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News 2008-2009

2009

2009 International Conference on Ecology and Transportation (ICOET)

Gooseberry Falls BridgeICOET 2009 was held September 13-17 at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center in Duluth, Minnesota.  Both successful and well-attended, the conference welcomed an estimated 400 participants representing more than 16 countries and tribal nations.  Over 120 presentations were included in the program, which also featured the Federal Highway Administration Environmental Excellence Awards ceremony on Monday, September 14 and two field trips hosted by Minnesota DOT.  Visit the ICOET Web site for more details.

Photo courtesy David Larson, Mn/DOT



Students Gain Education and Experience in Context Sensitive Solutions

TR News May-June 2009In an article published in the May-June 2009 issue of TR News, James Martin, associate director of the Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE) discusses how the partnership between CTE, North Carolina State University, and the North Carolina Department of Transportation provides students with experiential learning opportunities in context sensitive solutions. The article, "Introducing Context-Sensitive Solutions to the Next Generation of Transportation Professionals," gives an overview of the programs for graduate and undergraduate engineering students; citing examples of the various components of the programs as well as noting benefits for the participants. For information about CSS Summer Academy activities and presentations, see the Context Sensitive Solutions Summer Academy page.

TR News, May-June 2009, p. 30. Copyright, Transportation Research Board, National Research Council, Washington, D.C. Cover reproduced with permission of TRB.

2008

Improved Methods for Assessing Social, Cultural, and Economic Effects of Transportation Projects:  Final Report.  Performed by the Center for Transportation and the Environment under subcontract to Cambridge Systematics, Inc.

This report, requested by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), identifies existing and emerging community and social impact assessment measures that can be used as indicators of the quality of a community's life.  The report provides an in-depth, cross-disciplinary literature review and interviews with scholars both outside and within the transportation profession to build on current Community Impact Assessment practice.  It lays the foundation for understanding measures of community wellbeing and organizes them into a framework of three domains that reflect the inter-relationships that define community wellbeing:  physical health,  economic wellbeing, and social capital, defined as the social networks through which norms of reciprocity and trustworthiness develop.

In addition to improved measures, three categories of improvements to current methodology and analysis are described:  analyzing traditional data sources in new ways, adopting data used by other disciplines, and utilizing new data sources available from non-traditional sources The report demonstrates the utility of the framework and measures by applying the approach to a case study to understand how well a community is functioning and identify areas where a major transportation project could be expected to have major effects.

The report is primarily targeted towards the transportation practitioner charged with understanding and assessing community effects.  However, the concepts and methods will also be of interest to long-range planners and management personnel as their work requires understanding how transportation systems, projects, and programs relate to community quality of life.

The full report is available at StatewidePlanning.org

Cover of Transportation Land-Use Planning and Air Quality Conference Proceedings

Transportation Land-Use Planning and Air Quality Conference Proceedings

Printed proceedings of the 2007 Transportation Land-Use Planning and Air Quality Conference are available for order. The 444-page book, published by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), contains 40 papers presented at the conference held July 9-11, 2007 in Orlando, Florida.  CTE served as an official co-sponsor of the conference.

This proceedings will be valuable to engineers, researchers, and planners. The papers address important issues in the field of transportation planning, land-use, and air quality, as well as the latest developments and innovative practices. Topics discussed include Transportation Modeling and Local Transportation Issues; Transit and Air Quality; Environmental Impacts of Freight; Electric Vehicles, Diesel and Alternative Fuels; Climate Change; and many more.

The publication can be purchased through the ASCE Web site.

EPA Announces Final Report of 2008 Report on the Environment

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the availability of the EPA’s 2008 Report on the Environment, also known as the EPA 2008 ROE. An update of the draft that was released in 2003, this report addresses “trends in the condition of the nation’s environment” that provide a basis for EPA priorities and also allow the public to “understand trends in the condition of the air, water, land, and human health of the United States.” The report is available in PDF format at http://cfpub.epa.gov/ncea/cfm/recordisplay.cfm?deid=190806.

2008 National Wetlands Award

The National Wetlands Awards Program recognizes individuals for their wetland conservation efforts and dedication to protecting these important natural resources. The 2008 Award is being presented to seven individuals in six categories.

Among the winners, John Dorney, supervisor of the North Carolina Division of Water Quality’s Program Development Unit, is the recipient in the state, tribal, and local program development category. Dorney is being honored for his instrumental work in the development of North Carolina's wetland and stream protection programs.

The National Wetlands Awards program is co-sponsored by the Environmental Law Institute, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, USDA Forest Service, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, Federal Highway Administration, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service. The presentation ceremony will be held May 13, 2008, in Washington, DC.

More information on the National Wetlands Awards and the 2008 awardees is available online at www.nationalwetlandsawards.org.

 

   
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