Appalachian Carbon Partnership – Forests For The Future
Central Appalachia loses more than 130 acres of forestland everyday, as economic pressures force families to clear their land. Nearly 90 percent of forestland is privately owned and less than 5 percent of that land is under sustainable management. An innovative pilot program called the Appalachian Carbon Partnership is working to reverse this trend. A project of the Mountain Association for Community Economic Development (MACED), in partnership with Appalachian Sustainable Development and Rural Action, ACP supports the practice of good forest management by selling carbon offsets that compensate landowners for the carbon sequestered in their trees each year. WMMT visited the Stickney Family in Estill County, KY, where they are sustainably managing their woodlands, and talked with various folks who support land and landowners by buying Appalachian Forest Offsets.
Building Appalachia’s Bright Future
In late April, leaders from across eastern Kentucky and Central Appalachia came together in the heart of Harlan County, at the Harlan Convention Center, to talk about the future of mountain communities. Called Appalachia’s Bright Future, the conference was sponsored by Kentuckians for the Commonwealth, and aimed to build a new conversation about the unique opportunities and challenges the region faces at this pivotal moment in time. A common theme articulated throughout the event was that, as our counties face more lay-offs and an uncertain future, everyone needs to be a part of the conversation for what comes next. Here we’ll share just a few of the many voices from the weekend.
After Coal: Wales & Appalachia
Over 4,000 eastern Kentucky miners have lost their jobs since 2011, and many fear these coal jobs aren’t coming back. Now folks in the coalfields are asking the question, what comes next? Scholars at Appalachian State University think there are lessons to be learned from South Wales, a major coal producing region which faced a similar decline a quarter century ago. They and their counterparts from Wales will be sharing experiences at a conference, Appalachia’s Bright Future, in Harlan April 19-21. WMMT’s Sylvia Ryerson has this report.
Clinch River Protection to Boost Local Economy
Though we often hear in the coalfields that job creation and environmental protection are two things that cant happen at the same time, a growing coalition of individuals and organizations believes that the Clinch River, one of the most biodiverse river systems in North America, could itself be the backbone of a brand-new economy in Southwest Virginia. WMMT’s Parker Hobson has this story on the Clinch River Valley Initiative.