What is the Sierra Club?
The National Sierra Club (http://www.sierraclub.org) was founded in San Francisco in 1892 by legendary naturalist John Muir (http://vault.sierraclub.org/john_muir_exhibit/about/) who helped create Yosemite National Park and helped save Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Glacier Bay, Kings Canyon, Muir Woods, and many other natural wonders as national parks.
The Sierra Club is the nation’s oldest and largest volunteer-based environmental organization, with over 2 million members and supporters in 64 Chapters around the country. It has four primary environmental advocacy campaigns — Beyond Coal, Beyond Natural Gas, Beyond Oil, and Our Wild America — and sponsors more than 20,000 outings to our natural world in the U.S. and internationally.
The Pennsylvania Chapter of the Sierra Club was founded in 1972 and comprises 26,000 members in 10 regional groups. It is governed by an Executive Committee of leaders from each group.
The Lehigh Valley Group of the Sierra Club was founded in 1978 by Jeff Schmidt, Doug Roysdon, and Paul McHale. Schmidt became the first executive director of the Pennsylvania Chapter in 1983 and served in that role for over 30 years until 2013. McHale later became the U.S. Congressman for the Lehigh Valley. Roysdon remains a member of the Lehigh Valley Group executive committee.
The Lehigh Valley Group includes 1,500 members in the counties of Lehigh, Northampton, Monroe and Carbon. It is governed by a 9-person executive committee. Current chair of Lehigh Valley Group is Donald Miles and vice-chair is Matt MacConnell.
The Sierra Club Lehigh Valley Group Executive Committee meets most months, on the third or fourth Monday, at 7:00 p.m. on the 6th floor of Fowler Family Southside Center, Northampton Community College, 3rd and Buchanan Streets, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
Meetings are open to all and we encourage you to stop by and chat with us.
We also urge you to consider become an active member of Lehigh Valley Group and the Sierra Club by going to http://www.sierraclub.org
and clicking on the red “Join” button ($15).
Current Issues and Directions
Lehigh Valley Group of the Sierra Club focuses on environmental issues crucial
to our area, including:
• climate disruption and green energy
• natural gas hydrofracturing (“fracking”) and its impacts upon public health
• freshwater pollution of the Lehigh River and its headwaters
• protection and enhancement of wildlife habitats
• political activism to enable responsible environmental legislation and policy
• support and participation in regional events and programs for sustainability
• combating development sprawl in the Lehigh Valley
• encouragement of public transportation and greener vehicles
• municipal water and sewer pollution issues
• solid waste disposal and recyling
• promoting outings to engage people with our natural world