stories from the Public Lab community
This past weekend, Public Lab and Recharge NOLA, with Water Wise 7th Ward, led a joint workshop to build rain gauges and rain barrels with New Orleans 7th Ward residents at Dillard Community Resource Center. Over the course of the event, 20 participants worked to build 11 rain gauges and 11 rain barrels.
For the first part of the workshop, participants shared ideas and examples for why rain gauges are useful and important. For example:
We then used instructions based off of these materials to consturct rain gauges together.
This was the first time I had done this workshop, so gathering edits and ideas for the instructional materials was really helpful. For example the materials need to explicitly say that the gauges need to sit on a flat surface when people are drawing the lines, and that using food coloring in the water can make the water line easier to see. Participants also brainstormed ideas on how to set the gauges up outside after the event, for example we discussed options around signposts, zip ties, hose clamps, and even flower pots.
In the second part of the workshop, Hilairie Schackai with Recharge NOLA, a partner of Water Wise Water Wise used materials she had put together ([available here] (http://bit.ly/DIY_RWH_WaterWiseNOLA_updated11-22-15)) to explain the importants, and the various uses of rain barrels. She then walk participants through constructing their own barrels.
I had never participated in a rain barrel workshop before and some of the important takeaways I had from the experience were that:
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Lead photo from Promise in the Sand Facebook page
This week, Wendy Johnson & Jim Tittle of Midwest Pictures, LLC released their new documentary "Promise in the Sand" about frack sand mining in the Driftless region. The 24 minute piece follows the communities still struggling with the economic, environmental, and human health impacts of this arm of the fracking industry. Friends featured in this piece include the Swenson family (@dswenson), and Hank Bochon (referenced in the Community Science Forum: the frac sand issue here) of www.lookdownpictures.com. "Promise in the Sand" is a follow up to Midwest Pictures' first documentary on the frack sand mining issue, "The Price of Sand," that was released in 2013. It also comes on the heals of Dr. Thomas Pearson's recent book, "When the Hills are Gone: Frac Sand Mining and the Struggle for Community."
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