As faithful readers will recall, we’ve been reporting on the saga of the Roadless Area Conservation Rule for a very long time. Put in place at the end of the Clinton administration and immediately hamstrung by Bush operatives, the rule, which bans most roadbuilding and logging on roadless areas of the national forests, has bounced around a dozen courthouses, with Earthjustice lawyers defending the measure from attacks by states and the timber industry as the new government talked out of four sides of its mouth.
Earthjustice Vice President for Litigation Patti Goldman offers these fond memories of Joan Bavaria.
A bounty of acclaim has come in the passing of Joan Bavaria, who served eight years as an Earthjustice trustee. Many speak of her as their hero, a visionary, and a pioneer. For me, as for many at Earthjustice, Joan was an inspiration.
When she joined the Board of Trustees, she brought unbounded insights and energy. She challenged Earthjustice attorneys to embrace shareholder activism as one of the tools for environmental progress. She led by example, engaging personally with all around her, lending her deep knowledge to common challenges, and sharing her spark.
Joan spearheaded socially responsible investing with her founding of Trillium Asset Management, the first socially responsibly investment firm, and with her co-founding of Ceres, which developed the 10-point environmental code of conduct against which the environmental record and commitment of corporations can be judged. Her many accomplishments and honors are chronicled at www.ceres.org/joan. In addition, The Boston Globe wrote this remembrance.
Those of us who had the good fortune to know Joan will continue to be guided by the gift of her wisdom.
The Guardian, over there across the pond, has just published a splendid piece that should help put to rest some misconceptions about the ease, expense, and possibility of converting the world to a sustanable/green/you name it energy system. The writer is Chris Goodall, author of Ten Technologies to Save the Planet.
One of the good things about the Web is that it increases accountability. Those questioning the so-called "mainstream media" (MSM) don't have to hope that a stingy editor will find a few column inches to publish an op-ed to have their views heard.
So while I'm a regular reader of The New York Times, I was happy to see this article at grist.org panning the Times' story on the beetle epidemic which is killing off hundreds of thousands of acres of pine forest in the Rocky Mountains. The "Newspaper of Record" omitted the key fact that global warming is playing a key role in the beetle epidemic. That's because beetles are typically killed off when subzero temperatures last for days in the forest, something that hasn't happened for years.
It's a key aspect of the beetle story. And kudos to grist.org for telling it.
Joe Klein (author of Primary Colors, the scathing send-up of the Clinton years) gives President Bush quite a valedictory send-off today in the pages of TIME magazine.
Besides distaste for President Bush's "intellectual laziness," Klein lists a number of environmental actions that could be taken now in the final weeks of the Bush administration. Sadly, none of these are expected to happen.
It appears that Compassionate Conservatism, the muddled sound bite that was supposed to guide activities early in the reign of George II, has made a comeback, at least insofar as it applies to killers of wildlife.
We expected the worst for the environment from a Bush presidency. And he has never worked harder to meet our expectations than in these last few months. The list of misdeeds is long, and probably sadly familiar. Some of W's parting shots include:
The coal industry, whose schemes for scores of dirty new power plants are being challenged in the courts by Earthjustice and other organizations, is also under siege by a new generation of protesters whose favored tactic is nonviolent direct action.
This blog posting by Earthjustice President Trip Van Noppen appeared this week in Celsias.
For all Americans who care about our environment, which is most of us, a hopeful dawn broke with the election of Barack Obama.
During the last eight years the administration did everything it could to privatize the great natural areas in America, to privatize the commons all Americans share. We all know the story. Our rivers, lakes, mountains, forests, wildlife, fisheries, and minerals were all for sale to the highest bidder.
Mathis Wackernagel of the Global Footprint Network had an important (and scary) piece in the San Francisco Chronicle the other day that one hopes the new administration and the new Congress will take note of.