Quick Hits: Pipeline tree sitters, gray wolves under fire, and North Carolina joins Paris Agreement

Virginia Tree-Sitters Protest the Mountain Valley Pipeline

Tree-sitters in Montgomery County, VA, have been quietly protesting the controversial Mountain Valley natural gas pipeline since September. Erected on 4-foot-by-8-foot wooden platforms in white oak and white pine trees, two protestors at a time have been living in tree stands along the pipeline easement on the private land of Cletus Bohon. Bohon is one of hundreds of property owners in Southwest Virginia who were sued by Mountain Valley over access to their land. The proposed pipeline will span 303 miles from northwestern West Virginia to southern Virginia. Opponents of the pipeline worry that the project will have detrimental effects on forests, waterways and protected wildlife.


House Removes Gray Wolf from Endangered Species Act

On November 16, the U.S. House voted 196-180 to pass a bill that would remove the Gray Wolf in the lower 48 states from federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. Proponents of the bill cite concerns to the economic impact that Gray Wolves have on ranchers. Opponents argue that, while Gray Wolf populations have grown since 1974 when the species was originally listed as endangered, the Gray Wolf still faces many threats and should remain protected. The bill now moves to the Senate.


Governor Roy Cooper Aims to Cut NC Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 40 Percent

NC Governor Roy Cooper has committed the state to the 2015 Paris Agreement, setting a statewide goal to cut gases associated with global warming by 40 percent by 2025. The executive order creates the state’s first climate change committee and sets goals for innovations in transportation, buildings and power. Cooper is one of 17 governors who has committed to the goals of the Paris Agreement. President Donald Trump has said he will pull the U.S. out of the agreement in 2020, the earliest date possible.


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