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News Stream
 December 2010
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In This Issue

Georgia River Network News Stream
December, 2010


News
1.    Support Healthy Rivers in 2011
2.    Interbasin Transfer News: Action Needed
3.    Sign Your Name! Speak Up for Fair Water Sharing for All Georgians
4.    DeKalb County to Repair Aging Water and Sewer Systems
5.    Augusta’s Olin Chemical Switches to Mercury-free Technology
6.    Company Drops Plan for Trash-to-Energy Incinerator
7.    Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper Receives Favorable Decision in Action to Protect Water Quality in National Park
8.    Upper Etowah River Alliance Goes Solar
9.    Metro Water District Adopts Water Conservation Measures
10.    Len Foote Hike Inn Job posting

Workshops/Conferences/Calendar Items
11.    2011 Georgia River Network Weekend for Rivers—Registration opening soon!
12.    Update Your Organization’s GRN Directory Listing
13.    Paddle Georgia 2011
14.    Nominate River Network’s National River Hero
15.    Environmental Support Center Calls For New Climate Change Movement
16.    ICL’s Executive Director’s List of Core Competencies
17.    High Potential Diverse Leaders Class of 2011

Resources
18.    36 Ways to Motivate Your Nonprofit Employees
19.     Should You Copyright Your Materials?

Fundraising Deadlines
20.    Grants

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1.    Support Healthy Rivers in 2011

With 2011 just around the corner, we wanted to thank you for your support in 2010 and ask you to support the rivers you love by making a year-end donation.  Together, we are working harder than ever to protect Georgia’s rivers and make sure you can get out and enjoy them! Your year-end gift will make a big difference in 2011.

We are already busy preparing for Paddle Georgia 2011 (mark your calendar for June 18-24 on the Oconee River!). We are continuing work on the new Water Trails Program which will help you and your family enjoy Georgia rivers year round. And with your help, we will continue to work with you and Georgia’s network of 30+ river groups during 2011, providing tools and resources needed to successfully protect our waterways and advocate for strong protections of Georgia’s rivers throughout the state.

Working together, we will make a difference for Georgia’s rivers in 2011. Help protect Georgia’s rivers today by making a year-end donation.

2.    Interbasin Transfer News: Action Needed

At the December 10 DNR Board Meeting, Georgia's Environmental Protection Division (EPD) proposed a rule aimed at regulating interbasin transfers and protecting our rivers and downstream communities. Unfortunately, the rule falls short of fully regulating interbasin transfers (IBTs).

At issue is one word in the rule: “should.” Currently, the rule reads that EPD “should” evaluate the interbasin transfer criteria that are part of the State Water Plan adopted by the General Assembly and Governor in 2008. These 22 criteria include everything from an evaluation of the transfer’s impact during drought conditions to the effectiveness of water conservation efforts in communities receiving the transfer.

The criteria are good, but the use of the word “should” would allow EPD the discretion to ignore the criteria. For the criteria to be more than mere suggestions, the use of the word "shall" must be included in the rule.
Furthermore, as written, the rule applies only to "new interbasin transfers." To protect our rivers and downstream communities from existing water transfers that may grow to harmful levels in the future, the rule should apply to all interbasin transfers.

Solution: The language in the rule needs to be changed to “shall” consider, and the criteria need to apply to all water withdrawal permits involving interbasin transfers, not just "new" water transfers.
This simple change will ensure that every interbasin transfer will be evaluated so that harmful transfers will be identified and alternative water supply solutions can be developed.

WHAT YOU CAN DO: Tell EPD and the DNR Board to strengthen the proposed rules by Friday, Jan. 7 in one of 3 ways:

A. Going to http://www.protectgeorgia.net and sign up for the Georgia Environmental Action Network - By signing up you can contact EPD with just a few clicks of your mouse; or

B. Sending an e-mail to EPDComments@dnr.state.ga.us. Be sure to include the words “Surface Water Withdrawals Rules” in the subject line; or

C. Sending written comments to:

Nap Caldwell, Watershed Protection Branch
2 Martin Luther King Jr. Dr., Suite 1152 East Tower
Atlanta, Georgia 30334.


Click here for a sample letter

Click here to read the GWC's NEW briefing document on IBTs.

3.    Sign Your Name! Speak Up for Fair Water Sharing for All Georgians
SIGN! The "No Water Grabs" Petition


Over 2300 Georgians have signed on at www.nowatergrabs.com. Help us reach 5000 by January 10!

Here is how YOU can help:

1.    Sign the petition yourself at www.nowatergrabs.com

2.    Send a message to your friends, colleagues, members and board members and ask them to sign on. Contact April Ingle at ingle@garivers.org if you need a sample message.

3.    Post the petition on your website. Click the link on the bottom of www.nowatergrabs.com to embed the petition on your website.

4.    Post the petition on your Facebook pages and ask your friends and supporters to do the same.

4.    DeKalb County to Repair Aging Water and Sewer Systems

In response to an enforcement action by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this week, Dekalb County has agreed to undertake major repairs of its outdated water and sewer systems. According to the EPA, 836 sewage overflows have occurred in Dekalb between 2006 and 2010; these overflows pose a significant public health threat.

As explained by Stan Meiburg, Deputy Regional Administrator of EPA’s Southeastern Office, “Sewage overflows are a significant problem in the Southeast because of inadequate and aging infrastructure. This agreement demonstrates DeKalb County’s commitment to address long-standing sewage problems. Ultimately, this will benefit the local community and improve water quality in the Upper Ocmulgee and Chattahoochee watersheds.”
To read more about the sewer fixes, click here.

5.    Augusta’s Olin Chemical Switches to Mercury-free Technology

Olin Chemical announced this month that they will stop using mercury in their chlorine production by 2012. The Savannah Riverkeeper has been pushing Olin to convert for over 6 years. "Olin has proven today that they are committed to being a responsible steward of our area, and we couldn't be prouder of them for making such a wise decision. They have made the step forward needed to remain an economic leader in the Augusta area and are taking steps to become environmental stewards of our community." said Executive Director, Tonya Bonitatibus.

The Savannah Riverkeeper launched the "Olin Go Mercury Free" campaign after Frank Carl, the founding executive director, and a high school student, Lauren Smith, tested Olin's outfall channel into the river and found the mercury content of the soil to be over 10,000 times higher than state limits. The Riverkeeper was blessed to have attracted the attention and help of the national organization, Oceana, about 4 years ago. Since that day the two organizations have worked tirelessly on the conversion campaign.

For questions or comments contact Tonya Bonitatibus at (706) 826-8991.

6.    Company Drops Plan for Trash-to-Energy Incinerator

Good news for people who care about air and water quality in northeast Georgia:  A plan to build a dirty waste-to-energy incinerator in Elbert County has been called off, thanks in great part to the dedicated efforts of Citizens for Public Awareness, an amazing grassroots group that formed around this issue and fought the plant for over a year.  Read more in the Athens Banner Herald article.

7.    Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper Receives Favorable Decision in Action to Protect Water Quality in National Park

On December 8, Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper (UCR) received a favorable ruling in their ongoing legal action to protect water quality in the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. Earlier this year, the Georgia Environmental Protection Division issued a permit that would allow Forsyth County’s Fowler/ Shakerag sewage treatment plants to discharge millions of gallons of treated wastewater into the Chattahoochee River every day with unnecessarily weak limits on phosphorous and fecal coliform bacteria. On December 8, Administrative Law Judge Kristin Miller ruled favorably in UCR’s appeal on a key antidegradation issue.

In her order, Judge Miller found, among other things, that the permitted discharge would degrade the water quality of the Chattahoochee River. The next step will be an evidentiary hearing in January. Learn more here.

8.    Upper Etowah River Alliance Goes Solar

As of December, the office of the Upper Etowah River Alliance in Canton, Georgia has installed enough solar panels to bring them to Net Zero—which means that they will generate enough energy to completely pay for all of their energy needs.  On top of that, GA Power will be buying all of their energy at a higher price than they currently pay for electricity.  

UERA received  this system free of charge as one of the recipients of a Georgia Environmental Finance Authority grant made by Radiance Energy to provide solar to six  nonprofits to help them offset their costs of operation.  UERA was chosen because of their strong education mission and their building's visibility near the river.  In addition, UERA is now controlling 100% of the stormwater that comes onto the property through low impact techniques and in a matter of days will produce all of their energy needs!  
For more information about how UERA does it, email Diane Minick at dminick@etowahriver.org.

9.    Metro Water District Adopts Water Conservation Measures
On December 2, the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District (Metro District) unanimously voted in favor of the adoption of an amended slate of new water conservation measures. These measures, while not fully comprehensive, are a step in the right direction towards Metro Atlanta reducing its water waste.

The measures approved will require utilities in the Chattahoochee-Lanier Basins to implement:

•    Expedited Water Loss Reduction, which requires local utilities to cut in half any non-revenue water loss in excess of 10% by 2025;

•    Multi-Family High Efficiency Toilet Rebates, which significantly expands the current single-family high efficiency toilet (HET) rebate program to provide rebates to apartment complexes;

•    Install Meters with Point of Use Leak Detection to notify customers of possible leaks using metering technology;

•    Require Private Fire Lines to be Metered to identify and reduce improper water use; and

•    All utilities in the 15 county Metro District, including the Chattahoochee-Lanier Basins, will need to implement a Water Waste Policy to educate the public on the need to cut down on water waste.

The Metro District staff removed two important and needed conservation measures from the original slate put out for public comment on September 17, from the slate presented to the board for a vote:

•    Fixture Retrofit on Reconnect, which requires the installation of efficient plumbing fixtures prior to setting up a new water account; and

•    Water Sense New Homes Mandatory Program, which would require water efficient home design and use of efficient plumbing fixtures in new home construction.

"Retrofit on Reconnect" and "WaterSense New Homes" both present opportunities for addressing both outdated buildings and new buildings – where a significant amount of water is wasted. The Metro District staff said they intend to return to the board with a revised proposal with these two measures or substitute measures by June of next year.

10.    Len Foote Hike Inn Job Posting

The Len Foote Hike Inn, located in the mountains of North Georgia, is seeking a permanent, full-time Environmental Education Manager to join their small backcountry staff.  The Environmental Education Manager is responsible for developing and presenting educational programs to Hike Inn guests and giving daily tours of the facility, publishing a quarterly educational newsletter, planning and coordinating volunteer activities, updating volunteer databases and websites, providing outreach programs to local groups, maintaining the lodge’s native plant gardens, worm beds, and rain barrel, and ensuring lodge compliance with green building standards.  The Environmental Education Manager also shares general duties with the other managers, including cooking and assisting at meals, office management, guest check-in, and minor housekeeping.

The Environmental Education Manager will be required to live on-site, but no housing is available for family or pets.  Applicant requirements include a bachelor’s degree in natural science or related field, experience in education and/or public speaking, and a genuine interest in educating the public on natural resource conservation.   Familiarity with Microsoft Powerpoint & Publisher, knowledge of North Georgia history, plants, and wildlife, and green building experience are all desirable.   Salary is $21,000, plus bonuses, plus lodging and meals with paid medical benefits after three months.
To learn more about the Inn, visit our website at ww.hike-inn.com.  To apply, please e-mail a brief cover letter with an attached resume to hikeinnstaff@hotmail.com

11.    2011 Georgia River Network Weekend for Rivers—Registration opening soon!

You may ask: What’s the GRN Weekend for Rivers?

Surprise! We’ve changed the name of our annual conference to better reflect the Nature of the Beast. This year, we’ve rolled a lot more into our annual conference for river lovers: Field Trips!  A bigger party! Informational sessions about rivers for anybody and everybody!

So, join us for our Weekend for Rivers—and don’t worry, we’ll let you know when registration opens:

2011 GRN Weekend for Rivers: Georgia River Network Annual Conference and Celebration
Theme:  “Everybody’s River: Broadening the River Movement”
When: February 25-26, 2011
Where: Chattahoochee Nature Center, Roswell, Georgia
What: Georgia River Network’s Weekend for Rivers is just what it sounds like—a weekend dedicated to rivers for people who love rivers. Join us for two days of informative workshops and conference sessions, as well as field trips, networking opportunities, awards and a great party!

To sign up to get more updates about Weekend for Rivers, email JesslynShields at jesslyn@garivers.org.  Information and registration will be available soon on our new website: www.garivers.org.

12.    Update Your Organization’s GRN Directory Listing

Georgia River Network is working on updating the Georgia River Network Directory of Watershed Groups. Please take a moment to visit our website to check your listing to make sure it’s up to date.  Please send any edits to info@garivers.org by the end of December. The Directory is located at http://www.garivers.org/resources/directory.html.

13.    Paddle Georgia 2011

Paddle Georgia 2011 is scheduled for June 18-24 on the Oconee River from Athens to Dublin.

From Joe Cook's Blog on Scouting the Oconee: It is Sept. 19, and along with April Ingle, Ben Emanuel and others, I’ve now paddled some 30 miles of the Oconee River in preparation for Paddle Georgia 2011. Late afternoon sun lights the Oconee River near Scull Shoals. To clarify, this is the Oco-KNEE of middle Georgia, not the Oco-EEE of Southeastern Tennessee. The Oco-EEE is famed for Class IV rapids and even has an Olympic venue built upon it–the legacy of the 1996 games. The Oco-EEE hosts tens of thousands of thrillseekers each year on its challenging whitewater. A blossoming canoe/kayak rental business catering to Athens’ college populace notwithstanding, the Oco-KNEE seems a forgotten river. It is small, quiet and lightly used. To read more of this blog post, click here.


14.    Nominate River Network’s National River Hero

In this season of giving, how about giving a gift that keeps on giving? And, no – I’m not talking about a puppy. But, it is something that can instill a similar feeling of friendship, respect and warmth: Give the gift of a River Hero Nomination.

All nominations will be reviewed by a committee of your peers. Five (5) selected individuals will be honored at the National River Rally (June 3-6 in North Charleston, South Carolina). Learn more about the National River Hero Award program and nomination process at: www.riverrally.org/heroes.

Nominations are due by Feb. 4, 2011. Up to 5 individuals will be selected as our 2011 National River Heroes and honored at the 2011 National River Rally in N. Charleston, SC.

15.    Environmental Support Center Calls For New Climate Change Movement

Environmental Support Center has just put out a report, “Everybody’s Movement: Environmental Justice and Climate Change,” about climate change and environmental justice issues in the United States. The report outlines how the mainstream U.S. environmental movement is “highly homogenous by race and class and significantly by gender in its leadership.”
The report says environmental groups should heighten their attention to environmental inequities based on race, class and other differences, including women and children, as people of color already endure disproportionate impacts from environmental degradation. Since one-third of the U.S. population is comprised of people of color, and that by 2042 will constitute a majority, the lack of diversity and inclusiveness in the climate change movement reflects a “potentially fatal disconnect” with stated goals of cutting global emissions by 2050.

To download the  full text of “Everybody’s Movement,” click here.

16.     ICL’s Executive Director’s List of Core Competencies

Use ICL's list of Executive Director Core Competencies for self-assessment, development planning, job descriptions, or determining priorities when recruiting a new E.D. These Executive Director Core Competencies are also the outcomes to ICL’s popular Executive Director Leadership Program. Through years of working with organizations and their leaders, ICL has amassed a list of competencies that great organizational leaders embody. Click here to see the list.

17.    High Potential Diverse Leaders Class of 2011

In an effort to prepare Georgia's "emerging leaders" to succeed in future leadership roles, Georgia Center for Nonprofit’s Nonprofit University, in partnership with the American Express Foundation, launched the High Potential Diverse Leaders program. 2011 will mark the beginning of their Fourth Class of HPDL and they are seeking to recruit the best in class of talented Nonprofit Professionals to join the program. Click here to learn more and download an application.

18.    36 Ways to Motivate Your Nonprofit Employees

Click here to read the article.

19.    Should You Copyright Your Materials?

Click here to read the article.


20.    Fundraising Deadlines

 The following foundations are either new to our list of grants or have upcoming deadlines to submit proposals. To view grant makers that give throughout the year, visit our website at http://www.garivers.org/resources/tools/grants.html.

•    AEC Trust Technical Grants are made to charitable organizations seeking technical assistance. Visit https://online.foundationsource.com/public/home/aec. Deadlines: April 1 and September 1.

•    AGL Resources support environmental stewardship projects such as clean air, conservation, & green space. Unsolicited grants are welcome but are rarely approved. Deadline: Quarterly. Visit http://www.aglresources.com/community/guidelines.aspx.

•    Ben and Jerry's Foundation provides grants ranging from $1,000 - $15,000 for grassroots organizing that leads to environmental change and addresses the root causes of environmental problems. Letters of inquiry may be submitted at any time and are reviewed three times a year. Click here for more information: http://www.benjerry.com/foundation.


•    The mission of the Educational Foundation of America is to improve individual lives and their surroundings through education and awareness, in hopes of bettering humanity and the world we inhabit. The Foundation’s areas of interest include the environment, reproductive freedom, theatre, drug policy reform, democracy, peace and national security issues, education, medicine, and human services. Letters of inquiry may be submitted by email at any time. Visit http://www.efaw.org.

•    Environmental Protection Agency: Source Reduction Assistance Grant Program EPA annually awards grants and cooperative agreements under the Source Reduction Assistance (SRA) Grant Program to support pollution prevention/source reduction and/or resource conservation projects that reduce or eliminate pollution at the source. The grant program does not support projects that rely on reducing pollution by using recycling, treatment, disposal or energy recovery activities. This solicitation announces that EPA’s Regional Pollution Prevention (P2) Program Offices anticipate having up to $130,000, per region, to issue SRA awards in FY 2010. EPA will issue the awards in the form of grants and/or cooperative agreements. All funding will be awarded and managed by the EPA Regional P2 Program Offices. All of the forgoing estimates are subject to the availability of Congressional appropriations. Visit http://www07.grants.gov/search/search.do?&mode=VIEW&flag2006=false&oppId=50765

•    The Home Depot Foundation makes grants to 501(c)(3) tax exempt public charities for several purposes including community cleanup. Grants typically range from $10,000 to $50,000. Preference is given to proposals that encourage volunteerism and community engagement that result in the restoration or conservation of community and wildland forests for a healthier environment that address one or both of the following: restore urban or rural forests for environmental and economic benefit using community volunteers in planting and maintenance efforts, promote sustainable forestry management to ensure responsible harvesting and use of wood resources. Proposals are accepted throughout the year, and grants are awarded four times a year. Visit www.homedepotfoundation.org.

•    The Impact Fund awards grants to non-profit legal firms, private attorneys and/or small law firms who seek to advance social justice in the areas of civil and human rights, environmental justice and/or poverty law. They seek to provide funding for public interest litigation that will potentially benefit a large number of people, lead to significant law reform, or raise public consciousness. The Impact Fund has awarded over $4 million in general and donor-advised grants, since its inception. The Impact Funds awards grants four times per year, with the average grant size being $10,000 - $15,000. The maximum grant amount awarded to any single applicant per year is $25,000. Pre-applications reviewed 4 times a year. Visit http://www.impactfund.org/pages/grants/grants.htm.

•    Ittleson Foundation supports innovative pilot, model and demonstration projects that will help move individuals, communities, and organizations from environmental awareness to environmental activism by changing attitudes and behaviors. Initial letters of inquiry due by April 1st or September 1st. Visit http://www.ittlesonfoundation.org/enviro.html.

•    Mead Westvaco Foundation's primary focus is to enhance the quality of life in communities where MeadWestvaco has major operations and where MeadWestvaco employees and their families live and work. This includes providing direct grant support and encouraging active management and employee leadership involvement and volunteerism. Priorities for contributions in small and/or rural communities, where there are fewer sources of contributions, often address a broad range of needs. Support for urban communities is generally more targeted. Additionally, the Foundation seeks to provide leadership for advancing research, education and public dialogue on public policy issues of special interest, such as the economy, regulation and environmental stewardship. Proposals for grants are accepted throughout the year. Grants range from $250 to $10,000. Visit http://www.meadwestvaco.com/index.htm.

•    Norcross Wildlife Foundation provides funding for equipment and publications. Grants range from $1,000 - $5,000. Visit http://www.norcrossws.org

•    The Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation promotes a sustainable and just social and natural system by supporting grassroots organizations and movements committed to this goal. The Foundation provides support to organizations nationwide in the following funding categories: Protecting the Health and Environment of Communities Threatened by Toxics; Advancing Environmental Justice; Promoting a Sustainable Agricultural and Food System; and Ensuring Quality Reproductive Health Care as a Human Right. Applications are accepted throughout the year. Visit http://www.noyes.org.

•    Techsoup - Discounted Computer Software
Click on this website to purchase computer software at great prices. Must be 501c3. www.techsoup.org.

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