RUSSELL CO., VA-- Deputy Secretary of the Interior Lynn Scarlett; Brent Wahlquist, director of Interior’s Office of Surface Mining (OSM); and Lynette H. Hammond, Deputy Secretary to the Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade will join secondary school students from Virginia’s Wise, Russell and Dickenson counties on Friday, April 4, to plant American chestnut and other trees on mined land at the Flint Gap Pilot Carbon Sequestration Project.
OSM is working with the American Chestnut Foundation, Virginia and other states, coal companies, universities and other private and public partners on the Appalachian Reforestation Initiative. The American chestnut tree was once a prominent species in the eastern half of the United States, but was nearly rendered extinct by a fungus in the 1930’s. The American Chestnut Foundation has been working for 25 years to develop a blight-resistant American chestnut that will be used to repopulate the eastern forests.
|WHAT:|| The event will feature:
- Reforestation of Mined Land
- Carbon Sequestration through Reforestation
- Reintroduction of the Mighty American Chestnut on Mined Land
- 100+ Students Will Plant 1,500 Oak, Ash, Maple, Walnut and American Chestnuts
- Focus on Standards of Learning
|WHEN:|| 10:00 a.m. on Friday, April 4, 2008 |
|WHO: || The following dignitaries will attend the Arbor Day Celebration.
- The Honorable P. Lynn Scarlett, U.S. Department of Interior Deputy Secretary
- Brent Wahlquist, Director, U.S. Office of Surface Mining
- Thomas D. Shope, Appalachian Region Director, U.S. Office of Surface Mining
- The Honorable Lynette H. Hammond, Deputy Secretary, Virginia Secretary of Commerce and Trade
- George P. Wills, Director, Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy
- Benny R. Wampler, Deputy Director, Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy
- Butch Lambert, Director, DMME, Division of Mined Land Reclamation
- Ed Stoots, Regional Forester, Virginia Department of Forestry
- Brad Kreps, The Nature Conservancy
- Marshal Case, President, American Chestnut Foundation
|WHERE:|| Flint Gap, State Route 616 off Route 63, Russell County (directions follow)
- From points west (Wise County): proceed to Alternate Rt. 58 (58A) and travel east to St. Paul; turn left at the first traffic light and continue through a residential area of St. Paul; continue straight at the next light; continue on Rt. 63 into Russell County; continue on 63 by the Dante community; at the top of a long grade, turn right onto Rt. 616 at the Russell County, Dickenson County line; go 500 feet and turn right to the Arbor Day celebration
- From points east (Russell and Washington Counties): proceed to Alternate 58 (58A) and travel west to St. Paul; at the first light after crossing Clinch River, turn right; drive 3 blocks and turn right at a traffic light onto Rt. 63; continue on Rt. 63 into Russell County; continue on 63 by the Dante community; at the top of a long grade, turn right onto Rt. 616 at the Russell County, Dickenson County line; go 500 feet and turn right to the Arbor Day celebration
- From Dickenson County: proceed to Rt. 63 and drive through the Trammel community; at the top of a long grade, turn left onto Rt. 616 at the Russell County, Dickenson County line; go 500 feet and turn right to the Arbor Day celebration
NOTE: PLEASE WEAR HIKING OR WORK BOOTS OR OTHER STURDY SHOES. ALSO, DEPENDING ON THE WEATHER FORECAST, YOU SHOULD DRESS FOR COOL TO COLD WEATHER.