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Greenfinch in MD; Duke Power does the right thing
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- Subject: Greenfinch in MD; Duke Power does the right thing
- From: Joshua Stuart Rose <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Thu, 8 Feb 2001 17:09:42 -0500 (EST)
- Sender: email@example.com
I received something a while back from ex-Carolinabirder Dan Lebbin about
a dam project which was about to destroy a pristine valley full of
rainforest and wildlife in Belize. Duke Power was a major participant. I
do not remember if Dan sent his alert to the list, or just certain
individuals. In any case, you might like to know that our local power
utility has not only avoided rolling blackouts, but also has pulled its
support from the dam after being flooded with mail from people opposed to
the project. Protests are now being directed at a Canadian multinational
corporation called Fortis, to get them to follow Duke Power's lead. If
you know any Canadians, give them the news... I'll past the official
press release below.
A little closer to home, a Greenfinch has been found coming to a bird
feeder in Washington County, MD. All previous records of this Eurasian
species in the US have been deemed probable escapes, and so the bird
isn't on the official AOU or ABA lists. But if anybody happens to be
driving up that way, it would be a neat bird to see, though maybe not
quite as impressive as a Smew or Barnacle Goose... It sounds, however,
like many of this winter's other vagrants are on the move. The VA and MD
Snowy Owls are clearing out, along with Mary's little pal Tea, and the
Yellow-faced Grassquit down south disappeared after its couple of weeks.
Guess my Rufous will follow sometime soon; I'll let y'all know when I
notice its departure...
Joshua S. Rose
Department of Biology (Zoology, R.I.P.)
NRDC members, e-activists win round one in battle to save BioGem in
Belize, as U.S. company pulls out of dam project
From Natural Resources Defense Council
Thursday, February 8, 2001
NEW YORK - Following several months of member activism aimed at Duke
Energy Group, NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) learned last week
that the American-based utility company was pulling out of a dam project
in Belize that threatens unique habitat for jaguars and other rare
According to NRDC, Duke Energy?s move raises even more questions about
the environmental and economic soundness of the proposed Chalillo Dam on
the Upper Macal River in western Belize. Duke Energy?s decision came in
the wake of its receiving tens of thousands of messages from NRDC members
condemning the company for its expected involvement in the project.
In January, NRDC stepped up its efforts to stop the Chalillo Dam with
the launch of an Internet-based initiative (www.SaveBioGems.org) focusing
on 12 "BioGems" in North and Central America, including the Macal River
in Belize, which are under threat by government or corporate development
According to Jacob Scherr, director of NRDC?s international programs
and BioGems coordinator, NRDC will focus on Fortis Inc., a Canadian
multinational, which bought out Duke?s interest in the Chalillo Dam.
Fortis is already the majority owner of Belize Electric Ltd., the
country?s only electric utility.
"This is a perfect example of how individual citizens can bring
pressure on a major corporation to drop a wrongheaded project," Mr.
Scherr. "Now that Duke is out, we?re hopeful the public will help
convince Fortis to reconsider and abandon plans for the dam."
Mr. Scherr explained that the Macal River Valley is one of the most
vital and biologically diverse habitats in Central America. It is home to
an endangered subspecies of the Scarlet Macaw, Morelet?s crocodile,
tapirs, and jaguars. Scientists consider the Macal River Valley to be
crucial to saving the jaguar for future generations.
NRDC also protested the summary dismissal of Kimo Jolly, a teacher at
Sacred Heart Junior College in San Ignacio, Belize and outspoken critic
of the Chalillo Dam project. He is the top independent expert in Belize
on the economics and environmental impacts of the dam. Mr. Jolly leads
the Concerned Citizens Coalition, a grassroots group in Belize, in
opposing the dam.
"We fear that Kimo Jolly?s sudden dismissal was in retaliation for his
environmental activism -- a patent violation of his basic rights," said
Mr. Scherr. "We stand behind our friend and colleague now, and urge that
he be immediately reinstated and free to speak out in defense of the
The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, nonprofit
organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists
dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in
1970, NRDC has more than 400,000 members nationwide, served from offices
in New York, Washington, Los Angeles and San Francisco.
Press contact: Kathy Parrent, 212-727-4408; Kidd Dorn, 212-727-4475
For more information, contact:
Natural Resources Defense Council
Web site: http://www.nrdc.org