Established in Birmingham, the Alabama Environmental Council (originally the Alabama Conservancy) was founded in 1967. It is hard to imagine what Alabama would look like without this organization.
Over the years, the Alabama Environmental Council was responsible for the establishment of the Sipsey, Cheaha and Dugger Mountain Wilderness Areas. Along with the many special places preserved and protected by the AEC, the organization today still operates the longest running and largest non-profit recycling center in the state.
Recently, Bham Now uncovered a 1991 Alabama Conservancy (now AEC) Annual Report. Check out some of the accomplishments that was listed in the report that is now 26 years old:
- Recycled over 3.5 million pounds of material at the downtown recycling center.
- Sponsored with Bruno’s and Alabama Power a Christmas Tree recycling program that recycled and re-purposed 45,000 Christmas Trees statewide.
- Helped secure a portion of the Chief Ladiga Trail, which today in 2017 connects with the Appalachian Trail.
- Launched a statewide campaign and testified in Congress to create the Little River Canyon National Preserve.
- Prevented the establishment of a radioactive waste facility in Anniston, Alabama.
- Distributed funds in support of the Protect Alabama’s Dolphins Campaign along Alabama’s coasts.
- And began campaigning for the Forever Wild Constitutional Amendment legislation.
Fresh off the 20th Anniversary of Earth Day in 1990, the environmental movement in Alabama was growing exponentially in the early 90s. For example, the AEC’s membership doubled between 1990 to 1992.
This is just a “window” into the long storied 50 year history of the Alabama Environmental Council. Join the AEC, this coming Thursday, April 20th for the Annual Green Tie Affair (purchase tickets here) at the Clubhouse on Highland.
It is a once in 50 years celebration.
-The author is a former director of the Alabama Environmental Council