Issue 14.37 | Aug. 5, 2014
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CHARLESTON, S.C., Aug. 5, 2014 -- If you think it's hot this summer, just wait 45 years. Unless something is done to mitigate the amount of greenhouse gases pumped into the sky, heat waves will be longer and more intense -- and more people will die in South Carolina.
A new study of heat and its impact in the eastern U.S. by researchers at Emory University and other institutions suggests "that numbers of heat wave-related deaths are likely to be an order of magnitude higher in 2057-2059 than in 2002-2004. ... Effective mitigation and adaptation measures will be crucial to reduce the potential for catastrophic outcomes, particularly in the most vulnerable geographic regions."
In other words, the weather of the future is going to get worse unless policymakers deal with greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
According to the research, there was a 40 percent chance of at least one heat wave in the eastern United States in 2002-2004 and it lasted an average of 3.4 days. Using modeling, the study projected two outcomes for the future:
The new Emory study reflects the kind of data found in a 2013 report by the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (DNR). The 101-page study, "Climate Change Impacts to Natural Resources in South Carolina," was conducted as part of the department's mission to be the steward of the state's natural resources, which DNR says pumps about $30 billion a year into the state and is responsible for about 230,000 jobs.
DNR Director Alvin Taylor of South Carolina wrote in the report's forward: "Access to abundant recreational opportunities and natural assets play an important role in economic growth and quality of life at the local, regional and state levels, so protection and enhancement of our natural resources can and should be part of our overall economic development strategy. Any changes to our coastal environment could cause substantial economic consequences. Shoreline changes affect property uses, land values, tourism, and natural resources management as well as traditional uses such as hunting and fishing, timber management and agriculture."
And as the new Emory heat study highlights, unless something is done sooner than later, it's likely that heat waves will get longer and more people will die from the heat.
AUG. 5, 2014 -- As the 2014-15 school year opens today in Gwinnett, it could be that traffic will get more compact as 1,600 yellow buses hit the road, transporting 127,000 Gwinnett students on three different routings twice a day. It's the equivalent to driving 130,000 miles a day, or 58 round-trips of the 2,218 mile trip from Atlanta to Los Angeles each day. That's $60,000 each day for diesel fuel! (The anticipated first day enrollment is 172,383 students, but not all ride the bus.)
Wow! Our school bus drivers put in a tremendous mileage. And they do all this while having an admirable accident record, which is half the statewide average. These drivers are something else! One of the reasons for Gwinnett having such a low accident record is that Gwinnett gives the drivers 120 hours of training, compared to about 40 hours for some other nearby districts.
We learned this last week as Dr. Frances Davis, the assistant superintendent of the Gwinnett Public schools for human resources, addressed more than 2,000 drivers, managers and other personnel at a training session at Hebron Baptist Church last week. (Thanks to Hebron for the space. You need a big hall, like Hebron, for that many people!)
Dr. Davis was in front of the bus drivers speaking also as a member of the Gwinnett Rotary Club. The club recognized the drivers by handing out door prizes, and also provided them with a Chick-Fil-A meal. (It took the work of four different Chick-Fil-A franchises to have a hot chicken sandwich for that big a group.)
Rotary President Chuck Warbington welcomed the drivers and praised them
for what they do.
"These incredible individuals carry our most precious cargo daily. They are the first to greet our children in the morning and the last to get them home safely after a full day at school. They do this with the utmost concern for safety and with little fanfare. The bus drivers are one of the critical components to the fabric of what makes Gwinnett a great place to live and work."
Grant Reppert, the school district's director of transportation, said: "I am thrilled by the Rotary Club's recognition of the effort and commitment our bus managers and monitors make to the children of Gwinnett County. This is a fine gesture to recognize a very valuable group of GCPS employees. Every day our bus managers and monitors are focused on student safety while transporting students. They are trained and trusted to make the safe decision on the spot and in the moment."
Dr. Davis gave the drivers successful tips in driving. They included:
than anything else, Frances Davis challenged the drivers to work toward
good thinking, for "good thinkers are in demand. When success is
concerned, people are not measured in inches or pounds or degrees, or
family background. They are measured by the size of their thinking."
The public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring GwinnettForum.com to you at no cost to readers. Today's sponsor is Aurora Theatre, the professional theatre of Gwinnett County and home of the best entertainment in Northeast Georgia. With over 600 events annually, Aurora Theatre has live entertainment to suit everyone's taste. Aurora Theatre's Peach State Federal Credit Union Signature Series is comprised of Broadway's best plays and musicals alongside exciting works of contemporary theatre. Additionally, Aurora produces concerts, club comedy events, children's programs, and metro Atlanta's top haunted attraction, Lawrenceville Ghost Tours. Aurora Theatre is a world-class theatrical facility with two performances venues. It is nestled on the square in downtown Lawrenceville, with free attached covered parking and is surrounded by myriad of restaurants and shops.
Now Showing, Disney's and Cameron Mackintosh's Mary Poppins, the Broadway Musical, with several dates already sold-out -- tickets are going fast.
Editor, the Forum:
I forgot to email my answer to you for last Tuesday's mystery pix (had I done so, you would have had two correct responses...oh well).
Here's my little anecdote about what happened during one of my family's Colorado vacations years ago that included the Great Sand Dunes area.
While we were there, we actually got caught in a sandstorm and there was no "safe haven" in sight. Thank heavens we were inside the car. But, you should have seen the car afterwards!! Most of the paint was sandblasted off the surface. What a mess.
Lucky for us it was a rental car and, lucky for us and the rental car company, insurance paid for the entire repair costs. How's that for a vacation snippet?
Rant, rave, send us a letter
of Directors of Gwinnett Ballet Theatre have announced that Whitney Sue
Jones will be the new School Administrator effective immediately in preparation
for the new school year just beginning.
has been affiliated with Gwinnett Ballet Theatre since childhood when
she began taking ballet at the age of 4. She continued dancing with GBT
under the direction of Lisa Sheppard Robson, performing roles such as
the Sugar Plum Fairy in GBT's annual production of "The Nutcracker"
and many other leading roles.
Ms. Jones has been in charge of GBT's outreach program "The Dance Project" for the past two years, a project that has seen great growth and influence on the lives of Title 1 school children over that period of time.
GBT Board Chairman Len Diprima says: "Initially a beautiful dancer and student at GBT, later an excellent instructor and now in a leadership role, we are very excited about this development and believe that Whitney Sue will be a great asset to our organization in wonderful new ways."
Suwanee's Concert and Wing Fest to be August 16
Alternative rock band Everclear will headline the City of Suwanee's August 16 Concert and Wing Fest. This summer's community concert marks the 10th anniversary of music, movies, festivals, and more at Suwanee's Town Center Park. Sean Mullins headlined Town Center Park's very first concert on August 14, 2004.
Everclear was Billboard's Modern Rock Band of the Year in 1998. Over a decade from 1994-2004, the band had three platinum or double-platinum albums and several hits, including "Father of Mine," "Wonderful," and "Santa Monica."
This summer's community concert is being combined with a wing festival that will feature a variety of the saucy, finger-lickin' fare from area restaurants. The wing festival and musical performances will begin at 5:30 p.m. at Town Center Park with Everclear taking the stage about 8:30 p.m.
Hunter Callahan, Nine Times Blue, and The Athens Band will perform before Everclear.
A celebrity wing-eating contest will be part of the evening's activities. Attendees also will be invited to vote for their favorite wings from among the vendors at the festival.
Bring blankets, chairs, and picnics, but no alcohol may be brought into Town Center Park. Beer and wine will be available for purchase from concert vendors and licensed Town Center merchants.
Gwinnett Tech photography program to have Buford exhibition
The 2014 graduating seniors of Gwinnett Technical College's photography program will display their work at a portfolio presentation at Hot Pan Productions in Buford on August 16 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Hot Pan Productions is located at 554 Main Street in Buford. To reach them, call (770) 932-1670.
presentation will consist of work from the photography program's graduating
seniors representing genres such as photojournalism, advertising, wedding
scenes, portraiture and landscape. All images will be for sale.
officials have learned that Fitch Ratings has reaffirmed the government's
AAA credit rating with a stable outlook. The rating affirmed Gwinnett
County's debt of $19.1 million in general obligation bonds, $806.3 million
in water and sewer bonds and $89.9 million in development authority bonds.
On a train traveling west, the narrator, Jim Burden, discovers he has a mutual friend with a fellow traveler. Burden begins to reminisce on childhood days in Nebraska, as he focuses on the rugged, harsh landscape and the many immigrants who staked a claim to homesteads. One in particular, Antonia, befriends him, and in return, he teaches her English and they explore the open prairie. As they grow older, changes in social status force them apart, with Jim going to college and Antonia leaving the homestead to marry a suitor in faraway Denver. As the years progress, we see Antonia struggle while Jim is a successful attorney in New York City. They reunite after 20 years, Antonia now happy and settled in a large, boisterous family, while Jim reflects on how Antonia has been a constant force in his life.
From the first days of their freedom, Georgia's freed slaves demanded formal education. Legislation passed in 1829 had made it a crime to teach slaves to read, and legislation and white attitudes discouraged literacy within Georgia's small free black community.
Yet when schools for freed people opened in early 1865, they were crowded to overflowing. Within a year of black freedom, at least 8,000 former slaves were attending schools in Georgia; eight years later, black schools struggled to contain nearly 20,000 students.
While northern private benevolence and the federal government deserve credit for aiding black education in Georgia during Reconstruction, the primary impetus and sustaining force came from the state's African Americans. The first postwar schools were former clandestine schools, operating openly by January 1865. Literate black men and women opened new, self-sustaining schools. Northern freedmen's aid organizations began establishing schools in mid-1865. Of the nearly fifty aid societies working in freedmen's education in the 1860s, only seven were active in Georgia. These benevolent organizations raised funds, recruited teachers, and attempted to keep the future of the freed people before the northern public.
Meanwhile, Congress created the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, popularly known as the Freedmen's Bureau, in March 1865. Though it did not hire teachers or operate schools itself, the Bureau assisted the aid societies in meeting the burgeoning African American demand for education. It rented buildings for schoolrooms, provided books and transportation for teachers, superintended the schools, and offered military protection for students and teachers against the opponents of black literacy.
Even where the Bureau and northern aid did reach into Georgia, however, the freedmen themselves provided a substantial amount of support for the schools. They paid monthly tuition fees, raised funds for teachers' room and board, purchased lots for schoolhouses, and donated material and labor to build them. They also created and supported schools that were independent of northern efforts. Until 1870, while sustaining their own schools, the freedmen-nearly half of the state's population-were also required to pay school taxes for privileges from which they were excluded.
Adult freedmen sought the benefits of literacy for themselves as avidly as they sought schools for their children. In winter and in the slack times between planting and harvesting, fathers and mothers recited beside their children in freedmen's schools. To meet the demand for education from adults who could not attend regular classes, the teachers organized night schools and Sabbath-day schools.
Throughout Reconstruction, teachers reported that adults often constituted one-third of their students. Adult students were also served by formal secondary and higher education institutions, ranging from normal schools for teacher training in Macon, Columbus, Savannah, and elsewhere, preparatory schools attached to colleges, and the colleges themselves: Atlanta University, Clark College (later Clark Atlanta University), and the Augusta Institute (later Morehouse College).
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(NEW) Groundbreaking for Phase Two of the Gwinnett Fire Department expansion of its Fire Academy, Tuesday, August 5, at 3:30 p.m. at 3608 Braselton Highway in Hamilton Mill. The new facility will feature a new academic building, three-bay apparatus building with classrooms and a large training pavilion The project is funded by the voter-approved 2009 SPLOST sales tax.
(NEW) Herbs in the Garden class taught by Gwinnett County Extension Service. It will be held August 14 at noon (one hour) at the Extension office at 750 S Perry Street in Lawrenceville. Herbs are excellent garden plants that require minimal maintenance and come in a variety of scents, flavors, and colors. There is no cost, but register by August 12. Contact Timothy Daly or call 678-377-4010.
Workshop for Aspiring
Writers, at Suwanee Public Library, Thursday, August 14 at
6:30 p.m. Leading the workshop will be Author Joe Samuel Starnes (author
of Fall Line), using the topic: Research: A Writer's Best Friend
and A Writer's Worst Enemy- Using Research in Your Fiction. For
more details, visit www.gwinnettpl.org.
MORE EEB PERSPECTIVE
Gwinnett Forum publisher Elliott Brack suggests that Gwinnett County needs a long-range list of continuing objectives for improving the county. Read more.
GwinnettForum.com is a twice-weekly online community commentary for exploring pragmatic and sensible social, political and economic approaches to improve life in Gwinnett County, Ga. USA.
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