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Dear Friend,

You are receiving this special alert from the Friends Network facilitators because we know you care about conservation and recreation lands in Massachusetts. Two important issues, which will greatly impact our forests and parks for many years to come, require your attention: (1) Question 2, the Bottle Bill, and (2) H4325—An Act Relative to the Protection of Old Growth Forests.

Please read the information below and act now to reduce litter everywhere and to protect what's left of Old Growth Forests in Massachusetts. Thank you for all you do!

Massachusetts Forest and Park Friends Network


Yes-on-2-BannerPlease Vote Yes on
Question 2

On November 4, we will have an opportunity to reduce litter from plastic bottles in our forests, parks, beaches and trails. As volunteers for State Parklands, you know better than most how much time and effort it takes to pick up plastic bottles in the landscape and how the decaying plastic degrades our beautiful natural and recreational areas.

STATS:

  • Each year 30,000 tons of non-carbonated beverage bottles are buried in landfills, burned in waste-to-energy plants, or tossed onto our streets, parks and beaches;
  • It took 19,000 signatures (all of you who pick up trash in your parks and neighborhoods) and Senator Michael O. Moore to get the Bottle Bill on the Ballot;
  • Opponents of the Bottle Bill raised $8.7 million to fight this bill;
  • Continued grassroots support is critical to passing the Bottle Bill. Find out how you can help.
Please join our friend, former Massachusetts Chief Park Ranger Curt Rudge in supporting the Bottle Bill. Ranger Curt: Vote Yes on 2 to Stop Litter

The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection wants you to know why we all should support the Bottle Bill


Friends—Protect Old Growth Forests in Massachusetts—Please Call Your Legislators!

Old growth forests in Massachusetts need your help! A critical piece of legislation currently pending before the House Committee on Bills in the Third Reading. H4325 [Calendar Number 671], An Act Relative to the Protection of Old Growth Forests, filed by Representative Stephen Kulik (D-Worthington), would provide permanent protection for the last remaining stands of old growth forest in Massachusetts. Please contact your legislator today to let them know that this bill is important to you! Please ask your legislator, by email, phone or letter, to speak with both the Chair of the House Committee on Bills in the Third Reading (Representative Speliotis) and to Speaker Deleo in support of this legislation.
 

It is our hope that the Committee will report this bill out as soon as possible so that it can be voted upon by the full House and then by the Senate.
 
Very few truly ancient stands of trees exist today, even in our most remote woodlands.  In fact, less than 1,200 acres of old growth (areas undisturbed by human activity) exist statewide. Old-growth forests are extremely rare, and serve as “living laboratories” where students, scientists, and the public can learn more about forest development, tree genetics and climate change. Although 3 million of Massachusetts’ 5 million acres are forested, only 1,200 acres of this land is original old-growth forest.
 
All known old-growth forest in Massachusetts resides within “forest reserves” or “parklands”; these are state lands designated for recreation and nature.  Despite their small size, these ecological rarities provide “living laboratories” for scientists, students and the public, and must be permanently protected as part of our mission to preserve our natural heritage for the next generation.
 
The value of these rapidly disappearing old-growth forests to people and wildlife is immeasurable; in forests that have not been disturbed for hundreds of years, canopy layers, rich soils, and fallen trees create rich and diverse habitats for many species of birds, insects and reptiles. These areas also act as carbon sinks – helping to sequester global warming gases.
 
Currently, old-growth forests in Massachusetts are not lawfully protected from timber cutting, only by policy that could change at any time.
 
An Act Authorizing the Establishment of Old-Growth Forest Reserves would protect old-growth forests from logging and development by designating old growth forest on state lands already designated as forest reserves.
 
Thank you for taking the time to consider supporting H4325, An Act Relative to the Protection of Old Growth Forests!
 
Bill H4325 Text and History

Mass Audubon - Protecting Old Growth Forests


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