Coal Ash Disasters Take Action: No More Coal Ash Disasters

Coal ash, a byproduct of burning coal for electricity, is one of the largest waste streams in the country, with nearly 140 million tons produced each year. This toxic waste, which contains dangerous chemicals like arsenic, mercury, chromium, selenium, lead, and boron, is stored in more than 400 landfills and over 1,000 wet impoundments across the country. Yet currently no federal safeguards exist to protect communities and waterways from coal ash pollution.

Take Action
Tell your state legislators to support the EPA on finalizing strong coal ash safeguards by the end of this year.

The Dan River coal ash spill. Photo by Catawba Riverkeeper Sam Perkins.


Sign Up: Our Wild America Sign Up: Our Wild America

Sign up for our monthly Our Wild America newsletter to get the inside scoop about the Sierra Club’s work to explore, enjoy, and protect America’s wild legacy.

Stay up-to-date on the challenges facing our public lands and wildlife (especially in the face of climate disruption), follow what the Sierra Club is doing to connect people with nature, and learn what actions you can take to help protect our great outdoors.

Sign up today.


Grassroots Activism: Keep the People's Climate March Momentum Going! Grassroots Activism: Keep the People’s Climate March Momentum Going!

It’s been a week since more than 400,000 people marched in NYC for climate action (and in many other cities across the U.S. and world), but you can still take action!

Take Action
Tell the Environmental Protection Agency you support the Clean Power Plan.

Save the Pups – Join the Sierra Club today!

Support the Sierra Club today:

Wolves’ survival depends on you.

Become a Sierra Club Member for $15 and help reach our goal of 3,000 new members – and get these gifts:

Commemorative Rucksack OR a Sierra Club convertible weekender bag AND
BONUS 2015 Wilderness Wall calendar

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Friends,

It’s hard enough raising baby wolf pups in the wild. Add gunfire, and it’s unimaginable.

And with a decision that could strip gray wolves of their endangered status expected any day now…well, things will very likely get very bad, very fast for gray wolves.

We’re running out of time. 

We need to stop politicians from rolling back over 40 years of wolf and wildlife recovery. Become a Sierra Club Member today for $15.

With 2.4 million members and supporters like you on our side, Sierra Club has been leading the charge, fighting to save wildlife and the most treasured places in Our Wild America from dirty energy.

And if wolves lose their protections, Sierra Club will be front and center, fighting a hard-hitting legal case to get the decision reversed.

Your membership will provide the people power and resources we need the moment wolves or other wildlife come under attack – and the stamina to go as many rounds it takes to win big battles for the environment like Keystone XL.

With the possibility of the Senate changing hands and the tar sands pipeline approval inching closer, we need to show Big Oil that we’re a force to be reckoned with.

Right now when you join the Sierra Club, you’ll receive your choice of an 1892 Commemorative Rucksack OR a Sierra Club convertible weekender bag. And for a limited time, we’ll ALSO send you our 2015 Wilderness Wall Calendar – for FREE. Join the Sierra Club today for only $15!

This exclusive calendar is our annual celebration of the wild places and precious habitats that we all work so hard to protect – for the animals that call them home, and for future generations to enjoy.

Plus when you join the Sierra Club, you will also get these great member-only benefits:

  • 1-year subscription to our award-winning Sierra Magazine
  • Discounts on outdoor gear and more from Columbia, Travelocity, Public bikes and more
  • Your invitation to Sierra Club national and local outings
  • Updates and discounts on ways you can help your reduce your footprint

Thank you in advance for joining the Sierra Club. We need you to stand with us today!

Sincerely,

Michael Brune
Executive Director, Sierra Club