No issue of The Planet can paint a complete picture of the Sierra Club. Club activists work on so many issues in so many communities, and we do our work in so many different ways.
For example, on page 1, Tom Valtin describes the "knee-deep" advocacy of the Water Sentinels program, where Club members wade into creeks in hazmat suits or hang over the edge of bridges with buckets to take water samples from polluted waterways. Then, armed with lab results, they fight for cleaner water.
Meanwhile, on pages 4 and 5, we're publishing an excerpt from "Smart Choices, Less Traffic," a critical look at 49 transportation projects across the country. To assess these projects' impacts on traffic, smog, and sprawl requires a different kind of wading-through voluminous environmental impact statements, traffic studies, and department of transportation recommendations. It's unglamorous, wonky work, but it's critical to the Club's credibility. We know what we're talking about because we do our homework.
On page 1, we also look at how pro-environment candidates fared in pivotal races, where Club staff and volunteers knocked on doors and staffed phone banks to get out the vote, wrote and produced TV and radio ads, and kept environmental issues in the public eye. On page 6, we ask readers to write letters in support of protecting the Everglades, Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
There are plenty of ways to get involved. We need-and appreciate-your help. Contact your local chapter or go to www.sierraclub.org.
-John Byrne Barry
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