Environment

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TreesCharlotte summit focuses on city tree canopy

Gingko trees in uptown Charlotte show their colors in November. Photo: Nancy Pierce Concerned about Charlotte’s tree canopy? The UNC Charlotte Urban Institute and the nonprofit TreesCharlotte are sponsoring an Urban Forestry Summit on Sept. 20. The event is free and open to the public. 

Mecklenburg recycling: What do you do? Know? Want?

Trash piles up at a trash bin. Photo: Nancy Pierce Mecklenburg County wants to hear from residents about recycling. With the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute’s help, the county has launched an online survey. Those who take it can register for a chance to win an Apple iPad.

Booming York County growth provokes zoning, impact fee debates

New construction near Lake Wylie. Photo: Mae Israel The pace of growth in northern York County concerns residents, who worry officials aren’t paying enough attention to the environment or moving quickly enough to deal with problems.

Disease and old age afflict Charlotte’s tree canopy

Grier Heights with street trees and cankerworm bands. Photo: Mae Israel Lurking silently beneath the beauty of Charlotte’s tree canopy is a persistent problem with ailing trees. The issue significantly affects the city’s efforts to preserve and replenish its most treasured amenity.

Designing for indoor air quality: Talking with Jefferson Ellinger

Active Modular Phytoremediation System, at a public safety call center in the Bronx, N.Y.  Photo courtesy Jefferson Ellinger Air quality is important inside buildings as well as outside. A UNC Charlotte associate professor is using indoor plants to filter out pollutants in the air inside several new buildings. A conversation with Jefferson Ellinger. Part of the KEEPING WATCH on AIR initiative.

A city of trees, but for how long? Canopy is loved but threatened

City tree canopy, view of JCSU. Photo: Nancy Pierce In Charlotte, a shared passion about trees inspires community activism, marked by a keen admiration of the beauty of trees and pragmatism about protecting their environmental significance to the city. Part of 2016’s KEEPING WATCH on AIR.

These trees are the champions

The champion Alaska cedar at Historic Rosedale Plantation. Photo courtesy N.C. Forest Service In a city that loves its trees, some stout survivors have won a special, statewide honor: Champion Trees. For more about Charlotte’s tree canopy and the role of trees in protecting air quality, visit keepingwatch.org.

A ‘winning strategy’ for air quality? Better city design

UNCC Assistant Professor Brian Magi of the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences. Photo: Lynn Roberson, UNC Charlotte What’s the state of air quality in Mecklenburg County today? A discussion with Brian Magi, a UNC Charlotte academic who studies air pollution. Part of the KEEPING WATCH on AIR initiative.

At 80, biologist Matthews still stalks the threatened landscapes

Jim Matthews, botanist, treks the woods at Reedy Creek Nature Preserve with herbarium curator Catherine Luckenbaugh. Jim Matthews, a retired UNC Charlotte biology professor, is a botanist whose mission is to collect and catalog the plants of the 15-county region of the North Carolina Piedmont, preserving a record of what we have, before it’s lost to development.

What birds tell us about Mecklenburg’s environment

This loggerhead shrike, nesting near the Regal Starlight movie theater in northeast Mecklenburg County, was one of the last of its species in the county. The bird and its mate are no longer there. Photo: Tom Sanders 2011 A mostly volunteer team of “citizen scientists” is helping Mecklenburg County track which bird species are reappearing, or disappearing as development changes the local habitat. An interview with naturalist Don Seriff.