Music Booked For Trans Action Camp Benefit

Betty and the Boy

Betty and the Boy and four other folk, pop and punk bands will play at a benefit show to raise money for the annual Trans and/or Women’s Action Camp. TWAC was initially born from the idea of creating a safe space for trans and/or women in the social and environmental justice movement, according to Ariel Howland, organizer of and participant in the benefit show and camp. Eventually, that idea came into its own: a weeklong camp that focuses on community building and political activism. Continue reading 

Learning to Grow

Spencer Butte Middle School reaps vegetables and profit

Spencer Butte Middle School’s garden program has grown from the seed of an idea to a self-sustaining garden with its own economic income. The garden, managed by students, sells its lettuce and other veggies to the Eugene School District, which then uses them in the cafeteria at the school. “Kids run the entire garden, though we do have a volunteer who helps get the starts going,” says BJ Blake, principal at Spencer Butte. “But the plants are taken care of and harvested by our kids.” Continue reading 

Climate Action Teen Camp Looks For Postive Change

An upcoming camp for teenagers presents an opportunity for kids to get involved in climate change justice. The Next Generation Climate Action Camp, hosted by the Civil Liberties Defense Center, is aimed at empowering youth to make change in their communities, according to Amber Mongan, associate director of CLDC. “We wanted to provide the sort of action camps that are available to adults, but specify it for teenagers,” Mongan says. “Public schools don’t cover this kind of stuff, so we want to fill that need.”  Continue reading 

Rat Poison Passes Along Its Toxic Impact

Photo by Laurent Gauthier

Louise Shimmel, executive director of the Cascade Raptor Center, recalls a great horned owl that was found in a pond last winter. “You could actually see the bruises on his neck where the blood was seeping out of his jugular because his blood was so thin and he was essentially bleeding to death,” she says. “We were not able to save that one.” Continue reading 

Bee-Killing Pesticides Linked To Bird Declines

The latest in a number of recent studies looking at the impact of neonicotinoid pesticides has shown declining bird populations in areas where the pesticides are used in high concentrations. Neonics have already been associated with bee die-offs, and a new study published in Nature found that common bird populations such as barn swallows and starlings decreased 3.5 percent each year in areas associated with neonics use. Continue reading 

Bee Kills Lead to New Restrictions

illustration: Trask Bedortha

Studies have shown the links between neonicotiniod pesticides and pollinator deaths, but some jurisdictions have been quicker to ban the bee-killing chemicals than others. The city of Eugene banned them on its properties in February, but the June incident in Eugene where 17 sprayed linden trees killed more than 5,000 bees and other pollinator species calls attention to the fact that the city ban does not apply to private properties or all properties under the city’s management. Continue reading 

New Wolf Pups Just in Time for Father’s Day

New wolf pups in the Rogue River-Siskyou National Forest in southern Oregon

It’s been a good month for gray wolves so far: The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife documented new wolf pups in southern Oregon, and just across the border, the California Fish and Game Commission just voted to protect gray wolves under the California Endangered Species Act. The pups were fathered by Oregon’s famous OR-7 and are the first pups to be born in the Oregon Cascades since the 1940s. Continue reading