It's time for another exciting installment of Beargrass News Roundup-- where we find research and share it with you, our readers.
Want to get caught up on previous local news segments of Beargrass News?
Want to check out other nature groups in Kentucky?
Want to help save native wildlife--and the Earth!--while learning about how native plants can restore Kentucky's ecosystem? Wild Ones Louisville (link)
Want to learn more about the amazing and sometimes VERY rare native plants in Kentucky? : Kentucky Native Plant Society (link)
Interested in Spelunking , aka exploring and mapping caves? :The Louisville Grotto (Iink)
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Beavers in Beargrass? A Beargrass Beaver?
For the first time in decades, beavers (the animal!) have been spotted in Beargrass Creek, the largest urban waterway in the city of Louisville.
This is great news, just as it is undergoing a groundbreaking $3 million dollar restoration plan courtesy of the Army Corps of Engineers. This plan will review what it would take to restore ALL THREE FORKS of the Beargrass Creek watershed and change its role from an urban sewer to a community asset.
If we look at it through the linear park model, this this could be a bike or pedestrian path under 264 from major suburbs to downtown Louisville and the waterfront. Branding wise, this would be the urban answer to the Parklands of Floyds Fork and the new plans for a linear park in Southern Indiana.
Combined with the Louisville Loop in Jefferson County periphery, this would enhance quality of life for the suburbs by giving Boomers and Millennials a different way to commute to work and activities WITHOUT feeling like you are going to die.
Speaking of commuting....
Louisville commuters share the distinction of being the 2nd best drivers in the nation, although you wouldn't know it on Hurstbourne Parkway.
The average Louisvillian spends over 9 days a year alone in their car driving to work.
According to the Washington Post study, decreasing Kentucky's single occupancy vehicles (SOV) is the safest (hello, texting while driving) and more efficient way for cities to be able to support a larger population with the least amount of downsides (traffic, accidents, air pollution).
Read what James Bruggers from the Courier-Journal said about this:
" "A new study sheds light on how Louisvillians get to work. Among the highlights, we're older and we like to drive our cars, trucks or vans alone.Among the nation's 30 largest cities:-- We have the oldest commuters: median age 41.7 compared to Boston's 34.4-- We have the largest percentage of people who drive to work alone: 82.9 percent compared to 21.4 percent for New York.--
And, for some good news, we have the third shortest average travel time: 21.6 minutes, compared to New York's 39.7, and an average for all U.S. workers of 25.8 minutes.Louisville also has the second smallest percentage of workers who work at home, at 2.4 percent, one behind Memphis, at 2.1 percent. The winners in the work-at-home category? Austin, Texas, and Portland, Oregon, were tied with 7.1 percent.The analysis of 2013 U.S. Census data came out of the University of Michigan and shows 0.5 percent of us ride our bikes to work. That's not much, but it's better than El Paso, which had the poorest showing for bike commuters, at 0.1 percent."
With increased emissions, the Ohio River Valley can become a miniature greenhouse during the summer, and increased vehicle emissions could be directly linked to our Urban Heat Island effect currently happening downtown.
Read more on how the city is trying to combat this (and how you can help!) here
Be a part of the largest tree planting in Louisville!
Louisville Grows needs YOUR help!
In the Meriwether/Fort Hill neighborhood, named for the TWO civil war fortresses located in the neighborhood, Louisville Grows aims to plant over 220 trees in a single day! This is HUGE!
Sign up to help here:
The Pipeline Clusterf**k Continues
LG& E ( Louisville Gas and Electric Company's, who also own Kentucky Utilities), the regional energy monopoly, plan to build a 12-inch-wide natural gas pipeline through a section of Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest .
Bernheim Forest and Arboreteum, one of the oldest private land preserves in the entire United States, purchased a tract of land that was marked as having a conservation easement., which is something that is supposed tokeep land from being developed....forever. So why can LG&E change government law to build a pipeline? (Short Answer: McMansion development along Salt River/Floyds Fork)
Fortunately , the Kentucky Bureau of has sided WITH Bernheim Forest, against one of the largest energy monopolies in the state.
Ohio Highways Saving Money with Flower Power
If you've driven through Ohio recently,chances are you've seen the flowers on the side of the interstate. The reason is that ODOT decided that it was actually cheaper and better for the environment to plant flowers instead.
As part of a new program, ODOT will be ‘naturalizing’ from 30-feet away from the edge of the highway all the way back to the fences along the interstate, creating what they call pollinator habitats. These are aimed at helping bees and butterflies by growing more of the native wildflowers they use to grow and survive.
And they are saving a LOT of money.
Louisville Seeking Public Input on Climate Change
With President Trump taking the United States out of the Paris Accord, the global pledge to reduce carbon emissions in order to prevent global temperatures from rising more than 2 °C , the responsibility has now fallen to city governments to find ways to reduce.
Take the survey!
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