Sierra Club Home Page   Environmental Update  
chapter button
Explore, enjoy and protect the planet
Click here to visit the Member Center.         
Take Action
Get Outdoors
Join or Give
Inside Sierra Club
Press Room
Politics & Issues
Sierra Magazine
Sierra Club Books
Apparel and Other Merchandise
Contact Us

Join the Sierra ClubWhy become a member?

In This Section
  April 2002 Features:
Antibiotic Overload
Montiel, Wiwa Highlight Human Rights Abuses
Victory for Voters
Call for Nominations
Key Contacts
From the Editor
Natural Resources
Who We Are
Search for an Article
Free Subscription
Back Issues

The Planet

By Sarah Wootton

Signed, Sealed, Delivered | Stroke of Genius | Tally Ho! Valley Forge | Club Seals the Deal | Cool Things Our Colleagues are Doing

Signed, Sealed, Delivered

When University of Puget Sound freshman Lucy Cosgrove visited the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge last summer, she didn't imagine that her photos would end up in the hands of U.S. senators. But for Valentine's Day, Cosgrove and two friends turned their photos into "Don't Drill the Arctic" postcards to send to more than 35 senators. About 400 students signed the postcards.

Cosgrove's work in Tacoma, Wash., was part of a nationwide Sierra Student Coalition Valentine's Day event, during which students on approximately 25 campuses sent more than 700 Valentines asking their "sweethearts" in the Senate to vote against opening the Arctic National Wildlife to oil drilling.

In Evansville, Ind., Jessica Rinks and other SSC members printed up small cards to Sen. Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) for students to sign. Then, SSC members glued them to colored paper in the shape of hearts and decorated with stickers. "They looked really cool," says Rinks, a senior at the University of Southern Indiana.

Apparently, Lugar thought so too. When Rinks visited Lugar's office to lobby on the Arctic in March with SSC, the senator's legislative assistant gushed, "Are you the students who made the Valentines?"

Stroke of Genius

You're more likely to find artist Wyland on the North Shore of Oahu than the North Slope of the Arctic, but his paintings, murals and sculptures benefiting marine conservation can be found worldwide. An artist from a young age - he painted a mural on his parents' headboard at age three - his oceanic-life depictions have earned him a stellar reputation as a marine artist.

Starting this spring, Wyland's art will benefit the Sierra Club and the Hawaii Chapter's coastal campaign, Keep It Wild! The artist donated an original painting titled "Orca Evening" and 2,002 lithographs of the painting which will be available for sale exclusively to Sierra Club members. Proceeds from the sales will benefit the Club and Wyland's foundation.

Wyland unveiled his "Orca Evening" painting on the steps of the Capitol Building in Honolulu on March 15. The biggest draw of the day was a 4 x 16 foot mural painted by Wyland and 30 school children.

Photo: Numerous Sierra Club staff, members and volunteers turned out to celebrate the unveiling of artist Wyland's "Orca Evening" painting. Pictured here are, in front from left to right: Phil Barnes, Rochelle McReynolds, Wyland, Jeff Gantman and Allan Brown; and in back: Carl Zichella, Roberta Brahshear, John DeCock, Judge Coates and Marilyn Brown.

Tally Ho! Valley Forge

When George Washington wintered at Valley Forge between 1777-78, luxury homes were not an option. He and his Continental Army soldiers weathered a winter of harsh conditions.

Now, Toll Bros., a luxury home developer, wants to build 62 homes on a 62-acre inholding in Valley Forge National Park. "Township officials tried to stop the project, exhausted local ordinances, were taken to court by Toll Bros. and now have no recourse but to approve the development," according to Robin Mann of the Southern Pennsylvania Group. "The only solution is acquisition of the land for the park."

Working closely with the National Parks and Conservation Association and former Club staffer Joy Oakes, the group has helped garner local and national support to protect the park from development. They helped spearhead a rally earlier this year and circulated a petition for congressional funding. The day before the rally, the Park Service announced it was negotiating with Toll Bros. to purchase the 62-acre lot. Local newspapers reported a $10 million price tag for the land.

"There is a perception that national park land is invulnerable. People think if it's within the park boundary, it must be okay," says Mann.

Club Seals the Deal

The Club recently signed an agreement to co-publish its adult book titles with the University of California Press. Club staff will continue to handle project acquisitions and editorial development, and UC Press will assume responsibility for manufacturing, marketing, selling and fulfillment. (Sierra Club Calendars will continue to be published by Crown Publishers, and Sierra Club Books for Children will continue to be published by Gibbs Smith, Publisher.)

"The University of California Press is, in so many ways, an ideal co-publishing partner for the Club," says Helen Sweetland, publisher of the Books Program. "It has published widely and well in our areas of special interest, and it's one of the largest and most prestigious scholarly publishers in the world. We're very pleased and proud to be associated with such a distinguished imprint."

Five new adult titles are scheduled for publication this fall and about 15 new adult titles will be published annually. For more information, go to

Cool Things Our Colleagues are Doing

In Portland, Ore., students at Lewis & Clark College recently voted to raise student fees to buy something they will never see - a reduction in the college's greenhouse emissions. Specifically, the $10 per student fee will be used to buy 3,250 tons in reductions of carbon dioxide emissions, or "offsets," to bring the college's emissions to 7 percent under its 1990 emissions level. Oregon-based Climate Trust will provide the offsets, which it obtains from one of many projects that works to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including a wind farm and a forestry preservation project.

National Wildlife Federation Campus Ecology Fellow Julian Dautremont-Smith spearheaded the effort and organized a special campus vote on the issue. After 83 percent of voting students approved the proposal, the Chartering and Budget Commission of the Associated Students of Lewis & Clark requested the fee increase and announced its approval on Feb. 27.

Thanks to Dautremont-Smith's work and the support of students, Lewis & Clark will be the first college to be in compliance with the international Kyoto Protocol by Sept. 2002.

Up to Top