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The invasive exotic Chinese Silvergrass (Miscanthus sinensis) grows profusely along sunny corridors such as roadsides and railways, its seeds easily distributed by wind currents. Photo by Bob Gale
Accent
a Grassroots Environmental Organization
(828) 258-8737 • 29 North Market St., Suite 610 • Asheville, NC 28801 • www.wnca.org Issue 69 Volume IXX, Number 4 Winter 2004-2005
Western North Carolina Alliance
Although meetings are normally scheduled as listed below, changes are sometimes made due to holidays, scheduling conflicts, and so on. Please check with the listed Chapter leader or staff member to confirm meeting dates and other information.
WNC Alliance Offers to Help Rid Watershed of Invasive Species
by Jody Flemming Jody Flemming and Bob Gale re- cently met with Charlie Casey of the Asheville Water Resources Depart- ment at the North Fork Watershed to look at the exotic plant infestations. Miscanthus sinensis, or ��Chinese Silvergrass��, is an exotic invasive grass originally imported for ornamental landscaping, but which spreads rap- idly under the right conditions. The city would like to remove this plant from the watershed to reduce the risk of fire danger, to minimize erosion problems caused by the plant, and prevent over-competition with native species. The WNC Alliance is looking into various strategies and treatments ap- propriate for volunteer participation and has urged the Water Department to take advantage of such citizen in- volvement. The staff is currently con- sidering this request, and we��ll be ask- ing for volunteers in the spring to help with this project if it becomes imple- mented. by Greg Kidd On September 25, the Western North Carolina Alliance Public Parks Task Force and National Parks Con- servation Association co-hosted a con- ference titled: ��Blue Ridge Parkway: Scenic Byway or Commuter High- way?�� at UNC-Asheville. The confer- ence focused on the current General Management Plan (GMP) being cre- ated by the Blue Ridge Parkway staff. A number of expert speakers gave presentations on the values, design history, and issues facing the scenic road. Special direction was provided on how the public can give important input into the GMP, which will guide the protection of the Parkway corri- dor over the next 10 to 20 years. Notable speakers at the confer- ence included Landscape Architect Carlton Abbott, whose father, Stanley Abbott, was primary designer of the scenic road, David Hill, another land- scape architect who has been work- ing to restore views in Virginia that were impacted by development, and Cindy Szwarckop, a highway consult- ant who specializes in long term (and usually unforeseen) impacts from highway construction. These speak- ers provided an overview of the his- tory, scenic values, and solutions/pre- ventative measures to past and future impacts related to the Parkway. Greg Kidd, Associate Southeast Regional Director with NPCA (and the Public Parks Task Force representa- tive to the WNCA Steering Commit- tee) presented a citizen��s plan for deal- ing with planned North Carolina high-
Public Parks Task Force
Blue Ridge Parkway Forum a Success!
Fall color on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Photo by Bob Gale The most interesting part of the field trip to us was the distinct differ- ence in appearance of separate Miscanthus colonies. It was obvious to all of us that the plant thrives in open sunlit areas, but does not under the shade of an intact forest canopy. Plants Forest Task Force Speed Rogers – (828) 883-3048 Last Tuesday of each month at 5:30 pm, at WNC Alliance Asheville office. Contact Bob at (828) 258-8737 or bob@wnca.org Public Parks Task Force Dan Pittillo – (828) 293-9661 2nd Friday at 2 pm, at the WNC Alliance��s Asheville office. Contact Greg at (865) 329-2424 or email gkidd@npca.org
– Task Force Information –
Tusquittee Chapter (Cherokee, Clay, Graham Counties) Contact Aurelia Stone (828) 835-8473 or email astone@tri-county.main.nc.us Tuckasegee Community Alliance & Smart Roads Alliance (Jackson County) Contact Lydia Aydlett (828) 631-3824 or email aydlett@email.wcu.edu Macon County Chapter Bill Crawford – (828) 524-2280 Madison County Chapter 3rd Sunday at the Madison County Library in Marshall. Contact Carol Diamond (828) 689-5399 or email caroljo@main.nc.us McDowell County Chapter Z Woods - (828) 658-7550 3rd Tuesday, 7:00 pm at the Marion Welcome Center. Contact Teena Hayden at (828) 658-7550, or email hayden@horttech.us. Watauga River Conservation Partners (Ashe, Avery, Watauga Counties) 3rd Thursday, 5:30 pm at the Agricultural Extension Office in Boone. Contact Richard at (828) 963-8682
– Chapter Meetings –
Membership Committee 3rd Monday, 4 pm at the WNC Alliance Asheville office. Contact Jody or Karen at (828) 258-8737 or email karen@wnca.org. Steering Committee 4th Thursday. 6 pm at the WNC Alliance��s Asheville office. Contact Jody at (828) 258-8737 or email jody@wnca.org.
– Committee Meetings –
continued on page 3 continued on page 3

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Dee Eggers, WNC Alliance
2 Western North Carolina Alliance •
Accent • Winter 2004-2005
Accent is a quarterly publication of the Western North Carolina Alliance, a grassroots environmental organization which aims to promote a sense of stewardship and caring for the natural environment. The WNC Alliance��s primary goal is to protect and to preserve our natural land, water, and air resources through education and public participation in policy decisions at all levels of business and government. The WNC Alliance encourages its members to recognize the interrelationships among environmental issues and to take personal responsibility for achieving protection of the environment in their communities.
Editor Bob Gale Layout/Design Simone Bouyer Steering Committee Lydia Aydlett, John Baker, Randall Boggs, Susan Broadhead, Ben Brown, Jim Carroll, Dee Eggers, Teena Hayden, Scott Jackson, Gil Johnson, Greg Kidd, Jo Ellen Wade Staff
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR:
Jody Flemming - jody@wnca.org
ECOLOGIST:
Bob Gale - bob@wnca.org
COMMUNITY ORGANIZERS:
Norma Ivey - norma@wnca.org Roger Turner - roger@wnca.org
BUSINESS & FINANCE COORDINATOR:
Karen Austin - karen@wnca.org Foundation Partners American Rivers, Appalachian Forest and Resource Council, Beldon Fund, Brad Stanback, CS Mott Foundation, Fred Stanback, Merck Family Fund, New Leaf Fund, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Southern Appalachian Forest Coalition, Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation Main Office 29 North Market St., Suite 610 Asheville, NC 28801 (828) 258-8737 fax: 258-9141 Western Office 16 Stewart Street Franklin, NC 28734 (828) 524-3899 franklin@wnca.org Visit us online at www.wnca.org
Accent
Unsolicited article submissions to ACCENT are welcomed, and every effort will be made to include them, if appropriate to the issue theme or WNC Alliance goals. Submis- sions not published due to space limitations may be considered for subsequent issues. Photos should include the photographer��s name, permission to use, and detailed in- formation for use in captions. Articles and photos must be re- ceived on or before the issue dead- lines as follows:
Editorial Policy
Winter October 15 Spring January 15 Summer April 15 Fall July 15 In the recent presidential debates, environmental issues were barely touched on. To me, this indicates that news organizations consider environ- mental quality to have low relevance to the voting public. Instead, national security and the economy were the issues du jour. What the general pub- lic and the news media missed was the opportunity to understand and discuss the strong link between envi- ronmental quality and these key is- sues. Loss of grasslands, spreading dis- ease, deforestation, soil erosion, wa- ter scarcity — each of these has caused security and economic problems in areas ranging from Calcutta, India, to Lima, Peru - from Bangladesh to Is- rael. Just as humans are not separate from nature, Western North Carolina is not separate from the rest of the world. While we work to preserve and improve the quality of the environ- ment where we live, we must remem- ber that our work benefits people in other areas and even other times. It benefits generations yet unborn. And it makes possible a healthier economy because, as leading business schools like Chapel Hill and Harvard are teaching - the size of the healthy en- vironment is a limit on economic ac- tivity: healthier environment, more potential for the economy. This is a new idea to many in the U.S., but it��s gaining ground fast. Fortunately, the world community is increasingly recognizing the rela- tionship between environmental qual- ity and national security. Leaders ev- erywhere are beginning to recognize that the world��s political security may be bound to the health of the land, air and water. Perfect evidence for this is the recent announcement that an environmental activist won the Nobel Peace Prize. Wangari Maathai of Kenya is a 64 year-old professor who has worked tirelessly to improve en- vironmental quality and governance as means to improve the quality of life for her people. She totally ��gets it.�� Apparently, the Nobel Prize commit- tee does as well. This is an extraordi- nary step forward. Here in western North Carolina, we live in one of the most diverse re- gions of the planet. We are the stew- ards, willing or unwilling, of an abun- dance of extraordinary genetic infor- mation stored in the DNA of the life around us - and the yet-to-be-discov- ered gifts that life holds. One of the best examples of such gifts, albeit not local, is the beautiful little flower, the Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus). Western researchers noticed the plant in the 1950��s when they learned of a tea Jamaicans were drink- ing to treat diabetes. At that time, about 85% of children diagnosed with childhood leukemia died from the dis- ease. Scientists discovered a bevy of biologically active compounds in the plant, including vincristine and vin- blastine. These compounds have an- ticancer properties and because of them, now about 85% of childhood leukemia patients live. (In addition to any value to humans, the life with which we share these mountains has inherent value, but I��ll leave that is- sue for another time.) People who are healthy, who live in a healthy environments with clean water and ample food, people who have life opportunities and hope for the future do not become terrorists. Sociologists find that people living in desperation and uncertainty are much more likely to be influenced by radi- cal ideologies and take extreme and destructive measures. It is therefore important that we realize the larger picture in which we are operating. This is not just about protecting an- other forest from chainsaws or an- other creek from runoff. This is about preserving national security, making farms and therefore food possible in the future, protecting the global cli- mate cycle, curing disease and increas- ing the stability and potential of our economy. Environmental protection is an issue intrinsically and causally related to our national security and our eco- nomic future. Part of our task is to help people understand this so that environmental issues are rightly val- ued as among the most important of our time. This begins in the class- rooms and at the dinner tables across the land. It expands with letters to the editor, TV news coverage, and creates a growing level of environmental lit- eracy. People care deeply about these issues already. They just have not learned about the relationship be- tween them. Four years from now, I want to see Jim Lehrer asking presi- dential candidates about their specific plans to address the major environ- mental issues of our time — climate change and the loss of biodiversity — and I want the American public on the edge of their seats listening for the best answer. At the Western North Carolina Alliance, we are contributing to cre- ating that future. Please consider gift memberships to WNCA for friends and family during this holiday season to support the work we do and have those dinner table conversations that will spread awareness and possibili- ties for a brighter future.
Members Ask for Land Use Task Force
by Jody Flemming Several members have asked about firing up a new Land Use Task Force to spearhead WNC Alliance ef- forts to advance sustainable develop- ment and open space preservation. As you all know, this is an issue that de- mands creative solutions if we hope to maintain the unique character of our region. If you��d like to help get this Task Force off the ground, give us a call to let us know. We��re working to set up a meeting of interested folks in the near future and we��d love to have you involved. We currently have an intern, Joe Mohar, working to identify current ob- stacles to progres- sive planning, and creative solutions to those problems. He��s bright, ener- getic and eager to make a difference. Say hi to him if you call or stop by the office! (Ask him about signing up for some tap dancing lessons while you��re at it!) Joe Mohar is a UNC-Asheville intern working with the WNC Alliance on land use issues. Photo by Jody Flemming
Letter From the Chair
by Dee Eggers, PhD

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Western North Carolina Alliance • Accent • Winter 2004-2005 3
continued from page 1
WNC Alliance Offers to Help Rid Watershed of Invasive Species growing along the roadsides and on the dam were much taller and fuller, and contained an abundance of flower and seed heads. In contrast, the specimens under the forest canopy, though extensive, were in a more stressed condition and nearly devoid of seeds, making rapid spread very unlikely. And as Bob noted, as that previously thinned canopy continues to grow to- gether, more thoroughly closing out sunlight, this Miscanthus population can be expected to decline, making the dam and roadside areas the most urgent as target areas for the plant��s removal. Mr. Casey, who has worked for the Water Department for 28 years, commented that the patch we vis- ited was of a shorter height than it had been in the past, which backs up our statements and those by For- est Service and N.C. Natural Heri- tage biologists, that Miscanthus does not thrive under an intact forest canopy, and therefore does not con- stitute a significant fire risk through- out the forest, as the forestry con- sultant asserts in the management plan. The visit also clearly illus- trated the fact that if the roads are daylighted (clearcut to 50 feet along the roadsides) as prescribed in the management plan, Miscanthus will spread and flourish in the new openings, as it is doing along cur- rent roads. Your involvement in this work can help ensure the watershed��s long term protection. Stay tuned for details.
continued from page 1
Public Parks Task Force Blue Ridge Parkway Forum a Success! way improvements to roads that in- tersect with the Parkway corridor. Blue Ridge Parkway Resource Chief Bambi Teague provided a summary of the natural resources found in the 13 watershed headwaters and 600 miles of streams that cross the Park- way, as well as challenges in protect- ing these resources. Finally, Gary Johnson, Chief Planner for the Park- way, updated the participants on where the GMP process stands and where it is headed. The Parkway will accept com- ments from the public for some time to come, and public meetings will be scheduled in 2005. WNCA and NPCA will be following the process closely and publicize these meetings when scheduled.
Forest Task Force Busy with Site Visits, Decision, Appeal of Tanasee Sale
by Bob Gale On August 20, the Grandfather Ranger District proposed a timber sale in the Upper Creek area of Burke, Caldwell and Avery Counties. The proposal is only preliminary and boundaries of timber stands will likely be adjusted during the environmen- Rob Messick, Hugh Irwin and Bob Gale met with Grandfather District officials to urge the Forest Service to avoid logging in old growth. They also proposed that the Forest Service des- ignate an old growth ��Medium Patch�� for the 499-acre old growth stand. The current Forest Management Plan, which guides the process of timber
Forest Service Urged to Protect Old Growth
vide a clear and perfect example for medium patch designation. The meet- ing appeared to be very fruitful, and the Forest Service seemed to agree that a medium patch was warranted. We are awaiting word, as the District reviews legal language regarding old growth protection designation under the Plan.
The Forest Task Force has identified one stand that overlaps with an old growth forested area identified in the 2000 WNC Alliance Old Growth Report.
tal review and comment period. The Forest Task Force has identified one stand that overlaps with an old growth forested area identified in the 2000 WNC Alliance Old Growth Report. Also nearby, but not within, the pro- posed stands, is another old growth stand (approximately 670 acres) and a proposed N.C. Natural Heritage ��Re- search Natural Area.�� In mid September, FTF members sales and other activities in the Pisgah and Nantahala National Forests in North Carolina, includes sections which define the establishment of large patch, medium patch and small patch old growth stands. While large and small patches have been typically established, unclear wording of the Plan has resulted in virtually no es- tablished medium patches. The situa- tion at Upper Creek appears to pro- The FTF is also concerned about the cumulative impacts from this sale, given other previous logging that has occurred in the adjacent area. A Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) is anticipated either late 2004 or early 2005, and members will be comment- ing on these impacts and any other concerns that the EA might raise. by Bob Gale On October 4, Forest Task Force members Steve Novak, Rachel Doughty and Bob Gale visited the Tanasee Project area in the Pisgah District (Transylvania County) of Pisgah National Forest. Joining them to listen to the public, a significant amount of new road construction has been eliminated from the sale. We did notice some storm-caused erosion that extended a considerable distance through one of the proposed timber stands. sale is still going to cause significant impacts. Environmental groups fol- lowing this issue believe that the agency did not meet its obligations under the Forest Management Plan to give adequate consideration to wild- life, cumulative impacts, sedimenta-
Thanks to the persistent efforts from WNC Alliance... a significant amount of new road construction has been eliminated from the sale.
were new volunteers Jennifer Rennicks and Caroline Douglas, and Charlie McDade, a UNC-Asheville student who is doing intern work on environmental policy with the WNC Alliance. These three ��newcomers�� have been learning about the process of timber sale proposals and the pub- lic comment process under the Na- tional Environmental Policy Act. Forest Task Force members have made several visits to the Tanasee site, which has undergone several changes since it was first proposed as the Parker Creek sale in 1998. This par- ticular visit was scheduled to deter- mine if the existing roads had eroded due to the recent hurricanes. (See For- est Highway 50 article.) Thanks to the persistent efforts and comments from WNC Alliance and other groups and citizens over the last few years, and also due to a more sincere effort by the Pisgah District This backs up the major concern about sedimentation that people have with this sale. It is being proposed in the uppermost headwaters of the West Fork French Broad River that feeds into the nationally recognized trout fishing waters of the Davidson River. These West Fork headwaters have had a history of severe sedimentation and are finally beginning to recover from poor management from farming and timbering. Part of the drainage is classified as ��impaired�� under the Clean Water Act. Critics contend that this is no place to be conducting a project involving road-building of any kind, since roads cause erosion and sedimentation even if attempts are made to ��minimize�� such impacts. On September 3, the Forest Ser- vice issued a Decision Notice to pro- ceed with the sale in it��s modified form called ��Alternative C��. Though more environmentally friendly, the tion, illegal off road vehicle use, and potential for increased hemlock wooly adelgid infestation. The WNC Alliance Forest Task Force, Southern Appalachian Biodiversity Project and individual FTF member Than Axtell appealed the Decision on October 15. Wildlaw, Inc., with help from the Southern Environmental Law Center, filed the appeal. As required by law, the For- est Service met with the appellants to see if both parties could reach an agreement that would satisfy the is- sues of the appeal. While agreement on a couple of minor points seemed possible, no major solutions were reached. Pend- ing some further discussion among the appellants, the appeal will likely be sent on to the Forest Service��s Re- gion 8 office in Atlanta for a final rul- ing.
WNC Alliance: People working together to conserve our natural heritage.

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4 Western North Carolina Alliance •
Accent • Winter 2004-2005
by Steve Novak In the early 1990��s, the Forest Ser- vice Pisgah District moved, upslope, a 1.3-mile portion of a forest road bor- dering the Davidson River in Transylvania County. The road had been contributing sediment to the river, and a new proposal was being pursued to pave this and other forest roads which connect US 276 with N.C. Highway 215. The new road was to be called Forest Highway 50. There was immediate opposition to this major change in the middle of National Forest lands, and following years of public comment and more than one Environmental Assessment, the Forest Service decided only to pave the 1.3-mile stretch beginning at the Fish Hatchery and Pisgah Envi- ronmental Education Center and end- ing at Cove Creek Group Camp- ground. There was still major opposi- tion. The road had been placed in an unstable granodiorite rock formation and, twice over the last few years, portions caved in due to severe storm precipitation. The Forest Service ge- ologist had, from the very beginning, warned against relocating the road uphill, recommending improvement of the old roadbed instead. Despite this, despite repeated washouts, and despite public comments and an ap- peal of the Decision, plans have been moving ahead with the paving project, though no construction has begun. In September, Hurricanes Frances and Ivan wrought havoc on the road corridor. Serious cracks occurred along edges of the new road, which had been compacted with 18 to 24 inches of gravel and fine granite screenings. (The usual thickness of this ��crusher run�� surface is only 6 to 12 inches.) It was probably only due to this unusually thick surface, that the new roadbed did not completely collapse, but it was close. In two places holes washed through it in the middle of the road, and slides oc- curred both above and below this crusty surface in several places. Even worse, the old roadbed be- low suffered no less that 5 major land- slides, one over 70 feet wide. This and another slide washed tons of soil, trees and debris into the Davidson River below. Debris clogged the intake struc- ture to the Fish Hatchery facility just downstream and caused a drop in oxygen, killing thousands of trout. The new roadbed above certainly contrib- uted to the runoff that caused these landslides. Because of this situation, several environmental groups and citizens worked with Wildlaw and the South- ern Environmental Law Center to draft a letter to National Forests in North Carolina Supervisor John Ramey and Pisgah District Ranger Randy Burgess requesting that ��thor- ough thought and analysis�� be given to Forest Highway 50 before the pav- ing project is implemented. Under the National Environmental Policy Act, this situation can be considered ��new information�� which supersedes infor- mation contained in old documents. A NEPA document is no longer ad- equate when there are ��significant new��circumstances or information relevant to environmental concerns and bearing on the proposed action or its impacts.�� This letter was sent in mid- October and we are awaiting a re- sponse from the Forest Service. The agency has indicated that it hasn��t fully inspected the damage or ana- lyzed the project area yet, but will soon be doing so.
– annual membership meeting –
Hurricanes Cause Major Landslides on Forest Highway 50
Groups ask Forest Service to rethink paving project
The old roadbed of Forest Highway 50 was lost in a landslide during Hurricane Frances. Untold tons of soil and debris washed into the Davidson River, smothering aquatic life and killing thousands of trout. Photo by Bob Gale This bike trail on the old roadbed appears to go around a corner and downhill, but this view is literally the end of the trail. Beyond, thanks to a landslide, is a 50-foot plunge into the rocky Davidson River. Photo by Bob Gale

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Western North Carolina Alliance • Accent • Winter 2004-2005 5
The WNC Alliance Annual Fall Meeting was a mixture of reporting on the wonderful work of our members, workshops, award presentations and fun.
Far left: Members survey a table of goodies to determine their bids for the silent auction offered at the meeting. Photo by Karen Austin Center: Scot Sanderson, winner of this year��s Esther Cunningham Award, models the traditional shawl crocheted by Esther for the occasion. Photo by Norma Ivey Left: Membership Chair Randall Boggs gives Madison Chapter Chair Carol Diamond a big hug after presenting the New Growth Award to the Chapter for the second year in a row. Photo by Norma Ivey
Walton Trail Dedicated
by Bill Crawford On September 25th, family and friends of Walton Smith met for the dedication of the Walton Trail at the trailhead in Alsrka Laurel. Walton Smith was a Forest Service vision- ary and patron saint of the West- ern North Carolina Alliance��s early policy of selection cutting (rather than clearcutting) in the National Forests. During his retirement, Walton and his wife Dee lived in the Cowee Mountain Range near Alarka Laurel, where he raised Christmas trees, ran a saw mill, and tended to his honey bees. One of Walton��s many ideas was that a trail should extend from the High- lands end of the Cowees all along their crest to Cowee Bald. The Walton Trail can perhaps inspire the preservation and development of recreation in the Cowees that Walton loved. Several people spoke at the dedication at the trailhead in Alarka Laurel. Paul Carlson, friend of Walton, forester and Director of the Land Trust of the Little Tennes- see, spoke of the history of the Walton Trail and the ecological sig- nificance of its location along side the southernmost North Red Spruce Bog. Alarka Laurel is lo- cated where the three counties of Jackson, Swain, and Macon come together. Wayah District Forest Ser- vice Ranger Mike Wilkins talked about the excellent work that the Forest Service has done to make the trail a reality. A beautiful trail that Walton Smith had started is now a masterpiece of interpreta- tive signage completed by the For- est Service. Ramsey Smith, son of Walton and Dee, spoke for the family; all of the children and Dee were present. Ramsey thanked all of those attending and those individu- als who had a role in the trail��s completion. Norma Ivey and Dick and Gill Heywood of the WNC Al- liance, Paul Carlson, Claudette Dillard from the family, and Sally Browning, Forest Service Recre- ation Ranger, were all part of a committee that has worked for sev- eral years to make the trail pos- sible. Near the end of the dedica- tion, Dee decided to speak. She said she ��felt Walton was in Heaven looking down and smiling at what was going on this occa- sion.�� The dedication was well at- tended and Speed Rogers, Chair of the Forest Task Force, and his wife Beth drove from Brevard to attend. After the ribbon cutting, most at- tendees walked the trail and then enjoyed a reception hosted by the family at Walton and Dee��s home. The Waldee Trail is officially opened as Dee Smith performs the ribbon cutting. To her left are USFS Wayah District Ranger Mike Wilkins and Land Trust for the Little Tennessee Director Paul Carlson. To her right are family members Ramsey Smith and Claudette Dillard, and USFS Recreation Director Sally Browning. Photo by Norma Ivey
Is Your ��Year-End Gift List�� Finished?
Join Us at the Holiday Party!
You��re invited to join us at the Holi- day Fundraiser Party for an evening at the Governor��s Western Residence. The party is scheduled for 6:00–9:00 p.m., on Thursday, December 9th. You can be as dressy or casual as you like, and there��s no charge for attending. But of course, we��ll be asking for donations to help make the fundraiser a success. We��re also inviting civic leaders from western North Carolina. This year��s special invited guest is Great Smoky Mountains Superintendent Dale Ditmanson. The Governor��s Western Residence sits atop Sunset Mountain overlooking Asheville and the surrounding area. The residence, decorated for the holidays, and boasting an incredible view, prom- ises to be a cozy and welcoming loca- tion for our party. As a special incentive, along with the food, drinks and good company, you have the chance to enter our Super Raffle for a fun two-day getaway to Tybee Island, Georgia. ��Tybee Turn- around�� is a restored 1920��s home just 1-1/2 blocks from the beach and a short drive from historic downtown Savan- nah. It has a full kitchen, living areas, six bedrooms (for up to 14 people), open and screened porches, five baths and a whirlpool tub. During the off-season, the home rents for $960, but we��re of- fering $30 raffle tickets, or 4 for $100. So take a chance on winning and know that your raffle ticket donation supports our effective grassroots environmental organization! To see this house and get more information visit the website: www.tybeeturnaround.com. by Karen Austin It��s easy to find gifts for some folks on your list, but others can be a real puzzle. What do you do for that family member or friend who already has everything you can think of? A membership in the Western North Carolina Alliance might be the answer to your quandary. The recipient of your gift membership will receive:
��Accent��, a seasonal newsletter on
issues, member activities, and ways to take action on behalf of western North Carolina��s natural heritage
• ��Accent on Action��, a monthly
flyer with updates on pressing is- sues and member activities
Email alerts, usually one or two
each month, with information on late-breaking issues, updated event schedules, and other up-to-the- minute information. As an extra bonus, both you and the recipient will know that you��re helping to support one of the most ef- fective grassroots environmental or- ganizations in our region. You can use the membership form in this issue of ��Accent�� to give a gift membership. Please give us your name and address, as well as those of the gift recipient. We will notify the recipient of your gift by sending a card, along with information about the WNC Alliance. Finally, as you consider gifts for the people on your list, take a moment to think about making a gift to the Western North Carolina Alliance. The generosity of our supporters has a di- rect impact on our ability to continue making a difference in western North Carolina. As a final incentive, please re- member that your donation or gift of a membership is completely tax-de- ductible and can be made through a personal check or by Master Charge, Visa, or American Express. If you have questions, call Karen at the WNC Alliance office in Asheville, (828) 258-8737.
Happy Holidays!

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6 Western North Carolina Alliance •
Accent • Winter 2004-2005
Many voices united cannot be ignored!
ACCENT
Action
on
President
George W. Bush (R) (202) 456-1414 Fax: 202-456-2461 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, DC 20500. President@whitehouse.gov. Congress is a full-time job, with members often returning home or vacationing for weekend and for a 3- 4 week recess in the summer.
U.S. House
11th District — Buncombe except Fairview-Skyland, Henderson except Fletcher-Naples, Marion & most of McDowell, Rutherfordton-Forest City-Spindale & S. Rutherford, S. Polk, Morganton, Shelby, all of Yancey, Madison, Haywood, Transylvania, Jackson, Swain, Macon, Graham, Clay, Cherokee. Charles Taylor (R) (202) 225-6401 231 Cannon House Office Bldg., Washington, DC 20515 Charles.Taylor@mail.house.gov. 828-251-1988 10th District — Fairview-Skyland, Fletcher-Naples, S. McDowell, Chimney Rock-Lake Lure, N. tip Polk; all of Mitchell & Avery; Burke, except Morganton; all of Alexander, Catawba, Lincoln, Yadkin; part of Caldwell, Davie, Forsyth & Winston-Salem, Iredell, Wilkes. Cass Ballenger (R) (202) 225-2572 or 800-477-2576 (NC Office). 2182 Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, DC 20515. cass.ballenger@mail.house.gov.
US. Senate
Elizabeth Dole (R) (202) 224-6342 Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20510 John Edwards (D) U.S. Senate: (202) 224-3154 225 Dirksen Office Bldg., Washington, DC 20510. senator@edwards.senate.gov. 828-285-0760 Federal Office Building, Ste. 200, 151 Patton Ave., Asheville 28801
N.C. Governor
Michael Easley (D) 800-662-7952 Fax: 919-733-2120. 20301 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-0301
N.C. House
Dist. 114 — Susan Fisher (D) North/Central Buncombe Co. 258-5355, 36 Claredon Rd., Asheville 28806. SusanF@ncleg.net Dist. 115 — Bruce Goforth (D) East/South Buncombe Co. 298-8093, 137 Stonecrest Dr., Asheville 28803 Bruceg@ncleg.net Dist. 116 — Wilma Sherrill (R) West/South Buncombe Co. 254-5770, P0 Box 18561, Asheville 28814. Wilmas@ncleg.net Dist. 85 — Mitch Gillespie (R) McDowell/SE Burke Co. 724-9995, 753 Lake Tahoma Rd., Marion, NC 28752. Mitchg@ncleg.net Dist. 82 — Eugene Wilson (R) Ashe, Watauga Cos. 264-5365, 881 Queen St., Boone 28607. Genew@ncleg.net Dist. 84 — Phillip Frye (R) Avery, Mitchell, W. Caldwell Cos., 765-4925, P0 Box 589, Spruce Pine 28777. Phillipf@ncleg.net Dist. 86 — Walter Church (D) North/Central Burke Co. 874-2141, P0 Box 760, Valdese 28690. Waltc@ncleg.net Dist. 90 — James Harrell (D) Alleghany, Surry Cos. 336-902-0276, P.O. Box 626, Elkin 28621. Jimha@ncleg.net Dist. 112 — Bob England (D) Rutherford Co. 453-8807, P0 Box 908, Ellenboro 28040. Bobe@ncleg.net Dist. 113 — Trudi Walend (R) Polk, S. Henderson, most of Transylvania Cos. 883-3790, 112 Ridgewood Pl., Brevard 28712. Trudiw@ncleg.net Dist. 117 — Carolyn Justus (R) N. Henderson, N. Polk, NE tip of Transylvania Cos. 685-7433, P0 Box 2396, Hendersonville 28793. Carolynj@ncleg.net Dist. 118 — Ray Rapp (D) Madison, Yancy, NW/Central Haywood Cos. 689-2214, 133 Quail Ridge Rd., Mars Hill 28754. Raymondr@ncleg.net Dist. 119 — Phil Haire (D) Swain, Jackson, W. Haywood, NE tip of Macon Cos. 586-1771, P.O. Box 727, Sylva 28779. Philliph@ncleg.net Dist. 120 — Roger West (R) Cherokee, Graham, Clay, most of Macon Cos. 837-5246, P0 Box 160, Marble 28905.
N.C. Senate
Dist. 50 — Robert Carpenter (R) Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon, Swain, Transylvania Cos. 524-5009, 29 Admiral Drive, Franklin 28734. Robertc@ncleg.net Dist. 49 — Martin Nesbitt (D) Buncombe Co. 252-0490, 29 N. Market St., Asheville 28801. Martinn@ncleg.net Dist. 48 — Tom Apodaca (R) Buncombe, Henderson, Polk Cos. 696-0500, 214 North King Street, Hendersonville 28792. Toma@ncleg.net Dist. 47 — Joe Sam Queen (D) Avery, Haywood, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Yancy Cos. 452-1688, 71 Pigeon Street, Waynesville 28786. Joeq@ncleg.net Dist. 46 — Walter Dalton (D) Rutherford, Cleveland Cos., 287-2908, 560 N. Main Street, Rutherfordton 28139. Walterd@ncleg.net Dist. 45 — Virginia Foxx (R) Alleghany, Ashe, Caldwell, Watauga, Wilkes Cos. 963-5829, 11468 Highway 105, Banner Elk 28604. Virginiaf@ncleg.net Dist. 44 — Austin Allran (R) Burke, Catawba Cos. 322-1410, P0 Box 2907, Hickory 28603. Austina@ncleg.net Dist. 30 — John Garwood (R) Stokes, Surry, Wilkes Cos. 336-838-5378, 453 Mark Lane, North Wilkesboro 28659. Johnga@ncleg.net
Legislative Contacts
Blue Ridge Parkway Proposes Unneeded New Visitor Facility at Hemphill Knob — Public Comments Needed
NOTE: An Alert on this issue also ran in the September 27th issue of ��Accent on Action��. We are repeating it because the comment period on the issue is ending in a few days. It��s important that the National Park Service receive as many comments as possible.
The Blue Ridge Parkway has been seeking public comment on a proposal to build a Regional Destination Visitor Center at its Parkway Headquarters just south of the Folk Art Center in Asheville. This facility would include a 250 seat ��Immersive Digital Cinema��, ��Orientation and Marketing Center��, ��Learning Center��, and ��Mountain Ex- perience Interpretive Center��. There are several problems with this original pro- posal. A new visitor center is not needed and would be a huge waste of taxpayer dollars. The Parkway, like all national parks, is desperately short of funding for maintenance of existing infrastruc- ture and resource interpreters. Congress has fallen far short of providing such funds recently. Despite this, Congress- man Charles Taylor has obtained $1 million for planning this new facility and is seeking an additional $3 million for construction. This facility would have a major negative impact on the Folk Art Center. This existing facility already serves as a major visitor center destination, infor- mation center and gift shop, and has a 270-seat auditorium. There is plenty of room there for any expansion or alter- ation of such facilities that might actu- ally be needed. Also, a project of this scope should require a thorough Environmental Im- pact Study, however Parkway literature indicates that only a more cursory En- vironmental Assessment may be done. As this newsletter was going to press, the Park Service announced, with very little notice, a public meeting to introduce a set of four alternative pro- posals, two with the new Visitor Cen- ter facilities constructed at the Hemphill Knob Headquarters site, and two with the facilities located at the Folk Art Cen- ter. The public meeting was scheduled to take place on Tuesday, November 9 at Asheville-Buncombe Technical School in Asheville. The notice and pro- posed alternatives were posted on the Parkway website: www.nps.gov/blri. Click on News in the right side menu and then scroll to the bottom and click on ��Plan/documents Open for Com- ment�� to access the new proposals. Citi- zens are urged to become familiar with the proposals and express your com- ments to the Park Service. The public notice about the meeting was issued only on November 1, and the agency still is not conducting an Environmen- tal Impact Study. The Parkway should be urged to hold another meeting with reasonable advance notification! The deadline for public comment should be extended, as well, so citizens can have adequate time to digest the information and potential impacts from the proposal. Address your comments to: National Park Service/Blue Ridge Park- way; Attn: Planning Team-Regional Des- tination Visitor Center; 199 Hemphill Knob Road; Asheville, NC 28803 Express the above concerns and urge the Parkway to perform an Envi- ronmental Impact Study. The current deadline for Parkway comments is Nov 29th, so be sure to express these con- cerns, and any other comments you might have by then. For more information call Bob Gale at (828) 258-8737; bob@wnca.org or Greg Kidd at (865) 329-2424; gkidd@npca.org.
Request the email version of Accent On Action. Save trees and $ – Send your email address to karen@wnca.org.

Page 7
WNC Alliance Calendar of Events
NEW & RENEWING MEMBERS
Western North Carolina Alliance • Accent • Winter 2004-2005 7
Join WNCA Now!
WNC Alliance Membership Levels
____ $25 Regular/Household ____ $50 Supporting* ____ $100 Sponsoring** ____ $1,000 Lifetime ____ $ Other __________________
RECIPIENT��S NAME ________________________________________________________ ADDRESS ________________________________________________________________ CITY__________________________________ STATE ______ ZIP __________________ PHONE __________________________________________________________________ E-MAIL ___________________________________________________________________ VISA/MC # _______________________________________________________________ EXP. DATE __________________________________ SIGNATURE __________________ COUNTY _________________________________________________________________ YOUR NAME ______________________ __________________________________ ADDRESS ________________________ __________________________________ __________________________________
Clip and mail to: WNC Alliance 29 North Market Street, Suite 610, Asheville, NC 28801
Lifetime members Paul R. Moran Margaret Ann Tuomi Sponsoring members Lee Barnes Cindy & Stephen DuDose John & Phyllis Edwards Thomas W. Eshelman Jeanne Finan Charlotte Goedsche & Cynthia Janes Bob & Judy Grove William S. Jacobs & Susan Posey Donna & Robert Kelly Diane & David Kent Martie & Kip Kingree Christina Ross David Stewart Andrea Stolz Michael & Della Weizman Supporting members Susan Anspacher Bob Baschnagel & Julie Moran Bruce & Rebekah Beerbower Citizens for the Economic Future of Swain County Barry Halpert Mark & Mary Holliday Mort C. Jonas Jo Kenney Kathryn Jo Lynch Ray Miller & Linda Griffith George Rector Joan Byrd Paul L. Saenger M. D., Cherry Lentz Saenger Chester Sansbury Peggie G. Stamper James & Linda Taylor Robert B. Thompson Suzanne Williams Mary Worrell & Casey Carmichael Robert L. Wykle Individual/Household Members Dan Arnold David C. Bailey John Baker Loveeta Baker Margo Banks Steve Barineau Phil Barnette & Jerilyn MacMillan Donald C. Beam Jonathan Bell Randall Boggs Charles F. Boyd Erin Bronson Ben Brown Audrey Bryant Elizabeth Buchanan Lora Anne Campbell Francis J. Caputo, Jr. John & Laura Chase Paula Childers Eugenia Chilton Jane & Leon Christiansen Sal & Barbara Clarizio Ron Coates Gloria & Tom Cook Rebecca & Scott Cramer Richard L. Cundiff Jim & Jean Ann Cunningham Walter A. Damtoft Steve Denny John & Carol Deperczel Caroline Douglas Jan Durham Michael & Shari Elliott Harold & Brenda Elliott Sharon & Vic Fahrer Robert & Terry Fitzpatrick Jean (Ellen) Forrister Charles & Edna Foster Avram Friedman Mary R. Gillig Monroe Gilmour Nicole Grande Robert & Opal Grove Mr. Kim Gruelle Stacy J. Guffey Jack Hall Dr. Edward J.P. Hauser Teena Hayden & Z Woods Rick & Lyn Herrick Andrea Hessey Richard & Sharon Heter Joshua David Hill Sharon & David Horner John P. Humphrey Maureen Jablinske Scott Jackson Kennon & William Jamieson Kevin Johnson Margo Johnston Sally Kesler Aklea Klock Darin & Amy Kohler Gloria Landers Robert W. Lane Betty Lawrence Ginny Lentz Michael L. (Mikey) Lewis Glenn & Pat Liming Edwina Margrett Gary & Celeste Martin Karen Masson Ronald Mauney Denise McClellan Michael McCue Alan McRae Joe & Sue Miller Mary Miller Stair & George J. Peery Joe Mohar Richard & Catherine Monet Anne L. Moss Nick & Linda Mystic Cathy Parton Jim & Fram Phelps Nicholas & Sara Placentra, Jr. Art Polansky Linda T. Powell Donna Reilly Jennifer & Richard Rennicks Edwin & Virginia Riebel Edward & Jan Robles Jan Rubino Carl & Jean Saake Rosemary M. Sells Teri Sferlazza Kelly Sheehan & Joshua Martin Michael & Sally Beth Shore Penny Smith Hershella Smith Deanne & Dee Smith Jerry & Susan Smith Bunk & Nancy Spann Shirley Ann Sparr Janet Spletzer Heather Stevens & Jim McKay Aurelia & Jim Stone Jeanne Strickland Tom Strode & Joan Candalino Jim & Deb Swiatowicz Virginia Talbot & Dean Zuch Jessica R. Tavenner Robert Thomas Nancy L. Thompson Helen Toms Kirk Trowell Null & Trudy Tucker Bill & Sharon Van Horn Theodora Van Houten William W. (Billy) Wells, III Christine Westfeldt Judith Wikstrom and family Jim & Suzanne Williams Virginia C. Wilson Carole Wilson Carol (Jessie) Winters Frank Wolfe Lori Wright Teryl & Doug Zurick
Give a
GIFT MEMBERSHIP
to a Friend!
Creation Stewards Bright Hope Laurel Methodist Church Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Hendersonville Business Members T. J. Walker (The Dillsboro Inn) George & Sandra Lawrence (The Printing Press) Ron Dalton (Earth Connections) Randall & Nancy Baskin (The Celo Inn) Elmer Hall (Sunnybank Retreat Association)
November
16 Tuesday Good Earth Stewards of McDowell meeting Marion, NC Welcome Center, 7 pm. For more information contact Linda at (828) 738-0060 or Norma at (828) 258-8737 18 Thursday Watauga River Conservation Partners meeting, Boone, NC, 5:30 pm., at the County Extension Service building. For information call Richard at (828) 963-8682. 21 Sunday Madison County Chapter meeting at the Madison County Library in Marshall, 3 pm. Note the new time! Items on the agenda include planning for next year, with a possible change of meeting dates & times. Contact Carol at (828) 689-5399 or email caroljo@main.nc.us 30 Tuesday Forest Task Force meeting 5:30 pm, WNC Alliance Asheville office. Contact Bob at (828) 258-8737 or bob@wnca.org for more information.
December
7 Tuesday Tuckasegee Community Alliance Holiday Party at Soul Infusion Bistro & Tea House in Sylva, 5-7 pm. 9 Thursday Annual Holiday Fundraising Party, Governor��s Western Residence, Asheville, NC. Drinks & light hors d��oeuvres, from 6 until 9 pm. 9 Thursday Watauga River Conservation Partners holiday party, 6:00 pm, at home of Kathy Copley in Banner Elk. Contact Richard DeMott at (828) 963-8682. 15 Tuesday Holiday Party for Environmental Activists at Barley��s Taproom in Asheville, 6-9 pm (time approximate). This is an evening to socialize with our fellow volunteers from several area environmental organizations. For more information, contact Norma or Karen at (828) 258-8737. No Forest Task Force meeting in December

Page 8
Accent
a Grassroots Environmental Organization
Blue Ridge P arkw ay F orum a Success
page 1
Forest Service Urge d to Protect Old Gro w th
page 3
Major Landslides on F orest Highw ay 50
page 4
Annual M e mbership M eeting Photo s
page 5
Action ALERT
(828) 258-8737 • 29 North Market St., Suite 610 • Asheville, NC 28801 • www .wnca.org
Issue 69 V o lume IXX, Number 4 W inter 2004-2005
Proposed Parkway Regional Destination V isitor Center
page 6
m o re in sid e :
Map courtesy of Blue Ridge Parkway
WNCA Offers Help on Invasive W atershed Plant
WNCA Offers Help on Invasive W atershed Plant
29 Market St., Suite 610 Asheville, NC 28801 (828) 258-8737 www.wnca.org
Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage
PAID
Permit #217 Asheville, NC
Holiday Fundraising
Party & Raffle
Details Inside!
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