Posts Tagged ‘Gallatin’

Tennessee Invests in Main Street

Tuesday, April 8th, 2014 - posted by meredith

By Nolen Nychay

The Main Street Festival of Gallatin, Tenn., celebrates its 16th anniversary this October, keeping community traditions alive with local music and homemade food and craft vendors. Last year, the event drew more than 25,000 visitors looking to enjoy the rustic charm that the small communities of Tennessee pride themselves on.

The Greater Gallatin Inc. nonprofit organization hosts the annual festival to stimulate local businesses. The Tennessee Main Street Program, a statewide resource for communities revitalizing their downtowns, aims to preserve the authenticity of such small towns through their new “Ignite Downtown Economic Action” Initiative. “We’re excited about the potential of this new initiative to set realistic, economically prudent goals for Tennessee’s culturally unique towns,” says Todd Morgan of the Tennessee Main Street Program.

Launching this April, the IDEA Initiative will be a one-year program designed to help 27 Tennessee Main Street towns identify areas of economic opportunity. Economic development experts will visit each town, including mountain communities such as Bristol and Kingsport, to identify what most effectively attracts visitors and how that might be expanded. Afterwards, small business owners, city officials and local residents can gather for a public workshop to hear these expert opinions and offer their own suggestions for improvement. A final report with recommendations will be presented to each town hall to use for future projects.

2013 Marks Banner Year for Open Space in Virginia

By Emmalee Zupo

This past year marked the fourth most successful period for land conservation by the Virginia Outdoors Foundation — a state agency responsible for preserving open space and areas of cultural significance.

Nonprofit organizations such as New River Land Trust, based in Blacksburg, Va., have been helping local landowners place their properties into permanent conservation under the stewardship of VOF. The 56,697 acres of land protected from development in 2013 included more than 900 acres added to the state’s New River Trail State Park.*

Conserved properties also included historical landmarks such as the Shot Tower Historical State Park in Wythe County, Va., which protects one of the only remaining shot towers in the United States — and the remnants of what was once a major industry for the state. Shot towers are tall buildings that were used to create lead shot for firearms by dropping molten lead from a height of 150 feet into water, where the lead was then cooled.

John Eustis, executive director of the New River Land Trust, attributes the success of this past year to strong outreach efforts. “We couldn’t do our work without the support of our community,” Eustis says. “Thanks should always be given to those landowners and those community members who support conservation.”

*CORRECTION: The print version of this article incorrectly stated that 900 miles were added to the New River Trail scenic route. We regret the error.

Organizational Roundup

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012 - posted by molly

Fighting Tennessee Valley Assumptions
Appalachian Voices recently joined forces with the Sierra Club and Tennessee Clean Water Network to call on the Tennessee Valley Authority to not overhaul its aging Gallatin Fossil Plant without fully considering cleaner and cheaper options. TVA unveiled a draft Environmental Assessment for plans to sink over $1 billion into the aging coal-fired power plant for new scrubbers, but their public comment period only provided a thirty day-window for citizens to weigh in via mail and did not include a public hearing. The letter by our network of groups urged TVA to complete a much more comprehensive Environmental Impact Study, extend the comment period, open up discussions for public hearings and provide key background documents supporting its assumptions.
TVA’s plans would raise customer bills for years to come, even though a recent report shows that if the government-owned utility invested the same amount of money in energy efficiency, it could replace the Gallatin coal plant by 2015 and save TVA customers billions of dollars over the next twenty years while simultaneously reducing dangerous air pollution.

Dirty Money and Dirty Power in Virginia
On the eve of an annual energy conference hosted by the governor of Virginia, Appalachian Voices joined Sierra Club and Chesapeake Climate Action Network to released a timely report revealing the influence that coal companies and utilities wield over Virginia energy policy. In the report, “Dirty Money, Dirty Power,” the groups analyzed more than a decade of publicly available data to draw connections between political campaign contributions and the poor record of Virginia’s government in advancing energy efficiency and renewable programs compared to other states. The day following the release, Tom Cormons and Nathan Jenkins of our Virginia team attended the governor’s conference — sponsored by energy giants such as Dominion Power, Alpha Natural Resources and Appalachian Power — and spread a little clean energy love in what was otherwise a very coal-friendly conference. Visit

A Fond Farewell

The Appalachian Voice and Appalchian Voices would like to bid a fond farewell to our clever visual visonary, Meghan Darst, as she heads off to explore the marketing world wilds of Charlotte, N.C. Meghan started as an intern a year and a half ago, and soon jumped into a vital role on our Communications team. We will miss her sweet nature and willingness to tackle any graphics job — big or small. Best wishes!

AV, Citizens Groups Oppose TVA’s Rush to Judgement

Friday, October 19th, 2012 - posted by jw

>>>Proud to join Sierra and TCWN on this important effort. It’s a simple choice. TVA should be putting money into energy efficiency programs rather than trying to extend the life of an expensive, inefficient, dirty coal plant like Gallatin. – jw< << TVA would give the public only thirty days to weigh in on project that could raise bills

Nashville, TN – Yesterday afternoon the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) announced it will issue an Environmental Assessment (EA) for proposed upgrades at its Gallatin Fossil Plant outside of Nashville, Tennessee. The Sierra Club, Tennessee Clean Water Network and Appalachian Voices responded by calling on TVA not to sink over $1 billion into the aging plant for new scrubbers without fully considering cleaner and cheaper options and without adequate public input in the process.

The draft EA issued by TVA gives members of the public only thirty days to weigh in on the massive project with no opportunity for a public hearing. Instead, local and national groups are urging TVA to complete a much more comprehensive Environmental Impact Statement, extend the comment period, open up the discussions for public hearings and provide key background documents supporting its assumptions.

“With cleaner, safer, and more affordable energy options available to us, it is vital that the TVA takes steps to fully examine a proposal that affects not just the air we breathe and the water we drink, but also how much money its customers have to pay to fund these unnecessary and hugely expensive upgrades,” said JW Randolph, Tennessee Director of Appalachian Voices. “TVA says it wants to be a leader on energy efficiency but it’s investing in more pollution. This project is taking us in the wrong direction.”