Weekly Environment Grantee News!

Hello All,

In what will hopefully be a weekly occurrence, The Overbrook Foundation's Environment Program proudly presents "Environment Grantee Round-Up - All the Sustainable News that's Fit to Print!"*

In a huge coup for the Dogwood Alliance and forests in the Southern U.S., International Paper – the largest paper supplier in the United States – has agreed to expand the acreage of FSC certified forests and committed $7.5 million to conserve forests in hotspot eco-regions. It has also agreed to work with Dogwood Alliance to map endangered and other high conservation value forests and to discourage the future conversion of natural hardwood forests to pine plantations. This agreement comes after years of advocacy by groups like the Dogwood Alliance. Small in size but big in impact, the Alliance has helped convince companies like Staples, FedEx, Johnson & Johnson, and McDonald’s to upgrade their environmental and paper-procurement policies. This gradual build-up of support by clients of International Paper then created a domino effect, where paper producers like Domtar and Gerogia-Pacific also began working with Dogwood, and which in turn finally caught the attention of International Paper. Read and watch more about Dogwood's success here.

The Alliance for Climate Education was mentioned in a New York Times article on the "Next Generation Science Standards" - a sweeping set of suggestions to bring current science curricula in line with scientific changes, including teaching about climate change as early as middle school. The standards aren't binding, but 26 states have committed to seriously considering their adoption.

Green for All released a report, "Staying Green and Growing Jobs:Green Infrastructure Operations and Maintenance as Career Pathway Stepping Stones," in conjunction with American Rivers. Among other highlights, it notes that water utilities investing in green infrastructure can outsource operations and maintenance (O&M) work to workforce development programs that train individuals in green infrastructure – and that in fact, some already do. Operations and maintenance work also gives disadvantaged community members access to jobs and career on-ramps while performing the work required by water utilities.

CREST (the Center for Responsible Travel) is holding its Second Executive Symposium for Innovators in Coastal Tourism Development in Los Cabos, Mexico on May 15-18. CREST was one of the many organizations involved in preventing the proposed mega-development in Cabo Pulma (along with fellow Overbrook grantee Pronatura Noroeste), and it works to ensure that sustainable development becomes the norm, not the exception. Co-hosted by Stanford University, this conference will bring together a select group of developers, designers, operators, and investors involved in sustainable development of large-scale coastal resort and vacation home projects in ways that are integrated with local communities and the native landscape. You can check out the details here.

And that's it for now - check back in next week for more!

* Name be changed in future posts for the sake of brevity. Suggestions welcome!