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Winter 2009

 

iConserve; Do You?

by Jessica Sprajcar

iConserve logo

Any outdoor enthusiast is able to see the changes taking place in our environment -- stronger storms and fluctuating temperatures due to climate change, invasive plants and insects taking over our native forests, and pollutants clouding our streams and rivers. The rate at which we are losing native species to habitat loss is increasing, while the time our children (and many adults) spend outdoors is decreasing.

The environmental challenges we face can seem overwhelming at times, but one person can make a difference.  And when we act together as stewards of the environment, just think of all the wonderful things we can do!

It is with that thinking in mind that the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) created the iConservePA initiative.  iConservePA wants you to think about what conservation means to you and what you can do to “take conservation personally.” 

On the road to being more environmentally-minded, there are three levels of commitment: simple commitments -- very short, easy things to add to your everyday routine; next steps -- projects that might take a few hours or require regular monthly time commitments; and lifestyle changes -- become a champion for the environment through these rewarding commitments.  Whether you decide to do one small thing for the environment or change your whole day to focus more on conservation, you will be doing your part.

The iConservePA website (www.iconservepa.org) provides numerous tips for becoming “greener” and is frequently updated with new information.

For instance, the iConservePA theme for 2009 is native plants, a theme that ties in with the mission of the Wild Resource Conservation Program (WRCP) – one of the iConservePA partners. Throughout the year, programs and activities will be launched to encourage Pennsylvanians to plant more native species and appreciate their homegrown beauty. These programs include website additions full of information on choosing the right plants for your yard and finding plant nurseries that sell those natives; a new publication highlighting the benefits of native plants and the dangers of invasives; a photo mosaic contest; native plant sales at grocery stores; and a program highlighting special native plant communities in our state parks; among others.  To learn more about natives, iConservePA is one great place to go!

You might be asking yourself, “How else can iConserve?” Consider becoming a PA iConPA iCons are people like you who understand the value of protecting our natural resources and want to share ideas and opportunities to “take conservation personally.” PA iCons receive short monthly e-newsletters with “insider” information on the latest iConservePA events, news and happenings, and they are eligible for special giveaways and prizes. Sign up to become an iCon at www.iconservepa.org. 

The Wild Resource Conservation Program is proud to be a partner with iConservePA. We encourage you to do your part to “take conservation personally.”  Our native plants, animals and habitats depend on all of us to think and act “green.”

 

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