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Welcome to another edition of the EAC Action News, a publication of the Ecology Action Center, the primary resource for environmental education, information, and outreach in McLean County.


Nominations sought for McLean County Green Awards

Did your business, your neighbor, or a colleague or friend do something notable for the local environment last year?  Did someone you know start an innovative recycling program that deserves recognition?  We want to know so that we can help promote the great things going on in our community and encourag
e others to do their part.

Nominations for the World of Difference Award and the McL
ean County Recycling and Waste Reduction Award are now being accepted. The recipients of these awards will be announced on April 9, 2011 at the Illinois S
ustainable Living and Wellness Expo held at the Shirk Center at Illinois Wesleyan University. 

These annual awards recognize outstanding projects, activities, or individuals in McLean County that promote environmental awareness or conserve natural resources. Any business, organization, school, or individual may be nominated for either award. Applications are available at the links below or by stopping by the Ecology Action Center at 202 W College Avenue in Normal; all submissions are due by 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 31, 2011 to The Ecology Action Center.

Green Drinks - March 1, 5:30 p.m.

GDlogo3Join us for Green Drinks - the monthly environmental networking opportunity.  Green Drinks is an informal, social networking group for people working on or interested in environmental issues. Green Drinks groups meet in over 500 cities across the globe. The groups have no political affiliation and no agenda. They serve as a forum for green professionals and other interested community members to meet, socialize and share ideas. Join the conversation! 

Join us, Tuesday, March 1 at 5:30 p.m. at Medici in Normal.  Look for the Green Drinks sign in the downstairs bar.

Fracking Resources

An article in yesterday's Bloomington Pantagraph drew attention to the possible usage of hydraulic fracturing (or fracking) in drilling for natural gas or oil locally, right here in McLean County.  For more information on the risks of this increasingly controversial technique, check out central Illinois' own Sandra Steingraber's articles on the topic from the fall 2010 issue of Orion Magazine or her follow up in this month's issue of Orion Magazine.  

Another resource on this topic is the recent documentary film GASLAND, which is now available for checkout through the EAC's resource library.  However, please don't all rush at once - we only have one copy so calling ahead to make sure it is in is a good idea.  See the trailer here.

The expo is coming!  The expo is coming!

ISLWE10_color 2In just more than a month, the Illinois Sustainable Living and Wellness Expo will be here.  Mark your calendar for Saturday, April 9 at Illinois Wesleyan University's Shirk Center. This is the premier green event for all of central Illinois and has something for everyone - energy efficiency, local foods, natural and organic products, good local music,
dance, and more!

WGLT and Good to Go are partnering with the ISLWE to encourage attendees to get to the expo via sustainable transportation.  Friends of the Constitution Trail will provide free valet-style bike parking for all individuals biking to the event! 

Also new this year are a Thursday evening panel discussion on faith and sustainability as well as the central Illinois premiere of Mad City Chickens sponsored by the Heartland Local Food Network.  

More details are to come, so for the latest news check out the event website or follow the ISLWE on Facebook!

Interested in Permaculture?

In addition to our usual offerings of rain barrel workshops, composting and vermicomposting classes and more, the EAC is considering offering a permaculture workshop this year, partnering with our friends from Stelle at Midwest Permaculture.

What is permaculture, you might ask?  Well according to Bill Wilson of Midwest Permaculture, "...[it] is a creative and artful way of living, where people and nature are both preserved and enhanced by thoughtful planning, the careful use of resources, mimicking the patterns found in nature (bio-mimicry) and a respectful approach to life. Thus embraced, these attributes create an environment where all may thrive for untold generations." 

In short, it is a strategy towards sustainable gardening, landscaping, food-production, land-use, and more.  For more information, check out their website at  Better yet, if you are interested, send us a quick email at and we can keep you in the loop if we get a class scheduled here locally.

As always, we look forward to seeing you at the Ecology Action Center! Please stop by anytime Monday - Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or call us at (309) 454-3169 for information on our latest programs and events or to get answers to questions on recycling, household hazardous waste, clean water, and more!

The Ecology Action Center is a not-for-profit walk-in information and environmental education center with a mission to inspire and assist residents of McLean County in creating, strengthening and preserving a healthy environment.

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