As the United States enters its fifth month battling the COVID-19 pandemic, a patchwork of economic impacts and responses has materialized around the country. The coronavirus first hit large, globally connected cities, but is now spreading rapidly throughout the South and in smaller places. In Northern states and on the West Coast, governments acted quickly and forcefully to shut down businesses and have generally been slower to reopen them. Shutdowns in the South lasted for a relatively short period, only to recommence recently as cases began to spike. Meanwhile, local economies that relied heavily on industries such as tourism, energy, retail, and small business have endured massive setbacks, while those focused in financial services and other global services industries have felt lesser impacts. Follow this link to learn more.
The Western Center for Metropolitan Extension and Research has released the next white paper in their Leading Edge Dialogue series: Fulfilling the Land Grant University Mission: Extension and Community-Based Applied Research, co-authored by Lou Swanson (Colorado State University). Major themes of the discussion included: recognizing Extension’s emerging role-shift into inter- and multi-disciplinary work across the university system; establishing Extension as a co-creative partner with other public institutions in the work of community development and applied research; and exploring methodologies to advance workforce development and urban-rural interdependencies through programming. Follow this link to learn more.
All Extension professionals are invited to join this informative webinar series on incorporating Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion into Extension programs from planning to evaluation. The webinar series will begin Monday, July 13, 2020 at 3 p.m. EDT. Follow this link to learn more.
National Urban Extension Leaders (NUEL), in collaboration with the Southern Rural Development Center and Michigan State University, are excited to host a listening dialogue to inform decision makers next steps in addressing inequities internal to urban Extension and supporting urban Extension professionals to meet the needs of the communities served.
This supportive dialogue space was designed with all urban Extension professionals in mind, regardless of position or tenure. Everyone living and working in urban areas has ideas on how Extension can better support the community. The report will be reviewed by NUEL to map a strategy complementing current and historical contributions. Feedback will also be shared with state Extension administrators to help inform their next steps. The dialogue will be held on Monday, July 20, 2020, 2-3:30 p.m. EDT. Follow this link to register.
This project investigated the effects of adding a mycorrhizal fungal inoculant on three plants species growing in stormwater biofilters. They evaluated the impacts on both plant establishment and on plant stress and pollutant removal after two durations of drought. The results found that adding mycorrhizae had minimal impact on plant growth and stress tolerance of the tree species, Melaleuca ericifolia, and had a similar impact on sedge species. Interestingly, different species reacted differently to inoculant addition with regards to water quality improvement. Removal of nitrogen and phosphorus was improved with added inoculant in one of the sedge species both before and after a two-week dry period. These results show that mycorrhizal inoculants may be a promising amendment to biofiltration systems for improving water quality, but are less likely to improve plant health and tolerance to drought. The webinar is being held Tuesday, July 14, 2020 at 5 p.m. EDT. Follow this link to learn more.
Social Equity Impact of COVID-19 on Communities a panel discussion will be the third in a series of events on “Cities and Regions in the Post-Coronavirus Era,” initiating community conversations on what lessons can be learned from the crisis to create a more resilient and sustainable world. This webinar will be held on July 31, 2020, 12-1 p.m EDT. Follow this link to learn more.
Extreme heat and its health impacts are on the rise. Annually, extreme heat already causes more deaths in the United States than all other weather-related causes combined, with effects most pronounced in urban areas. Reducing urban heat exposure is an equity issue. In this webinar (July 8, 2020, 1-2:15 p.m. EDT), speakers will introduce the efforts of the Los Angeles Urban Cooling Collaborative (LAUCC) – a multi-disciplinary, national partnership of researchers and practitioners working to understand and implement urban cooling strategies and the heat-health impacts on the human body. Follow this link to connect to the webinar.