Redline Heat

Redline Heat

Groundwork RVA, a community-based non-profit in Richmond, Virginia, is working to build climate safe neighborhoods in communities where the ramifications of historic redlining are still ubiquitous. (Image: Groundwork RVA) It’s summer. It’s hot. But it’s more than just...
Farms Under Threat

Farms Under Threat

A 2020 report by the American Farmland Trust assesses farmland preservation policies by state and sets out a call to action to strengthen them. (All graphics: Farms Under Threat/AFT) Recently Lightning Update explored implications of the pandemic on farming in part 1...
Redressing Land Wrongs

Redressing Land Wrongs

In 1910, Black farmers owned about 15 million acres of farmland in the U.S. That amount has declined dramatically due to a variety of discriminatory practices, one of many “land wrongs.” (Photo: Black farmers in the Gravel Hill area of Henrico County,...
Farms Amidst the Pandemic, Part 2

Farms Amidst the Pandemic, Part 2

Farming is a big part of the landscape and a big share of Chesapeake land conservation. This week we explore the reality or potential of regional food distribution systems for supporting farmers. (Photo: CCP) Chesapeake conservationists spend a lot of resources...
Unanticipated Spectacle

Unanticipated Spectacle

Morning dawns at McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area, northwest of Washington DC and close by the Potomac River. The sunflowers will be aglow in minutes. (Photos: Clandestine Wren Photography) Each July and August several fields at the 2,000 acre McKee-Beshers...
Farms Amidst the Pandemic, Part 1

Farms Amidst the Pandemic, Part 1

Masked up shoppers at the Anne Arundel County Farmer’s Market in Annapolis (above), and apparently at other markets, have driven sales higher for a number of Chesapeake farmers during the pandemic. (Photos: above and first two below — Doherty; others...
Open Space for People, not Cars

Open Space for People, not Cars

Now is the time for thinking about creative solutions to public open space, including reducing the vast swaths of urban real estate dedicated to cars, not people. (Illustration: Practice for Architecture and Urbanism via New York Times) Back in May, still in the...
The Race for Nature

The Race for Nature

The Center for American Progress recently released “The Race for Nature,” the third report in a continuing series on strategies for achieving a “30 x 30” conservation goal. We continue to explore implications for conservation from both the...
Maps to Understand Our World

Maps to Understand Our World

Earlier this month, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced the release of ConserveVirginia 2.0, an interactive map system for viewing Virginia land conservation priorities. (Image: Virginia DCR) Conservationists have always relied on maps. And that is never more...