1) "Sitting in Our Cars" A New Study About Traffic In Bham
2) Southern Company/National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Grant Announcements
3) Reclamation of Abandoned Mine Sites
4) BEN Notes: Little River Canyon Public Meetings, River Guardians Needed, Educational/Sustainability Websites, Animal Sounds from the MacCaulay Library
1. "Sitting in Our Cars" A New Study About Traffic In Bham - According to a study by the Texas Transportation Institute, commuters in the Birmingham area can expect to spend 27 hours stuck in traffic a year.
The 2005 Urban Mobility Report ranked Birmingham 43rd out of 85 urban areas for the annual number of hours delay a typical motorist will experience. The 27 hours of sitting in traffic is almost a quadruple increase from the 6 hours motorist in Birmingham were delayed in 1982. To learn more about this study view the report at http://mobility.tamu.edu/ums/
2. Southern Company/National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) Grant Announcements - Southern Company and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation recently awarded two major grants to Alabama groups within their Power of Flight and Longleaf Legacy programs. Here are descriptions for two of the Alabama grantees:
* Quail Unlimited, Inc. - to support the Northern Bobwhite Conservation Initiative by restoring the habitat of the Bankhead and Talladega National Forests in Alabama.
* Auburn University School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences - to pilot methods to reintroduce fire among longleaf pine in mountainous areas with excessive undergrowth. This project aims to restore longleaf pine in Alabama with the goal of creating methods that can be used throughout longleaf's range.
Since 2002, Southern Company and NFWF have contributed more than $4.7 million through 61 grants to the Power of Flight and Longleaf Legacy programs. In addition, grant recipients have contributed nearly $6.7 million in matching funds, resulting in an on-the-ground conservation impact of more than $11.4 million.
3. Reclamation of Abandoned Mine Sites - Some interesting figures from two Sunday Birmingham News articles on abandoned mine reclamation in Alabama written by News reporter Kent Faulk. They include:
* For nearly 30 years, Alabama's Abandoned Mine Land Program has reclaimed more than 35 square miles. It is estimated 112 square miles of Alabama landscape remain scarred by mining operations abandoned before 1977.
* According to the Birmingham News, environmentalists and regulators agree - at the current pace of funding it could take 200 years and an estimated $402 million to reclaim the land remaining on the Alabama Abandoned Mine Land Program's list of abandoned mines.
For more information about abandoned mines in Alabama go to the Surface Mining Commission website at http://www.surface-mining.state.al.us/ To learn more about the Federal Abandoned Mine Reclamation program, visit http://www.osmre.gov/fundstat.htm
The Birmingham News articles can be found at http://al.com .
BEN Notes: Little River Canyon Public Meetings, River Guardians Needed, Educational/Sustainability Websites, Animal Sounds from the MacCaulay Library
Little River Canyon Public Meetings - The National Park Service is seeking ideas for improving Little River Canyon National Preserve. Three open houses will be held this week to allow the public to make recommendations. Open house meetings are scheduled for:
December 5th - 5 to 8pm at the Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce, 256-927-8455
December 6th - 2 to 4pm at the DeKalb County Tourist Association, 256-845-3947
December 7th - 5 to 8pm at the DeKalb County Tourist Association, 256-845-3947
For more info about park planning, call John Bundy at 256-845-9605 or visit http://parkplanning.nps.gov
River Guardians Needed - The Flint River Conservation Association is planning a workshop next year to train people to find signs of nonpoint source pollution and report violations. The workshop is scheduled for February 24th in Huntsville. For more detailed information call Soos Weber at 256-427-5116 or visit http://www.huntsvillepreserves.com
Educational/Sustainability Websites - Check out these websites that provide new educational tools and info on sustainability.
http://www.nrel.gov/learning - Learning about Renewable Energy - Website provides basic info about solar, wind, biomass, hydrogen and geothermal power.
http://oceanslive.org/ - OceansLive.org aims to bring the ocean world to communities worldwide and make oceans accessible and local through a multimedia system approach.
http://www.populationeducation.org/index.jsp - Population Connection's education program is a national population education program with a strong emphasis on teacher training for educators of grades pre-K through 12.
http://theevergladesstory.org/ - Water's Journey Everglades, this website offers a wealth of information about the history and contemporary situation in and around the Everglades.
http://www.sustainlane.us/home.jsp - SustainLane is a website designed for state and local government officials to exchange best practices in sustainability and network among peers.
Animal Sounds from the MacCaulay Library - Here is a really neat site. The Macaulay Library (formerly the Library of Natural Sounds) is the world's largest archive of animal sounds. They have more than 160,000 recordings of 67 percent of the world's birds, and rapidly increasing holdings of insects, fish, frogs and mammals. Visit - http://www.birds.cornell.edu/MacaulayLibrary/About/