Wednesday, January 09, 2008

And the Winner in New Hampshire is the Pine Barrens!

With the New Hampshire primary now over and all the political buzz shifting to Michigan, South Carolina and elsewhere, I'd like to report on a real winner in the Granite State. Just before Christmas news was released that the Ossipee Pine Barrens received $2.34 million through the federal Forest Legacy Program.

This is great news for one of New Hampshire's most endangered ecosystems. And great news indeed in the Bush years, an epic that won't go down in the history books for environmental stewardship.

The Pine Barrens has been a top priority of the NH Nature Conservancy and they will take the newly appropriated money and acquire 715 acres of this threatened habitat in the towns of Freedom, Madison, and Ossipee. These new lands will increase the Conservancy's Pine Barrens Preserve to nearly 6,000 acres. Great news for our planet. Thanks to Senators Judd Gregg and John Sununu and the Nature Conservancy for helping protect this special ecosystem.

Now back to your regularly scheduled presidential campaign. While my predictions for the winners in NH were only half correct, here's a prediction that I'm making that will be 100% on target. No matter who replaces George W. Bush in 2009, Republican or Democrat, it will be better news for our planet than what we've been dealing with in the past eight years. Still, I don't see any of the candidates, Republican or Democrat making the environment a priority. And not including Global Warming fear-mongering here. I'm talking about land protection, population sustainability, increased funding for our parks and forests, alternative energy sources that are truly sustainable, and the need to reduce our destructive and narcissistic levels of consumption. Put that in your campaign rhetoric McCain and Clinton!

(photo-Pine Barren trailhead in Ossipee)

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