Invironment

In This Issue
Coal-Free Indy
Grant Match
Mounds Greenway
Staff Updates
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All Aboard!
Please join us for an important discussion on the future of the Hoosier State passenger rail service from Indianapolis to Chicago.

Date:
Friday, August 29, 2014
9 am to 12 noon

Location:
Metropolitan Indianapolis Board of Realtors
1912 N. Meridian St.
Indianapolis
(free parking in rear of building)

RSVP to Tim Maloney, tmaloney@hecweb.org
Stunning Victory: Indianapolis's Coal Ash Lagoons to Close
coal ash/power plant

Indiana is the American epicenter of coal ash sludge lagoons, having more than any state in the nation. Earlier this month, a major breakthrough happened: Indianapolis Power and Light (IPL) declared that they would be closing all of their eight dirty Indianapolis-based lagoons, starting in 2016. This is a stunning victory for public health and part of a larger victory, led by Sierra Club, which will result in the ending of coal burning at IPL's Harding Street plant by 2016!

HEC played an instrumental role in raising visibility of IPL's dangerous coal ash lagoons: HEC released the first-ever comprehensive report of Indiana's coal ash problem, called Our Waters at Risk. A major finding from this report was that, in 1989, the concentration of several dangerous pollutants had exceeded national drinking water standards. This troubling discovery prompted a call by a coalition of public interest groups, organized by HEC, for the Marion County Health Department to pursue groundwater testing in the vicinity of IPL's lagoons and press IPL to pursue its own groundwater testing.

A widely-covered press conference, in the backdrop of a first-ever HEC-Sierra Club billboard on the dangers of coal ash, put a needed spotlight on the dangerous risks of coal ash contamination. This effort, on top of the tremendous organizing efforts by the Sierra Club and many other partners in the faith, public health, consumer rights, university, and social justice communities, put sufficient pressure on IPL to do the right thing!
Jack Johnson Will Match Your Gift Until Sept. 1st!

Environmentally-focused singer-songwriter Jack Johnson's charity is matching donations to HEC through September 1st, up to a total of $2,500! 

Help us reach the match by contributing to HEC!
Alternative Plan to Mounds Reservoir Unveiled

As an alternative to the proposed Mounds Reservoir, which would have serious ecological impacts, the Hoosier Environmental Council is proposing the Mounds Greenway - White River Conservation Area. This would be a linear park and trail connecting Muncie to Anderson that would allow a hiker or bicyclist to travel from the Cardinal Greenway in Muncie to Mounds State Park to the Anderson city trail system.

The Greenway would protect the free-flowing West Fork White River as well as conserve the forest, wetlands, and riparian habitats in the river's floodplain. The Mounds Greenway will also provide multiple outdoor recreational opportunities, such as trails for hiking and bike riding, access points for fishing, kayaking, and canoeing, camping and picnic areas, and wildlife observation.

The Mounds Greenway plan was developed in collaboration with Heart of the River and the Robert Cooper Audubon Society. For more information about the proposed Mounds Greenway, click here.
HEC Team Expansion

HEC welcomes three new members to our staff this month!

Amanda Shepherd is our new Senior Program Associate.  Amanda will play a key role in outreach, assist our Policy Directors with policy research & educational material development, and manage some water & energy policy projects.   Amanda has a B.S. and M.S. in geology and has a diverse background that includes academic research, work in the private sector, and teaching.

Morgan Whitacre will be our new, full-time Community Relations and Development Coordinator. Morgan was most notably the Finance Director for the highly effective Freedom Indiana organization. He has a law degree and diverse experience in political fundraising.

Sharlene Fish Kipfer will be our new, part-time Community Relations and Donor Coordinator.  Shar will manage a small portfolio of donors as part of HEC's Donor Engagement Team as well as handle an array of administrative activities.   Shar has a strong fundraising and advocacy background.   She has a master's in public policy.

Visit our staff page to learn more.
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