The Sierra Club, founded by John Muir in 1892, is one of the oldest, largest, and most influential grassroots environmental organizations in the United States. The Niagara Group is one of eleven groups in the New York State Atlantic Chapter of the Sierra Club. The Niagara Group represents Sierrans in Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans, and Wyoming counties in Western New York.
ISSUES AND ACTIVITIES Our members are involved in many different activities to help protect the environment of our local area, the state, and the planet, including the following:
- We address climate change by promoting renewable energy, energy efficiency and conservation. We support NY’s 2019 Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act that requires a complete transition to renewable energy, decarbonization and electrification of transportation, heating and cooling our buildings, manufacturing and agriculture. Our transition to a renewable energy economy must be based on economic, racial and environmental justice. The Niagara Group also is working to fulfill the goals in NY’s climate legislation including prevailing wages for all renewable energy jobs, a just transition for communities and workers dependent on the fossil fuel or nuclear industries.
- We oppose the destructive and toxic horizontal drilling practice for natural gas known as hydrofracking, and chemical waste disposal sites that pollute our environment and drinking supplies.
- We oppose the build-out of any new fossil fuel infrastructure and pipelines.
- We seek to protect and enhance our local wetlands, water bodies, forests, parks and watersheds.
- We lobby our local and state elected officials for better environmental laws and policies. We interview and endorse candidates who support the environment.
- We host and participate in events throughout the year to educate the public about environmental issues.
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE MEMBERS
- Sara Schultz: Chairperson, Atlantic Chapter Clean Transportation for All Committee, Liaison to United Solar Energy Supporters NY, Liaison to Interfaith Climate Justice Community of WNY
- Robert Ciesielski: Atlantic Chapter Vice Chair, Atlantic Chapter Energy Chair, Liaison to Interfaith Climate Justice Community of WNY
- Larry Beahan: Conservation Chairperson, Habitat Chair, Atlantic Chapter Group Alternate Delegate, Delegate to Niagara Relicensing Environmental Coalition
- Roger Cook: Co-Chair Political Committee, Liaison to Interfaith Climate Justice Community of WNY, Liaison to Divest NY
- Janet Lenichek: Co-Chair Political Committee, Atlantic Chapter at Large Delegate, Atlantic Chapter Political Committee, Liaison to the Good Food Purchasing Program,
- John Szalasny: Waste and Recycling Chair, Atlantic Chapter Delegate
- Ellen Banks: Atlantic Chapter Conservation Chair
- Diana Strablow: Vice-Chair, Pipeline, Natural Gas Work, Renewable Heat Now Campaign, Co-Chair Atlantic Chapter Gas Action Committee
- Richard Lippes: Legal Consultant
- Lisa Mertz: Representative for Chautauqua County
- Abdur-Rahman Morgan: Secretary
NON-EXECUTIVE MEMBERS WORKING WITH THE NIAGARA GROUP
- Esther Clabeaux: Treasurer
- Gretchen White: Newsletter Graphic Designer
SIERRA CLUB NIAGARA GROUP BY-LAWS
As a member group of the Atlantic Chapter of the Sierra Club, we are bound by policy of the Atlantic Chapter and by our own Niagara Group By-Laws which can be read here: Niagara Group By-Laws Protocol for online Executive Committee voting .