Houston Chronicle Editorial Cartoonist Nick Anderson won the Art in Service to the Environment Award for 2014 at the Sierra Club Lone Star Chapter Environmental Awards this past Saturday. Wait a minute. A cartoonist won an environmental award? You bet!
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In 2016, the U.S. Forest Service (FS) will begin a four-year process to revise the existing National Forests and Grasslands in Texas (NFGT) forest plan. Usually, forest plans are revised every 10-15 years. However, our existing forest plan is already 19 years old! To say we are overdue for a change, is an vast understatement. Sam Houston, Davy Crockett, Angelina, and Sabine National Forests and LBJ and Caddo Grasslands all deserve a revised plan with better and more protective environmental measures.
Years of civil rights complaints have gone unexamined by the EPA, and this week Earthjustice filed a lawsuit on behalf of several groups, including the Sierra Club's Lone Star Chapter, to compel the EPA to fulfill its duties to enforce Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. The complaints, according to the Earthjustice press release, "involve discrimination by the states in granting permits that subject already overburdened low-income communities of color to more big-polluting facilities." What's the story in Texas?
When Denton citizens came together last year to pass an unprecedented local ban on new hydraulic fracturing, retaliation by the powerful oil and gas industry seemed inevitable. With the passage of HB 40 this year, the 84th Legislature and Governor Greg Abbott reasserted the supremacy of the oil and gas industry lobby in the state of Texas. While it may not have come as a surprise, its predictability did little to soften the blow.
Last month, we posted about La Loma, a special green space in East Austin that has been neglected by the city and strewn with years of toxic trash. ATX EJ leaders and Sierra Club Outings went on a hike with Pete Rivera and his brother Raymond, who have explored there for decades. Several Young Scholars for Justice (YSJ), a program of PODER, also traversed La Loma and saw first hand the discrepancy between green spaces east and west of I-35. Steps are being taken to persuade the city of Austin to clean up this beautiful space and protect it. Meanwhile, Rivera, a leader with the Springdale-Airport Neighborhood Association and PODER board member, shared a moving poem, written collectively by recent YSJ graduates.
The Executive Committee of Sierra Club’s Lone Star Chapter announced today the hiring of Reggie James as its permanent Chapter Director. James had been serving as Interim Director since January, and led the Lone Star Chapter during the 84th Legislative Session.
Texans associate a lot of things with our hot summers: swimming holes, trips to the coast, and warm nights spent outside with the fireflies to name a few. Unfortunately for Texans in urban areas, the unstoppable heat also harkens the arrival of ozone season making the outdoors a dangerous place.
June 1, 2015, was the official end of the 2015 Legislative Session… at least the regular session. There are always rumors of special session brewing. Here are some highlights from the perspective of the Sierra Club’s Lone Star Chapter.
By: Julia Von Alexander, Dave Cortez, and Mayté Salazar
It’s hard to imagine 50+ years of oil, metal, appliances, and other trash strewn across Zilker Park, or barrels of waste atop Mt. Bonnell. It has been a longstanding tradition of Austin’s environmental movement to explore, preserve, and defend beautiful green spaces in and around our precious creeks and streams, many of which can be found west of Interstate 35. But what happens when similar green spaces located east of the highway are left unkempt, polluted, and toxic?
In response to Governor Greg Abbott’s line item veto of $1 million for water conservation education grants in FY 2016, Ken Kramer, Water Resources Chair, Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club, issued the following statement: