April 2021 VNRC E-News: Wild & Scenic Film Festival is this week!

April E-Newsletter from VNRC

We hope the spring weather has brought you some renewed energy and optimism. We’re feeling pretty excited ourselves: VNRC’s annual screening of the Wild & Scenic Film Festival is coming up on Thursday! Learn how to get tickets—and read on for many more updates about our work.

Latest News

This week: 13th Annual Wild & Scenic Film Festival — Join us on Thursday at 6:30pm for a virtual evening of films about the resilience of natural environments across the globe, and the people who care for them. Get tickets here and check out our silent auction. Learn more below.

The Vermont Climate Council wants to hear from you! — Have you been waiting to weigh in on the work of the Vermont Climate Council? The public portal for comment, feedback, document-sharing, and more is now live. Find it here, and stay tuned for other ways to engage.

 All you needed to know about the 2021 Transportation Bill — Last month the Vermont House overwhelmingly passed the annual Transportation Bill. It includes increased investments in electric and high efficiency vehicle incentives, as well as fare-free transit and other dollar-saving, pollution reducing strategies. Learn more here and in our most recent episodes of the weekly Climate Dispatch.

 Here’s why transportation really matters — In our newest entry at People, Places, and Transportation, VNRC’s Kate McCarthy examines why transportation matters, beyond the obvious reasons of getting around. There’s climate change, personal cost, public health, livable communities… the list goes on! Read it here.

 Updates on toxics — Bennington lawmakers and people impacted by toxic PFAS contamination called for lawmakers to support legislation that will help Vermonters access medical monitoring for diseases linked to toxic exposure. The Senate advanced a bill to protect Vermont firefighters and families from toxic chemicalsAn expansion of Vermont’s “bottle bill” is poised to make recycling easier and more efficient. Learn more via our partner organization, Vermont Conservation Voters

Virtual Learning

April 7, 6pmJust Transitions, Climate and Environmental Justice Workshop — Learn more about environmental justice issues in Vermont, EJ policies across the U.S., and what it means to incorporate a Just Transitions lens into the work of the Climate Council. No registration required; access the meeting here (Meeting ID: 853 6495 4580, Passcode: 539204). Find more info at the Climate Council website.

April 8, 4-5pmReconnecting Rivers and Restoring Ecosystems — As part of a series held by the Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, VNRC’s Ecological Restoration Coordinator Karina Dailey will discuss restoration efforts relating to rivers, dams, and other bodies of water—with an emphasis on collaborative work across various organizations and agencies. Learn more and register here.

April 13, 7-8:30pmClimate Solutions for Vermont — VNRC’s Johanna Miller is among the panelists at an upcoming webcast about getting students and concerned residents involved in global and local paths to a just and sustainable energy transition. Learn more and register here.

April 14, 12-1pm: Your Vermont Climate Council: Economic Impact, Stories, and Solutions — We’ve collaborated on an exciting program to help you get to know Vermont’s Climate Council. Hear from local business voices about the economic opportunities of climate action, and learn how to get involved in the Council’s work. Register here for the webinar and find more info below.

April 22 (Earth Day): Beekeeping 101 — Save the date! Kim Greenwood, formerly a clean water expert and advocate at VNRC, is also a longtime beekeeper. She’ll fill you in on what to expect from a year of beekeeping. Perfect for beginners of all kinds, or anyone interested in the value of bees to our local ecosystems. Stay tuned for registration info.

Apply or Nominate

— Arthur Gibb Nominations are Open — It’s time to nominate the next recipient of the Arthur Gibb Award for Individual Leadership. The award honors a Vermont resident with a legacy of integrating smart growth and conservation in their work. Applications are due on April 21. Find more details below.

  Small Grants for Smart Growth — VNRC’s Small Grants program is accepting applications on a rolling basis for community-based initiatives related to smart growth. Find out here if your project is eligible.

  Tiny Grant Applications are Open — The Association of Vermont Conservation Commissions (AVCC) welcomes conservation commissions across Vermont to apply for this year’s round of Tiny Grants, which support projects in land conservation, education and outreach, stewardship and management, and planning. Learn more and apply here. 

In the News…

 “Build Back Better”— Last week the Biden administration revealed the American Jobs Plan, a $2 trillion economic recovery package that centers clean energy, justice, and jobs. Our Executive Director Brian Shupe recently remarked on the plan’s potential benefits for Vermont. The question remains: will it be politically feasible on a national level, or effective enough to stall the climate crisis? 

An apology for eugenics, nearly a century in — Ninety years to the day after a eugenics bill was signed into law making involuntary sterilization legal in Vermont, the House voted unanimously to apologize for the actions of its predecessors. Read more.

— Sappy story –VNRC’s Jon Groveman spoke to Seven Days about large scale maple sap extraction and the need for Vermont to assess how these operations can minimize environmental impacts based on current growth in the industry.

Find more details below…

Wild & Scenic Film Festival

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival is this week! Join us on Thursday, 4/8 for an evening of inspiring short films, from the safety and comfort of your own home.

Our silent auction is open—and entirely online! You can view the items and bid here. The auction will be open through April 11. Start your bidding today.

While admission to view the films is free, a donation to VNRC of $10 or more through the ticketing system enters you into a raffle to win items from sponsors like Klean Kanteen, Lake Champlain Chocolates, and many others. Click here to get tickets and make your donation.

We can’t wait to “see” you in the screening room!

Arthur Gibb Award for Individual Leadership 

It’s time to nominate the next recipient of the Arthur Gibb Award for Individual Leadership! VNRC presents this honor annually to a Vermont resident who has made a lasting contribution to their community, region or state in the ways they integrate smart growth and conservation. 

Find the 2021 nomination form here. Materials must be submitted electronically or by mail by April 23, 2021. 

The 2021 award will be presented at VNRC’s Annual Meeting, which will be held in the fall—hopefully in person! Learn more about the award, Art Gibb’s legacy, and past awardees at https://vnrc.org/awards/.

Your Vermont Climate Council 

If you haven’t heard about the Climate Council or are eager to learn more about their work, this webinar is for you.

All are welcome to attend a community discussion about the cost of climate impacts, the economic opportunities climate action presents, and how to engage in the Vermont Climate Council’s work to chart a path toward a just, green, resilient economy. 

Hosted by the Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR) and the Nature Conservancy in Vermont, with support from VNRC and other organizations from the #ActOnClimateVT coalition.

Registration for this webinar is free and the details to join will be sent via email to all who register in advance of the event. Click here to register.

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