139 Acres Saved

Activists on August 24 permanently protected 139 acres of forestland in Royalston, Massachusetts. Royalston is near Greenfield and Keene. The land includes several ponds. “Canoeing across this sheltered wetland is a dramatic experience,” said David Kotker. He works for the land trust that saved the land. It has a web site at www.MountGrace.org. “No signs of human habitation are visible.” Among the animals that live there are beavers, a breeding pair of bald eagles, and a rare juvenile golden eagle. A photo of the land is below. To enlarge the photo, click on it, then scroll down and click “see full size image.” photo by Eric Vickery

Land trusts get most of their money from the state and federal government. Politicians decide how much to invest in saving land versus war and prison for non-violent people. Protecting land from development is one of the best ways to stop climate change, which the world's leading scientists say is a major threat to earth's ability to support human life.

The below map of the Connecticut River watershed in Massachusetts, southeast Vermont and southwest New Hampshire shows that the vast majority of the farmland and forestland is vulnerable to being converted to houses, roads, parking lots, and Walmart stores and similar commercial buildings. The map was current as of 2015.

Click on the map to enlarge it, then scroll down and click "see full size image." Then click on the map again to enlarge it more. You can move the image using the arrows on your keyboard.

In the Valley, land trusts have protected much of the land that is safe from development. Links to local land trusts are at www.FindALandTrust.org.

Meanwhile in Greenfield, activists are working to save land that Walmart wants to pave. An excellent two-minute video about the battle is at:

www.vimeo.com/156290461

To get involved in the effort to save wilderness and stop the Greenfield Walmart, contact Al Norman at:
info@sprawl-busters.com
phone: (413) 772-6289
21 Grinnell Street
Greenfield, MA 01301

Walmart is owned by the richest family in the world, the billionaire Waltons. They pay the world's lowest wages at their factories in China. In the USA, they pay barely above minimum wage.

In Greenfield, Walmart has logged the land it wants to pave in hopes of winning approval from the government. But the land can be turned back into wilderness. Information about how to turn old sand and gravel pits into thriving wilderness parks – including “before and after” photos – is at these two web pages:

www.meduxnekeag.org/gravel_pit.htm

www.restorationtrust.org/annual2006.html (search the page for “gravel”)

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