Sometime this week the Iowa Senate will consider Senate File 390, the nuclear energy rip-off bill Bleeding Heartland discussed here and here. MidAmerican Energy, which would benefit from the bill, has given generously to Iowa legislators from both parties and to political action committees. Constituents need to urge senators to reject this bill, which would hurt consumers, or at least table it. MidAmerican is in only the first year of a three-year feasibility study on nuclear power in Iowa. The Senate switchboard number is (515) 281-3371, or you can e-mail your senator. The Sierra Club Iowa chapter created an easy e-mail form here and posted a four-page pdf with more background information: “MidAmerican Energy Company’s Misguided Pursuit of Nuclear Power: removing barriers, providing incentives, and skirting the existing regulatory process.”
The Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation is hiring a Land Projects Associate to “provide support for 40-50 active land protection projects.” Click the link for the job description and skill requirements. Applications are due May 2. The 125-acre Bernau Prairie in Kossuth County is one recent example of a completed INHF land protection project.
The Women, Food and Agriculture Network is accepting nominations for the second annual “Sustainable Farming Mom of the Year” award. Click here to view the 2010 finalists and winner. Nominations are due by 5 pm central time on Friday, May 6.
Trees Forever is seeking Iowans age 25 or younger to serve on its Youth Advisory Council. Applicants may be in high school, college or out of school. The Trees Forever site has more information on the council’s role.
Details on lots of events coming up this week are after the jump. Please post a comment or send me an e-mail if you know of another public event that should be mentioned here.
Monday, April 25
Representative Bruce Braley (IA-01) is hosting a town-hall meeting from 10 am to noon at the Rogalski Center, St. Ambrose University Campus, corner of Ripley and Lombard Street in Davenport. It’s the first in a series of Braley town-halls this week on the federal budget and deficit reduction. Participants will be “able to create your own budget and work with your friends and neighbors to make cuts and find savings,” as people can do with this New York Times online tool. Braley has been talking more like a deficit hawk since last November’s election.
Women landowners interested in sustainable management should RSVP as soon as possible for the Women, Food and Agriculture Network’s events Wednesday and Friday (see below).
Tuesday, April 26
Trees Forever is holding a tree planting in North Liberty at 8 am and a Cedar Rapids walking tour at 6 pm; click here for more information.
Bruce Braley is holding a town-hall meeting on the federal budget and deficit reduction from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm in the Cedar Valley
Commons Ballroom, University of Northern Iowa, 1224 West 23rd Street in Cedar Falls.
Iowa Interfaith Power and Light is holding a “Cool Congregations Coffee” at the Immanuel United Methodist Church, 2900 49th Street, Des Moines, from 7 pm to 8:30 pm. Participants will share thoughts and actions on energy conservation and take a church tour to see how the congregation has tried to save money and reduce its energy consumption. Refreshments provided.
The Iowa Wind Energy Association’s annual conference opens with a reception at 5:30 in the Polk County Convention Complex Exhibit Hall, 5th and Grand in downtown Des Moines. More information on the conference is available at the Iowa Wind Energy Association’s site.
Wednesday, April 27
The Iowa Wind Energy Association’s conference on “Iowa Wind: Growing Energy & The Economy” begins at 9 am in the Polk County Convention Complex in Des Moines. More information on the conference is available at the Iowa Wind Energy Association’s site. Featured speakers include IWEA President Randy Van Dyke, Iowa Department of Economic Development Director Debi Durham and Representative Leonard Boswell.
Bruce Braley is holding two more town-hall meetings on the federal budget and deficit: from 9 am to 11 am at the Grand River Center, 500 Bell Street in Dubuque, and from 2 pm to 4 pm at the Student Center Ballroom, Upper Iowa University Campus, east side of Washington Street in the middle of campus, Fayette.
Trees Forever is holding tree plantings in Marion at 9 am and Spirit Lake at 1 pm; click here for more information.
From the Women, Food and Agriculture Network:
Transitioning the Land
8:30 to 2 pm
Location: St. John Lutheran Church, Carroll
This gathering will be an informal discussion designed to allow women landowners the opportunity to talk about what they are looking for in a tenant. It will also be a chance for new and beginning farmers to share their goals and plans with the people who could be their future landlady, or who will have the same values and ideas that their future landlady will hold. This talk will be facilitated by female experts who can share resources available such as creative conservation-oriented farm leases and other tools. All interested women are welcome, including owners, operators and inheritors of farmland, and new and beginning farmers, regardless of their degree of knowledge. A free lunch will be provided. In order for us to get an accurate meal count, please RSVP by Friday, April 22, by calling Lynn Heuss at 515-201-9405 or emailing her at lheuss AT gmail.com.
Thursday, April 28
Trees Forever is holding a tree planting in West Okoboji at 4 pm; click here for more information.
The Iowa Pride Network is holding a Spring Soiree and Honors Benefit beginning at 7 pm at zart1312, 1312 Locust Street in Des Moines.
Friday, April 29
It’s Arbor Day, and Trees Forever has tree plantings scheduled in Waverly at 9 am, Clinton at 9 am (volunteers are needed), and Greene at 2 pm. Click here for more information.
The Iowa Renewable Energy Association’s symposium and expo begins with a day of continuing education courses for LEED accredited professionals and energy efficiency, wind and solar power professionals. All events take place in the Iowa Memorial Union on the University of Iowa campus in Iowa City; click here for full schedule.
Iowa Rivers Revival presents:
River Currents: A forum on revitalizing rivers
Location: Chichaqua Bottoms Greenbelt Longhouse, 8700 NE 126th Ave., Maxwell, IA
River Currents is an education forum led by Nate Hoogeveen and Mary Skopec of the Iowa DNR. The forum is geared toward river enthusiasts, water trail developers, watershed coordinators, IOWATER volunteers, and others who desire a better understanding of a river as an expression of its watershed and riparian zones. Part of the day will be spent learning about common stream problems, including examples of alternative projects that mimic systems found in nature offering practical solutions for various bank stabilization, flood reduction, drainage, road crossings, and other types of projects that happen in and along rivers. The last part of the day will be spent learning about the relationships and interactions of a river’s habitat. Registration: $10-meal included. RSVP: email@example.com
Time: 09:00 AM – 03:00 PM
From the Women, Food and Agriculture Network:
Women Caring for the Land
Location: Livery Barn, 201 S. Dodge St., Bloomfield, Iowa
Women who own or manage farmland in Van Buren, Davis, Jefferson and neighboring counties are invited to participate in a free conservation discussion and field tour on Friday, April 29, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Livery Barn, Davis County Historical Complex, 201 S. Dodge St. in Bloomfield (morning) and at the Township Hall, 601 W. North St. in Cantril (afternoon). The program is called Women Caring for the Land and is facilitated by women conservation experts from NRCS, FSA, DNR, and Pathfinders RC&D who can share resources available such as USDA cost-share programs, state loans, and other tools. All interested women are welcome, including owners, operators and inheritors of farmland, regardless of their degree of knowledge about conservation. A free lunch will be provided. In order for us to get an accurate meal count, please RSVP by Monday, April 25, by calling Lynn Heuss at 515-201-9405 or emailing her at lheuss AT gmail.com.
Saturday, April 30
There’s a major “Cleanup & Greenup” in Davenport, beginning at 8 am and lasting five hours, involving more than 500 trees. Volunteers are needed. Click here for more information.
I-Renew’s expo continues at the Iowa Memorial Union at the University of Iowa in Iowa City. Saturday’s events and exhibits are geared toward the general public and run from 9 am to 5 pm. schedule for exhibitors, speakers and demonstrations covering renewable energy, sustainable living, green building, energy efficient technology, renewable fuels, alternative transportation, advocacy, and “Bright Green Business.”
From the Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation:
High Trestle Trail Grand Celebration
Location: Ankeny, Sheldahl, Slater, Madrid, and Woodward
The High Trestle Trail’s Grand Celebration on April 30th will mark a big day for Iowa’s world-class trails system. Join the five trail towns of Ankeny, Sheldahl, Slater, Madrid, and Woodward in celebrating the completion of the new 25-mile trail and its 13-story, half-mile long bridge that spans across the Des Moines River. Participants will receive a passport to be stamped at each of the trail towns, where there will be food, music, art, and events for kids. Most of these activities will take place between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. (rain or shine), and no registration is required. Visit www.HighTrestleTrail.info for maps, info, updates, and more!
Time: 10:00 AM – 04:00 PM
From the Iowa Environmental Council’s calendar of events:
Backyard Abundance Plant Sale
Location: Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center, 220 South Gilbert Street, Iowa City, IA
Get a jump on your spring plant shopping at the Backyard Abundance plant sale. All plants are sourced as locally or regionally as possible. A wide variety of vegetable seedlings, herb seedlings, fruit trees, and berry bushes will be available.
Your purchases help host free yard tours and presentations throughout the community.
Local experts will be available to answer all questions about planting and tending your new plants. See http://www.backyardabundance.org/ for more information.
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
From the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa (registration info here):
The ACLU Foundation of Iowa is proud to announce that the 2011 Louise Noun Award will be presented to the three former Iowa Supreme Court justices, Marsha Ternus, David Baker, and Michael Streit, who were removed by voters last November in the wake of the Iowa Supreme Court’s 2009 historic ruling supporting marriage equality. They will be honored at the ACLU of Iowa annual dinner on Saturday, April 30.
The Louise Noun Award, named after the remarkable former president of the ACLU of Iowa, is presented to those who have made significant contributions to civil liberties in the state.
The keynote speaker will be Des Moines attorney Sharon Malheiro, a leading advocate in LGBT issues. Malheiro founded and is the chair of One Iowa, the largest statewide civil rights organization dedicated to LGBT issues in Iowa. She has been a significant force in achieving same-sex marriage equality in this state.
A former journalist, Malheiro joined the Davis Brown law firm in 1990. She was elected president of the firm’s board of directors earlier this year. Soon after joining the firm, Malheiro started working on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) issues. She worked to amend Des Moines’ human rights ordinance to include protections for gay and lesbian people, to introduce the Iowa Safe Schools legislation, and to add a LGBT amendment to the Iowa Civil Rights Act.
Dinner and program will be held at the University Athletic Club on the campus of the University of Iowa.
Reservations are requested by Tuesday, April 26. Tickets may also be purchased at the door for $50.
5:30 p.m. Registration and check-in
6:00 p.m. Appreciation Reception for the justices and our keynote speaker with hors d’oeuvres and cash bar
7:00 p.m. Dinner and program
8:00 p.m. Keynote speaker Sharon Malheiro
Louise Noun Award presentation
Sunday, May 1
I-Renew’s expo continues from 10 am to 5 pm in the Iowa Memorial Union on the University of Iowa campus. Click here for the full schedule of speakers, exhibits and demonstrations.