Fri, 25 September 2009
If state budget negotiators succeed, the very nature of what makes Pennsylvania just that - "Penn's Woods" - will be destroyed. That's because many of our elected officials seem unwilling or unable to stand up to the oil and gas drilling industry's million-dollar lobbying scheme. They need to hear from you: don't support any budget that harms Pennsylvania's forests and parks.
The proposed budget would be devastating for Pennsylvania’s environment. First, the budget sacrifices the integrity of our state forests by rushing to lease them for drilling. Secondly, it allows energy production companies to drill without enacting a severance tax. And it repeals the Oil and Gas Lease Fund that for 55 years has provided revenue for protection and management of state parks and forests.
As if that's not enough, while gas drilling fat cats are handed their sweetheart deal, the state's theaters, museums, bingo halls and volunteer fire departments are given the shaft, with surprise taxes proposed for cultural events and small games of chance. Hmmm... sound like a good deal for Pennsylvanians? Not so much.
Watch PennFuture's president and CEO Jan Jarrett make the argument against the current budget proposal. The speech was part of a recent press conference with House legislators and a broad coalition of state partners standing up to protect our most treasured state resources.
We cannot let the state legislature destroy Penn’s woods and the very fabric of our state. The short-sighted sacrifice of our public land and wholesale concessions to the multi-national energy companies that want to drill here cannot be tolerated. This is a taxpayer rip-off.
Contact your state representative today and say "no!" to No-sylvania. Then make a tax-deductible contribution to PennFuture so that we can continue to work for a just future where nature, our communities and the economy thrive.
Category:Vidcast -- posted at: 6:01 AM
Thu, 23 April 2009
How much "green" will Pennsylvania get from the federal stimulus bill, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act? PennFuture's director of outreach Christine Knapp counts the ways our environment and economy will benefit during a recent appearance on NBC 10's Live @ Issue program with Steve Highsmith.
In addition to federal dollars flowing to improve the state's public transportation infrastructure, sewer and water line upgrades, and important energy efficiency projects, the stimulus bill also provides significant new funding for green jobs development. Philadelphia in particular is poised to capitalize now from new, sustainable jobs, thanks to hard work that the Sustainable Business Network and the Green Economy Task Force have done over the past year to create linkages between employers, trainers, and job-seekers. Similar work is underway just outside Philadelphia as part of the Smart Energy Initiative, a project of the Chester County Economic Development Council. Recognized as the 2009 Regional Economic Development Project of the Year by the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, the Smart Energy Initiative is bringing together employers and other partners to create workforce and economic development opportunities in the clean energy sector.
Not to worry... there's plenty to go around. Check out PennFuture's special edition of Green Power Update that has a rundown of new federal and state funding for clean energy and energy efficiency projects. Whether you are a homeowner, business owner, entrepreneur or aficionado there's something in it for you. You can learn more about why it matters at one of our upcoming events-- our global warming conference in northeastern Pennsylvania, or our clean energy conference in Harrisburg.