|In today's edition of "Believe it or Not" comes word that ONCE AGAIN a cohort of 12 sponsors has introduced a bill (HB 755) in the Pennsylvania House targeting the "special funds." Including, yes, the Keystone and Environmental Stewardship Funds. Naturally, we oppose any effort to divert these funds to general expenditures and are monitoring this legislation. Visit our Take Action page of the website to keep tabs on developments as they occur.
Of course, a key reason for our constant opposition to these types of fund raids is that Keystone/ESF are vital economic drivers. Witness this article in a recent PA Environment Digest about the new ranger office at Mount Davis (Pennsylvania's high point) in the Forbes State Forest. Local companies. Local jobs. Somerset County thanks the Keystone/ESF!
This also flies in the face of poll data released yesterday by DCNR (find out more with a click to the graphic above) proving YET AGAIN how important these places have been and continue to be to Pennsylvanians.
The next Lunch & Learn comes to you on February 11. "Mammals of Pennsylvania" will be the subject with Mindy Marker, environmental educator at the Little Buffalo State Park complex (which includes the Ibberson and Boyd Big Tree conservation areas). Tune in the Facebook page or YouTube channel at noon on the 11th. Unfortunately, no, pandas will NOT be included in the discussion but if you want to watch this one from the Toronto Zoo play in the snow, click the photo. Come on, you know you want to.
You will notice over the course of the rest of 2021 that PPFF will focus on the 50th anniversary (in May) of Pennsylvania's Environmental Rights Amendment. There will be all manner of ways for you to exercise your creativity in thinking about the impact of these 60 very significant words. Stay tuned here, on our social media, and through the website.
"So. Earth. Pale blue dot. We will fail you not." If you clicked on last week's "In Closing" you were treated to a replay of youth poet laureate Amanda Gorman and her stunning reading at President Biden's inauguration. Prepare to be stunned further with this video of "Earthrise" from 2018. Count the number of times I've spouted to Friend Wendy that "I don't know. I just don't 'do' poetry." Multiply that by the number of times people have had to hear "I don't know. I just do 'do' rap." Cue "Hamilton."
Goodness, Pam. If you're not really careful you're going to have your little mind expanded! Not to the extent of tolerating free form jazz but you can't have everything.
"News of Note" concludes this week with a sad note on the passing of Patrick Solano at the age of 95. Mr. Solano was, amazingly, a counselor and confidante to NINE governors from both parties. Respected by all in ways that are now considered "old-fashioned," the environmental education center at Frances Slocum State Park bears his name. PPFF has established a memorial fund in Mr. Solano's honor, contributions to which will directly benefit environmental programming at the center. Contribute at ppff.gives/pat-solano-enviro-ed-center.