Thursday, May 29, 2008

OMNI member demonstrates sustainable living, travel

Please click on image to enlarge.

Town Branch neighborhood resident Richard Tiffany doesn't require shoes or expensive clothing or a car to travel across south Fayetteville.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Carbon Caps Task Force to welcome global-warming commission to NW Arkansas on Sunday

NWA Nonprofit Holds Reception for Arkansas' Global Warming Commission, Unveils Planetwork Initiative and PSA

Fayetteville, Ark., May 16 2008 — On Sunday May 18 at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Springdale, AR, the Carbon Caps Task Force (CCTF), a committee of the Omni Center for Peace, Justice, & Ecology, will hold a reception for Governor Beebe's Arkansas Commission on Global Warming. At the same time, the group will also unveil the Planetwork initiative, a policy alert database used to raise awareness of state climate change policies that the 2009 Arkansas General Assembly will consider next year. The reception will be from 3:00 to 5:00pm. Attendance is free and an open invitation is extended to the public and all media.
With the event, the CCTF hopes to raise awareness of actions that Arkansas is taking to address climate change implications and support the Governor's Commission on Global Warming. Commissioners will describe their role and answer questions from those in attendance. Among those confirmed include Arkansas Representative and Commission Co-Chair Kathy Webb, Commissioner Steve Cousins, Commissioner Kevan Inboden, Commissioner Elizabeth Martin, Commissioner Robert McAfee, and Commissioner Cindy Sagers. Special invitations were sent to local and regional political leaders.
At the reception, the group will also explain their history and support with the Commission. The CCTF was instrumental in establishing the Commission, and on Sunday they will officially unveil a new project, called Planetwork. Planetwork is a legislative alert database which will be used in the 2009 General Assembly of the Arkansas State Legislature, while the policy recommendations put forth by the Commission are being considered. The group will also unveil a new PSA supporting the Commission and advertising Planetwork, which will be shown on state television networks.
The reception is an opportunity for the citizens of Northwest Arkansas to meet their commissioners and learn what they are doing to shape Arkansas climate change policy. A question and answer period will follow the Commissioners' talks, and a tour of the wind turbines that the church has recently installed will take place after the closing remarks.
Hors d'oeuvre and and beverages will be served, emphasizing a local and organic selection.
About the Carbon Caps Task Force – The CCTF is a committee of the Omni Center for Peace, Justice, and Ecology (www.omnicenter.org), and was instrumental in establishing the Governor's Commission on Global Warming. Since the Commission was appointed, the CCTF has continued to support their work through other projects and continues to raise awareness of climate change issues in Arkansas.
The GCGW (www.arclimatechange.us) will consider, evaluate, and compile a multi-sector set of recommended policy options and present them to the Governor. Members are appointed by the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Arkansas State Senate, and the Speaker of the Arkansas House of Representatives. The GCGW comprises a diverse group of stakeholders who bring broad perspective and expertise to the topic of climate change in Arkansas. Members represent the following sectors: energy, agriculture, forestry, industry, business, non-governmental organizations, academia, and government. The GCGW was formed by Gov. Beebe in response to public input from the Carbon Caps Task Force and the Citizens' First Congress in 2007.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Meet members of the Governor's Commission on Global Warming on Sunday May 18 in Springdale

Keeping Arkansas Beautiful

Do you care about global warming in Arkansas?
Come meet the people who are making a difference.

Members of the Governor’s Commission on Global Warming
are coming to Northwest Arkansas just to meet you!


Reception 3 p.m. May 18, 2008
at St. Thomas Episcopal Church
48th Street and Watkins Ave
Exit Interstate 540 onto U.S. 412, then South on 48th Street
Springdale Arkansas
St. Thomas is the church with windmills east of Interstate 540

Wine and hors d’oeuvres
Sponsored by the Carbon Caps Task Force
of the Omni Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology

For details, call Robert McAfee, 479-638-0035
or e-mail Robertmca1@aol.com
Or
Gladys Tiffany, 479-973-9049 or e-mail gladystiffany@yahoo.com

Build Hill Place right or don't build it

From Aubrey Shepherd's blogs:

The maps based on aerial photos below are reasonably new, and people who live in some houses along the Town Branch of the West Fork of the White River between Eleventh Street and Fifteenth Street who are paying on mortgages on their homes now have to pay for flood insurance.
A close look at the maps reveals that FEMA now acknowledges not only that many buildings in that stretch are either IN or immediately adjacent to the acknowledged flood plain but also that much of the infrastructure for the failed Aspen Ridge site was built in the flood plain between Sixth and Eleventh streets west of South Hill Avenue.
People who have lived in the neighborhood a long time know that the actual floodplain is much wider in places than the FEMA map shows.
While the developers of the Hill Place project are being required to remove a sewer line and blocks much of the flow under the bridge at Eleventh Street, they have not been told to build their proposed traffic bridge higher than the current walkiing bridge. In fact, they are proposing to build the traffic bridge LOWER than the walking bridge built in 2005 or 2006 across the stream. Because federal agencies will barely even look at the plans, the city must make the decision on this further construction in the floodplain.
In 2003 and 2004, the developers claimed that FEMA maps did not show floodplain in the area. Neighbors pointed out that the Town Branch FLOWED OVER much of that land frequently even though the government had not designated it as floodplain and that, not only did the stream flow over the bridge at Eleventh Street but sometimes flowed over the bridge at Fifteenth Street.
Just another example of NIMBIES being ignored in favor of developers and builders who don't care what harm their projects might do as long as they are able to reach the density level required to make a huge profit. People who say "Not in my backyard" in this neighborhood have seen the water there (and some have seen it in their houses or flowing in front of their houses); so they aren't talking about a trivial problem.
The lowest portion of the former wooded wetland at the southeast end of the project must be dug out and structured to pre-Aspen Ridge grade or lower to reapproach the historical flood-prevention capacity of that land.
No further paving should be done southeast of the existing walking bridge and the impervious fill dirt should be removed and water again should be allowed to soak into appropriate organic soil.
Developers claim their right to build as long as their project doesn't send more water off their land than flowed off there before.
They use voodoo mathematics that ignore overflow from the Town Branch and that ignore the nearly 100 percent permeability of the surface of the area before it was cleared and filled with rocky dirt and red clay.
They rely on the fact that water has threatened the downstream homes a little more each year during the decades the University of Arkansas has filled similar land on the campus and covered or dredged absorbent soil on the campus in favor of non-absorbent, non-organic soil and concrete.
Now is the time to begin to require developments to DECREASE downstream flooding, not aggravate it and blame the university for its building practices. Multiple wrong decisions don't add up to a right decision.

Monday, May 12, 2008

FEMA floodplain map of Aspen Ridge/Hill Place and streets downstream

Please click on image to ENLARGE.

Please click on image to ENLARGE.

Please attend meetings Thursday and Sunday

PLEASE CLICK on IMAGE for EASIER READING.

The original project failed to be completed but did great environmental harm. The current effort is to ensure that the developers of the replacement project maximize their effort to protect the environment.
Also, please see information a few posts down on the Sunday meeting with members of the Governor's Task Force on Global Warming on Sunday.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

2008 OMNI Peace Garden Tour map

Please click on blue "view larger map" below map to ENLARGE and to see list of sites and addresses and to convert to other types of maps or to use the map to travel virtually around the planet online.


View Larger Map

Interactive map of 2008 tour of peace gardens

Copy and paste this link in email to send to others:

http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?hl=en&client=news&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=107917042384490530765.00044caa96cfb37b9d8e5
place holder post

Map to OMNI Center for Peace, Justice, Ecology

Click link below to enlarge. Use choices at right to switch to satellite map view. Move cursor to move view to any place on earth.

View Larger Map

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Meet members of the Governor's Commission on Global Warming on May 18 in Springdale

Keeping Arkansas Beautiful

Do you care about global warming in Arkansas?
Come meet the people who are making a difference.

Members of the Governor’s Commission on Global Warming
are coming to Northwest Arkansas just to meet you!


Reception 3 p.m. May 18, 2008
at St. Thomas Episcopal Church
48th Street and Watkins Ave
Exit Interstate 540 onto U.S. 412, then South on 48th Street
Springdale Arkansas
St. Thomas is the church with windmills east of Interstate 540

Wine and hors d’oeuvres
Sponsored by the Carbon Caps Task Force
of the Omni Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology

For details, call Robert McAfee, 479-638-0035
or e-mail Robertmca1@aol.com
Or
Gladys Tiffany, 479-973-9049 or e-mail gladystiffany@yahoo.com

Thursday, May 1, 2008

World Press Freedom Day brings imbedded photographer to OMNI Center

As part of World Press Freedom Day, the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice, and Ecology and the Northwest Arkansas chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists will commemorate journalists killed while gathering news in the service of an informed public.
This event will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 3, at United Campus Ministry, 902 W. Maple St., at the corner of Storer and Maple in Fayetteville.
The speaker will be Michael Woods, who will present slides and speak about his experiences covering the war in Iraq. Woods has been a photographer for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since June 2000. He was the fifth photographer from the Democrat-Gazette to be embedded with the Arkansas National Guard during its first deployment in Iraq. He was there from November 2004 until February 2005. He won an award from Editor and Publisher magazine in the news photo category for one of his photographs from his Iraq coverage.


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Dick Bennett
OMNI Center for Peace, Justice, and Ecology