Conservation Spotlight: AMC Newsletter (July 2013)
Editor’s note: The following is quoted from the July 2013 edition of Get Out, Speak Up, the monthly conservation e-newsletter from the Appalachian Mountain Club.
Acting on Climate Change
Photo by Ian Wescott
On June 25th, President Obama released a national action plan on climate change, which he put in the context of increased wildfires, drought, rising sea levels, and severe storms, like Superstorm Sandy. The President’s Climate Action Plan outlines steps to curb carbon pollution through energy efficiency programs and by doubling the amount of clean energy produced. The AMC has long been a leader in addressing climate change by: using on-site renewable energy at our world-class destinations; connecting our supporters to energy-efficiency programs; promoting clean air policies that reduce carbon pollution and protect hiker health; and supporting a network of trained climate change presenters. AMC’s Energy Policy prioritizes energy efficiency and balancing energy siting needs with public investments made to protect our region’s lands, water and trails. The AMC applauds the Administration’s leadership and looks forward to increased investments in energy efficiency and responsibly shifting to cleaner sources of energy.
Protecting Maine’s 100-Mile Wilderness
Photo by Heather Clish
AMC is actively working with the Forest Society of Maine to protectan additional 14,000 acres in the heart of the 100-Mile Wilderness region, adjacent to our Maine Woods Initiative lands. Protecting this property will conserve important river frontage, mountain peaks, and 11 miles of the Appalachian Trail corridor. It will also protect access to the scenic and popular Gulf Hagas gorge and trails up to Whitecap Mountain, which—at 3,644 feet—is the highest peak between Mt. Katahdin and Bigelow Peak. The AMC strongly supports this project, which will rely on federal Forest Legacy funding as well as state funds from the Land for Maine’s Future program.
Keep New Jersey’s Open Space Funds Flowing
New Jersey continues to seek solutions for renewing statewide open space funding. Thanks to your calls and emails state legislators are working on a measure that would put robust open space funding on the ballot in November. New Jersey residents would then have the opportunity to vote in support of dedicating $200 million a year for 30 years from state sales tax revenue for the purchase of open space and flood-prone areas, as well as to fund stewardship, farmland, and historic preservation.
Northern Pass Transmission Line Announcement
Northern Pass announced its route for the 40-mile portion through northern New Hampshire that includes burying eight miles of the proposed high voltage DC transmission line. This power line would carry Hydro-Quebec power to southern New England from Canadian rivers that are to be flooded. This power is not considered essential for the northeast power grid, but would instead be competitive with domestic power sources. The project still includes over 180 controversial miles of new steel towers up to 155 feet tall that would dissect and visually impact New Hampshire’s landscape, including 10 miles through the White Mountain National Forest. Public and elected officials’ responses to the announced northern New Hampshire route were tepid, only applauding the fact that Northern Pass backtracked from its earlier position that burying the line was impossible. AMC is now updating its visual impact analysis of the proposed project to incorporate the now identified northern route and other changes.
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