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Conveners of Rappahannock Exchange Invite the Public to Synergize Government and Commerce

Imagine a day in the not too distant future when the government and private sector work in concert to achieve Chesapeake Bay restoration. Imagine watershed-based marketplaces found in every major river basin transacting products and services, every one of which, contributes to bringing the Bay back to life. Imagine communities, businesses, and landowners interacting within new commercial platforms that provide yearly landowner payments for healthy-Bay land uses from private transactions boosting corporate profit.

Together, we can build such a marketplace in 2 years. We need your help.

November 2, 2009

Dear Friend of the Rappahannock River Basin:

The Rappahannock River Basin Commission, and special guest Congressman Rob Wittman, would like to invite you to participate in a symposium called “Incentivizing Restoration through a Chesapeake Bay Economy”. The purpose of the symposium is to begin the process of creating a bioregional marketplace called the Rappahannock Exchange.  This is a national pilot project, which will seek to integrate environmental goals and policy with commerce.  This unique initiative addresses the concept of stimulating, creating, and sustaining a demand for the services provided by our farms and natural resources.  Financially rewarding landowners who preserve these resources of national interest and enhance the economic opportunities of businesses that participate in the Exchange is a core principle.

There is now common recognition that our country’s farms and natural resources provide a vital function in the well being of our society. Considerable work has been done across the country in developing tools that quantify ecosystem services, as well as the creation of registries that list marketable ecosystem service projects with marketing protocols.  Much of this essential work is supply side oriented to ensure that quality environmental assets and services are available for trade.  But half of the equation is missing from these efforts. The Rappahannock Exchange initiative is unique because it seeks to integrate the supply side framework with the voluntary demand side of corporate, social, and personal responsibility. Commerce will emerge that promotes ecosystem health of the Chesapeake Bay and the Rappahannock River Basin.

As you are aware, the Chesapeake Bay’s ecosystems continue to decline despite government regulations while the health of our farms and natural resources are threatened. A new approach is needed to solve these issues. As a participant in the symposium, you will have the opportunity to shape the development of an historic effort to create the “first of its kind” bioregional economy designed to put a value on the very resources needed by all. The launch of this national pilot program discussion will be:

When: December 9, 2009

8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Where: University of Mary Washington,

Stafford Campus,

121 University Boulevard,

Fredericksburg, 22406

Cost: $25

We have come to the 21st century. The significance of this effort has implications far beyond Virginia’s boundaries. Please accept this personal invitation to roll up our sleeves and come together, embracing the unique strengths of our private and public heritage to construct the world’s first post-industrial ecological economy.

Sincerely, The Symposium Conveners -

The Honorable State Senator Emmett Hanger, 24th Senate District, Chair, Rappahannock River Basin Commission

The following Conveners are listed alphabetically:

Phil Brown, Food Safety Manager, Wegmans Group

David Crowe, Investment Banking (Retired)

Butch Davies, Attorney and Member, Commonwealth Transportation Board

Margaret Davis, Rose Hill Farm and Member, Essex County Board of Supervisors

Pamela Faggert, Dominion Resources

Faye Gish, Owner, Faye’s Office Supply, Inc.

Dan Gregg, Owner, Grelen Nursery

Joe Grzeika, President/Owner Joetech LLC and Chair, King George County Board of Supervisors

Robert Hagan, President, Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce

The Honorable State Senator R. Edward Houck, 17th Senate District

Robert Lee, Executive Director, Virginia Outdoors Foundation

Jerry Logan, Owner, Logan Electric and Member, Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors

Alex Long, A-Long Realty Advisors and Chair, Port Royal Planning Commission

John Meggs, Nature Neutral, Green Building Supply

George G. Quarles, COO Transports and Purchasing, Quarles Petroleum Inc.

Peter Rice, Founder, Plow and Hearth

The Honorable Delegate Ed Scott, 30th House District

The Honorable State Senator Richard Stuart, 28th Senate District

John Tippett, Executive Director, Friends of the Rappahannock

Buzz Van Santvoord, Road Runner Logistics Consulting

To register go to: http://www.rappriverbasin.org/symposium.htm and click on the Registration Form

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