Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day Greetings & News

Earth Day is a great holiday and here in Charlottesville we are so enamored with it, we celebrate it for a whole week. Over the past week or so there have been a number of major announcements and events with Earth Day/Earth Week in mind, capped off by an amazing Eco Fair on Saturday. There's so much going on, some things may have flown under your radar screen.

* In case you didn't hear, for example, last Thursday the City joined with Better World Betty and a number of local businesses to kick off a Reusable Bag Campaign, whereby we're going to distribute thousands of reusable shopping bags (to cut down on use of disposable plastic bags that are clogging our streams, polluting our parks and neighborhoods, and increasing our dependence on fossil fuels). A growing list of local businesses have agreed to provide rebates of at least a nickel a bag for shoppers who bring their own reusable bags. For more info.:

* Today, the City announced a new initiative called "Sundays in the Park," to enable and encourage local residents to enjoy the scenic beauty of the eastern side of McIntire Park (which is typically off-limits to non-golfers) on the last Sunday of each month, from noon til dusk starting this Sunday, April 26, and running through November.

* And last Tuesday, as part of my re-election campaign, I unveiled a series of proposals for increasing Green Space in our City -- see

For more local eco-news, keep tabs on Betty World Betty's blog at or C-Ville Weekly's "Green Scene" blog at

And Happy Earth Day to you and yours!

UPDATE: Oops, almost forgot -- another big piece of news from this past week that hasn't received much attention is that City Council agreed on Monday to a permanent 50% reduction of building permit fees for construction projects that include green roofs.

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