The Engaged Sierran
Aline Lotter Retires as NHSC Chapter Treasurer
Aline joined the Sierra Club in the '80s, thinking it was an extremist organization to which she could add "weight" as a respected lawyer, but found that her philosophies and the Club’s were quite well aligned. She was on board when the New Hampshire Chapter was born in the '90s, becoming actively involved with Chapter activities (and pizza-eating!). Her experience as Treasurer with the NH Bar Association prepared her for the same position with the NH Chapter, and she also served on the Executive Committee and as chapter chair in the past 15 or so years. She returned to the treasurer's position, and has only just relinquished it to get on with her personal goals in the art community.
It's always wonderful to see someone join a cause and be willing to serve in leadership positions, plus do whatever else is asked, especially when that service spans many years. Aline has kept the Chapter on an even track, and financially sound as well. Her artwork has become her main focus at this point and she is featured in a current exhibit in the North Conway area, recently written up in the March 17 issue of The Conway Daily Sun. Aline's personal website is http://paintingsbyaline.com/.
The NH Sierra Club thanks Aline for all her hard work, and wishes her much success in the art world!
NHSC Welcomes Our New Treasurer
A daunting task, at best, and to find a willing and qualified volunteer just when you need one? Amazing!
Katharine Daly of Dunbarton stepped up to the challenge on learning of this pending vacancy. She was approved by the Executive Committee and has already started learning the intricacies of the job.
Katharine is a Life Member of the Sierra Club, and has been an active member in the New Hampshire Chapter since 2004. She is a retired attorney and former Executive Director of the Human Rights Commission, with responsibility for creating that agency's operating budget.
When asked what she felt was the priority for the environmental future of New Hampshire, Katharine had this to say: "Right now a top priority in New Hampshire is to move forward in a positive direction to make sure our state continues to conserve and protect the environment as we help our country solve energy and climate issues. For example, Sierra Club's participation in the examination of the Site Evaluation Committee and establishment of environmental standards in the siting of energy generating facilities is critical. It is important that NH Sierra continues to advocate for broad, sensible, scientifically based standards that will protect the environment."
An outdoorswoman, Katharine is committed to the preserving the natural beauty of New Hampshire. We are excited to welcome her into this very responsible position, and thank her for her dedication to the NH Sierra Club Chapter.
Something's in the Air – Spring or Climate Change?
In the woods, the iconic moose is not surviving mild winters. On the coast, shrimp fishing was completely called off this year because of the warm water temperatures. Throughout the state extreme weather events have torn up our roads costing our communities millions of dollars per event.
The climate is changing. New Hampshire Sierra Club is looking for solutions. Are you?
These impacts are real and the solutions are real too. That is why the New Hampshire Chapter is calling for climate solutions that work in New Hampshire. We are building up our list of partners, training our leaders and talking to the decision makers. We are hosting informative events and providing critical analysis to our elected officials. This work cannot be done without your support.
The corporate interests would rather ignore the science and ignore the facts of climate disruption. The New Hampshire Chapter does not agree with climate deniers! Our number one goal is to reduce climate impacts and climate pollution.
This is a big job and we can't do it alone. Your donations allow us to be an independent voice for change and to continue developing science-based solutions to important environmental issues effecting New Hampshire.
Stand up against these corporate lobbyists, and say yes to a future with clean air and healthy kids. Please donate to help create a better tomorrow.
Legislative Update - HB 1570, Establishing a Paint Stewardship Program
New Hampshire needs more recycling options to reduce waste and landfill risks. Here's a new idea that NHSC would like to bring to your attention.
Rep. Scott Burns (D-Franklin) recently sponsored HB1570, a bill that would create a paint recycling stewardship program. The proposal is pretty simple. You paint your walls, your barn, your house as usual, and end up with a pile of mix-and-match cans, with varying amounts of different paint products in them in your basement, attic and garage.
Under this proposal, and without waiting for Hazardous Waste Disposal Days, you would be able to take all these cans to a paint recycling point. At this point the plan is to have these points be places we buy paint to begin with – hardware and home improvement stores. It is possible that town transfer stations could also be designated, but this has not been the main focus.
The Paint Manufacturers' Association (http://www.paintcare.org/) will develop this network of paint drop-off locations throughout the state. The collected paint products will be picked up regularly and delivered to a third location where it will be reformulated and re-issued as a recycled product. To fund this project, manufacturers would include a small fee when they sell the products to the local retail outlets - under a dollar. Retailers could decide if they want to pass on this direct cost to their customers. After all, they are also getting the benefit of added foot traffic in their store.
There would be terrific benefits to towns and cities. It would remove paint from the main waste stream. Paint will no longer threaten to spill on trash removal equipment, nor would there be an incentive to dispose of it inappropriately because there is no charge to drop it off. We will see fewer threats to the environment and wildlife, and increased recycling of not only paint but also the various paint containers. A three-for-one!
We encourage you to read a recent Concord Monitor article written by bill sponsor Rep. Scott Burns that describes the bill's intent in detail. Please write to your state Senator (find yours online) today in support of HB1570.
Contact Chapter Director Catherine Corkery, firstname.lastname@example.org or 224-8222 for further information.
Tar Sands in New Hampshire and What You Can Do
NHSC is monitoring a number of bills about tar sands in the State House. Tar sands oil is the game-changer for climate change because from mining, to processing, to distribution it emits the most carbon. Our friends Carol Foss, the Director of Conservation at NH Audubon Society and Eric Orff from National Wildlife Federation have developed an excellent presentation about tar sands and the risks of tar sand spills here in the Granite State.
Over the past eight months or so Carol has been on tour with her scientific tar sands presentations. I was lucky enough to attend one at the state house last month. I learned that tar sands are a combination of sand, clay, water, and a dense form of petroleum called bitumen, that are extracted from the ground and then transported through pipelines to the facilities that produce crude oil but unlike regular oil, tar sands are much more difficult to clean up as the recent spills in Marshall, Michigan and Mayflower, Arkansas have shown. In New Hampshire, there are currently two pipelines owned and operated by the Portland Pipe Line Corporation (PPLC) that transport oil across New Hampshire territory to the Montreal Pipe Line Limited, an oil company owned by ExxonMobil and located in Montreal, where another oil corporation, TransCanada, intends to route its tar sands reserves.
The Sierra Club applauds Representatives William (Bill) Baber (Strafford-District 14) and Marjorie Shepardson (Cheshire-District 10) for their work with bills HB1224-FN and HB1376. HB1224 seeks to increase state oversight on these pipelines to increase local monitoring and raise the siren if the oil is switched to tar sands. HB1376 creates a study committee of legislators to review the safety procedures for pipelines in the state. To support these bills, please write letters to your local newspaper, and contact your state Senator (find yours online).
If you are interested in learning more about tar sands and what you can do to prevent their transportation through New Hampshire, feel free to contact me, Thomas Hobbs, at email@example.com. You can learn more about the issue in Rep. Baber's recent article in the Concord Monitor.
Help Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act
In 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed into law the Wilderness Act, which, in part, set aside an initial 9.1 million acres of wildlands. Fifty years later, there are now more than 100 million acres preserved by the Act. The 1964 Wilderness Act defines "Wilderness" as areas where the earth and its communities of life are left unchanged by people, where the primary forces of nature are in control, and where people themselves are visitors who do not remain.
We invite you to help the NH Sierra Club celebrate the Wilderness Act. If you are a trained outings leader, consider leading an outing this year. Interested in leading an outing, but haven't been through the training? Not to worry. The training isn't daunting at all. Help us all enjoy the wilderness this year, and for the next 50 years. Contact Thomas Hobbs, firstname.lastname@example.org, if you're interested in leading an outing.