San Antonio utility closes Deely coal plant

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享KSAT:On the last day of 2018, CPS Energy officially closed its coal-fired Deely plant that has been open since the late 1970s. The Deely station was part of the Calaveras Power Station on the Southeast Side near Highway 181 and Loop 1604.The decision was made in 2011 due to the plant needing many environmental upgrades and a big push from the local environmental community. CPS Energy CEO Paula Gold-Williams said the much-needed environmental upgrades are what ultimately shut its doors.“From an environmental standpoint, it was the right decision,” Gold-Williams said.Gold-Williams said that while CPS Energy is steering away from coal, there is another option being considered. “I think a lot of it will be focused on gas and then new technologies coming down the pipe,” Gold-Williams said.“Coal is not the cheapest. Gas is … arguably.” And it’s “consistent, great for reliability and very cost effective,” Gold-Williams said.More: CPS Energy closes coal-fired Deely plant in operation since ’70s to focus on cleaner energy sources San Antonio utility closes Deely coal plantlast_img read more

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Macquarie, Siemens form energy-as-a-service unit targeting U.S. corporate renewable market

first_imgMacquarie, Siemens form energy-as-a-service unit targeting U.S. corporate renewable market FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Reuters:Units of Macquarie Group and Siemens AG are forming a venture named Calibrant Energy, that will invest in the emerging energy-as-a-service (EaaS) sector in the United States, according to a joint statement on Monday.Electricity generation is forecast to increasingly move away from traditional structures involving large fossil fuel-burning power plants, towards localized systems using renewable energy and battery storage, known as distributed energy.For entities embracing this model, they can choose to ‘outsource’ their power systems to a specialist entity, in the same way firms hire technology platforms rather than develop their own systems – so-called software-as-a-service (SaaS).Set up by Macquarie’s Green Investment Group, and Siemens’ Smart Infrastructure and Financial Services units, Calibrant Energy will build the energy infrastructure at no up-front cost and then manage it for customers including companies, municipalities and hospitals, the statement said.Calibrant aims to utilize Macquarie’s capital and Siemens’ technology, as it competes to grow in the space. According to a June forecast from consultancy Wood Mackenzie, around $110 billion of investment could be made in distributed energy in the period 2020-2025.Other professional investment firms are also seeking to tap into distributed energy. Last month, Blackstone Group launched its own platform. Carlyle Group and BlackRock Inc have such joint ventures with Schneider Electric and General Electric, respectively.[David French]More: Macquarie, Siemens units create U.S. distributed energy joint venturelast_img read more

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2014 Fly Fishing Film Tour in the Blue Ridge

first_imgThe Fly Fishing Film Tour (otherwise known as F3T) is back, and is bigger and better than ever, quickly becoming one of the most exciting and dynamic outdoor film tours making the rounds nationwide.Founded in 2007, the F3T is a unique  presentation of fly fishing cinema, growing quickly each year as it continues to add cities to the roster. Important to the festival’s mission and success, F3T is dedicated to supporting local fly shops and conservation groups that form the backbone of the sport’s educational and environmental efforts.A portion of ticket sales from each show go to support fishing and habitat-related conservation groups. In 2013 the group raised $250,000 for conservation partners including Trout Unlimited, Wild Steelhead Coalition, Bonefish Tarpon Trust, Utah Stream Access Coalition, Stop Pebble Mine and more.For a full schedule and to purchase tickets, click here. To win tickets to Thursday night’s show in Asheville, N.C., at Highland Brewing, answer our trivia question below and email Dusty with your answer!For more information, check out Asheville’s local outfitter Hunter Banks for specific details on Asheville’s showing of the F3T.Here is Your Trivia Question:The conservation group Trout Unlimited was founded in 1959 in which U.S. state?Email your answer to dusty@blueridgeoutdoors.com to win a pair of tickets to Thursday night’s F3T showing in Asheville!Winner will be drawn and announced Wednesday at 5 p.m. EST. Must be able to attend the event on Thursday night in Asheville to win!10257930_10152433348552009_1825391635906482823_nlast_img read more

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More Power to You, Girl.

first_img“Where’s that fella of yours?”In the midst of setting up the Go in the pouring rain, I turn around to see an older gentleman standing beside the Jeep, clad in a cotton t-shirt and matching gym shorts. He seems unaware of my discomfort with his presence.“There isn’t one,” I reply bluntly.A nervous knot begins to pulse in my stomach. Most conversations that begin with the mention of a guy, a boyfriend, a partner of any sort, usually end up in me getting feisty and defensive. Plus, he’s standing in the pouring rain without even a floppy hat on to at least allude to the fact that he might at least recognize it’s precipitating.No. Instead, he stands there soaking up every rain droplet like a sponge as he eyeballs my every move.“I could have sworn I seen one.”“Nope. Just me.” I say, hoping he picks up on my shortness.I return to my tasks, hustling now to assemble the rig and disappear inside. I’m tired, hungry, wet, cold, and now, feeling very much self-conscious and alone. There are times when I crave the company of others, and times when I’d rather hole away in the woods or turn invisible. Right now, I’m feeling the latter.“Well I’ll be damned! It was you I saw then,” he says, suddenly starting to chuckle.My patience drained, I rip back the hood of my rain shell so he can more clearly see my face, my piercing gaze that, in my mind, says “beat it, buddy.”“You don’t see many ladies camping out in the woods by themselves,” he says, still smiling. “More power to you, girl.” With this last comment, he nods and winks, turning his back and retreating into the misty fog.I stand there incredulously, watching him slowly shuffle down the road. He didn’t ask me about the Go, which is usually the first question I receive, oftentimes before even a greeting of any sort. He didn’t ask me what Blue Ridge Outdoors was, or what I was doing as a lady camping out in the woods by myself. Though initially I was suspicious, wary, he proved to be harmless.That’s been the case for the most part since I hit the road in April. I have yet to encounter an individual who made me feel truly uncomfortable or in danger. While I think that speaks to the good nature of people in the South, in the back of my mind, I still find myself mulling over worst-case-scenarios, escape plans, potential weapons of defense. It sounds a little irrational, but I’m not ignorant of what can happen.That being said, I also feel that, in general, women are much safer traveling alone than society tends to portray. I’ve received concerns from friends, family members, the boss, even total strangers. Yes, I agree, I absolutely need to keep my wits about me on the road, but not simply because I’m a woman. Anyone traveling alone at any time should be conscious of their surroundings, and I think that’s just the key to mitigating being cornered or ending up in the wrong place at the wrong time: be aware (that and mad judy choppin’ skills – Kung Fu Hillbilly’s got the hook up if you need a crash course).For instance, I don’t go on a run in an urban area in the evening by myself. Or if I do I tell someone and bring a headlamp. I don’t wear clothing that draws unwanted attention (you’re lucky to catch me in anything but the same Eddie Bauer skort and shirt I rock almost every day). I don’t wear make up. I don’t smell bad, but I certainly don’t smell good either. I don’t go to bars alone. I have yet to camp out in a parking lot overnight.But these are really just matters of preference, and not so much things I believe that women should not do at all. If you want to don a cute dress, throw on some perfume, a pair of heels, and hit the town solo, do it. Same if you want to pack your bag and hike for days on end. There’s nothing, and should be no one, stopping you.Recently there have been a lot of TV commercials released that have in some way addressed our perception on women and how the manner in which we treat young ladies can drastically impact their decisions later in life (see the latest Always and Verizon commercials for examples). In a time when, in my opinion, children are over-coddled anyway, I find it particularly irritating when girls are met with hesitance, doubt even, on their abilities to handle the adversities of adventure or traveling solo.There are amazing women in this world who have conquered unimaginable feats: to mention just a select few, Tori Murden McClure, the first woman and first American to row solo across the Atlantic Ocean; Kira Salak, the first woman to traverse Papua New Guinea and the first documented person to kayak solo 600 miles down the Niger River; Zoë Romano, the first woman to run unsupported across the U.S.A. and the first person to ever run the Tour de France.These women are strong. Smart. Passionate. Determined. They don’t take ‘no’ for an answer and they don’t seem to think twice about diving headfirst into the unknown, solo. What if the way in which we respond to a young girl’s dream about circumnavigating the continent of Africa by kayak deters her from ever fulfilling her potential and becoming the next McClure or the next Romano?Now, this is not to say that we should disregard the statistics and tell women they have no need to be concerned when traveling alone – harassment of any sort is not an issue to take lightly at all. But I think in general, I’d like the paradigm to shift to one that discourages a sense of helplessness, doubt, and overprotection, and fosters, instead, a curiosity for the unknown, the faith to achieve the impossible, and the strength to do it all with the grace of a woman.More power to you, girls.last_img read more

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Trail Mix | Peter Cooper

first_imgPeter Cooper has worn many hats in Nashville. He’s a professor at Vanderbilt University, teaching a class on the history of country music. For years he wrote about music for The Tennessean. He now works at the Country Music Hall of Fame Museum and remains a tremendous songwriter and singer who has written some of the best music I have heard in the last ten years.I came across Peter’s works a number of years ago through my good friend Eric Brace, founder of Red Beet Records. Cooper and Brace have collaborated on a number of projects for Brace’s label and, to me, they both personify all that is right about a city that so often gets music oh so wrong.Cooper deserves mention among the ranks of Nashville’s best songwriters, troubadours too often unsung, like Tommy Womack and Will Kimbrough, Kevin Gordon and Jon Byrd. To this list I must add a name I didn’t know until I got Peter Cooper’s most recent record, Depot Light: Songs of Eric Taylor, which releases tomorrow.As the title would suggest, Cooper has recorded an entire record of Eric Taylor’s songs. Admittedly, I was unfamiliar with Taylor’s work, but – as is often to case when I open up a record by Peter Cooper or anyone else supported by Red Beet Records – I discovered a previously unknown gem. Eric Taylor is a powerful songwriter, and Cooper’s renditions of his songs only leave me wanting to delve deeper into the original material.I recently chatted with Peter about the gravity of recording another songwriter’s work, why Eric Taylor’s song resonate with him so, and carny life.BRO – What about Eric Taylor’s music prompted you to do a whole record of his work?PC – It’s all in the songs, which are absolute narrative masterpieces. It’s not that I wanted to somehow raise the profile of these songs or pay tribute to Eric. That’s a selfish project. I just wanted to sing these songs and hope that maybe someone will mistake them for my own.BRO – Got a particular lyric of Eric’s that really turns you inside out?PC – Eric doesn’t ever take a line off, so every lyric of every song carries enriched language and weight of emotion. I’m always compelled when he writes about fathers and sons, and there are two in particular on Depot Light that turn me inside out. One is “Charlie Ray McWhite,” which is about a grown son searching for his father, a drifter. The song opens with the son explaining, “He was coughing cold and crazy in the rain/Wish I’d had the sense to ask his name/When I think back on it now, it crossed my mind/But the man I was looking for was nearly twice the size.” So, he was actually in his father’s presence, he just didn’t recognize him because his expectations were of a stouter man, not this sadsack. Eric told me the song was true, except for the end, where the father has died. In reality, Eric was in Florida and found his father, but they soon began arguing and the reunion was a bust. The other father and son song I love is the title track, “Depot Light.” In that one, we don’t even realize it’s about a father and a son until the last line of the song. The narrator just offers details about a conversation at a train depot with a man who trades in low-level thievery: “The all night waitress, she just talks too much/So he steals her spoon and her coffee cup.” At the end, Eric writes, “If she’d come home, boy, I’d take her back,” which doesn’t reveal the characters’ identities. The very last verse line is nearly a repeat, with one word changed: “If she’d come home, son, I’d take her back.”BRO – Is there a different pressure in recording a collection of someone else’s tunes when compared to recording your own?PC – In some sense, there’s very little pressure in recording Eric Taylor’s songs because they’re all stunners. I mean, Roseanne Barr could sing these songs and it’d choke me up. But, in truth, there was a heavy sense of responsibility in doing this album. The responsibility wasn’t to Eric, it was to the songs themselves. The performances had to be up to the level of the material.BRO – We are featuring “Carnival Jim & Jean” on this month’s mix, which is a dark carny song. On a lighter note, if you had a job at the carnival, what would it be?PC – I love that song. It’s a song of desperation, yet in a way it’s the funniest thing on the album. I like how Jean’s hectoring of Carnival Jim cuts close to home: “You say the smell of cotton candy’s ’bout to make you sick/You won’t do no better without me.” If I had a job at the carnival, I’d like to work at the booth where people try to shoot basketballs into those small rims. I’d like to hector junior high hotshots who miss. I’d be like a cross between Bobby Knight and Don Rickles. Big fun, at the expense of hopeful young people.Peter’s calendar is rather quiet for the rest of 2015, with just one show remaining between now and the end of the year. You can catch Peter, along with a collection of songwriting chums, at The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville on December 17th.  Cooper will also be returning to Jammin Java in Vienna, Virginia, on January 23rd, with his good friend Eric Brace.For more information on Peter and the new record, surf over to his website or go bother the fine folks at Red Beet Records.last_img read more

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Drive Hydrated with BottlePro

first_imgPicture this. You’re driving along with your large water bottle by your side, but it doesn’t fit in your cup holder so you put it on the seat next to you. Most times it shifts side to side, reacting to the twists and turns of the road. Suddenly the light in front of you turns yellow and you slam on your brakes, only to see your bottle fly off the seat and smack against the glove compartment. You spend the time at the light trying to reach your water bottle, but it’s out of reach. Oh well…who needs water anyways?For many owners of Hydro Flasks, Nalgenes, Klean Kanteens, and other large bottles, it’s not difficult to picture this scenario because they live it almost every day.  It’s not only inconvenient, but it’s also a safety risk when bottles go flying.A new product is making it easier to drive hydrated. BottlePro is a cup holder adapter designed specifically for large water bottles, such as 32oz Nalgenes and 40oz Hydro Flasks, and it’s taking the outdoor industry by storm.  With more people using large water bottles than ever before, it’s about time there was a cup holder adapter to help make things more convenient while driving.Each BottlePro comes with an adjustable base design that allows it to work with the majority of vehicles out there.  But with thousands of cup holder designs, BottlePro certainly won’t work with every single vehicle.  The company openly states that, but they back up their product with a rock-solid return policy.  If BottlePro doesn’t work out for any reason whatsoever, the company will issue a full refund and even pay for return shipping.So if you own one of these larger water bottles and wish it were easier to keep it close by while driving, this product may be what you’ve been waiting for.  Detailed specifications are available on their website.  Check it out!Website: www.BottlePro.netlast_img read more

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INFINITY DOWNS FARM DEBUTS INITIAL 2017 CALENDAR

first_imgHome of the Lockn’ Festival and The Festy Experience in Arrington, Virginia debuts with concerts, wine and beer festivals, Spartan Race and more!Arrington, Va – Infinity Downs Farm, Central Virginia’s premier outdoor concert and events venue, and home to the Lockn’ Festival, The Festy Experience, and Blue Ridge Bowl amphitheater, is excited to present the initial 2017 calendar. Tickets for all events are on-sale now at www.infinitydowns.com. Saturday, April 22 – The Revivalists with special guests People’s Blues of Richmond at the Blue Ridge Bowl. 7:00 pm. Advance tickets $25. Half-price for Lockn’ 2017 ticket holders. $12.50, if you bought (or buy) at 2017 Lockn’ ticket free admission, if you bought (or buy) a Lockn’ student or military ticket. Saturday, April 29 – A Day At The Downs – Wildlife and Wine Festival featuring an evening with Bruce Hornsby. A benefit for the Wildlife Conservation Center at 12:00 pm. Wine tastings from Virginia wineries and mingle with the Bongo Antelope and other wildlife onsite to showcase the important work of The Wildlife Conservation Center. All day entertainment, and special evening solo performance with Bruce Hornsby at the Blue Ridge Bowl. Saturday-Sunday, June 3 & 4– Reebok Spartan Race – Virginia Super and Sprint Weekend. Registration open. With a longer distance than the Sprint and more obstacles, the Super will test your endurance, perseverance and grit. Spartan Race will bring 8-10 miles and more than 25 Signature Spartan Obstacles through tougher and more rugged terrain. Saturday, June 17 – Nelson County Community Day featuring the Rockn’ to LOCKN’ finale. 12:00 pm Tickets $10. Benefits The Giving Hope Foundation. This annual family friendly event features local food, craft beer, wineries, family activities, vendors, and more. Music from six local Virginia bands as they compete in Rockn’ to LOCKN’ finale. Fans vote to choose three winning bands who will go on to perform at the 2017 LOCKN’ Festival. Thursday-Sunday, August 24-27 – LOCKN’ Festival returns for its 5th year at the Oak Ridge and Infinity Downs farms. Tickets on-sale now. Four days of music, artist collaborations, food, craft beer, camping, outdoor activities and more. The Avett Brothers, Phil Lesh & Friends, Widespread Panic, Umphrey’s McGee, The Revivalists, String Cheese Incident, Keller Williams, Gov’t Mule and 14 others bands already announced with more to be added. Thursday-Sunday, October 5-8 – The 8th Annual Festy Experience returns to Infinity Downs Farm featuring The Infamous Stringdusters and the best in folk and Americana music, craft beer, local food, camping, outdoor and family friend activities. Pre-sale tickets on-sale now with more artists to be announced. Tickets for all events are on-sale at www.infinitydowns.com, and more events are expected to be announced. Formally known as Nelson County Preserve, Infinity Downs Farm is a 387 acre property located at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Arrington, Virginia. The former 225 year old tobacco farm was purchased in 2014 by the owners of the Lockn’ Festival, and has already established a scalable and versatile venue featuring the Blue Ridge Bowl amphitheater, Garcia’s Forest performance area in the woods, and plenty of open fields for parking, camping, and other outdoor accommodations. In addition, miles of hiking and bike trails have been curated to enjoy a variety of outdoor activities. Infinity Downs Farm can be on found at www.infinitydowns.com, on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. last_img read more

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The War on Wolves

first_imgIn January, companion bills were introduced to the House and Senate that would remove the protections of the Endangered Species Act from gray wolves in Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. Nicknamed “the War on Wolves Act,” the proposed legislation would strip wolf populations of federal protection—subjecting the species to trapping and trophy hunting.If passed, delisting of the controversial red wolves of North Carolina, Mexican gray wolves of New Mexico and Arizona, and various other endangered species are likely to follow.Over two million gray wolves once roamed the continent. Yet by the turn of the century such wolves had retreated to remote parts of Alaska, Canada, and to a smaller extent the Great Lakes region.In 1995, a small population of gray wolves were brought from Canada to Yellowstone National Park. Wolf populations have grown to 1,700, naturally dispersing to Montana, Wyoming, Washington, Oregon, and Northern California.Conservationists view the reintegration of the gray wolf as a success. In addition to steady population growth, wolves have often transformed the ecosystems and physical geography of the lands they roam.As an apex predator, wolves suppress the abundance and behavior of their prey, in turn opening up nutrients and reshaping ecosystems.For example, in Yellowstone National Park, the overabundance of deer and elk led to overgrazing, causing the devastation of willow, aspen, and cottonwood trees. Yet the reintegration of the gray wolf forced the grazers to keep moving. Vegetation began to regenerate, leading to the reemergence of birds and bears, beavers and otters, fish and reptiles. The regenerating forests also stabilized eroding river banks.Red wolves have also helped maintain ecological balance in North Carolina. The species feeds on deer, raccoons, rabbits, and other rodents, initiating trophic cascades that result in abundant habitat for beavers, fish, songbirds, and more.Opponents of wolf reintegration are a vocal group from small ranchers to hunters to the industrial agriculture and energy industries.Indeed, the loss of cattle or sheep due to wolf depredation can be devastating for small ranchers. Though most states compensate ranchers for confirmed losses due to wolves, such kills are tricky to verify.Yet the most powerful anti-wolf contingent is comprised of industrial agriculture and the oil and gas industries. While their lobbying efforts often invoke the threatened livelihood of small ranchers, the industries’ primary hope is to operate on lands currently protected for the wolf among other species.In North Carolina, anti-wolf factions pressured the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to end the red wolf reintegration program and remove wolves from private land. The Fish and Wildlife Service has drastically scaled back red wolf recovery plans to appease private landowners and hunters.At its core, the political battle over wolf populations across the United States has come to symbolize the country’s differing views on conservation and the Endangered Species Act.Conservationists see the Endangered Species Act as a way to legally protect species from the threats of industry and development. A recent Tulchin Research survey suggests that support of the Act crosses party lines; 90 percent of registered voters support the legislation.Yet others view the Endangered Species Act as an easy way to lock up natural resources. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) argues that the Endangered Species Act “has never been used for the rehabilitation of species. It’s been used for control of the land.”President Trump has said he will oppose all environmental policies that get in the way of energy and infrastructure projects, and he has appointed Ryan Zinke (R-Montana) for Interior Secretary. Zinke has voted to remove wolves, grizzlies, and lynx from the endangered species list, and notoriously featured a dead gray wolf on his 2011 Christmas card.Was Zinke’s Christmas card a testament to his belief in environmental deregulation or an eerily prophetic caricature of the future of wolves in the continental United States?Wolf populations have waxed and waned with the currents of American expansionism and politics. The War on Wolves Act could be their final curtain call.last_img read more

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Don’t Let Them Silence You

first_imgDaniel Boone National Forest (Kentucky): 564,100 acres “Under the new rule, the Forest Service will have nearly complete discretion to approve commercial logging projects, build new roads in areas that are important for nonmotorized recreation and wildlife, close roads that are important for public access, and even approve pipeline or utility rights of way, all without science-based review and public accountability,” says Sam Evans, attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center. The public still has an opportunity to comment on the proposed rule. Public comments can be submitted until August 24 at www.fs.fed.us/emc/nepa/revisions/index.shtml, or visit Southern Environmental Law Center’s action page for the Forest Service rule change at http://OurForestsOurVoice.org.  Without public notice, there would be no safeguards against logging old growth, harming rare habitats, muddying trout streams, or developing unroaded areas with roads and timber production.  “If we don’t speak up now, we won’t have the ability to speak up in the future when logging or pipelines or roads threaten our favorite trails, hunting areas, overlooks, rivers, or campsites,” says Evans.  If you have hiked, biked, or explored the outdoors in Appalachia, it’s likely taken place in a national forest. National Forests in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic comprise over 14 million acres—ten times more than all the national parks and other public lands in our region combined. Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest (Georgia): 866,700 acres This month, the U.S. Forest Service is proposing to take away public notice, comments, and scientific input for over 93 percent of all its decisions.  The Forest Service claims that the new rule is needed to alleviate a growing backlog of paperwork and to speed up projects to remove hazardous fuels in areas prone to catastrophic wildfire. The new loopholes would not be limited to those kinds of actions, however, and Congress has already given the Forest Service streamlined authority to protect communities from wildfire.  Allegheny National Forest (Pennsylvania): 513,600 acres National forests in Southern Appalachia are among the most popular in the country. The Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina is the nation’s second-most visited national forest, with nearly 7 million visitors last year. According to the U.S. Forest Service’s own 2014 Visitor Use Survey for the Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest, over 90 percent of forest users are hikers, mountain bikers, paddlers, trail runners, and other nature-seeking outdoor enthusiasts. Without their input into future decisions, our forests will become less hospitable to the activities they enjoy. Most Popular National Forests in the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Monongahela National Forest (West Virginia): 920,500 acres Pisgah-Nantahala National Forest (North Carolina): 1,100,000 acres Talladega National Forest (Alabama): 393,000 acres “Wildfire is being used as a fear tactic and smokescreen to dramatically expand resource extraction projects without any public or scientific input,” says Hannah Furgiuele, program director for Friends of Big Ivy, a conservation and recreation organization focused on North Carolina’s Pisgah National Forest. Evans agrees: “If the Forest Service isn’t willing to limit these authorities now, while the public is watching, then you can bet they won’t hold themselves back in the future, when they are making decisions behind closed doors.” A proposed Forest Service rule change will eliminate public comment and transparent scientific review from most forest decisions Cherokee National Forest (Tennessee): 656,300 acres G. Washington-Jefferson National Forest (Virginia): 1,792,000 acres The proposal would create large new loopholes in a statute called the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA. Whenever a government action has the potential to harm the environment, NEPA requires the agency to pause and ask two questions: are there less harmful ways to meet our goals, and, if not, are the benefits worth the harm? Those questions can’t be answered without scientific review and public input. The Forest Service’s new rule, however, would bypass these simple safeguards for the vast majority of its decisions. While NEPA has always allowed agencies to fast-track routine actions like re-paving parking lots, the new proposal attempts to stretch those loopholes to include a breathtaking number of decisions. For example, the proposal allows up to 4,200 acres of logging—6.6 square miles—with no advance notice or opportunity to comment.  Sumter National Forest (South Carolina): 372,700 acres As important as these lands are for recreation, scenery, tourism, and clean water, they’re also open to other kinds of uses, like commercial logging, pipelines, oil and gas drilling, and mining. In the past, when the Forest Service considered approving these kinds of activities, it was required to give the public advance notice, conduct a transparent and science-based review of the potential harms, and allow the public a chance to comment or object. Public comments have been key in protecting forests for decades.last_img read more

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Earthquake in Haiti

first_imgBy Dialogo January 13, 2010 I am from Argentina and all that has happened in Haiti pains me very much. It is now a country decapitated by nature and by its bad government. I completely offer myself to humanitarian relief and to the care of orphaned children which I would like to adopt. Think about my wishes. I pray to GOD for all of you and the troubled families. help the hatian people crynew single by konnectivesto be donatedcontact us please I want to help because I am afraid. need to donate this song we have tell us how I want all the Haitians to have faith because we are helping. Hello, I am Hurtado Esteban Exequiel from Salta, Argentina. I would like to help but I don’t know how. I can’t help economically and therefore I wanted to know how else I could help. Secretary Clinton (Jan. 12): “We are still gathering information about this catastrophic earthquake, the point of impact, its effect on the people of Haiti. The United States is offering our full assistance to Haiti and to others in the region. We will be providing both civilian and military disaster relief and humanitarian assistance. And our prayers are with the people who have suffered, their families, and their loved ones.” The State Department Operations Center has set up the following number for Americans seeking information about family members in Haiti: 1-888-407-4747 (due to heavy volume, some callers may receive a recording). Our embassy is still in the early stages of contacting American Citizens through our Warden Network. Communications are very difficult within Haiti at this time. *Private Offers of Assistance for Haiti Relief Efforts * Anyone wishing to donate or provide assistance in Haiti following the devastating earthquake that struck near Port au Prince on Jan 12, 2010, is asked to contact the Center for International Disaster Information. The Center, operated under a grant from the United States Agency for International Development’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance and initial support from IBM, has become a valuable resource to the public, as well as US government agencies, foreign embassies and international corporations. CIDI has established a dedicated page to coordinate Haiti support at: http://www.cidi.org/incident/haiti-10a/ To help, you can also simply text “HAITI” to “90999” and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross to help with relief efforts, charged to your cell phone bill. Or you can go online to organizations like the Red Cross and Mercy Corps to make a contribution to the disaster relief efforts. Courtesy of: Department of State http://www.state.gov/p/wha/ci/ha/index.htmlast_img read more

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