Thursday, September 28, 2006

Bama Environmental News - September 28th

1) Auburn Researcher Publishes Ivory-Bill Woodpecker Findings
2) Alabama Aquatic Biodiversity Center To Release Endangered Snails
3) Birmingham Metro Would Fail New Tougher Air Pollution Rules
4) 26 Alabama Mayors Pledge Support in Water War
5) Coastal Cleanup 2006 - The Numbers
6) BEN Notes: Village Creek Renew Our Rivers Cleanup, An Inconvenient Truth Viewing, Solar Home Tour, Weeks Bay 13th Annual Plant Sale, EcoFest 8, ARA River Revival, NEMO Training Workshops


1. Auburn Researcher Publishes Ivory-Bill Woodpecker Findings - Earlier this week, according to the Mobile Register, Auburn researchers have published evidence that the long thought to be extinct ivory-bill woodpecker has been discovered in the Florida Panhandle.

Researchers said they've had 13 sightings of the ivory bill and some 300 distinctive calls and sounds associated with the elusive woodpecker. The last clear photos of the bird and uncontested proof of the bird's existence date back to the 1930's in Louisiana. In 2005, an announcement was made that the woodpecker was rediscovered in Arkansas. The researchers at Auburn have acknowledged that the evidence is not conclusive, but they have assembled lines of evidence including audio recordings and evidence of some 20 roost cavities in the Choctawhatchee River basin.

Auburn's lead researcher is Geoff Hill, who is considered one of the world's preeminent authorities on bird evolution and coloration. Their research has been published in the online journal Avian Conservation & Ecology. You can find the article at

2. Alabama Aquatic Biodiversity Center To Release Endangered Snails - Alabama's new Aquatic Biodiversity Center, a program of the Alabama Department of Conservation plans to release approximately 10,000 juvenile Pilcate Rocksnails into the Locust Fork of the Black Water River in Blount County. The snails are offsprings produced from 160 adult snails collected from the Locust Fork in Jefferson County. This release, will be the first of it's kind of an endangered species, by the new center.

The snail, which requires clean flowing waters has been eliminated from 97 percent of its historic range (which was primarily throughout the Black Warrior River Basin) due to the construction of dams and water quality degradation. If successful, the release may eventually allow for the removal of the Pilate Rocksnail from the endangered species list.

For more information about this new and exciting program, contact Dr. Paul Johnson at 334-683-5000.

3. Birmingham Metro Would Fail New Tougher Air Pollution Rules - According to the Birmingham News, recently released air pollution rules by the Environmental Protection Agency pertaining to particle pollution would place the region in violation of air quality standards. Air quality officials have determined that three Jefferson County air monitors would fail under new tougher rules.

The new limits on particle air pollution is considered important by the EPA because the new tougher standard on particles will keep an estimated 15,000 people a year from dying premature deaths nationwide. EPA predicts the decision to strengthen the standard will cut by half the allowable particulate emissions from smokestacks and tailpipes.

4. 26 Alabama Mayors Pledge Support in Water War - This week, 26 mayors from the Alabama-Coosa-Tallapoosa river basin have pledged in a letter supporting Governor Bob Riley and state congressional efforts to prevent water from being "wrongfully redirected to Georgia" potentially harming the environment and industry.

The letter is in response to the long running water dispute between Georgia, Alabama and Florida.Mayors from the following Alabama cities signed the letter: Alexander City, Ashland, Camden, Centre, Childersburg, Coosada, Dadeville, Fort Payne, Gadsden, Grove Hill, Heflin, Lineville, Lowndesboro, Millbrook, Monroeville, Pratville, Rainbow City, Roanoke, Rockford, Sylacauga, Talladega, Thomasville, Wedowee, Wetumpka, White Hall.

5. Coastal Cleanup 2006 - The Numbers - The initial figures are in, and it looks like another "job well done" for this year's 19th Annual Alabama Coastal Cleanup, which was held earlier this month. The numbers are astonishing.

In Alabama, according to Amy King of the Alabama Department of Conservation, about 40 tons of trash and debris were picked up by 3,700 volunteers at 23 sites in Mobile, Baldwin, Covington, Escambia, Butler and Conecuh counties. Some of the most unusual items... pieces of a dog house and a deflated bounce house.

6. BEN Notes - Village Creek Renew Our Rivers Cleanup, An Inconvenient Truth Viewing, Solar Home Tour, Weeks Bay 13th Annual Plant Sale, EcoFest 8, ARA River Revival, NEMO Training Workshops

Village Creek Renew Our Rivers Cleanup - Come join the Village Creek Environmental Justice Society and Alabama Power's Renew Our Rivers river cleanup program on Saturday, September 30 between 8:00 am to 1:00 pm. There will be live entertainment, a formal program and lunch for all volunteers immediately after the cleanup. Directions to Village Creek: Take I 20/59 West to Exit #121 (Bush Blvd/Ensley) go right off the interstate to Avenue V, which becomes Avenue W. go approximately 1/2 mile north to creek. The tent is located at 11th Street Ensley and Avenue M at the footbridge. For additional info call Dr. Mabel Anderson 205-798-0087 or Alabama Power at 1-800-LAKES11

An Inconvenient Truth Viewing - Didn't get to see Al Gore's documentary about Global Warming in the theaters? Here is your chance to view a free screening of the movie! The movie will be shown on Sunday, October 1st at 7:00 pm. - St. Andrews Episcopal Church in Birmingham 1024 South 12th Street (across from the Alys Stephens Center on the UAB Campus). The screening will be in the Parish Hall and there will be a casual discussion after the film.

Solar Home Tour - The Alabama Solar Collective is sponsoring a local Solar Home Tour in rural Blount County on October 7th starting at 9:00 AM. To register and directions, contact Stephen at 205-429-4120 or email (be sure to write "Home Tour" in the subject line). For additional solar Home Tour sites check out

Weeks Bay 13th Annual Plant Sale - Join Weeks Bay Reserve's 13th Annual Native Plant Sale, October 6-8, 8:00AM to 4:00PM each day. For additional information and directions, call Weeks Bay at 251-928-9792.

EcoFest 8 - Please join the Southern Environmental Center for EcoFest 8 - Thursday, October 12th, 6-9 at WorkPlay (corner of 5th Avenue South & 23rd Street) in Birmingham. The live auction will be conducted by Alan Hunter (original MTV VJ fame) and Rick Journey from Fox 6. For ticket information go to

ARA River Revival - The Alabama Rivers Alliance will be holding "River Revival" October 22nd from 1:00PM to 6:00PM at King's Bend on the banks of the Locust Fork River. Tickets are $20 in advance, $60 for a car full - and they can be purchased at Deep South Fly Shop, Alabama Outdoors or at . For additional info call Jennifer Rupe at 205-322-6395 ext. 104.

NEMO Training Workshops - ADEM's Nonpoint Source Education for Municipal Officials (NEMO) program is one of the most innovative in the country. If you know a municipal official who would benefit from this program, NEMO is presently registering participants for their 2006 Training Session. The training is scheduled for October 26th at ADEM's Main Office, Room 1201 in Montgomery. For more information, contact Patti Hurley at 334-394-4350.

No comments: