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Sunday, July 14, 2024

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VA law prevents utility shutoffs in extreme circumstances; MI construction industry responds to a high number of worker suicides; 500,000 still without power or water in the Houston area; KY experts: Children, and babies at higher risk for heat illness.

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The House passes the SAVE Act, but fails to hold Attorney General Merrick Garland in inherent contempt of Congress, and a proposed federal budget could doom much-needed public services.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Pollinator festival, mural highlight rusty-patched bumblebee in Ohio

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Monday, June 10, 2024   

An upcoming festival in Columbus, Ohio, aims to raise awareness about the plight of pollinators and ongoing conservation efforts.

According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, as of 2020 there are more than 70 species of pollinators marked as endangered or threatened. Climate change is blamed for driving the numbers of North American bumblebees down nearly 50% since 1974.

Kenia Lamarr, an artist in Columbus, noted the rusty-patched bumblebee, listed as a federally endangered species in 2017, is now only rarely spotted in Ohio. Lamarr recently created a mural in honor of the species in the Columbus's Linden neighborhood. She said public art displays can play a role in capturing attention and inspiring action toward conservation efforts.

"While I was working on the mural, community members stopped in and were able to have conversations with me and to express their connection to the bumblebee," Lamarr recounted.

The Endangered Species Coalition is commemorating 50 years of the Endangered Species Act by sponsoring murals throughout the country. A pollinator festival and party on June 15 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in Linden will celebrate the mural's unveiling.

Dianne Kadonaga, owner of Sunny Glen community garden and coordinator for the group Connecting Community Corridor of People Pollinators and the Planet, said at least 20% of households in Linden and the surrounding region lack access to reliable transportation, so having access to a hyper-local garden allows people to share garden equipment, seeds and plants, and knowledge.

"I wanted to keep the project hyper-local within a mile or two of the Sunny Glen garden," Kadonaga explained. "It's the main demonstration garden, where we have a pocket pollinator prairie garden, a woodland garden and a rain garden, all with native plants to the area."

Sunny Glen will be giving away native plants on June 15 which specifically help support the rusty-patched bumblebee, and many other pollinators and local wildlife.


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