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15 counties must clean their air

15 counties must clean their air

ATLANTA -- Air Quality Awareness Week recently came to a close, and 15 metro Atlanta counties didn't quite make the clean air cut.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently changed its standards of attainment for ozone standards from .08 parts per billion to .075 parts.

The change means that 15 formerly compliant counties were re-designated at nonattainment for ground-level ozone: Bartow, Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry, Newton, Paulding and Rockdale.

To clean up the air, residents can try carpooling to work or taking MARTA if possible; fewer cars on the roads means more breathable air for everyone in metro Atlanta.

Learn more about how to reduce emissions and cut down on ozone at www.cleanaircampaign.org.

Amphibian Monitoring Workshop this Friday

Amphibian Monitoring Workshop this Friday

DEKALB --  DeKalb County Chief Executive Officer Burrell Ellis announces that DeKalb Adopt-A-Stream is hosting an amphibian monitoring workshop this Friday, April 13, 6 to 9 p.m. at Arabia Mountain Preserve, 3787 Klondike Road, Lithonia, Georgia 30038. There is no charge for the workshop and it is open to the public, ages 14 and up.

During the workshop, attendees will discover the wonderful world of amphibians and the helpful information they tell about the environment as water quality indicators. The agenda includes an indoor presentation highlighting frogs and salamanders that are found in and around local streams and wetlands. Participants will then be led along a stream and wetland area viewing and identifying frogs. At the conclusion of the workshop, participants will receive an instruction manual and a color ID key.

FEMA encourages Chattahoochee-area residents to learn flood risks

FEMA encourages Chattahoochee-area residents to learn flood risks

ATLANTA -- As 2011 draws to a close, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) encourages all Americans to understand the risks that surround them -- and for residents of the Upper Chattahoochee River Region, those risks include the possibility of flooding.

FEMA worked with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to create maps of the 107-mile stretch of the Chattahoochee River between the Buford Dam and Coweta County, which includes Cobb, Coweta, DeKalb, Douglas, Forsyth, Fulton and Gwinnett counties.

These updated maps detail flood hazard and risk data with the ultimate goal of protecting homeowners from flooding.

Maps for those who live in the Chattahoochee flood region are available at www.georgiadfirm.com. Learn more about steps to prevent flood damage at www.ready.gov/floods.

Fulton County Seeks Nominees for Environmental Awards

The Fulton County Citizens Commission on the Environment (FCCCE) is seeking nominations of environmental advocates and environmental projects that exemplify environmentally-sound practices to be recognized at its annual Environmental Awards Program on April 18, 2012.  All nomination entries must be postmarked by Friday, January 13, 2012.

All submissions will be evaluated in one of the following categories:

  • Environmental Advocate -  Individual in Fulton County who supports activities that  protect the environment and exemplify environmentally sound practices
  • Best Development Development in Fulton County that implements proactive and Innovative  best management practices
  • Environmental Program Fulton County programs that focus on environmental awareness and pollution prevention

One award will be presented in the E

Practicing What They Preach: Turner Construction Atlanta Achieves LEED Gold Certification for Their

Practicing What They Preach: Turner Construction Atlanta Achieves LEED Gold Certification for Their

Company’s commitment to green construction
practices starts with their own offices

Turner Construction Atlanta, a leader in environmentally friendly building practices, recently received a Gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the United States Green Building Council for renovation of their own Atlanta offices. Turner is Atlanta’s largest LEED builder and incorporates sustainable elements into every project.

For Winston Williams, the company’s Green Champion, the space is a demonstration of Turner’s real commitment to sustainability. “Green building practices are an important movement in construction today,” he says. “We embrace those values not only for our clients, but for ourselves as well.”

Green features of the space include:

Deal appoints new Ga. EPD director

Deal appoints new Ga. EPD director

ATLANTA -- Jud Turner has been appointed director of the Environmental Protection Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR board made the appointment official this week after Gov. Nathan Deal nominated Turner for the post.

Turner replaces F. Allen Barnes, who is leaving to work in the private sector.

Turner is a founding partner in the law firm Turner, Bachman & Garrett LLC and public affairs firm Georgia360 LLC. He was former Gov. Sonny Perdue's lead attorney and represented the governor during negotiations with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service during the state's severe drought.

Turner has also served as general counsel to the Georgia Department of Education.

Eco-Fabulous Explored on Beltline Tour

Eco-Fabulous Explored on Beltline Tour

The Atlanta Beltline project is a diverse 2.8 billion project to renovate neighborhoods, parks and commercial space for an area of the city that will be connected by town-car (incorporating old railroad tracks).  The project incorporates nature and neighborhood's existing materials to create a neighborhood that's "eco-fabulous", as our tour guide called it. Brian Leary, the brain behind this project was a college student who was inspired by a similar plan in Paris.

Every Friday and Saturday at 9:30AM, the Atlanta Beltline hosts a free three hour tour along this beltline that highlights the circle that the town cars will transit. Currently, this Beltline tour is reserved for the next year but I was lucky enough to find a seat, due to a cancellation.

I didn't know what to expect on these tours. When I signed up I had never imagined the tour would take three hours out of my Saturday.