The 2018 General Assembly will convene on January 11 and adjourn by the end of February. The Virginia Conservation Network (VCN) will have a lobby day on January 22. In preparation for Conservation Lobby Day, Virginia Conservation Network will host a webinar during which experts will brief participants on the major issues anticipated in the 2018 session. The date for the webinar is still being determined.
Join fellow conservationists on December 7, 7 to 9 p.m. and learn about renewable energy opportunities in Alexandria. Congressman Don Beyer will be the opening speaker. Perhaps some of what we learn can be used in other jurisdictions.
Arlington County is updating the 2005 Public Spaces Master Plan, which provides strategies for the future for our public spaces, including parks, natural resources and recreational needs. The county is seeking community input for certain areas of focus.
The Fairfax County Environmental Quality Advisory Council (EQAC) will hold its annual public hearing at the Fairfax County Government Center, conference rooms 9 and 10, 7:30 p.m. You can find EQAC’s annual report here. EQAC presented it to the Board of Supervisors on November 21.
The new General Assembly will convene on January 11 and adjourn by the end of February. VCN will have a lobby day on January 22. Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam will be inaugurated governor on January 13. You can find key dates for the state legislature here.
Fairfax County Park Authority staffers have prepared a proposal to allow the flying of recreational drones in two more county parks, Lake Fairfax and Popes Head. Currently, this activity is allowed only in Poplar Ford Park. FCPA will hold a public meeting and a public comment period on December 11, 7 p.m.
The Virginia State Air Pollution Control Board recently unanimously approved a draft regulation to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and connect Virginia to a carbon-trading network of nine other states.
Local governments manage local parks, waste, land use, schools, construction and development and more. Local government managers (for counties, they are called county executives) are now preparing the FY 2019 budgets that they will propose to the elected officials to whom they report. Arlington County invites residents to submit ideas and comments here. Check your local government for the schedule and ways to make suggestions.
DEQ is currently working on the specifics, a draft proposal that will set the limit or cap on emissions, create allowances and establish a method for allocating them to the involved parties. The draft will be reviewed and voted on November 16 by the state Air Pollution Control Board, and then sent to the governor to sign.
The Fairfax County Park Authority held a public planning meeting as part of the process to update the master plan for Lake Fairfax Park. You can still comment via email at Parkmail@fairfaxcounty.gov until December 1, 2017.
Our local governments manage local parks, waste, land use, schools, building and development and more. Local government managers (for counties, they are called county executives) are now preparing the FY 2019 budgets
The Virginia Conservation Network — with the Sierra Club Virginia Chapter, Chesapeake Climate Action Network and Virginia League of Conservation Voters — will host two meetings in Northern Virginia focused on how we can work together to guarantee climate action in Virginia.
Flying drones for sport is increasing and some recreational or hobbyist drone organizations are advocating that park officials allow recreational drone flying in our parks. The Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA) is considering a proposal to allow more recreational drone and other unmanned aircraft use in seven parks throughout the county.
The Alexandria Enviromental Policy Commission (EPC), whose members are appointed by the city council, is updating the city's environmental action plan (EAP). The first set of recommendations will go to the City Council in May or June 2018.
Up to one billion birds collide with glass and are killed every year in the U.S., according to the American Bird Conservancy. A group in Washington, D.C., including City Wildlife, is conducting a “lights out” fall monitoring project
On September 12, 7 p.m., the Fairfax County Wetlands Board will hold a public hearing on the George Washington Memorial Parkway/National Park Service's application for a permit to restore Dyke Marsh, at the Springfield Government Center, 6140 Rolling Road, Springfield, VA 22152.
The Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA) has published the draft Great Parks Great Communities Parks and Recreation System Master Plan, available at Great Parks Great Communities Park Authority Master Plan. It is important for county officials to hear people’s views and recommendations.
To learn how Fairfax County views the environment and its sustainability challenges and to share your views, attend the 89th “Green Breakfast” on September 9 where Kambiz Agazi, Fairfax County Environmental Coordinator, will make a presentation.
Join other conservationists, form alliances and learn the issues on September 22-23 for the Virginia Environmental Assembly, Jepson Alumni Executive Center, Fredericksburg. Visit the Virginia Conservation Network.
It’s never too early to get involved and to educate candidates about conservation and the value of our natural resources. On November 7, Virginians will elect a governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and all 100 members of the Virginia House of Delegates.
FCPA will hold a meeting on June 29, 2017, on revising the master plan for Franconia District Park in Lee District. Officials will present a concept plan based on community input at the Franconia Government Center Community Room
ASNV recently weighed in on Fairfax County’s work to establish criteria for flying recreational drones, model airplanes, quadcopters and other recreational flying devices in the county’s parks. Park staffers are identifying potential sites in the county for these activities, at the direction of the Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA) Board.
Following up on our March 18 conservation advocacy workshop, the ASNV Advocacy Committee will meet on April 24, 7 p.m., at the Mason District Government Center, 6507 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22203 (small conference room). Directions here.
National Audubon urges members to contact Members of Congress and encourage them “to uphold and support America’s conservation programs.” Visit Action Audubon. National Audubon is also fighting efforts to weaken the Endangered Species Act. Info here.
Most national environmental groups, including the National Audubon Society, believe that the current Congress and the Trump Administration will try to weaken many current federal environmental policies.
On November 8, all incumbent Northern Virginia U.S. representatives were re-elected: Cong. Don Beyer (D-8); Cong. Gerry Connolly (D-11); Cong. Barbara Comstock, (R-10); and Cong. Rob Wittman (R-1). Virginia’s U.S. Senators, Tim Kaine (D) and Mark Warner (D) were not up for re-election in 2016.
Now is the time to urge your candidates to support conservation. In addition to electing a U.S. president and vice president this year, Virginians will elect 11 members of the U.S. House of Representatives.
The 100th anniversary of the U.S. National Park Service (NPS) this year is an opportune time for advocates to urge elected officials and candidates to provide stronger support, especially more funding, for our 413 national park sites.
Two dozen national parks no longer sell water in plastic bottles. Instead, they sell reusable bottles and have installed water refill stations. The U.S. House of Representatives passed a measure to prohibit the NPS Director from approving “a request by a park superintendent to eliminate the sale in national parks of water in disposable, recyclable plastic bottles.”
Millions of bird die every year after colliding with buildings, especially windows. National Audubon urges all Auduboners to encourage their members of Congress to support H.R. 2280, the Federal Bird-Safe Buildings Act. Go here to learn the details.
Thanks to North America’s largest land conservation project in history — an effort in which Audubon played a leading and integral role — the Greater Sage-Grouse will not require federal protection under the Endangered Species Act.
Pope Francis will address Congress on September 24 and plans to discuss his recent climate-change encyclical Laudato Si': On Care for our Common Home. A People's Rally for Climate Justice is planned for that morning at 7:30 AM on the National Mall.