Conservation Montgomery 

September 18, 2012

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Two years later:  A county bill strong on paper but weak in effectiveness
Residents Express Concern Over Gaps in  
Environmental Site Design Legislation 

By Agnes Blum
Writer for Conservation Montgomery   

Silver Spring residents have bid farewell to one of the area's great sledding hills. The steep slope, at the center of the Chelsea School compound on Pershing Avenue, will no longer be the fast track for sleighs in the snow. Instead, it will become part of a
63-townhouse development that is set to break ground in the summer of 2013.
ESD slope
Prime slope for snow sledding at the Chelsea School site  
that will be lost along with mature trees with townhouses to come 
But local conservationists are worried about more than losing just a great winter playground. They're concerned that the developer won't follow county guidelines that guarantee stormwater retention, and that the county's rezoning of the land to allow so many townhouses has subverted the intent of environmental protection laws. 


In 2010, the Montgomery County Council passed Expedited Bill 40-10, amending the county's stormwater code to include environmental site design (ESD). The bill was passed in order to comply with the Maryland Stormwater Management Act of 2007. 


"There's an enormous gap between the intention of the law, the letter of the law and how it is being implemented on the ground," said Diane Cameron, conservation director for the Audubon Naturalist Society and a founding board member of Conservation Montgomery.  "The gap is disturbing. The intent is being thwarted."


The idea behind environmental site design is to capture as much rainwater on site as possible, using vegetation, soil and other rainwater harvesting practices -- such as rain gardens and green roofs -- to avoid runoff that will end up polluting local waterways. 

                                     Click here to read the full story.....

Community Volunteers Reach Out to Residents on Home Energy Efficiency

By David Hauck
Montgomery County Sierra Club &
Member of the Conservation Montgomery Advisory Council

David Hauck 

We can help you can save energy and money this fall and winter.


The Montgomery County Sierra Club is offering presentations throughout the county on the "Top Ten Energy Saving Tips" to help homeowners plan energy conservation projects.  Tips include information on how much energy and money you can save on efficient lighting, proper insulation and air sealing, and the use of programmable thermostats. There are also tips on the benefits of home energy audits and money saving government and utility company incentive programs. Finally, Sierra Club members involved in the project will help people who come to the event plan their energy saving projects and follow up with them with additional resources and information to help get the projects done. To make this project a success, we need people like you, to host presentations!


Here's how it works:



1) We provide trained presenters who are local Sierra Club members who have taken steps to make their homes more energy efficient. We supply informational handouts and follow up after the event to provide additional information to attendees. All we need is a host for these presentations and a site (a home, a community association meeting room, faith-based institution).

2) Once the date, time and place for the presentation are set, we help you advertise it to your neighbors and/or other Sierra Club members in your neighborhood. If an organization sponsors the presentation, we can provide sample emails and a newsletter announcement to advertise the event.  

3) At the event, the presenter collects contact information from attendees who would like to receive additional energy efficiency information.

4) After the presentations, we send thank you emails and conduct follow up calls with additional information on home energy efficiency.

Please become part of our energy-saving community by signing up today to host a presentation. C
ontact: Susan Eisendrath, Energy Efficiency Project Co-Lead, susan.eisendrath@gmail for more information, to become a presenter, or to host a presentation.


Working together to enhance our quality of life.