Our next events:

“WILDLANDS”

 New Art Exhibition, Great Hall Exhibition Space,                                                                              100 River Street, Springfield, Vermont

“WILDLANDS” is a new exhibition celebrating our public lands and National Parks and the beauty and experiences we enjoy in our publicly owned wild spaces.  “WILDLANDS” hopes to convey not only the beauty and diversity of our wild places but the spiritual sustenance of these places.

John Muir a Scottish American naturalist, is called the “Father of the National Parks.” Muir believed that “In a changing world we need places “to pray in and play in.” This sentiment rings true today.
The show’s intention is to put a spotlight on habitat preservation and on how societies come to value and live in balance with natural resources in a time of climate change, urban development, and political stresses that impact our wild places.

The exhibit runs through March 30, 2018.  Great Hall events are supported by the Springfield Reiuonal Development Corporation..

For more information go to www.facebook.com/Greathallspringfield

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UVSC Excom Meeting

Tuesday November 28, from  6:30 pm until 8 pm, in the Rotary Room, Howe Library, Hanover, NH. All are welcome to attend!

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Mega Dams, Mega Damage

Thursday, December 7th, from 6 until 8 pm

Mayer Room, howe Library, Hanover, NH

                          Sierra Club Upper Valley Group

                                     invites you to join us for

a Panel Discussion on “Megadam” Projects in Canada

The negative cultural, environmental and financial impacts of hydroelectric power generated by Megadams in Canada

 Roberta Benefiel, Director of the Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, Inc.                                                                                  Amy Norman of Labrador Land Protectors

Background:

An international network of about fifteen environmental and social justice groups announced the start of a multi-state speaking tour featuring Roberta Benefiel director of the Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, Inc. and Amy Norman of Labrador Land Protectors. The MegaDams, MegaDamage tour aims to raise awareness about the negative cultural, environmental and financial impacts of hydroelectric power generated by megadams in Canada. Public events will be held in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania.

Subsidized Canadian power companies are targeting new markets in the U.S. Multinational corporations propose a network of transmission corridors in Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and New York to deliver the power hundreds of miles from remote areas of Canada. The transmission corridors are at various stages of permitting and include the Atlantic Link, New England Clean Energy Connect, Champlain Hudson Power Express, New England Clean Power Link, Vermont Green Line and the Northern Pass through New Hampshire’s White Mountain National Forest. State laws and programs classify electricity from these megadams as “clean” and say it helps stop climate change. The opposition groups say this is a myth.

Over the past several decades, Canada’s electricity companies have dammed all but three of the country’s largest rivers. The MegaDams, MegaDamage tour will focus on Nalcor Corporation’s Muskrat Falls dam in Labrador, one of two proposed impoundment projects on the Grand River also known as the Churchill River.  The second proposed dam on the Grand River is called Gull Island. The Muskrat Falls project (also known as the Lower Churchill project) is currently under construction.

Long standing opposition to Canadian megadams intensified at Muskrat Falls in 2016. Just before flooding for the dam began, protesters went on hunger strikes and others were jailed for entering the construction site and shutting it down for 5 days. Resistance is ongoing.

The Muskrat Falls megadam threatens all Labradorians, but it is particularly harmful to the livelihood, wellbeing, and even the lives of the Indigenous peoples of Labrador – the Innu, Inuit and Metis. Megadams flood huge swaths of boreal forest, wetlands, wildlife habitat, and destroy aquatic ecosystems. The flooding releases methyl-mercury, a neurotoxin, which bio-accumulates up the food chain contaminating lake trout, salmon, smelt, and seal, all considered extremely important food sources for northern communities.

“We want to stop the Muskrat Falls mega-dam,” said Ms. Benefiel, “and make sure the Gull Island dam on this same river never sees the light of day.  Politicians and policy makers on both sides of the border should pursue energy alternatives that provide long lasting local jobs with the least possible harm to our rivers, food sources and way of life, and that will not burden future generations with billions of dollars in costs.  We are joining U.S. based public interest groups to raise awareness that state laws and programs incentivizing and promoting destructive Canadian hydropower as “clean” is not acceptable.  The U.S. states can meet greenhouse gas emissions targets while helping the local economy, not huge multinational corporations,” Ms. Benefiel added.

Amy Norman, a young Inuk woman and activist with Labrador Land Protectors will join part of the tour. Ms. Norman is a member of Nunatsiavut, the Innu self-government of Labrador and has family ties to the North West River and Nain.  She will speak at the 48th National Day of Mourning in Plymouth, Massachusetts on Thanksgiving Day, an event organized by the United American Indians of New England. “Muskrat Falls threatens our very existence as Inuit,” said Ms. Norman.  “It is poisoning our food webs, and contaminating the country foods we depend on, both physically and spiritually. It is forcing us to cut ties with the land.  To continue this project knowing the damage it will cause is cultural genocide,” Ms. Norman stated.

 Groups supporting the tour include:

Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, Inc., Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador, Canada                                                                          Labrador Land Protectors                                                                 Sierra Club Canada Foundation                                                           New York Environmental Law and Justice Project, NYC               Save the Pine Bush, Albany, NY                                                     Friends of the Hudson                                                                           New Community Project, VT                                                       Vermont Climate Union                                                                  Antioch New England, Keene, NH                                              Mariposa Museum, Peterborough, NH                                         Citizens Climate Lobby, Monadnock Chapter                                   NH/VT  Sierra Club Upper Valley Group                                      United American Indians of New England                                 Vermont Chapter, Sierra Club

CONTACTS:

Roberta Benefiel, Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, Inc. rebnfl@gmail.com, Tel. 709-987-9414

Amy Norman, Labrador Land Protectors, amy.beanorman@gmail.com Tel. 514-946-1509

Denis Cole, Labrador Land Protectors, selfdeterminedlabradorian@gmail.com Tel. 709-728-5007

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NPS – 100

2016 was the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the National Park Service! Along with the national Sierra Club and many Chapters and Groups we have actively participated in Events sponsored by the Park Service in our area. The Boots to Boats initiative continued in 2017, as does the cooperation between our Group and the Park Service.

Here is our own Joan Hoffman, Artist in Residence at the Park!

Joan - MBR - 3

Here is Karl Kemnitzer with our Upper Valley Group table at the NPS-100 event

Karl -1

Here is Bonna Wieler with our table at the Boots to Boats celebration:

Bonna -1

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