1) EPA Announces Tougher Ozone Rules
2) Forever Wild Buys 1500 Acres Along Paint Rock River
3) Alabama's 3rd Birding Trail Located in the Black Belt
4) City of Troy Signs U.S. Conference of Mayors Climate Change Agreement
5) BEN Notes - Ruffner Mountain Seeking Education Director, Shoals Earth Month, AEC's Green Tie Affair, Dauphin Island Discovery Day, 1st Annual Village Creek Run & Workshop, Alabama's First Lady to Attend Auntie Litter Parade, E-cycling Day at Whole Foods, Dauphin Island's Cocktail with the Critters, Camp McDowell's Raptor Run
Thicket Magazine's Green Issue is on newsstands this month! Check out this new exciting magazine at http://www.thicketmag.com
1. EPA Announces Tougher Ozone Rules - According to a news story written by Birmingham News environment reporter Katherine Bouma, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced last month tougher health requirements to clean up the nation's air.
Under the new rules, Birmingham and as many as four Alabama metro areas are likely to be in violation of ozone air pollution rules. The counties that are expected to not meet the new rules are: Baldwin, Jefferson, Madison, Mobile, Morgan and Shelby. Presently, all of Alabama is meeting the current standard.
Why the new, tougher ozone air pollution standard? According to the News, health experts say smog under the current ozone regulation - even in areas where the limit is being met - causes hundreds of premature deaths among the elderly and health problems for thousands of young children and people with asthma and other respiratory illnesses. The new rule will help address this national environmental/health problem.
2. Forever Wild Buys 1500 Acres Along Paint Rock River - The state of Alabama's Forever Wild program has purchased 1500 acres and roughly 3 1/2 miles of frontage along the Hurricane Creek and Paint Rock River in Jackson County, Alabama. Nature Conservancy officials call the Paint Rock River one of the world's "last great places" and have been working hard since 2001 to spare it from development.
The new Forever Wild Reserve was bought by the state from the Nature Conservancy for more than $1.5 million. Along with Forever Wild funds, the state was able to use an additional $1.2 million from the U.S. Forest Service's Forest Legacy Program. The new preserve will be named Henshaw Cove and will be part of the 30,000 acre Skyline Wildlife Management Area.
For more information about Forever Wild and Alabama's public lands, visit http://www.outdooralabama.com/publiclands/
3. Alabama's 3rd Birding Trail Located in the Black Belt - Alabama now has its third Birding Trail - the Black Belt Nature and Heritage Trail.
The new trail covers a large "swath" of the state, from the Mississippi state line in the west to the Georgia line in the east. The trail's three loops cover 13 counties and 55 sites. Along with a number of historic sites, some of the trail's nature sites include: the Perry Lakes Birding Tower, the Choctaw National Wildlife Refuge, the Oakmulgee division of the Talladega National Forest and the Marion Fish Hatchery.
Alabama first birding trail was the Alabama Coastal Birding Trail. It was followed by the North Alabama Birding Trail. Visit http://www.alabamatravel.org to check out Alabama's newest Birding Trail.
4. City of Troy Signs U.S. Conference of Mayors Climate Change Agreement - Recently, the city of Troy and its Mayor Jimmy Lunsford have signed on to the U.S. Conference of Mayors Climate Protection Agreement. Under the agreement cities commit to:
* Strive to meet or beat the Kyoto Protocol targets in their own communities, through actions ranging from anti-sprawl land-use policies to urban forest restoration projects to public information campaigns;
* Urge their state governments and the federal government to enact policies and programs to meet and beat the greenhouse gas reduction target suggested for the United States in the Kyoto Protocol - 7% reduction from 1990 levels by 2012; and Urge Congress to pass bipartisan greenhouse gas reduction legislation.
Other Alabama cities who have signed the agreement include: Auburn, Bessemer, Huntsville, Opelika and Tuscaloosa.
5. BEN Notes - Ruffner Mountain Seeking Education Director, Shoals Earth Month, AEC's Green Tie Affair, Dauphin Island Discovery Day, 1st Annual Village Creek Run & Workshop, Alabama's First Lady to Attend Auntie Litter Parade, E-cycling Day at Whole Foods, Dauphin Island's Cocktail with the Critters, Camp McDowell's Raptor Run
Ruffner Mountain Seeking Education Director -Ruffner Mountain Nature Center in Birmingham is seeking an Education Director. For a complete job description email email@example.com
Shoals Celebrates Earth Month - Talk about a busy month! Check out all the activities and Earth Day events in Shoals at http://shoalsenvironalliance.netfirms.com (They will be holing Earth Day on April 19th). Contact Charles Rose at 256-381-2826 if you have any questions.
AEC's Green Tie Affair - Mark your calendars - The Alabama Environmental Council will be holding their 12th Annual Green Tie Affair on April 17th at the Flower Stems Loft on 213 Richard Arrington Blvd. South. For more info, call 205-322-3126.
Dauphin Island Discovery Day - Dauphin Island Sea Lab will be holding a Discovery Day, Open House on April 19th. For additional info call 251-861-7509.
1st Annual Village Creek Run & Workshop - On April 19th from 10:00 to 1:00 at the McAlpine Community Center in Birmingham, members of the 2007-2008 Project Corporate Leadership Class and Environmental Leadership Program will host a workshop to discuss strategies for implementing the Olmstead Vision for the Village Creek Area in the Ensley and Pratt Communities. For info about this event call - L'Tryce Slade at 866-925-5742.
Alabama's First Lady to Attend Auntie Litter Parade - Alabama's First Lady, Patsy Riley will be leading Auntie Litter's 17th Annual Earth Day Parade and celebration in downtown Birmingham. The parade, which on April 22nd begins at noon. For more info call 205-879-3009 or visit http://www.AuntieLitter.org
E-cycling Day at Whole Foods - Whole Foods Market in Birmingham will be holding an Electronics Recyclables Day on April 19th, 8am-4pm. Bring old computers/electronics and cell phones.
Dauphin Island's Cocktail with the Critters - The Dauphin Island Sea Lab Foundation will be hosting Cocktails and Critters with TV Host and Sports fishing photographer Bill Boyce on April 24th at the Five Rivers in Spanish Fort. For additional info, call 251-861-7509.
Camp McDowell's Raptor Run - Camp McDowell will be holding a "Raptor Run" fundraiser on May 3rd at Camp McDowell. For details, visit http://www.raptorrun.com