Topic: In the News
The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County, McHenry County College Sustainability Center and…invite the public to a special presentation by Betty Trummel, retired District #47 educator, who has just returned from Antarctica. On December 2, Betty and 75 other women in science from around the world set sail on a three-week science and leadership expedition to the Antarctic Peninsula. The expedition, called Homeward Bound, took place on board a ship named Ushuaia, named after its home port in Argentina.
Betty will provide us the exciting details about the challenges and rewards of participating in science research and expeditions in the Earth’s southernmost continent and ocean. She will talk about the role of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) in working in this remote, harsh and unique environment and will also discuss how the Earth’s Polar regions are important areas for the study of climate change and how the ecosystems on both land and water are impacted by a warming Earth. In addition, Betty will share a bit about her research and student trip to Arctic Svalbard this past summer. She will have traveled from 79 degrees north to 65 degrees south in a matter of months!
When: Tuesday, January 24 at 7 PM. Doors open at 6:30.
Where: Luecht Conference Center, McHenry County College, 8900 U.S. Highway 14 in Crystal Lake. Event is free to the public, but donations appreciated.
You can make a donation right now through PayPal or mail a check before the end of the year to:EDMC 110 S Johnson St, Ste 106 Woodstock IL 60098
Greetings to all of you! Whether you have been with us for decades, years or are new to our organization, know that each & every one of you is an essential part of the work & successes of the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County. You are the energy & force that keeps our organization going! Thank you for all that you do.
As members & volunteers, you commit daily to protecting & preserving our natural world & educating our community about the value of a healthy environment. Because of that commitment, we have an influential voice out there in McHenry County. To take advantage of this, we have been busy growing & changing to make our efforts more impactful. In addition to the annual events that we do such as our Earth Day Celebration, documentary screenings, County Fair booth, It’s Our River Day, fundraising & member events, & many more, we have some big accomplishments to highlight. We ask for your continued support through an end-of-the-year gift to help us keep building on these accomplishments.
- Recycling: We organized drives around the county keeping tens of thousands of pounds of waste out of the landfills, including electronics.
- Water & Natural Resources Protection: We planted hundreds of plants for monarchs & other pollinators this year at four sites in the county. We also advocated for a Water Resources Specialist position at the County level & educated our governmental bodies about the dangers of coal tar sealants.
- Styrofoam Recycling Project: The technology for Styrofoam recycling changed quickly, so our efforts had to shift quickly as well. We began a crowd sourcing program to raise money to continue our successful Styrofoam recycling project.
- The Green Spot: Our little store has done big things this year, collecting & reselling books to raise thousands of dollars to help keep our lights on & computers humming to make sure we can communicate our work to you & the public.
- BYOBag: Our efforts to reduce the use of plastic bags has gone big too, helping 20 municipalities & the county spread the word about not using paper or plastic when shopping, & helping the City of Woodstock to celebrate BYOB for a whole year!
- Strategic Planning: This year we wrote a 3-year Strategic Plan that includes the hiring of a Part-Time Executive Director. This is a big step for our organization, as it will allow us to have someone specifically designated for public outreach.
As you plan for your year-end giving, please consider a generous donation to the Defenders. We are asking for your financial help to move us along in our goals. Please let your dollars follow your heart!
And to keep abreast of all that your donation is accomplishing, please “Like” us on Facebook, read our quarterly newsletter – “EarthConnect”, check out our eNews in your inbox every Wednesday, & visit our website at www.mcdef.org!
We sincerely apologize to anyone affected by the unexpected early closure of our recycling drive on Saturday, December 10th in Woodstock. Our truck was completely filled by 11 AM and our volunteers were unable to accept items beyond capacity. Those affected are welcome to take their items, including TVs and other electronics, to our warehouse in Elgin at 501 Davis Road. Phone# is 827-429-1926. Donations for TVs, computer monitors and batteries apply. Again, we are truly sorry our drive was forced to end early due to volume of items. Thank you for your understanding and we look forward to seeing you in March for our next drive and other Defenders’ events.
On Thursday, December 8, Citizens’ Climate Lobby will be the focus of the acclaimed National Geographic series “Years of Living Dangerously,” which has helped to focus national attention on climate change and the organizations working on solutions that individuals, communities, companies, and governments can use to address it.
The McHenry County Chapter of Citizens’ Climate Lobby will celebrate this recognition with a public viewing party, to be held at McHenry County College, Room 166-7, from 7:00pm-9:00pm. The public is invited to the screening, which is offered free of charge.
“At a time when many Americans despair about the partisan gridlock in Washington, CCL volunteers provide hope by bringing Republicans and Democrats together to work on climate solutions,” said Mark Reynolds, Executive Director of Citizens’ Climate Lobby. “This episode of ‘Years of Living Dangerously’ highlights the work of Jay Butera, one of those amazing volunteers.”
Citizens Climate Lobby works to build the political will for climate change solutions such as a national, revenue neutral carbon fee-and-dividend system. Since the organization’s 2007 founding, it has empowered ordinary citizens to hold direct meetings with congressional representatives, local officeholders and business leaders, and other influential stakeholders as they make the case for fair, effective climate action.
The episode will be preceded by a message from special guests, including members of the “Years of Living Dangerously” cast.
Local sponsors include Citizens’ Climate Lobby, the McHenry County College Sustainability Center, The McHenry County League of Women Voters, and the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County.
The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County is again collecting political signs.
If you do not plan to re-use your signs following the election, signs can be brought to the Defenders’ warehouse, care of Chicago Logistic Service, 501 Davis Road, Elgin, Illinois. There will be a bin at the back of the building, available any time. You can also bring them to the Defenders Recycling Drive in Woodstock on December 10, from 9am to noon, at the Soil and Water Conservation District building, 2222 S Dean Street. (southeast corner of Route 14 and Dean Street.)
Woodstock, IL – October 21, 2016- On October 18th, The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County sent information regarding the dangers of coal tar sealants to over 250 establishments throughout McHenry County. Recipients included city/village leaders, Park, Road and School Districts, hospitals, libraries, daycare centers and theaters. Included in the information was a six-page factsheet from the United States Geological Survey, which concludes that coal tar sealants contain extremely high levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon compounds (PAHs), “which have been known to cause cancer, mutations, birth defects or death in fish and other aquatic organisms.” Coal tar is a known human carcinogen and asphalt sealant, therefore, is recommended for sealing paved surfaces.
The Environmental Defenders strongly encourages that our communities cease the use of coal tar sealants on pavement and reports that eight municipal and township members of the Barrington Area Council of Governments (BACOG) adopted a resolution in January 2016 committing to not purchase or apply coal tar or other high PAH sealants.
Founded in 1970, The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County is a non-profit, membership organization dedicated to the preservation and improvement of the environment in McHenry County.
The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County
110 S. Johnson Street, Suite 106
Woodstock, IL 60098.
www.mcdef.org. Like us on Facebook! Twitter
WOODSTOCK – In July of 2016, the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County reluctantly ended their Styrofoam recycling program and closed their many drop-off sites. The increased popularity of the program resulted in rising costs due to greater and greater quantities of collected material. Additionally, the Defenders were limited in the number of responsible recyclers that would accept the material. Thankfully, the Dart Corporation recently reached out to them to provide logistical support once the Styrofoam is collected. However, financial resources are still needed to provide transportation and labor getting foam to and from collection sites, once they are reestablished. This is the reason the Defenders just launched a fundraising campaign called “Cloud Based Styrofoam”. They are seeking donations to fully fund three to five years of the collection program, to reopen local sites and to expand efforts into neighboring communities. Read more about the campaign at Generosity.com or by clicking this link: https://goo.gl/ygPa6s
With the news attention being given to the plight of the program through the Chicago Tribune and Northwest Herald newspapers, by WBBM radio and, recently, through a story aired on WGN’s 10:00 news, the Defenders are looking forward to catapulting the Styrofoam recycling campaign forward. If you have questions, please contact the Environmental Defenders office at 815-338-0393, or Ken Santowski directly, at 847-910-2985
ALGONQUIN – McHenry County residents will be able to help clean up the Fox River by participating in the ninth annual “It’s Our River Day” celebration Sept. 17.
The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County and the village of Algonquin are sponsoring the local celebration of the statewide initiative from 1 to 4 p.m. at Cornish Park, 101 S. Harrison St. The initiative was created in 2004 by the Illinois River Coordinating Council and former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn to create awareness of the state’s major waterway.
Volunteers will help clean up the Fox River while learning more about local environmental groups. Some local organizations participating in this year’s river cleanup event include the Land Conservancy of McHenry County, Illinois Paddling Council, Algonquin Rotary Club, Friends of the Fox, Sierra Club and McHenry Conservation District.
There also will be a live water rescue demonstration provided by the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Protection District during the event.
Event co-coordinator Cynthia Kanner, with the Environment Defenders, said about 70 to 100 volunteers attended the celebration last year.
“It’s a day to just to celebrate the Fox River,” Kanner said. “We’d love to have more people come down this year and help appreciate that part of the river.”