WV Rivers News: Inflation Reduction Act, Candidate Forum, Events

Inflation Reduction Act Makes Historic Investment in Climate and Conservation

Here’s some good news! In mid-August, Congress passed the Inflation Reduction Act after months of intense negotiations.

The Inflation Reduction Act makes historic investments in science-based climate and conservation measures that are good for West Virginia.

Some of the ways the Act helps West Virginians:

  • It is the largest investment ever to address climate change. It is estimated to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% from 2005 levels by the end of the decade.
  • It provides $10 billion for rural communities’ transitions to renewable energy; and invests $3 billion in community capacity building to address disproportionate environmental and public health impacts from pollution and climate change.
  • It improves public health by permanently re-authorizing the Black Lung Excise Tax to support the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund.
  • It encourages clean energy use through consumer and manufacturer tax-credits and incentives.
  • It protects public lands by providing funding for the Forest Service, National Park Service, the “Forest Legacy Program”, and the National Wildlife Refuge system.
  • It reforms federal public lands oil and gas leasing to protect taxpayers.

Candidate Forum – Huntington September 13

Join the West Virginia Climate Alliance, Marshall University, Citizen Action Group, Environmental Council, and League of Women Voters for a candidate forum on Tuesday, September 13 from 6:30pm to 8:00pm. Stay tuned for additional candidate forums in the Charleston and Morgantown area.

Candidates from congressional district 1, senatorial district 5, and delegate districts 24, 25, 26, and 27 are invited to participate in this non-partisan, educational forum. Voters will have the opportunity to hear candidates discuss the future of West Virginia energy, jobs, and justice through the lens of climate change. Candidates will answer written questions from the public and partner organizations during this moderated event. Refreshments will be provided. Register for free and submit your questions here.

Listening to Ohio River Valley Residents

In mid-July, Ohio River coordinator, Heather Sprouse, traveled along the Ohio River to hear from residents who are deeply connected to the river and their communities during a series of listening sessions. Now, we’re hosting a virtual listening session on August 24 at 3:00pm. You are invited to share your vision for the Ohio River during this online discussion.

Please join WV Rivers and partners on Wednesday, Aug. 24 via Zoom to be part of the conversation. Register here. If you’re unable to attend, feel free to reach out and we’ll make sure your voice is heard.

Leave a Clean Water Legacy

Did you know that August is National Make-A-Will Month? What kind of legacy do you want to leave for West Virginia’s exceptional rivers and streams?

If you’d like to consider a legacy gift to WV Rivers, or maybe you already have but haven’t documented it with us, contact Chett Pritchett, Development Officer.

Guest Post: Summer Fireflies

We published this story in The Intake, one of our specialized e-newsletters, and thought readers of WV Rivers News would enjoy it as well. The article is by Krista Noe, assistant zoologist at the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources.

One of the most magical aspects of summer in our region is the amazing display by fireflies. Fireflies, also called lightning bugs, are a type of beetle belonging to the Lampyridae family. In our region, fireflies begin displaying in May and end around August. Therefore, there is still time to catch some great displays before the season ends!

Here are some fireflies you may see on these wild and wonderful summer evenings:

The big dipper firefly (Photinus pyralis): This is a common yard species that you have likely been seeing already! They have a yellow flash and a tendency to fly slightly downwards then upwards as they flash. You will see them in greatest numbers around dusk, although they can keep flashing later into the night.

Photo: Photinus pyralis Art Farmer. CC BY-SA 2.0.

Photuris: This genus of firefly usually has green flashes. You may see single green flashes or a more prolonged flash, which is indicative of a “slow glow!” Photuris usually start flashing after dusk and continue into the night.

Photo: Photuris by Bruce Martin. CC BY-SA 2.5.

The Potomac River firefly (Photuris potomaca): This firefly is special to our region. It can be found around and after dusk along cobble shorelines with young trees and drift piles of the Potomac drainage. Like other Photuris, this species emits a green flash. It can be identified by its unbroken “flash train” of one flash per every 0.5 to 0.9 seconds. Since there is little documentation about the display season for this species, we are not sure when exactly it stops flashing in the season!

Photo: Photuris potomaca photographed in New Jersey, in July 2014 from the awaytogarden.com blog

Because we are still trying to learn more about the Potomac River firefly, if you think you see one matching its description, or any other interesting flashers, you can email Krista Noe, assistant zoologist at the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, at Krista.L.Noe@wv.gov.

Happy firefly viewing!

Opportunities to Learn, Connect, and Get Inspired

Buckhannon RiverFest – August 27

Stop By and Say Hi at the Morgantown Pride Block Party – August 28

WV Rivers is so excited to be part of the 4th Morgantown Pride Block Party. The fun starts at 1:00PM on Sunday, August 28, at the Morgantown Farmers Market from 1:00pm – 8:00pm.

Family Fun at the Freshwater Folk Festival – September 10

The Freshwater Folk Festival at the White Sulphur Springs National Fish Hatchery is a fun day for the whole family. The event features food; live music; crafts; exhibits; and hands-on educational activities designed to foster understanding, appreciation and conservation of freshwater resources.

E-Council’s 2022 Environmental Summit – September 24 and 25

The 2022 Environmental Summit will bring together local and state environmental organizations in West Virginia to facilitate conversation around the opportunities and challenges facing the state’s environmental movement.

The event is free with a suggested donation of $25/day which covers food and lodging at the WVU Natural Resource Center outside of Morgantown.

Bring your hiking boots and visit nearby Coopers Rock State Forest. Sleep in a yurt! Stick around on Sunday and go zip lining! Live music on Saturday evening and time to relax around a campfire.

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