Not sound science to ban predators on wildlife refuges
Case for voting NO by the Sierra Club (April 6, 2017):
President Trump signed H.J. Res. 69, overturning the rule that banned "predator control" on federal wildlife refuges in Alaska unless "based on sound science in response to a
Any rule mentioning "sound science" is in trouble under a Trump administration.
So what kinds of practices will the Trump administration now allow on our federal wildlife refuges? Activities that include shooting or
trapping wolves while in their dens with pups, or hunting for grizzly bears from airplanes.
It's all about ensuring a maximum yield of prey species like elk, moose, and caribou for the real apex predator: humans. So if having more elk requires
killing wolf pups in their dens, then so be it.
The Obama administration's rule (which Trump revoked) never tried to stop all hunting. Subsistence hunting was still allowed.
Publicize grant opportunities for diesel emission reduction
Zero-Emission Bus Information: Federal funding opportunities:
Low or No Emission Vehicle Deployment Program (LoNo) offers funding to transit agencies for the acquisition and leasing of zero- and low-emission transit buses and related
equipment with a budget of $22.5 million.
Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) provides funding for projects that reduce transportation-related emissions.
State Energy Program (SEP) offers grants typically in the range of $300,000-$800,000 to advance programs that create jobs and further climate and energy security.
TIGER Discretionary Grants are available to surface transportation infrastructure projects that will have a significant impact on the nation, a region, or metropolitan area, with grants ranging from $100,000 to $25,000,000.
Mandatory labeling for GMO products, then long-term testing
We have a Right to Know what is in our food, right? Currently there are NO labeling requirements for genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or genetically engineered (GE) foods--a plant or meat product that has had its DNA artificially altered in a
laboratory by genes from other plants, animals, viruses, or bacteria. GE food crops require the use of more industrial pesticides than non-GE crops, have been shown to lower crop yields, and supports the mega-agribusines monopoly that undercuts local,
sustainable and organic farming techniques.
Right now, you are eating GE food without knowing it. The average American eats their weight in GE ingredients in a year. But no independent, long-term studies have been done to determine if these foods are
truly safe. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not require GE food to be labeled, but permits it voluntarily. Virtually no companies have labeled their GE food under this system. [We advocate] the mandatory labeling of GE food.
Urge president to establish more national monuments
If you're grateful that the Grand Canyon, Glacier Bay, and the Olympic Peninsula have been preserved as national parks, consider that these icons were once national monuments. The Antiquities Act of 1906 allows the president to proclaim areas
of "historical or scientific interest" as national monuments, using a signature alone. The first to receive the honor was Devils Tower in Wyoming, designated by Theodore Roosevelt in 1906. The most recent is Fort Ord along the California coast, protected
in April by Barack Obama. And the largest is a marine sanctuary near Hawaii, established by George W. Bush in 2006. (Only three presidents since Roosevelt have not established a monument.) Here's a sample of places the Sierra Club is urging the president
Fort Ord, California
Berryessa-Snow Mountain: California
Organ Mountain-Desert Peaks: New Mexico
Greater Canyonlands: Utah
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge-Polar Bear Seas: Alaska
Source: Sierra Club magazine, "Monumental Places"
, Jul 1, 2012
Well-financed environmental NGOs such as the National Resources Defense Council and Sierra Club, or "Big Green" as I call them collectively, launched an aggressive, politically coordinated campaign against Clear Skies. The basis of their opposition
was the false and utterly absurd claim that Clear Skies was a "rollback" of existing Clean Air provisions. This was simply not true. The real problem for Big Green was that the bill did not address greenhouse gases. Opponents amusingly called
Clear Skies "Orwellian." The bill proposed the 1st-ever cap to reduce mercury emissions from the power plants by 70%, yet, true to form, these Big Green groups said it would allow more mercury to go into the air. Go figure. Clear Skies opponents knew
that it would be more difficult to pass greenhouse gas regulations IN ADDITION TO a 3-pollutant bill. Because of this, they held it hostage, making it very clear that politics, not the environment, was the priority.
Strict regulation & restrictions for offshore oil drilling
The Sierra Club believes that no offshore petroleum exploration should occur unless and until the following conditions are met:
Strengthen the Coastal Zone Management System with immediate full funding.
Lease sales should be prohibited in
areas that possess:
High seismic activity
Fragile or unstable geological structures
Proximity to particularly diverse or productive marine ecosystems, or marine sanctuaries
Where visual impact of offshore structures would significantly
reduce aesthetic values
Where the risks are unusually high.
Petroleum exploration and production that does take place must be conducted in accordance with the strictest controls possible under current technology, and must be subject to
automatic, heavy fines for all oil spills regardless of cause.
The Sierra Club opposes leasing of lands beyond 200 meters depth until international agreements [define] ownership of sea floor resources.
One type of governmental strategy is to offer tax breaks for installing energy efficient measurements. Tax incentives constitute a “carrot approach” in they are voluntary instead of mandatory. In theory the market should respond
to these incentives and gradually the US economy will move to higher energy efficiency.
Source: Ozark Sierran, Jim Rhodes, Are Energy Taxes a Good idea?
, Mar 30, 2000
Sierra Club on Forests
We need protected forests
The need for protected forests cannot be overstated. Instead of recognizing the value of forests for clean air and water, recreation, wildlife habitat and the benefits for future generations, the Forest Service assessed our natural treasures only in
terms of timber targets and congressional appropriations. As a result, today almost of our old growth forests are gone and the timber industry has turned our National Forests into a patchwork of clearcuts, logging roads and devastated habitat.
Source: Seeing the Forests for their Green: Commercial Logging Pgm
, Aug 1, 2000
Sierra Club on Population
Stabilize population and reduce wasteful consumption
The goals of the Global Population Stabilization Program are to protect the global environment and preserve natural resources for the future by stabilizing population and reducing wasteful consumption. We strive to achieve these goals by:
romoting family planning programs and reproductive health services
empowering and educating women and girls
reducing excessive consumption and encouraging people to live in ways that have less of an impact on the earth’s resources.
Source: Sierra Club web site
, Jul 2, 2000
Pesticide law is "corporate captured" by farm lobby.
Congressional Summary:Amends the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA) to prohibit the EPA or a state from requiring a permit for a discharge into navigable waters of a pesticide authorized under FIFRA. Excepts stormwater discharges and discharges of manufacturing or industrial effluent.
Proponent's argument for bill:(Blue Ridge Times-News, April 2013): Sen. Kay Hagan announced a bill to eliminate a "redundant and burdensome" requirement that 365,000 pesticide users get a CWA permit before spraying in or near lakes and streams. Farmers and other chemical users already have to meet stringent requirements for pesticide application under FIFRA, Hagan said, and the CWA permit only adds a duplicative, unnecessary layer of bureaucracy. Hagan said the "overlapping regulations" have also forced some municipalities to cut down on spraying for mosquitoes "because they don't have the manpower (to deal with the
extra red tape), and they fear lawsuits."
Opponent's argument against bill: (Oregon Sierra Club newsletter Dec. 2012): Rachel Carson's "Silent Spring" turned 50 this fall: it catalyzed the environmental movement [by focusing on pesticides like DDT]. Today we still face the issues she outlined in Silent Spring. Pesticide law and regulation in the US is a case study in corporate capture: beholden to the farm lobby in Congress, all the way back to the 1947 formation of FIFRA.
FACT: From 1988 to 1995, more than 65 bills were introduced in Congress to tighten pesticide regulations. None of them passed.
FACT: In the late 1990s, two separate investigations revealed that more than half of all former top-level pesticide regulators at the EPA subsequently went to work for, or were paid by, pesticide and chemical industry interests actively involved in fighting EPA efforts to protect the public from pesticides.